It’s the dirty story
of a dirty man
and his clinging wife
His son is working
for the Daily Mail,
it’s a steady job but he
wants to be a paperback writer…
Morning finds Ken passed out on the couch. Deirdre and Blanche talk in low voices as they watch him from the kitchen door. Blanche wants to know how long Deirdre plans to put up with this. “It’s not the book I mind,” Blanche tells her daughter emphatically, “it’s the rudeness, the boozing, the beard!” Blanche is convinced that the chain-smoking fishwife character in the book is non-fiction, starring Deirdre. Deirdre is skeptical but the seed has been planted.
At lunch, Deirdre brings home fish & chips for herself and Ken and encourages him to take a break. He says flatly he’s not hungry. Deirdre points out that she’s come back especially, and can’t he just give her a half-hour. Ken notes that he’s been “a bit absorbed,” in that curious way he has of painting his obnoxious, condescending behaviour in the softest possible light. Deirdre, having decided that the chain-smokng fishwife is indeed her, probes Ken.
Ken loses patience quickly with the questions about the “fictional” marriage. He becomes angry and says all she can do is question and complain. Deirdre is very hurt, and tells Ken how very sorry she is that his life was such a drag until he rediscovered his masterpiece. “I just want to finish!” he shouts in exasperation. “Believe me, you’re not the only one,” retorts the fishwife, slamming out.
Later, Deidre comes home early, pulling a sicky. Ken is out. Blanche urges Deirdre to finish the manuscript and decide if she really sees her marrige therein. Blanche then goes for a nap.
Ken comes home to find Deirdre in tears. Rather than have the slightest interest in his wife’s distress, he rages at her for reading the manuscript, “How dare you!” Deirdre flings the pages at him, furious at her characterization. She says the hero must be Ken: “Clever grammar school boy….dealing with the fools and harridans around him as he struggles to escape his roots. And the fag-smoking monster he marries…You think you’re too good for around here, too good for me. If I’m so boring, so parochial and around here is so awful, why did you never have the guts to leave?” she cries.
“Don’t think I haven’t tried,” he shouts, redfaced. He accuses her view of being simplistic; obviously not that of a towering intellect. The bottom line for Deirdre is that Ken is implying he has married beneath him. “At least I’ve been able to use something from my own experience!” he roars. And earns himself a slap. Deirdre runs away in tears as Blanche walks in “Get out,” Ken hollers. And pours himself a stiff drink.
You Won’t See Me
David wakes up and calls in a sicky at work. He wants to clear his day to try and talk to Tina. Gail cheerfully offers him a cuppa and says that David doesn’t have to explain himself to her – it’s his job and his sicky. She hopes he can straighten things with Tina.
Later, David lounges outside when Tina and Joe pull up in the car. “He’s keen, I’ll give him that,” Joe remarks to his daughter. He comments that we all do mad stuff when we’re in love. Tina won’t be budged. She enters Jerry’s for work. As David approaches, Joe blocks his way, but kindly. He tells David that Tina likes him but if he goes crashing in, he’s had it. He advises patience. David backs off. David tries again later as Tina is serving Bill. Darryl ushers him outside. He also urges David to back off. “You stink of desparation,” Darryl advises. “have a bit of dignity.” David slopes off home. “Be a man, my son.” Darryl calls after him.
Gail, meanwhile, has purchased some magazines from the Kabin to replace the ones gone mysteriously missing from the medical centre when she runs into Joe in the street. She offers up her little buck-toothed randy-gopher smile. They discuss their estranged teens, and decide to prolong the chat over a cuppa.
Michelle Ma Belle / Another Girl
Ryan has returned home and surprises Michelle in the sitting room behind the pub. She greets him and asks him if he’s gotten taller. Ryan wants to know what’s up with Steve. Steve has told Ryan they fell out – after all, it was a long cab ride from the airport. Michelle is immediately snarky and defensive. She apologizes. Michelle says they broke up because she suspects Steve of cheating on him.
“Where will we go?” Ryan wants to know. Michelle tells him they’re staying in Steve’s pub. “You haven’t really thought this through then,” Ryan correctly surmises. “I thought you loved him, and we were settled.” Ryan says, adding with a deadpan innocence that Steve would never cheat just because you whine like a buzz saw on granite. ‘Kay not the last bit.
Becky is chatting with Jason and Eileen during her shift. Eileen gently wants to know how long Becky is staying, mentioning the house is crowded. Michelle is filing her nails and being a snot to Steve. He attempts to explain why he told Ryan. He then points out that they need some clean glasses and Michelle replies, “Be my guest.” Steve then asks Becky to stop chatting and clean the glasses. There is a weird, static, eye-locking moment between them before she agrees, Michelle whines, “Don’t have a go at her just because you’re too much of a wimp to ask me to do it!” He already tried ya mardy cow.
Jason finds Becky later in the smoking shelter . He has picked up the frission between her and Steve. Becky fluffs it off, saying Steve was just chucking his weight about. Jason is still disturbed.
In the cab office, Steve complains to Eileen about Michelle’s attitude and says he can’t carry on. He lies to Eileen when she asks who he boffed. Eileen isn’t buying it. Just then Jason pops in. He wants a word…about Becky.
Molly is doing dishes when Tyrone sneaks up on her to steal a snog. Auntie Pam comes in with wedding magazine she’s knicked from the medical centre. She still has her head full of grandiose wedding plans and is flatly ignoring Molly and Tyron’s request for simplicity. Anyone want some balsa wood wedding invites?
The three of them are still pouring over magazines, having shifted to the Rovers. Ooh, what about a horsedrawn carriage? Auntie Pam wonders. Molly reminds Tyrone that she just wants to marry him – not get into debt over it. They seem united on that front and Pam is shut out for the moment.
When I’m Sixty-Four
Audrey is moving supplies about in the sal-oh. Natasha urges her to take it easy. Ted stops by to say that Bill has returned the peace-offering opera tickets…he’s planning to attend Carmine, but says it’s no fun alone. He invites her and she accepts, explaining that she’d declined to go with Bill because she knows it’s not his thing. He’d be crunching crisps or snoring. She bumps into Bill later, outside the sal-oh. He asks her out for a beer. Audrey confesses she accepted the opera invitation from Ted. Bill says it’s a good thing he’s not the jealous type, and wants to know if Ted’s still gay. The ice seems to be thawing between them.