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OCTOBER 1983: Episodes 3824 – 3835

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Crossroads Episode: 3824: Original TX: 04-10-83 (Tuesday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: XXX                    Director: XXX

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3825: Original TX: 05-10-83 (Wednesday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: XXX                    Director: XXX

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3826: Original TX: 06-10-83 (Thursday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: XXX                    Director: XXX

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3827: Original TX: 11-10-83 (Tuesday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                     Director: Peter Croft

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3828: Original TX: 12-10-83 (Wednesday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                     Director: Peter Croft

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3829: Original TX: 13-10-83 (Thursday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                     Director: Peter Croft

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3830: Original TX: 18-10-83 (Tuesday)

   

Adam Chance tries to reassure his nervous bride-to-be, Jill Harvey. Horace Jackman drops a bombshell for Barbara Hunter. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                     Director: Peter Croft

 

Mr Paul brings a selection of menus into the office for David to look over. Adam is too busy with his feet up and reading the newspaper to worry. Mr. Paul asks him to pass on to Mr, Hunter that “Roast duck is back on the menu!” Adam is intrigued. “Is that a favourite of his then?” he asks. “He expressed an interest” replies Paul. Adam tells Paul that he is aware that he has been playing “musical chairs around the chalets”. Paul is not rising to the bait. “If you want me to answer the question, could you make your meaning clearer?” he asks. “It’s nice work if you can get it but it’s hardly worth laying your job on the line for” Adam tells him. “Whilst David Hunter does not agree with my relationship with a married woman, he seems to turn a blind-eye to my relationship with an unmarried one!” Adam is intrigued. “So it’s all stations go is it?” he asks. Paul is not in the mood to play games with Adam. “I have watched a lady make light of a broken heart – now that takes courage!” he tells him.

 

In the garage, Sharon is looking for Sid, but he’s not there. Benny asks her who will be looking after Nina while she is at work. Sharon explains that Diane is on a split-shift and will be picking her up from the bus stop. Benny suggests that he would be willing to pick her up if she needs him to. Sharon reminds him that he is needed at the garage, and if she started sending him on private errands then Mr. Chance would really have a reason to blow-his-top. Benny remembers that Adam had been looking for Sharon the day before. “He said he will try and catch you some time” he tells her. Benny then tells Sharon that having a little kid around the house is reminding Diane of her son, Nicky. “Aren’t I awful? – I never thought of that” Sharon says.

 

In the office, Barbara and Jill are talking about Horace Jackman. Barbara tells Jill that she can’t seem to find the key to get through to him. “We get on fine on a certain level – but it’s not enough. What I need is an insight into what makes a man take off in the first place” she says. “Jacko says that it was some row that he’d had at his job and that he’d had a fight with his boss… It just doesn’t ring true somehow….” Barbara goes on, but Jill doesn’t seem to be listening.

 

Jill apologises and tells Barbara that she is thinking about Mrs. Brookes. “I know we had a good laugh at her – but can you imagine how she felt?” she asks. “It’s pretty grotty” Barbara agrees. “Marooned in front of all those people – I just shudder to think” admits Jill.  Barbara tells her not to apply what happened to Miriam to herself. “Things can go wrong can’t they? They have done before…” Jill points out “We (her and Adam) nearly got as far as this (the wedding) last time” Barbara tells Jill that they are further advanced this time – and that Adam is walking round as a happy man. “Do you really think so?” Jill asks. “I KNOW so my sweet” she replies supportively. “I’m beginning to not trust myself” she admits. Barbara points out that the two of them really do get on. “You’ve been through the good and the bad…” she suggests. “You’re right, I DO know Adam, and I DO love him” Jill admits.

 

At the Brownlow’s, Kevin tells Glenda to sit down while he prepares some beans on toast. “There’s some with sausages if you have a look” she replies. Glenda discovers that Kath has bought herself a new dress. Kath comes in and explains to Glenda that she had nothing to wear and felt that she couldn’t let Edna down again. Kath complains that it’s is nearly always women at the dances anyway…. “But you still need a new frock?” Glenda asks, inquisitively. Kath goes out to finish getting ready for her evening out. The phone rings – it is Paul Ross, who complains that he has nobody to cover reception. He asks Glenda whether she would be willing to cover for a couple of hours – and she agrees. “Your mum won’t like it” Kevin tells her. “Perhaps mum won’t know” suggests Glenda. “Anyway, there’s one or two things round here that WE don’t like very much” she adds….  He burns the toast. (END OF PART ONE)

 

(PART Two) Adam is busy covering reception. Barbara suggests to him that he find Jill. “A little hand-holding wouldn’t go amiss” she advises him. Adam stares intently as Barbara. “What is THAT?” he says. Barbara looks down at herself. “It’s called a cleavage Adam” she replies mischievously. “Remind me to get you a guide book for your honeymoon.” In actual fact he has been looking at a portable microphone that she has attached to her lapel. She tells him that Horace Jackman gets uneasy when she scribbles notes, so she has decided to record the conversation instead. He asks her what she meant about Jill. She tells him that Jill is having butterflies about their forthcoming wedding. “They have to be caught gently…Try too hard and they get damaged” she advises him.

