Saturday, February 11, 2017

Daily Mediocrity - Review:- Thursday 09.02.2017 Part II

After the brilliantly depicted first part of Thursday night's offering, we settled down to a decidedly underwhelming second part, which accomplished precious little. From the brilliant Daran Little to the decidedly bland and mediocre Lauren Klee in one fell swoop.Then I recalled that Monday's episode should have been shown last Friday, but wasn't; and Tuesday's was Monday's. The first episode Thursday, would have been the cliffhanger for Tuesday.

Part II caught up with things, and it's no surprise that, as per usual, the second half of the week's offerings on EastEnders is almost always the weakest link in the week's worth of episodes. Why should this one be so different?

There was precious little to bang on about, except the following points:-

1. Jack (Again). Jack, I reckon, got spooked by the fact that Glenda kissed him goodnight when she thought he was asleep. Now, he's interpreting her every action or even attempt to help with the children as something it's not. He's acting like Jack always acts when he thinks he has an ax to grind - like a prick.

I must admit that her subtle kiss on the temple took me by surprise, but I watched it again, and it seemed that Glenda hesitated before she kissed him, ever so slightly, and I think it wasn't out of any sort of weird attraction, just because, I think, she felt that he may have needed that. It was a kiss of approbation, a maternal kiss; and she may have even been thinking of Ronnie and Roxy when she made that gesture. 

Anyway, the tea in the morning and the offer of attending the inquest, even ringing Max to provide moral support for Jack, were all well-intentioned efforts to provide Jack some support. Like it or not, Glenda is the grandmother to two of his children, and the mother of his late wife. Yet it seems to me that Jack is still that much self-obsessed that he's worried, on the one hand, that Glenda might be developing some sort of untoward and unnatural affection for him. Cougar-ish behaviour - but then, it's only natural of Jack to think that, being the male slut that he is. So in his own inimitable way, he seeks to sideline her. 

Glenda isn't stupid. She knows she's getting on his nerves.

Inevitably, he's handed the opportunity he wants to get her out of his children's lives, when he finds that the inquest has found that Roxy's blood and urine showed cocaine traces and her general autopsy showed a history of mild substance abuse. She died from cardiac arrest, which occurred as she hit the cold water in the swimming pool. Ronnie drowned, entangled in the train of her wedding gown. Misadventure. An accident. But Jack is angry, probably really at the fact that Ronnie died, or that she sought to spend a few moments on her wedding night with her sister instead of her husband, and died as a result of a misguided action. But Jack would never blame Ronnie. Instead, it's Roxy's fault, for snorting cocaine, jumping into the pool, suffering cardiac arrest and dying ... and Ronnie died because she jumped in after her. 

Ronnie would still be alive today if she hadn't decided she just had to break open a bottle of champers with her sister instead of sleeping with her husband on their wedding night. Roxy wouldn't have minded. She was just settling down to a bonk with Max. Jack blames Roxy, but because Roxy's not around, he casts his blame and his anger on the next best thing - Glenda.

Jack would have kicked her out anyway, only the coward just now appropriated his version of a valid excuse. Asshole.

2. The Awful Teens. Yes, just what exactly is po-faced Rebecca RedNose doing hanging about with kids one year behind her at school?

This ongoing saga is not where EastEnders needs to direct the show at the moment. We can yawn and surmise what will happen. Rejected by Louise, who's gone off with Rat's Nest and Sniggle for an afternoon of sniggling, Rebecca will now tell Shakil that Louise snatched her phone and sent the pics Rebecca kept of Shakil in all his naked glory. 

And there will be a lovely fight, and ample opportunity for Keegan to exercise his misogynistic tendencies toward Rebecca.

I hate the school set (and the return of McKlunkey's) and all who inhabit it. The teens are the worst bunch ever in the history of the show. Untalented, unlikable, uninteresting.

3.Michelle. This was a recast that should never have been made. Since when did Michelle ever look down her nose at a day on the allotments with Arthur, even in his memory? This woman is too posh, too cosmopolitan (Michelle has been living in rural Florida near Pensacola, which his pretty much the bastion of Rightwing political thought in the state) and too non-Michelle ever to be her. I have a sneaking suspicion they are going to turn her lezza, after a totally heterosexual Michelle has never had an inkling of lesbian tendencies, and make her the abysmal Tina's new love interest, the way Tina hovers around her all the time, making sexual innuendo. 

This is how you turn the inadequate re-cast of an iconic character into a tick-the-box variety. She's already a sex offender, now let's palm her off on the local lesbian.

