Sunday, May 31, 2015

Le Smell - Review:- Friday 29.05.2015

Written by the brilliant Natalie Mitchell, whom, as a novice, I seem to recall, wrote the only episode under Newman's tenure which actually felt like an EastEnders' episode of old. A lifelong fan, Natalie Mitchell knows the characters of whom she writes. In fact, I'd like to see her do more writing for Sharon.

There are two stinks hanging around the Square at the moment.

Stink I.

Roswell Ronnie, stand up.

An over-rated, unlikeable character played by a mediocre actress. So shoot me. At the moment, there are three characters on the programme in dire need of instant karma - Jane and Bobby (for obvious reasons) and Ronnie.

I hope this is on the horizon. And soon. Several people think Ronnie, a woman who kills, the epitome of a strong woman. I disagree. Ronnie is as man-dependent as any woman on the Square, even if she only uses the man of the moment as an accessory and a means by which she can obtain a child. If she can control the man to her liking, so much the better, and he'll stick around. But she doesn't love these men, as much as she's obsessed by any of them. They're a means to an end.

Tonight, she purred contentedly as she sat on her sofa about the dream she had of having the three people whom she loved most living with her under the same roof - implied sentiment (so that she could keep an eye on and control all three). Where does that leave Amy, you might ask? Conveniently forgotten, that's where.

Another example of Ronnie's innate weakness is what she does whenever she gets in trouble over her head, and that's most of the time. Ronnie, being a psychopath, has innate arrogance and believes herself far superior to anyone around her. She fucks up, and turns to Phil. Kills a man in cold blood, watches dispassionately as his body is crushed to dust, then she steals a cool million from her cousin Phil and leaves a hold-all covered in his and the murder victim's DNA, along with a blood-stained phone, in his house. In a New York minute, Phil, Sharon and Roxy are all involved in a murder cover-up, and all are forced to keep their mouths shut for fear of prison and losing custody of their children. She gets a gun from Vincent "for protection" from the Whites, who haven't been seen for dust forever, and when it becomes too dangerous for her to handle, she drops it under the kitchen table, yes, at Phil's house.

How ironic that Ronnie's gun got used on Phil.

Tonight is no different.

For about five minutes into tonight's episode, Charlie was interesting once more - when he was refusing her phonecalls and when he found enough scrota to confront her about Vincent's claims. Up until that moment, Ronnie had been all smiles and syrupy sweetness, but that whole demeanor seemed, at one and the same time, so creepy and so false, I'm not surprised Charlie didn't buy it. Clock how quickly the Ice Queen emerged as soon as Charlie questioned her version of events.

To his credit, he didn't back down from her leveling the accusation of infidelity his way. He met it head on, and offered the same, spontaneous and unrehearsed rationale that Roxy has consistently used. And although Charlie denied that there was ever anything permanent in his feelings toward Roxy (a lie, as we all know - don't forget that it was Charlie who reckoned he'd married the wrong sister), Ronnie never once denied that, although she may not have been unfaithful with Vincent, she'd certainly thought about it.

Then, as soon as Charlie starts talking families and referring to Ronnie, Matthew and himself as a "team", he loses his balls again. He concedes to Ronnie, and this is "day one," for them as a family, but Ronnie's already been double-crossed once by Charlie, and now he joins the ranks of the sister she at once obsesses over and disdains as someone whom she cannot trust. 

Without trust, there isn't really a marriage.

Her truest colours showed tonight with the snide remark she made about Amy, in an indirect reference to her calling Roxy a slag the day before.

For big, tough Ronnie, she's spooked to the core by the fact that Vincent knows she's killed Carl White. She's spooked enough to enlist Phil's aid by demanding that Phil acquiesce to Vincent's one-off blackmail demand.

Quite honetly, the Mitchell showdown, fronted by Ronnie, tonight against Vincent was - I have to say it - fucking preposterous. Has Phil Mitchell so lost his marbles and his manhood to the extent that he will bow to pressure from Ronnie? He, himself, said she was a liability, and it was her insistence that he kill Nick Cotton, after she was bested by Nick, which brought about the accident she suffered. Oh yes, she'd stolen a hundred grand from Phil at that point, and Phil's said nothing about that. 