 

He goes into the office and finds Jill at a desk. “No David?” he asks. She tells him that there is only her there. “Who could ask for anything more?” he jokes. Considering his next words carefully, he tells her that he is beginning to feel a little nervous. “There’s no need” she tells him. “I would give anything for it to be this time next week – when we’re off and away and happy…” he tells her. She confesses to him that she is “feeling silly too.” Adam tells her that he loves her too much to let her worry.

 

A short while later, Adam enters the garage office to find Sharon ready to leave. “I hear you’ve changed some procedures?” she asks him. He confirms that the washing up time has altered. “I’ve restored it” she tells him. “They abused it” he replies. Sharon assures him that she will limit it to five minutes.  He agrees with her decision. She asks Adam about Sid “You told him to stay out of the office – What if I need him in the office?” Adam tells her that he isn’t going to pay a fully trained mechanic to be an office junior.  Sharon tells him that she doesn’t need help all the time, just some of the time. He suggests that she has (in fact) needed quite a lot of help lately.  “And I’m going to need more in the next fortnight” she tells him. “I plan to take afternoons off from three o’clock.” Adam is unhappy at the thought of that. He asks her why she will need the time. “Personal reasons” she responds. “Personal reasons that keep you out of the office for half of the afternoon are not sacrosanct” he tells her. Eventually she confesses. “I am babysitting a friend’s child”. Adam is shocked. She points out that she has worked all summer – and adds that it was agreed that she could take time off in lieu when needed. “Is she a close friend?” he asks. “Not particularly close but I’m very fond of the child” Sharon tells him. He considers this for a moment and smiles. “Children are a mystery to me – we don’t come together instinctively” he admits. “I used to think that was the same about me” she replies.

 

“So… You’ve reversed my order with Sid? he asks. He tells her that next time he should be allowed to countermand his own orders “So I don’t look a twit”…. “OH if only you weren’t so good at your job….” he laments, jokingly. “I can’t delegate” he admits. “You don’t trust easily either do you?” she asks. “That IS true – but I can with you” he tells her. He asks her to promise that standards won’t slip if he agrees to what she has asked for. They go through to the staff room where Mac and Sid are finishing up for the day.

 

Adam tells Sid that he will be resuming some of the office duties while Mac will manage the shop floor. He gives Sharon a wink and then leaves. “You said you’d do it kid – and you did it” Sid congratulates her.

 

John Latchford and Kath walk into the bar for a drink before dinner. Paul gives them each a menu “Nice to see you so comfortably on the other side of the fence” he tells her. John tells her to order anything she likes “It’s a celebration!” he tells her. “You and Me… and it’s me birthday” he admits.   Kath tells him that she didn’t see any cards in his chalet from his office – or his wife. HE admits that his wife left him after one business trip away. “She left a note saying she’d taken the kids and her things”. Kath asks if he ever hears from them. “Well if you call one letter in fourteen years keeping in touch…” he suggests.  He tells Kath that he gave his wife everything – except his time. “I paid the mortgage – and when she left I sat and stared at four walls through the wrong end of a glass…” he confesses. “And then came religion – I got this job through a friend in the church” he adds. Kath asks him about the issues with Diane. He reveals that two years ago he received a photo of Donna (his daughter) “…and Di is the spitting image of her” he tells her. He shows her a photo “Funny – you can still be proud of kids you wouldn’t know if you met!” he adds.

 

John goes to the bar to order them some drinks, while Kath studies the menu – just as Glenda comes into the bar. She is surprised to see her mum there. Kath tells her daughter that her friend Edna suddenly had a date. John returns with a drink and Kath introduces them. “Yes – we’ve met” John admits. “YES. WE. HAVE.” fumes Glenda, before leaving.

 

In his chalet, Horace Jackman is washing his socks in the bathroom, watched over by Barbara Hunter. He is talking about the fact that kids today are often up to no good – sometimes against him. Barbara asks if there is a lot of violence in his life. “There was a time when they wouldn’t have tried it on with me!” he tells her. “Why don’t you just try and settle down?” she asks him. “I don’t want none of that” he replies crossly. “I could put my hand to anything if I want” he boasts. “The road suits me fine”. Barbara asks him to tell her about his wife. “Saint” he replies. Barbara asks where she is now. “She’s gone on….” he replies cryptically. Barbara asks if that is why he left home – because she died.  He confesses that he left a good few years before that – and only found out when he was told by a bloke that he met. “Missed her funeral I did” he confesses.  She asks him whether he would have liked to have been at her funeral. “Last respects means a lot” he replies. “I never had a proper chance to put things right” he adds. “DO you think you would have been able to?” she asks. “Never know now will we?” he replies. “Sometimes it helps to talk to somebody who might understand” she suggests. “Sometimes it’s better to share things…” He shakes his head. “There’s things you can’t share” he tells her.  “What we’ve been talking about happened a long time ago” she tells him. “And surely it doesn’t matter quite so much any more” she suggests. “You couldn’t say that if you knew” he corrects her. “I’m Danny Jackman’s father” he tells her. She raises her eyebrows… (CREDITS)

 

“Danny Jackman’s father” she repeats

“So how the hell do you live with a thing like that?” he asks. 

