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article imageReview: UK Soap EastEnders — German Market? Beijing Olympics, more like

By Jane Reynolds     Dec 18, 2012 in Entertainment
A 'sideways' review of the latest goings-on in EastEnders, the popular British Soap Opera.
For episodes broadcast in the UK 10th-14th December 2012.
*Warning: May Contain Spoilers*
No red-nosed reindeer to light up the Brannings; the Square's all lit up, but who's paying the bill, and did Roxy really pay for Kat's Christmas shopping trip?
"What sort of person would do this? It's evil," Abi cried as she looked at the broken reindeer (God, don't she and Tanya look alike?).
Son of Derek, that's who, and I'm wondering now whether he should be with Lauren after all, as anybody who can behave like that's not fit to be in the same room as the lovely Tanya.
There's something going on between Tanya and Derek. I don't know what, but I saw more evidence of it again this week when she told him: "Will you just leave my kids alone."
As I've said many times: Tanya's expressions tell you more than ANY words, and the look that flashed across her face as she said it spoke volumes, but WHAT?
It's all going to be coming out over Christmas, so I'm curious to see if I'm 'on to' something here (I'm betting that Lauren's his), and I was also curious about how she'd got the all clear from the hospital but told Max that her phone had been switched off and that she'd forgotten to turn it back on.
I don't know about you, but if I go anywhere where I can't use my phone, the very FIRST thing I do when I come out is to look and see if I've got any messages then ring people to tell them what I've just been doing/what's happened etc.
This happens a lot in EastEnders. It's not really credible is it (oops, it's that word again), and neither was Kat's defence of bumping into Roxy – who apparently drew £100 cash out for her to go shopping with. Yeah, right! If I were Alfie I'd have been straight on the phone to Roxy to check if it was true – although her phone would probably have been switched off, wouldn't it?
German market? More like the Beijing Olympics
Switched off. Switched ON. HOW ridiculous were those lights? Can you seriously expect us to believe that some little Square dahn the East End could rustle up enough money for a tree that size (where on earth did the cherry picker come from?) and a display of literally hundreds of thousand of lights? Even that light for the top of the tree; that wouldn't have come cheap, would it?
Ok, I know it's Christmas, but EastEnders is meant to be realistic (yeah, ok, sort of!), and there is no way that Alfie would have been able to organise all that – never mind the COST of it all, and as for it being a German market … er, what was German about it? Those stalls looked to have nothing but tat on them. Wasn't he meant to have got traditional German products on his trip to … Germany?
It's just not (in the slightest bit) credible, and it really does exercise me. I've had a bit of trouble following it this week – Tuesday's episode especially. It was all very 'bitty' and felt disjointed, and I STILL don't know what Phil's plan is over Lexi – although he's got her now ("MY baby" he told Lola), so that might speed it all up a bit.
How is Phil going to look after a tiny baby: give up all his other stuff (not that he ever seems to do any work)? This is a man with a fuse as short as Max Branning's hair, so how he's going to cope with a small child is a mystery to me.
Cora's heart's melted for Christmas
Ok. Moaning over. Time for a bit of praise. A LOT of praise. HOW good were those scenes with firstly Abi and CC in the launderette and then CC and Ava? I had tears running down my face as the hard-nosed harridan melted like a snowman right in front of our eyes.
"Do you like Christmas?" Ava asked her.
"I'm coming round to it," CC admitted – fighting back tears of joy.
Wonderful stuff. Let's have more of Ava please, and let's hope that Rainie shows up for the wedding (and sober too) so that they can have a real 'Fairmlee' Christmas. Not long to go now …
Festive Appropriate/Inappropriate Music in the Background this week, with 'Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time' playing as Alfie gave Bianca a bag of stuff and told her she was going to have a good Christmas; the line 'Don't fool yourself; she was heartache from the moment that you met her,' was wailing-away as Alfie stood waiting for Michael to arrive, and he even sang along to the line, 'I knew what she'd done'.
There's more. Shakin' Stevens' 'Merry Christmas everyone' was ringing-out as Abi told CC to cheer up because it's Christmas, and we heard the line, "Sweet love was born," as CC and Ava talked guardedly in the launderette. There were more than that, but I couldn't make out the rest.
Four Grins of the Week again. That's our Christmas present sorted!
Ian: "I've called Europe."
Denise: "Were they in?"
Abi: "What's up?"
Tanya: "Well, a) I don't want Derek telling me who's gonna be bridesmaid; b) I don't want him being Best Man, and c) I don't … want him being around. Apart from that, I'm fine."
Phil (to Derek): "Go and play with the traffic."
Jean: "It's not very Christmassy in here."
CC (wearily): "It's a launderette, Jean. Not Santa's Grotto."
* Alfie looks like Mr Incredible (Mr Incredibly stupid more like) here. His legs and bottom half look tiny and his jeans look WAY too tight!
* Surely it was a plantain that Ian was holding? HOW much better would that scene have been if Denise had said smugly: "Actually, Ian, that's a plantain, not a banana. I thought you'd have known that – what with you being a fruit and veg seller all these years … "
* CC got that job fast. The ad was only in the paper last Thursday.
* Ian's got a bit of a Father Christmas belly going on!
* I see where Cousin ITT gets his hair from (that tea towel on his head was a big improvement), as Sharon's hair's getting 'bigger' by the week!
* I loved (and was worried by) CC's line to Abi: "You get to an age where you don't want ups, you don't want downs, you just want a bit of peace." I'm starting to agree with her, but that's not good!
* Where was Tommy while Kat was out shopping and Alfie was torturing himself over her?
* Where's Scarlett gone? Michael never seems to have her any more. How is he managing for money? Didn't Janine cancel his access to all her accounts?
* Anyone else think that Lola could have been Sharon's long-lost daughter?
* Derek's flies were undone just after Kat got back to the pub. A blatant clue? A very strange thing to have bothered writing into the script if it wasn't!
Thanks for reading Queen Vic Corner, and I hope that (unlike half the characters in the Square) you'll have a Very Happy Holiday!
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