Our highlight of the night? Coronation Street…

  … and the much anticipated 50th year celebration of Coronation Street on British television (watched here in the Netherlands on satellite TV).

To anyone not having a British heritage you may be scratching your head in confusion.

Coronation Street is a soap opera running on British TV for 50 years. It is regarded with reverence by the nation, shown five times a week and can bring the country to its knees when moved from its regular time slot to accommodate declarations of war, royal engagements or Manchester United playing a big game.

This is a National Treasure you don’t mess with.

It’s one of those soaps where you can live abroad for twenty years, move back and pick up the storyline. Should there be any confusion over new characters brought in during your absence, you only have to ask another Brit to fill in the gaps and you’re back on track. It helps that several characters in the soap when you left are still there, older but recognisable.

What has always set the show apart is its dead-pan humour and one liners that leave you gasping with admiration. And, having watched it, who can ever forget Reg Holdsworth and the water-bed? I don’t need to talk about the characters, they have been well documented elsewhere over the years and are beloved by the nation.

Set in the north of England, the back streets of Weatherfield are somewhere near Manchester, a territory little known to anyone south of Birmingham. The northern tribe is regarded with suspicion by its southern cousins, who find the northern accent foreign, blunt and Neanderthal compared to the elongated vowels they use in warmer, soft climes

I’m not a TV columnist, and my opinions on programming are private and verbal, yelled at the TV screen during transmission but I hope the storyline improves tonight if they want to sustain the ratings.

The explosion and tram crash were reminiscent of watching Thunderbirds back in the day. All a bit wooden, wobbly, and long shots to hide the strings. Great concept – current storylines filmed as they would have been 50 years ago. Sadly, it was wasted on me.

Expect I’ll lynched for saying it, but feel I missed the point. The Captain assures me I did. He and Harry watched both episodes with a level of rapture usually reserved for a Man United game. They loathe soaps and kept asking who was who. The Captain insists I fell asleep half way through, doubtful given the questions thrown my way, but entirely possible as the second episode did feel shorter than the first.

Will I be watching tonight? Absolutely. Wouldn’t miss it for the world. Corrie doesn’t need all this hype and staged drama, its strength is, and always has been, its solid characters and gritty northern bite.

As someone raised in the midlands, with two children born in Yorkshire, and one dating a Lancashire lass, I know where my loyalties lie.

About wordgeyser

Our anglo/american family used to live in four countries (USA, Canada, UK and the Netherlands) on two continents, separated by distance, time zones, circumstance and cultures. It has been a scary, enriching, challenging place to be. The only things guaranteed to get us through were a sense of humour and the amazing people met along the way. . . This year everything changed with a move for us from the Netherlands, – and a move along with us for our son and his wife from the UK – to Houston, Texas, the same city as our daughter. With our youngest in Vancouver, Canada, we are now all living on the same continent. How this happened, and more importantly why, will be the subject of this ongoing blog...
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