 

So today it’s the softer side of Adam Chance. I really like it when we are let-in to his world a little. Normally there’s no denying he’s a schemer and a charmer – but today, he uses those skills more effectively. His jokey attitude allows Paul Ross to talk to him openly, His fake confession to Jill gives her the ability to speak up about her own concerns about the wedding and his attitude towards Sharon is lovely. The two of them have a great relationship. Mutually respectful. I like it.

 

I can’t believe it is Adam and Jill’s wedding tomorrow though – it was hardly referenced at all today.

 

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Crossroads Episode: 3831: Original TX: 19-10-83 (Wednesday)

VTR:  2923:83

   

Today’s the day for Adam Chance and Jill Harvey. She becomes Mrs Chance. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                    Director: Teddy Abraham

 

John Latchford is busy with paperwork in his chalet, when he is visited by Kath Brownlow. She tells him that she is so worn out – and sorry – for Glenda’s blow-out the night before. “On your birthday as well – it was so awful” she complains. “It’s me she objects to” he tells her. “Lord knows why” Kath replies. “It’s not your place to apologise” he tells her. Kath puts it down to Glenda expecting, and not having fully got over the loss of Arthur.  “Glenda’s not even speaking – she’s just smouldering” Kath cries – worried that they still won’t be speaking in 12 weeks – when the baby arrives.

 

John tells her that he is impressed by the fact that she is a warm and unselfish woman– but suggests that Glenda shouldn’t be allowed to get away with her behaviour. “I just can’t live in atmospheres John” she tells him. “You can see and do whatever you like, with whom and wherever you like” he reminds her. He asks whether she wants to be at Glenda’s beck and call forever. “It strikes me I’ve come at the right time, lass” he tells her. She smiles.

 

On reception, Glenda and Diane are discussing the wedding of Adam and Jill. “Bet you’ve been to a few haven’t you?” Glenda asks. “…as a guest I mean”.  Diane laughs. “I’ve even been to two of me own… or is it three? I’ve lost count!”. Glenda asks Diane whether she knows where they will be going on their honeymoon. Diane tells her that she hasn’t got a clue – it’s under the official secrets act! “But we all know what they’ll be doing” she suggests cheekily. “I feel as if I’ve been divorced much more times than I’ve been married” Diane jokes. They are interrupted by a stern faced Mr. Paul. Glenda immediately busies herself behind the desk.  Diane takes a hint – and scarpers. Mr. Paul tells Glenda that he knows she has already been reprimanded for her outburst towards John Latchford the night before. “He was asking for it” she tells him. “But was he paying for it?” he replies. “Last night was FAMILY business” she tells him.  Mr. Paul reminds her that it was done publically at the motel. Glenda tells him that she knows he is a customer, but points out that she had “no choice”.  Glenda points out that since she will be on maternity leave shortly he will be shot of her soon enough and that there will be no more trouble.

 

Mr Paul tells her that it will need settling. “Was this mum’s idea?” she asks. Mr. Paul tells her that it is his idea. “I won’t do it” she tells him. Mr Paul tells her that she WILL apologise to Mr. Latchford in her own free time.  Kath interrupts him and thanks him for speaking with Glenda. He tells her that he can’t believe that a pregnancy could be responsible for such changes in her personality. “I sometimes fear for the safety of our customers when she is around” he (half) jokes.

 

In the sitting room, Barbara finishes sorting Jill’s make-up. “Do I look alright?” she asks. “You could have David Bailey’s shutter working overtime” Barbara assures her.  Jill panics that she has got ready too early. Barbara suggests a game of eye-spy, but it doesn’t really work. Jill finds herself thinking about Meg “I wish mum could be here… and Sandy. I feel so alone…..When I think what might have been…SHOULD have been….A different kind of love” She is brought back to reality by Barbara telling her to think of the future.

