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article imageReview: UK Soap Coronation Street: Bye-bye Betty. End of an era ...

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By Jane Reynolds     Apr 23, 2012 in Entertainment
Welcome to a review of the most recent episodes of Coronation Street: the popular British Soap Opera.
For episodes broadcast in the UK 16th-20th April 2012
*Warning: May Contain Spoilers*
Surprise letters; a surprise for Tommy, and it's no surprise that Sally's trying Carla's patience or that Kirsty's trying everyone's on the cobbles this week …
Although Betty Driver died last October, it's only now that 'our' Betty's died, and what a sad week it was, but – with Corrie's usual combination of clever and careful writing – Betty's funeral week was celebrated exactly as she would have wanted: with happy reminiscences, and a toast.
One of the things that make Soaps so enduringly successful is that they're like sharks: constantly moving, and in a week that saw us say a very sorry goodbye to Betty, we said an equally sorry 'hello' to none-other than that rogue, Terry Duckworth.
The mark of a good 'baddie' is the reaction they provoke, and Terry's come right in and probably got us all shouting at our screens to tell Tommy to run a mile!
Carrying a little more weight than the last time we saw him (and doing a passable impression of Bernard Manning – for those of you old enough to remember him!), Terry landed back on the Street 'large as life' (you might say), and promptly landed one on Tommy's nose before realising it was his own son he'd just belted.
Even that made no odds to Terry, yet the mere mention of Tommy's Inheritance was enough to promote a sudden dramatic change of behaviour, and how low was it of him to screw that photo up to make it look as if he'd kept it since Tommy was a toddler?
Oh, it's wicked, and Terry's a nasty, scheming villain who's quickly turning Tommy against his best mate Tyrone. It's a pity Tommy's not going out with Curse-ty, as she and Terry would probably get along like a house on fire – although I'd like to see who comes off worst if/when she finds out that it was him who smashed the front of Tommy's camper van.
"He's trying to wind me up. Tell him to shift it. I'm seeing the midwife in 20 minutes," she'd instructed Tina. Yeah, cos parking in the road; that's just not on, is it? Besides; he couldn't have shifted it anyway – as it wouldn't have started!
It wasn't really a good investment for someone who's meant to know a bit about cars, but you sense that it won't be long before Tommy's going to be looking to make another 'investment': this time in his father's business. Oh dear. Can't you take that money off him Tina – before it's too late?
Never mix business with pleasure, they say, and poor Audrey's regretting signing the Salon over to David (well, Kylie), and things took another turn this week with "Bonnie and Clyde" changing the name/sign outside. Where will it end? Not well, I fear.
Carla's already regretting saying yes to Sally's potential investment in Underworld, and she almost ruined her meeting in the Bistro this week.
"I'm Carla's partner. 'Business', not the other kind," she trilled to nicely-named Neil Trindley. (Keep that line in mind. It'll all be evidence/proof when Carla and Michelle get together … )
If I was Carla, I'd be sure to take the clients a little further afield – and not tell Sally where I'd gone. I'd also think twice (thrice!), about taking Sally's cash. If what's happened so far's anything to go by, she's asking for trouble.
I'm loving Tina at the moment – especially in that white coat. She's so glamorous, feisty, and is so protective over Tommy.
She puts me in mind of a young Pat Phoenix, and if she ends up being in the show for the next 30 years I can just see her turning into another Elsie Tanner!
You could see she was genuinely upset about Betty. "I loved your mum. She was top," she told Gordon.
She certainly was, and it's been a very sad week, but – as ever with Corrie – along with the tears we've had some laughs, so here's my Grins of the Week:
Lewis: "Sad day."
Gail: "Did you know Betty?"
Terry (about Fiz): "Listen to your girlfriend."
Tyrone: "She's not my girlfriend."
Terry: "Probably wise. Can't imagine what the offspring of you pair would look like."
Tina: "You met your dad and he hit you?"
Tommy: "Well. He hit me and then I met him."
Tracy: "I didn't know her (Betty) that well."
Deirdre: "You knew her all your life. She was your Godmother!"
Kylie: "I'm going to torch that motorhome. He (Lewis) can't film us if he's toast."
Fiz: "You know what it's like when you don't know your dad; you make him up in your head."
Sally: "He'd be better with a made-up one."
Kylie: "Does this look wonky David?" (Gail comes in) "Talking of wonky."
Terry: "Dad would have turned in his grave."
Tommy: "He was cremated."
Terry (about Roy): "Where's Rain Man?"
PS I loved the bit where Roy politely asked Tina, "Are you dining?"
" … No (!)" she replied (as if he'd asked her something completely ridiculous)!
PS2 I'm glad they didn't make a big song and dance about the letter stating that Annie Walker had left the Rovers to Betty in her will.
PS3 What a touching moment: Norris paying Betty's paper bill and writing 'Account Closed' in the book.
PS4 There was a whole lot more to Betty Driver than Corrie. You can listen to her life story on Radio 4's Desert Island Discs on the BBC's iPlayer. CLICK HERE
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