Sunday, February 12, 2017

Somefink Outta Nuffink - Review:- Friday 10.02.2017

Leave it to EastEnders to start the week with a bang and end it with a whimper. This was an underwhelming effort, which gave us gratuitous Denise (again, who appears to be making an appearance in every episode for no purpose whatsoever) and Dirty Whitney being given a chance to play the victim card again.

Gardening at Night.

 It's the bleak mid-winter, and it's cold, so po-faced Rebecca creeps off to the allotments and her family's shed to sing Dido in the dark. Yes, we know Jasmine Armfield sings and plays the guitar, but don't push her dubious talents on the unsuspecting viewers of EastEnders. It's the bleak mid-winter, and it's dark, so where the hell is 10 year-old Dennis after dark, and why does there never seem to be anyone at home at the Mitchells'? And how smart of Michelle to leave two pizzas, needing refridgeration, out on the kitchen table, suddenly to get the urge to don a duffel coat and go off to dig in the dark at the allotments. Gardening at night, anyone? What did that prove? Why? I've heard of gardening being therapeutic, but traipsing off after hours to a rank allotment in the dark in London on a Friday night ... as Peggy would say ...


It's times like this when I really miss Peggy. Of course, this was another contrived scene - ya know, Michelle just suddenly was consumed with the urge to go do a bit of digging in the dark, whilst on a cold, chilly, practically freezing mid-February night, Rebecca just happened to go sit on the cold, dank floor of a timber shed just so she could sing to the stars and play her guitar.

It was and excuse, people, to give us the big scene where Non-Michelle talks poshly to her even posher niece, literally, about nothing. Well, yes, it was about something, but it was so oblique that neither would care to articulate anything other than to speak in hypothetically.

Sorry, but did Rebecca not understand the concept of "lonesome?" It's not exactly an American expression. I've heard it many times in my years in the UK, but instead of qualifying it by reiterating another adjective which means the same - "lonely" - Michelle had to use the overly trite "Billy No Mates" allusion, when querying why Rebecca looked so down the other day. As much as she would admit, it had to do with a fall-out with Louise over Shakil, for something Rebecca is too ashamed to admit.

Of what, precisely, is she ashamed?

Is she ashamed of having kept the nude photos of Shakil on her phone, the ones which were meant for her eyes only but which she shared with Louise, and which Louise sent to all and sundry, and for which Shakil blames her; or is she ashamed of the fact that she allowed herself to be manipulated into losing her virginity to Shakil, who wasn't as serious about the relationship as she was? All in all, it's a fair bet that Michelle has done - and we know she has done - far worse; yet she tells Rebecca that a few months from now, all will be forgotten, and Rebecca will wonder why she even felt ashamed. 

Does Michelle think that way? Is she way over manipulating, grooming and sexually abusing a student in her care that she now thinks, arrogantly enough, that this won't impede her attempts to get back into the teaching profession? 

Rebecca has to ask the dorky, ubiquitous question that every hack has a teenager ask some non-parental adult who puts themselves out to listen to their teenaged angst - Why is Antie Michelle so cool when Martin wasn't? Possibly because Auntie Michelle isn't her parent and doesn't have to worry about her fucking up her life for some inconsequential boy or some half-baked girl with whom she's quarreled. When Rebecca eventually fucks up big time, it won't be any skin off Michelle's arse. In the end, she forgets the pizzas rotting on the table in the Mitchell kitchen and buys fish and chips for the Fowlers, even thinking of texting Louise along the way, so that when the doorbell at rings at the Fowlers', Professor Know-It-All just knows the caller is for Rebecca. 

Michelle the Miracle Worker. Not.

Jack Thinks with His Dick Again. Jack's a prat. That's established. But Glenda's reaction at the end of her segment made me think and wonder about Max's intentions - that Max had somehow manipulated Jack into seeing Glenda off and out of the children's lives, and that once Jack woke up and left his current dark place, he'd see what Max was up to as well.

Jack, however, was being just a narcissistic asshole, thinking the chaste kiss Glenda gave him as he slept beside his daughter was a sexual come-on; but Jack always did think with his dick. He immediately translated Glenda's spontaneous gesture of maternal affection for something sexual, openly insinuating that she wanted into his bed.

I do believe Glenda was sincere in wanting to take care of the children, but honest enough to admit that she couldn't do this alone. Besides, I thought she'd moved into Jack's house in the first place in order to help him look after the kids, as he was struggling on his own. I thought the conversation between him and Glenda was weird, nonetheless for the cryptic conversation between Max and Jack when Jack returned homed to find Glenda there, where Max cautioned him to hear Glenda out, whilst not listening to what she was saying. 

Instead, he ended up manipulating her into walking out of the children's lives, admitting that she had, all her life, endeavoured to get people to like her, that she was not maternal, yet had gotten close to Amy, but who stopped short of actually taking Amy and Matthew when they were rhetorically offered to her by Jack.

I get the fact that Glenda will never be a full-time character, owing to the fact that Glenys Barbour spends half the year in the US, but I like Glenda and would like to see her as a recurring character. Her remarks at her departure does make me wonder about Max's game and if he is, indeed, sincere. Remember Jack fully believed he was guilty of Lucy's murder.