 

We return to John Latchford’s chalet, just as Glenda bursts in. “I’ve been sent to apologise” she declares. “you’ll have to speak up” he teases her. “Don’t worry, I WILL” she assures him.  “I’m supposed to say I’m sorry – but I’m not. Not by a long chalk. If it were up to me I wouldn’t be here at all, but I have to  be SEEN to be here…” John is satisfied. “I’ll take that as it” he tells her – and suggests that she should be grateful that he doesn’t bear grudges. “But I DO” she replies sarcastically. “You’re scraping the barrel a bit aren’t you?” she asks. “But I suppose all the  other women run away don’t they?” she asks. John has heard enough. “It’s you that needs to examine their intentions, madam” he tells her. “My dad hasn’t been dead a year yet Mr. Latchford” she tells him. John reveals that Kath suggested that they don’t see each other any more. Glenda is overjoyed “Did she now?” she asks. I don’t see why her life and mine should be ruled by a selfish….” he begins – but Glenda isn’t listening. He asks Glenda whether she has considered asking Kath what she feels. “I need her a lot more than she needs you” Glenda tells him. “Aye – and that’s the truth of it” he reluctantly agrees. “its because I care about her” she tells him. “I know what she needs – and you’re just not it” she adds – before leaving.

 

Mr. Paul meets Adam and David in the bar to tell them that the car has arrived to take them to the church. “I have the ring and I deliver you – and that is my obligation fulfilled” David replies jokingly. Adam asks Paul whether Jill is nervous. “Not so much as a flicker” he replies. “I wish I could say the same” Adam replies, before he and David leave through reception. (END OF PART ONE)

 

(PART TWO)

 

Outside the church, Diane, Kath and Sharon meet Miss Tatum. “I wouldn’t miss it for the world” she tells them.

 

Diane’s heel comes loose and she hobbles into church with only one shoe.

 

Adam and David arrive in a classic car. “Here comes the condemned man” Sid jokes to Mac.

 

As Adam and David go into church, Sid suggests that it brings back memories. “I should have joined the foreign legion” he jokes” – just as Mavis arrives out-of-breath. It appears she had been expecting Sid to pick her up in the car.

 

Sharon half jokes that she is surprised that Adam has turned up. Diane points out that Jill has not yet arrived and suggests that she nail him to the chair.

 

Jill and Barbara arrive in a bright orange Rolls-Royce that just happens to match the exact shade of Barbara’s dress and hat.

 

When they get into church – Jill hands her daughter (bridesmaid) Sarah-Jane her parasol, and makes her way to the aisle.

 

Two boys attach old boots to the rear bumper of the car.

 

The marriage blessing takes place – watched over by Sid, Mavis, Sharon, Diane, Kath, David, Barbara, Mac, Sarah-Jane and Miss Tatum (and some non-speaking extras)

 

The happy couple leave the church and have photographs taken, before getting into their bright orange Rolls Royce.

 

CREDITS (Bells ringing instead of theme tune) 

 

Right then – first… That Glenda is such a self-absorbed cow that I really dislike her at the moment. I don’t necessarily think John Latchford is right for Kath either, so I suppose I agree with her in a sense – but she seems to be going about this in completely the wrong way. The sooner this baby arrives, and gives her something to think about – the better.

 

On the other hand, I really like the little in-jokes that Diane makes about her own weddings / divorces – and it is a nice reminder for loyal viewers to remember Vince Parker and Chris Hunter… But I suppose that’s where this episode falls down for me. OK – we have Jill reminisce about Meg (absent) and Sandy (deceased) but there are plenty of other cast members / family members that could have turned up for this wedding – namely her cousin Brian or Uncle Andy.

 

It was lovely to see Miss Tatum wheeled out for the occasion but the absences felt a little obvious. Would the main guests at a wedding really be the staff from the garage? Does Kath Brownlow really have that much to do with Adam or Jill? As for the way Jill almost dismisses Sarah-Jane as she enters the church – surely a mother would share the occasion with her (silent) daughter? The wedding blessing takes up almost all of part two here, which is reminiscent of the time given over to previous church services and weddings – and I can see why some viewers felt like the cast were family members back in the day.

 

It does feel like you’ve been to the service. I have to confess to having a soft-spot for the appalling electronic “photo” effect that uses dreadful quality video stills AND the heart shaped fade around the happy couple during the credits. So 1980’s it’s incredible. It’s a shame that Meg couldn’t turn up for the wedding though – fancy ignoring your own daughter’s wedding…

 

Direction of the episode seems to consist mainly of extreme close-ups of faces, which felt a bit strange to watch actually. Some great location scenes at the church though. As a side note, in the year 2001, footage from this episode appeared in the “new” Crossroads as a home-video of Adam and Jill’s wedding.

 

Site Ref: Episode Available to buy on Crossroads: Volume 2 (Network)

 

Site Ref: 24.5

 

 

Crossroads Episode: 3832: Original TX: 20-10-83 (Thursday)

   

Adam and Jill Chance go on a surprise honeymoon. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                    Director: Not Credited on-screen

 

Mac and Sharon are in the garage office. They have finished what looks like an argument…and Mac leaves. Sharon puts her head down on a box file that is on her desk in front of her. She then lifts up her head and picks up the telephone. She asks to be put through to the wedding reception and Diane Hunter.  Sharon asks Diane whether she could come over to the garage. “In me best frock? You’ve got to be joking” replies Diane, sipping champagne.  Diane asks Sharon to come over to the reception but Sharon tells her that is the whole point – she can’t. Taking one last swig at her glass, Diane agrees to meet her at the garage.

