Monday, July 10, 2017

Blasé - Review:- Thursday 06.07.2017

Once again, this episode gets a resounding 4 out of 10.

It was just another case of nothing happening. Bits and bobs of this and that. Seriously.

1. Stacey starts her job behind the bar of the Vic, which is silliness in and of itself. What pub or licenced restaurant would hire a pregnant woman? Bar work is hard, and it's going to get harder when her pregnancy progresses and she's standing during the entirety of her shift on painful swollen ankles. And there's the fatigue to think of as well. Of course, it's all a set-up for her to go into labour at the Vic and to have the baby there, wherein the kid will probably be named Vicki (again) or Victor if it's a boy. EastEnders, these days, you can read it like a book, just like you know that Shirley's going to take Stacey's promotional idea and claim it for her own.

2. Jack's grieving Ronnie. The next day is her birthday and instead of Ronnie being across the Square, playing Yummy Mummy to Matthew and Amy (and everyone forgetting what a cold-blooded psychopathic killer she was), instead we have blonde Norwegian nanny Ronnie fingerpainting with the kids and making lasagna. I would have thought Amy, who's almost nine is a bit too old for fingerpainting, but they make Amy speak and act as though she's five - I guess they're making up for all the times she stared mutely at the camera and only shook her head once or twice, not speaking before she was six. Still, Martin Fowler didn't speak until he was twelve.

3. I am convinced that Honey is EastEnders' version of Bernice. You could almost see Bernice tonight, notebook in hand, reading assiduously from social and psychological management coursework, literally applying sales techniques learned on this course, the likes of which would apply to a big retail chain of supermarkets and not a corner shop.Then, ultimately, quoting from the most important rule in the handbook about the company not tolerating staff being physically or verbally abused in an effort to fend off Keegan's homophobic rant earlier at Derek.

I thought Derek was given his notice. OK, he explained the situation to Yolande, and the decision is out on appeal, but I didn't think they would allow him to work until Johnny had managed to work rookie magic and get his conviction scrapped.

4. The Taylors continue to be featured in an effort to flesh them out, beginning with Karen's first and last day cleaning Beales'. She rabbits on because she's nervous of a new situation, but she strikes a bad chord with Ian when she notices Bobby's picture in the Beale photo and starts innocently asking question, even suggesting that perhaps her Chatham, who has learning disabilities, and Bobby could be friends. Of course, it grates with Ian that Bobby is doing time in a Young Offenders' institute - the tipping point, being Karen's innocent remark (Bet'e gets away wiv murder), because, of course, that's just what Bobby did, up to a point; and it galls Ian that a family of people he rightly regards as low-lifes and chavs have all their kids under one roof, with the odd ASBO here and there, whilst Bobby, the ubiquitous nice, middle-class boy, sits in a cell.

Of course, we continue to be subtly exposed to the Taylors' family dynamics, especially the announcement to the rest of the clan that Bernadette is pregnant. The more I see this lot, the more I'm convinced that Keegan isn't a biological part of the group, but more or less,a by-blow of his father, who left the kid when he schlepped through. There are loads of tell-tale factors:-

a. The obvious is that he's black, or mixed-race, smack dab in the middle of an all-white family, when Karen originally said that her kids were the result of two relationships.

b. Then there's the fact that Keegan and Bernadette are the same age, fifteen.

c. Keegan goes by his father's surname, Baker; the rest share Karen's surname, Taylor. For Keegan to have his father's surname, it means that his dad was wither married to Karen, or whoever his mother is, or that he gave permission to Karen to allow the boy to have his name,were he not married to her.

d. Then, there's the way that Karen treats him, in apposition to the way she reacts to Bernadette or Riley and Chatham. She's loving, affectionate and caring. Even the way she speaks with Keanu has a different timbre to her behaviour around Keegan. Oh, she defends him, but there's a spark of difference there, even the animosity that exists between Keanu and Keegan. Even before Karen blurted out that Bernadette was pregnant, the two were almost at dagger points about Keegan's overt animosity towards Bernadette begging another day off school. Also, at the end of the episode, when Karen was reassuring Chatham that they wouldn't have to get rid of the dog when Bernadette's baby came, Keegan noticed the way she treated the boy. He clocked her obvious affection for him as opposed to her offhand treatment of him.