Well, now, Vincent's demand for his silence is The Albert, and we know from spoilers that Phil will forge Sharon's signature in order to give Vincent (and Ronnie) what they want. He will betray his wife, while his psychopathic cousin demands that Sharon act more like a Mitchell. Really, Ronnie? You seem to be the one who's left your family open to your bad behaviour. It's just dawned on me that Phil would even do something like this to Peggy, whom he also treated like shit from time to time.

Phil harps on about the concept of family. He needs to get his priorities straight. Phil's family is his wife, his son, his stepson and his ward. It's not the ice queen, psychopathic alien who regularly robs from him and leaves incriminating evidence lying about.

Someone needs to bump Ronnie off this time, because the actress playing her is clearly bored with the role.

As well as Sharon, who'll suffer massively in all of this, there's also Roxy to think about. 

Roxy is all over the place at the moment. Last night, she had one of many epiphanies she's had about Ronnie in the past - that Ronnie isn't content unless she's controlling every aspect of Roxy's life, so much so that Roxy believes that she can't function unless Ronnie is controlling her being. But last night's episode ended with a drunken Roxy crawling into bed with her self-satisfied sister, who's won the round again.

Tonight, Roxy realises, yet again, that she's been had, and she's doing exactly what Ronnie hopes she'll do. She drinks. Heavily. I felt immensely sorry for Roxy when she was drunkenly unburdening herself to Sharon in The Albert. Roxy's self-esteem is low, she feels inadequate that she isn't Ronnie. I actually liked the bond she was forging with Sharon, and I would love to see these two as friends. Ronnie doesn't need her, and Charlie doesn't need her. I suppose the game plan is for Ronnie to ensure that she and Charlie freeze Roxy out to such an extent that she feels isolated.

I do feel that Ronnie's downfall will come via Roxy. It's time she tore herself away from her sister's tit.

Finally, I loved Rita Simons's drunk scene with the woefully amateurish James Forde. Rita's facial expressions were hilarious.

Stink II.

Patrick is my hero. As he noted, himself, tonight, he sees right through Vincent. We even got a mention of Paul Trueman, one of the best characters on the programme since the Millennium. Patrick was right. As much as he loved Paul, Paul was always laying trouble at his door.

Was that a bit of thick foreshadowing when Vincent asked Patrick where Paul was, and Patrick informed Vincent that Paul was dead? It seemed as such, especially since Patrick was reminded of Paul so strongly by Vincent. The difference between Vincent and Paul is simple - Paul Trueman, ultimately, had compassion and a heart.

It doesn't help that Richard Blackwood continues to underperform, although I would think this is acting to the best of his ability. I hate the way he hisses all his s sounds. If it's supposed to remind us that he's a snake in the grass, it's too obvious. I imagine, since Vincent's sussed that Patrick is having a hard time financially, from the final demand for Council Tax (wait a moment ... don't the Trueman-Foxes pay monthly?), he'll "pay his way" as he said.

As much as I don't like Vincent, I like his family even less. Claudette is another inspid character played by an inadequate actress, and Donna is just vile. It wasn't enough for her to sit at that family get-together and belittle Kim and Denise, she has to accost Liam and undermine Carol's message about his studying, encouraging him to go against the grain of his grandmother's wishes and even encouraging him to pursue older women or girls sexually. She's really a vile creature, deserving of a slap.

Vincent's family looking down their noses at the Truemans?

I totally agree with Patrick. Vincent is a piece of dirt, and the sooner Kim realises that, the better.

The Return of the Native. Kush's useless platitude to Masood about how to deal with his children - Start building. Start building what? Bridges? The Masoods as a unit? I'm not sure, but Masood is. He channels the time when the Masoods were part of the community - owning the Post Office, a restaurant, even a market stall - although not all at once. They were close-knit but an integral part of the community.

Really, Masood? Because I seem to recall that Zainab looked fown her nose at everyone and everybody in the Square. So Masood's idea of building is to re-open the Masala Masood market stall.

Is Zainab on the horizon? 

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