 

Back at the garage, there is a knock at the door of the office. “Who are you and what do you want?” Sharon asks. It is Benny. He asks whether Sharon is feeling alright and offers to take a few hours off work so that he can collect Nina from school. Sharon thanks him for being kind, but points out that if she gave him time off then Mr. Chance would really have a go at them. Sharon assures him that Diane will be willing to do it instead… Just as Diane arrives in the office.  “It’s your afternoon off isn’t it?” Sharon asks her friend. Diane guesses what Sharon is after. “She likes you” Sharon tells her. “I like her as well. I told you that you were getting in over your head and now you’re as good as admitting it” she adds. Sharon reluctantly agrees. Diane says that she will pick Nina up but points out that she doesn’t want to be involved. “What are you afraid will happen?” Sharon asks. “The same thing that’s happened to you” Diane replies.

 

At the Brownlow’s, Kevin arrives home from work. Glenda tells him that she was sent to apologise to John Latchford. “Oh that’s good” he tells her. “You don’t think I did do you?” she asks incredulously. “What I actually did was warn him off!” she reveals. “You’re going to end up pushing her into his arms” he replies. “Just let it drop – she’ll soon forget him” he assures her. They are interrupted by the doorbell ringing – but sadly (for Glenda) Kevin returns with a bunch of flowers with a card saying ‘hope there’ll be a next time soon – love John’. Glenda is unimpressed.

 

At the flat, Sharon is unhappy about her performance as “temporary mother”. She is annoyed that Nina has gone to bed without doing her Makaton exercises as she has been too busy dealing with garage paperwork. She thanks Diane for picking Nina up. “It’s all been a terrible mistake hasn’t it?” Sharon asks. “Is that what you think?” replies Diane. “Isn’t that what you want me to say?” Sharon asks. Diane tells her that isn’t a fair thing to say. “Nina’s a very sweet kid. She’s got you to love her, she’s got Benny to love her – You don’t even know her and she’s staying here… Her mother loves her….” Diane reveals that Nina isn’t the problem – “it’s the others” she tells Sharon.  Diane points out that she visited the school. Sharon tells her that they do very good work there and that they obviously care about the kids. “What about the ones who can’t walk? What about them?” Diane asks. “And the ones who can’t talk? Do they care about them as much as they care about Nina?” she says. “Those ones who can’t talk -  They’re barely there” Diane adds. “You can’t say that” Sharon replies. Diane remembers a beautiful blonde boy that she saw at the school, with soulful eyes and a ‘twisted’ face. “Who loves him?” she asks.

 

“His mother and his father” Sharon replies. “But what about the ones who leave their kids? Who abandon them?” Diane asks. “What about Nina’s father? What about him?” she adds. “What happens if the parents die? Who looks after the kids then?” Diane asks.

Sharon points out that when Nina is older there is every possibility that she will be able to hold down a job – She could go to an adult training centre. “Nina’s wonderful compared to them – she’s fantastic” Diane replies. “But what about the ones who can’t manage at all?” Sharon shakes her head. “Nina’s the only one I know – I can’t break my heart about the other ones” she tells Diane. “… and actually, she doesn’t break my heart at all. I like her” Sharon adds reflectively. Diane recalls time when Nicky was younger, and she tried conning him to go to sleep early so that she could go out to dinner with a fella. “It was like he had a built in alarm clock” she remembers….

 

At the Brownlow’s, Kath is clearly excited by her delivery of flowers. She instructs Kevin to get her best vase. “Why didn’t Glenda open them up and arrange them? She’s good at that” Kath asks. Kevin doesn’t say anything. “I wouldn’t have minded” Kath says, before taking her flowers to the kitchen. “I would” adds Glenda, grumpily from the sofa.

 

Kath returns to the lounge and tells them they’ve been busy at the motel. “Ah you’ve been too busy to see the crysanth sender?” she asks. “Not too busy to apologise, no” Kath replies. Glenda reveals to her mum that she definitely didn’t apologise when she was sent. “I told him to lay off” she reveals. “Do you know what he told me?” Kath asks her. “I’m not interested” Glenda replies. “He told me I ought to consider myself a little bit more” Kath tells her. “If you’re peeved that you’re no longer the centre of my life I’m very sorry – but he talks a lot of sense you know…. and I happen to think that he’s right!” she adds, before picking up her vase and taking it to the kitchen. (END OF PART ONE)

 