The Totally Unnecessary Fox Sisters' Non-Story. There they are again, there for no other reason than the EP deems them to be there, accomplishing nothing that hadn't existed before. Now, it seems that after Denise got all bluff'n bluster previously after her discovery that she was officially an "orphan", saying that she didn't have to forgive Kim for anything now, she's suddenly forgiven her. 

And also, now that we've got the non-collection of the bins out of our system, we're now having to hear Denise whine on and on and on and on and on about the noisy, unseen students who have moved in next door to her, ranting aloud, herself, at the Council in the middle of the street and going on and on and on and on about how she hung on the phone for over two hours the previous day, trying to make a complaint.

Cut to the scene with the sisters in the Vic, where we just had to have Denise show off her suddenly-acquired literary knowledge, describing the Council and their meanderings about the students as Kafka-esque - a pretentious and deliberate remark, if there ever was one. Besides, how many GCSE students study, much less comprehend Kafka? Denise can't even string one grammatically correct sentence together, and now she's supposed to be some sort of literary genius? How long before she's sleeping with the Scandinavian instructor?

And the entire pointless debacle ended with Denise and Kim stroking each others' already massive egos, ending witn both deciding that they really were physically beautiful. This is what I mean by the irrelevance of Denise. She gets one short, sharp spurt of a storyline, and then she sinks back into sneering, arrogant, pejorative insignificance. Instead, now we'll get her looking down her nose at the great unwashed of Walford as not measuring up to her far superior education.

The Eternal Victim. Bite me, but Dirty Whitney deserved that smack, and when we saw the Carters in their last bonding scene, I seriously thought she'd go running to Mick. 

Throughout this entire fiasco with Lee and Whitney, we've watched his self-esteem steadily crumble, knowing that he could never live up to the image he'd formed of his formidable father in his mind, to the point when people actually realised that Lee was having trouble, and then instead of helping him out, the ones on whom he depended the most, systematically went about tearing him down - specifically Mick and Whitney.

Since Mick found out about Lee's part in the raid, he's done nothing but denigrate and deny his son, whilst feeding Whitney's enormous ego, in the wake of Linda's absence. He treated Nancy the same way, but without Linda there, Lee's been on a hiding to nothing. He hasn't told Linda about Lee, but had Linda been there, she'd at least have given Lee a chance to explain his side of the story; and she would have loved him unconditionally.

Whitney has gone on and on at Lee about him lying to her, and even made him pledge not to do it again; but it's all right for Princess Whitney to lie to him. She lied about her wedding and engagement ring. She wouldn't accept Lee's assertion, a true one, that Beanbag and his suddenly absent missus couldn't go out for drinks as he was starting a new job in security in Dover the next day. Dover isn't exactly a hop, skip and a jump away. From East London, in light traffic, it's a good 90 minute drive one way. And the pay being briliant is another fallacy EastEnders have provoked. I live in Hythe, 12 miles from Dover. This is and has been for years a depressed part of the Southeast. Wages in Dover are nowhere near what wages in London are, and besides, the cost of fuel getting to Dover by road or even the cost of a train journey, isn't cheap.

Beanbag probably did need an early night, yet from the get go, Whitney was deliberately provocative in getting him to come out for the evening. Also, when she Lee was getting in a round of drinks, she was provocative even moreso - placing her hand on his knee, leaning in to talk to him, laughing suggestively; and Lee noticed that. It was all in aid of seeing if Beanbag could look out a job opportunity for Lee at the same firm in Dover, when she found out they wanted ex-Army personnel.

Then she had to brag to Mick about what she'd done, and Mick just had to tell her that Lee didn't deserve her, which she took to heart and loved.I also think the penny dropped with Lee when Beanbag remarked that Whitney must really have wanted Lee away from the house for her to grapple after a job in Dover for him.

Whitney deserved the smack Lee gave her, but of course, I suppose we're supposed to play the sympathy card for her. Her greediness and demands got them into a financial fix, he was under pressure to take the first job on offer, rather than working shifts in the pub for his family. Lee lied to Whitney, but when he was found out, he promised not to do so again; however, the moment she lied to him about pawning her rings, she lost the moral high ground to diss him for having lied the same. The fact that she removed the rings from her fingers hit hard at Lee; he'd never removed his wedding ring. The symbolism there was rife. At that moment in time, I think Lee knew that she never really loved him. The straw that broke the camel's back, and Lee, was when she told him that Mick said he didn't deserve the fragrant Whitney and when she went to great lengths to tell him what a strong man Mick was. The silly bitch doesn't realise how weak Mick is, and if she had any sense, she'd have realised that this was the only reason he responded to her smutty snog. I hope Lee doesn't slope off. I hope he finds out about the dirty little secret being shared by Whitney and Mick before he goes. 

That smack was way overdue. She's a bitch. Worse than that, she's a dirty little bitch. Even when she was forced to admit that she pawned her rings, already she was saying she could buy them back with all the money Lee would earn from the brilliant security job she'd landed him in Dover. I really do wish someone would tell this character a few home truths. She's been needing that said to her for years, but no one's dared.

The Carters. Mick, the strong man, was forced to grovel to Abi, but I'm glad Abi made him realise exactly how badly he had behaved in that instance. And Shirley's begging Johnny to put his essay on hold to help in the pub, saying that students do all-nighters, was just ignorance in the abject extreme.

Not the best of episodes.

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