4. What's EastEnders These Days without a Scene with the Fox Sisters? Are the Fox sisters O'Connor's Brannings? Must we not have an episode unless there's some sort of scene between Denise and Kim, for no purpose whatsoever? We've now gone from the circular rants about the evils of adoption, to the even more circular scenes of Kim showing up wherever Denise is and the pair of them just saying ... nothing in particular.

This scene was about Denise simply glaring at a house full of noisy, yet unseen students, who managed to keep her up all night long. They passed small talk. Message to Sean O'Connor: Yes, we know that they are still there. Stop trying to make them relevant. Get the fuck on with whatever storyline you're promising for your pet Blisters and finish it off. I'm tired of Kim's stupidity and Denise's speciality in sour-faced looks. 

5. And Finally, the Carters. The Carters' stupidity never ceases to amaze me. Ironic line of the night goes to Dirty Whitney, who basically brushed off with disdain Lee's offer to step up and help his old man through crisis time at the pub. She blew off the offer as irrelevant, implying that Lee, himself, was irrelevant.

Your dad's a strong man, she assured him. 

But he isn't. Mick is anything but a strong man. This episode proved more than anything that he isn't. He's weak, and it's beginning to look as though his relationship with Linda is just another good, old co-dependency type rampant in Walford. Linda is the one who holds that family together. She leaves Mick for more than a day, and he falls apart. He sulks in bed when Linda tells him that, at the moment, her priority is her sick mother. 

Marriages are partnerships. When one partner falters, the other steps in and copes. That's maturity. But Mick is a big manbaby. He actually acts surprised that the pub is near-empty during their lunchtime stint. Really, who would want to hang out at a pub after witnessing what went on the night before - that the lovely jubbly cooking auntie was a cold-hearted bitch who tried to kill her own sister, that the landlord appeared to break the licencing laws (even Jane knew how serious that was), and that the oldest son of the family planned a break-in and robbery of his family home?

People would avoid that place like the plague, whilst they stayed at home and gossiped.

I think even now Lee is beginning to see through Whitney's falseness. It's ok for Whitney to hang around the pub like a bad smell, thinking herself indispensible to Mick, whilst denigrating his son as inconsequential. The only reason Whitney wants Lee away from the Vic is so she can drool over Mick to her heart's content. So much for making him a cheese sandwich as a peace offering to send him out to a job he hates. She doesn't even know how he likes his sandwiches. 

Cheese sandwiches featured heavily in this episode - from Whitney's attempt, to the fall-out in the kitchen between Abi and Shirley to Whitney's ultimate peace offering, this time with pickle.

Mick, however, was all over the place, nonetheless when he inadvertantly ran into Dirty Whitney. He was like a stammering schoolboy, but it was all too obvious that there's an attraction, on both parts. Oh, she's trying to love Lee, she's telling herself; but the naked ring finger tells more than the truth; and she wanted to talk her feelings out with Mick until Tracey arrived, and this attempt was turned into a team pep talk, complete with football terminology.

Mick re-instated Abi in the kitchen, with a lunchtime menu of various sandwiches, and asked an indignant Shirley to help her out. Babe did do some good things, and one of them was properly training Abi in kitchen hygiene and technique, and when Shirley is just slapping cheese onto a sandwich. Abi was right to lay into Shirley's indifference and entitlement, in my opinion; but Mick's intervention, basically telling Abi to shut up and get on with it, resonated hugely with me in the week where a ranking MALE US Senator told a ranking FEMALE US Senator to sit down and shut up, Mick's treatment of Abi was crass, intimidating and out of order.

But then, most of what Mick did in this episode was crass, intimidating and out of order. He couldn't even negotiate a roofer to come deal with the two leaks in the pub roof, for all his mooning at Linda's picture and cooing talk of her on the telephone. He alienated staff and ignored the needs of his customers, having one walk out and another demand his money back for a pint he ordered an hour before. 

Now Mick's got a lot on his plate, as everyone keeps reminding Lee of his part in creating Mick's financial woes; but I think a lot of Mick's problems come from his burgeoning feelings for his horny daughter-in-law. Yes, he loves Linda, but Linda is someone familiar who's been with him since his childhood, and he's never allowed himself to be interested in another woman. When women have shown an interest, like Belinda or when Whitney did beforehand, Linda was always there. But this time she isn't, and Mick's given into temptation. This is the main reason why he wants Linda to return. Linda's presence means he isn't tempted by Whitney's increasingly overt efforts. 

At the end of the day, Mick has to retreat to his bedroom and sulk, only to find out that Shirley's actually found a roofer who doesn't cost a fortune and who can come at a moment's notice, leaving Mick with the words of wisdom that if he has to lean on anyone in Linda's absence, it should be his mother. 

But will he?

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