(PART TWO) Diane is trying to sleep on the sofa in the flat. She picks up an alarm clock and studies it, before getting out from under her blankets. She has clearly been thinking about her own son as she makes her way over to the telephone and dials the number in America. When it is picked up at the other end she asks to speak to Nicky. “It’s his mum” she says. When Nicky comes on the phone she tells him that she is missing him. She tries asking him about school, but he tells her that he has to go. “I love you” she tells him, sadly. As Diane makes it back under her covers, Sharon enters the front room. She is collecting a glass of water for Nina. Diane asks Sharon whether Nina ever tells her she loves her. Sharon tells her that she doesn’t - “that’s thinking” says Sharon. – She points out that Nina is affectionate, and hugs – and presents herself for kisses. Diane tells Sharon that Nicky told her he loved her on the phone – “but I can’t kiss him” she adds, sadly. “What do I have if I don’t have him?” she asks.

 

In the motel bar, Miriam Brookes asks Paul Ross whether he thinks Jill and Adam will be happy. “I think they’re happy right now” he replies. “Do you think they’ll last?” she clarifies. “That’s what they’ll be asking themselves” he reflects. “They’re an odd mixture. Jill is very fragile… she doesn’t really believe in herself. She’s certainly had her share of unhappiness.” She asks what he thinks of Adam. “He’s not quite the villain that people make him out to be” he tells her. “He’s a go-getter, wheeler-dealer – out to get everything for number one! Whether he can look after number two as well? I just don’t know!” Paul points out that on the few occasions he has seen Adam behave well – it has always been because of Jill. “She seems to have that sort of effect on him” he reflects. “That’s called love, Paul” she replies. “And now they’ve found it I hope they can keep it”

 

In a Venice hotel room, Jill throws open the shutters. “Come and look, it’s the most beautiful sight I’ve ever seen” she tells Adam. He gets up from the bed – “And you’re the most beautiful sight that I’ve ever seen” he replies. They kiss passionately. Eventually Jill tells him that they have to get up. “Do I have to?” he asks. “Love, honour and OBEY” she reminds him.

 

They go over to the window. Jill tells him that she wants to stamp every little bit of it onto her mind. “A golden gateway – that’s what they call it” he tells her, as they look out across the water.

 

Jill and Adam go sightseeing around Venice…

 

…and take a trip on a gondola…

 

Later that evening they sit on their balcony. “Happy?” he asks her. She nods. “Let’s keep it that way.” She smiles. “We will” she tells him. “There never can be another day like today” she says regretfully. “There’s tomorrow!” he points out. She shakes her head. “Today is special” she tells him. “You are a clever darling” she adds. “Yes – I’m brilliant” he agrees. “You knew I’d love this place” she tells him, smiling. He tells her that he listened to something she said once. “I’ve never been to Venice” he recalls. “Never been to lots of places” he goes on. “Venice is for romantics” she replies. “I do love you Mrs. Chance” he tells her. He suggests that he always knew at the back of his mind that Venice was waiting for them. “It’s going to be all too short this honeymoon” she sighs. He tells her that the experience is “tantalising”. She is confused. “Things you know not of!” he adds mysteriously. “Tell me!” she demands, but he refuses. “Secrets!” he says – secretively!

 

CREDITS (Special Venice Theme by Rondo Veneziano)

 

“Husbands and wives shouldn’t have secrets” she tells him.

“Well we shall.. Just for the moment….” 

 

So after the hustle and bustle of the wedding, it is very much back to normal today – at least in the first half of the episode. There is some absolutely cracking stuff from Diane and Sharon. The talk about the children at Nina’s school is heartfelt, if slightly uncomfortable viewing. Diane has always walked the fine line between comedy and tragedy – and never more so than here. Her broken shoe during the wedding has given way to reflective melancholy – and it is played beautifully by Susan Hanson. This is why Diane was (and still is) such a popular character.

 

For once, I actually find myself agreeing with Kevin. It is only a matter of time before Grumpy Glenda pushes her mother into John Latchford’s arms. She is still playing the ‘moody teenager’ role and it is tedious.

 

Mac appears in a rather strange “blink and you’ll miss him” moment at the beginning of the episode, and not again at all. I wonder why they went to the bother – since we don’t actually know what Sharon and he were discussing…

 

You’ve got to love the extravagance of the extensive sight-seeing trip in Venice – featuring so many iconic images that I half expect to see Adam eating a Cornetto whilst on the gondola. He doesn’t… but what he does do is set up the world’s biggest tease. The big reveal is coming tomorrow. I wonder what it could be…

 

Site Ref: 24.6

 

 

Crossroads Episode: 3833: Original TX: 25-10-83 (Tuesday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt and Alan Wiggins                    Director: Not Credited on-screen

 