Keanu seems a quiet, determined, decent boy with convictions and ambitions, but there's something that he has against Keegan, and then, there's Keegan's overt misogyny to deal with. His reaction to Bernadette's pregnancy was one of disgust. However, that doesn't stop me from wondering if Keegan isn't the father of Bernadette's baby?

5. The ludicrous Jackson settle in. It's obvious that Sonia isn't in lezza mode anymore, judging by her reaction to Mr Pryce, who seems to be the drama and music teacher at Walford High. It was laughable that Sonia, with memories of her off-key trumpet-playing, barely beyond beginner level, taking credit for Rebecca's musical talent (which really isn't much in the general scheme of things), whilst leaving the deplorable Robbie searching the market for the missing Dave, in the middle of planning team-building exercises in which no one takes an interest. He's the laughing stock of the market and a poor choice for a return character.

Dean Gaffney isn't funny at all, and I would imagine that the dead cat found in the wheelie bin isn't Dave at all, because there's got to be a twist in this tale.

Also, it didn't take Sonia long to start trash-mouthing Dot's intransigent behaviour at the hospital - annoying the nurses and insulting the doctors, amongst other things. This whole farce doesn't interest me at all, including Sonia's snide dig at Martin's interests in front of the teacher (which was low), apart from wanting to know why exactly Sonia had to leave Kidderminster or Kettering or wherever the hell she was.

6. The Beale-Branning Love Triangle. Jay and Ben have obviously bought a voice-recognition music system, similar to Amazon's Alexa service, and they're playing up their new roles as the natural successors to Minty and Garry in Idiotville by playing music and horsing around with issuing commands. Of course, this was bought with the stolen credit card, and I can't wait for the law to catch up with these two.

Not only have they become idiots, they've also become blatantly cruel to Abi, making snide remarks about the dress she was wearing resembling a curtain and then wondering if she'll ever get another boyfriend. They should talk. Neither of them have had any recent semblance of a social life. Jay's last sustained relationship resulted in him getting put on a sex offenders' list, and the only action Ben's seen since Paul's death has been a one-night stand with a plank, otherwise known as Johnny Carter.

What's worst about this entire sequence of slut-shaming Abi is that both boys, at one time, had lengthy sexual relationships with her. Jay actually wanted to marry her, and Ben gave her chlamydia. That was a very uneasy scene to watch.

Abi, on the other hand, has her sights set on Steven, and the best scene in an otherwise mediocre episode was the scene at the Beale house, where Abi alternatively encourages Steven, alleviating his self-doubts (Ian's regard for him, how important he is to the business) whilst at the same time, feeding his doubts about his relationship with Lauren. Mind you, everything she says about Lauren is true - that she's superficial, shallow, never satisfied with what she has and doesn't think half as much of Steven as he does for her. She's actually quite good with the sinister manipulation, actually asking would he really be losing anything if he lost Lauren.

Of course, the irony in this situation is that Lauren had the opportunity to cheat on Steven the night of Abi's party. She didn't, yet Steven cheated on her with Abi, and now, finally synced into her mobile charger at work, and spying on her at her desk at work, he's infuriated to see her accept the invitation of an after-work drink with Josh, enough to make a beeline for Abi in which to indulge in some angry sex, which - ultimately - will result in Abi getting pregnant and Steven's duplicity exposed.

7. Carmel, Max's useful idiot, has a drink with him after a planning meeting. He's plying her with a Tanya-Branning-sized glass of wine. Loose lips sink ships.

Mediocre episode.

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