In the flat, Sharon and Nina are dressed and ready to go, but Diane (who has been sleeping on the sofa) hasn’t yet surfaced. Eventually Diane gets up and offers to make everyone a coffee, while Sharon and Nina fold her blankets. Sharon goes to help Diane in the kitchen. Diane tells Sharon that during her brief phone call to Nicky, he revealed that he is in the sixth grade in swimming. Sharon is impressed. Diane then reveals that Nicky’s friends are planning on going round to Frank Adams’ house, where there is an Olympic sized swimming pool. “Are you driving Nina to school or are you just taking her to the bus stop?” Diane asks. “I’m going to drive her to school because I want to see her teacher” Sharon replies. “I want to know what they do with them all day long.” she adds. “And the ones you were talking about last night – they obviously get something out of it don’t they?” Diane asks how she can be so sure. Sharon tells her that she uses her eyes. “You can see what she gets out of it can’t you?” she asks. Diane finds it difficult to understand how Sharon can remain so unaffected by everything. “It just doesn’t get to you does it?” she asks. “When a fella used to say I was hard I was very angry, cos I wanted to be soft – but maybe I think it’s not a bad thing to be a bit hard. I haven’t got time for all that rubbish – all those labels like ‘retarded’… You’ve just got to worry about what’s important.”

 

In his chalet, Horace Jackman has made himself at home by covering it with newspapers. Barbara has brought him his breakfast. “I didn’t see a soul yesterday” he complains. “What about the girl who brought your food in?” she asks. “’Her? That Diane what’s related to you?” he asks. “…tongue in her head she’s got” he complains. Barbara tells him that Diane is alright. “What was all that pallarva yesterday?” he asks. Barbara tells him that it was Jill’s wedding. “More fool ‘er” he replies.  She asks him why he says that. “I just DO – that’s all” he replies defensively. Barbara suggests that he wash his hands before breakfast. He complains, but goes into the bathroom. He turns on the tap – but doesn’t wash. Barbara asks him about his wife and suggest that they must have been happy together. “It don’t last” he replies. “Nothing does. We was right as rain, her and me… and Danny…when he was a nipper” He starts to think back… “Later on of course the writing was on the wall…That’s what she always used to say…. terrified her it did.” HE reminisces about seeing his wife’s eyes at breakfast following the death of their son. “It finished me – hell of a feeling in the pit of your stomach” he says sadly. He comes out of the bathroom. “It’s no good going on after that – broke her heart” he tells her. “Mine too if it comes to that… He was such a lovely boy….Gentle really…..” Barbara replies with a simple “Yes – I’m sure”.

 

In the flat, Sharon and Nina have finished their toast. Sharon asks whether she is still hungry and spreads some toast with butter. Diane comes in and offers to do the garage books for her. Sharon tells her that it wouldn’t be possible, due to the way she has designed the ledgers – to make her indispensable! Diane leaves and Benny arrives. Sharon offers Nina the toast, but she doesn’t want it. Benny sits down. Nina asks whether Diane has gone out for a lolly. “Who knows!” Sharon replies. She goes out while Benny practices some sign language. He offers her some sweets, but Nina wants a lolly! Benny asks Nina whether he can have some of her toast. She says a very definite NO! Benny playfully argues with her. She sticks her tongue out at him and he smiles.

 

In the garage rest room, Sid and Mac are having a sit down and a cup of tea. Mac points out that the phone has been quiet. Sid tells him that it is because he has taken it off the hook! “We want to have a cup of tea in peace – with Sharon playing ‘Mary Poppins’ with that kid”. “You’ve got to admire her” Mac suggests. They are interrupted by John Latchford who asks whether Sharon is about. “She’ll be nipping in any minute on her umbrella” Sid jokes. John asks whether Sharon has heard any more about his potential deal from Go-Col. “I see Christmas more often” Sid replies. .. just as Sharon arrives. She is surprised to see that tea-break has been moved forward by an hour.  The boys reluctantly return to work as she and John move through to the office. She takes a casual look at the phone, and replaces the receiver. He asks about the deal. She reveals that she had a message yesterday – and sadly it is not what he wants to hear. He tries to persuade her to change her mind – but Sharon points out that keeping the shelves stocked is Go-Col’s responsibility – not hers. She promises to have a final word – and John leaves.

 

At Nina’s school assembly is in mid-flow. Nina and her friend Emma are showing pictures of clowns that they have coloured in. Sharon walks in and reads a poem by Sir John Betjeman that is on display in the entrance hall…

 

Answer me world is a good name

It is what we all are saying

Answer me world with a good game

When the rest of the world is playing

 

I’m not made of a different kind

I don’t want to be left behind

I want to join with the other out there

Answer me world with your love and care

And let me join in the playing.

 

Sharon watches as the assembly comes to an end. She is surprised to see Alison Cotterill leading the children out.  (END OF PART ONE)

 

(PART TWO) “I didn’t know you were a teacher” Sharon tells Alison. “It’s my first job” Alison replies. Sharon asks whether she has seen Benny. “Not yet” she says. Alison reveals that she didn’t plan to get a job so near to Kings Oak, but had no choice when the offer came up. Sharon asks whether she should tell Benny that she has seen her. Alison smiles as she thinks of everything that Benny did for her. “It’s like there are people that God sends to you – but I don’t want to go back to who I was then…” Sharon tells her that she doesn’t think there is any chance of that. Alison tells Sharon that she has no idea of everything that happened to her. Sharon points out that in a place like Kings Oak, everyone knows everything. Sharon invites Alison to supper with her and Nina. She tells Alison that she is sharing Diane’s flat in Castlewich, but points out that Diane will be working. Alison refuses. She tells Sharon that she doesn’t want to go back to being “that timid little girl again” - “You’re a bit timid about seeing Benny” Sharon points out.

 

Sid delivers a customer’s car keys to the motel reception. Barbara catches up with him. “You might be just the man” she suggests. “That’s what all the ladies say!” he replies. “Danny Jackman – does that mean anything to you at all?” she asks. Sid asks whether it has anything to do with the man in the chalet. Barbara tells him that Danny was his son – killed from what she can gather – and that he was some kind of sportsman. “Not a jockey!” Sid points out. Barbara reveals that she can’t ask the man in the chalet as she has been pretending that she is aware of who Danny was – and now feels that she can’t go back on this deception.

 

In the flat, Sharon and Nina are drawing round her hand. Sharon asks for a bit of her toast. Nina agrees, but says that Sharon is bad! “Aren’t I a good girl?” Sharon asks. There is a knock at the door. It is Alison. Nina tells her to “go away” – the women carry on. Sharon suggests that Alison be included in the picture. “Do you want to draw round Alison’s hand?” she asks.” Nina replies “No!” -  Sharon tells Alison that she is glad that she has come round as Nina keeps saying “no”. “Children often play at being difficult” Alison reassures her. Nina gets up and goes to the door. “Where are you going?” Sharon asks – just as Benny walks in. Alison goes to shake his hand – but he greets her with a huge embrace. She looks relived.

 

Back in Venice, Adam and Jill walk into a walled garden restaurant. “Time has flown” complains Jill. “We’ll be back” he reassures her. “I promise”. “Do you always keep your promises?” she asks. She asks him about the “little guessing game” they played on their first night. “I did try terribly hard…” he confesses. “I’ve had a wonderful time – who could ask for anything more?” she tells him. She does however suggest that they should have gone out to eat. He tells her that he is being romantic, wanting to recreate their first evening – even down to sitting at the corner table….”

 

…”Damn” declares Jill, when she spies an elegant woman, facing away from them in a headscarf sitting at their table.  “Well it is the best table. Do you want me to ask her to leave?” he suggests. “These Italian women get very uppity” she replies.

 

She watches as Adam approaches the woman and talks to her. Jill watches closely, and is amazed when the woman turns round. It is her mum! Se rushes over and they embrace.  CREDITS (Special Venice Theme by Rondo Veneziano)

  

Meg: “Come on – lets go to the roof garden. We can talk up there… 

 

Whoa! I mean… whoa! Who saw that coming? Well actually – nearly everybody it seems – since it was spoilered in the newspapers for several weeks beforehand – Well I suppose it would have been difficult to keep the Italian filming under wraps for long. But really – MEG IS BACK! In 1981 we were told that it would be the last we would see of Meg – and here we are -  just under two years later – and here she is. It is actually a real thrill to see Meg Mortimer / Noele Gordon appear on the credits again. In some ways the programme is just the same as it was when she left – Adam and Jill, Sid and Mac, Sharon and Diane… Alison and Benny – but in others it seems to have moved on enormously. 1981 was almost a hangover from the 1970’s, but we are now firmly into the 1980’s here – and I love it. Obviously we have only had a glimpse of Meg, but I’m looking forward to hearing more about what she’s been up to…

 

Absolute credit to Sharon, Diane and Benny here – playing opposite Nina looks like an absolute rollercoaster. It strikes me that everything Nina is doing is absolutely natural – i.e. unscripted – and it is almost as though the actors are having to play their characters, keep the scenes moving along AND improvise responses to Nina – all at the same time. Largely this works, but the young girl does have a habit of looking off-set or directly at the camera, which can’t be helped, but also has the consequence of taking us out of the drama. This is clearly one of the social-issues that Crossroads has dealt with so successfully in the past, and it is impossible to consider quite how ground-breaking this story was at the time. I also think it is amazing that the producers are running the story alongside what was perhaps one of the most anticipated soap returns of all time.

 

Site Ref: 24.7

 

 

Crossroads Episode: 3834: Original TX: 26-10-83 (Wednesday)

   

XXX. (TV Times)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt, Alan Wiggins                    Director: Not Credited on-screen

 

At the Hotel Gabrielli in Venice, Meg and Jill are strolling through the garden. “So life is good?” Jill asks her mum. “Life is very, very good – I’m enjoying every minute of it” she assures her. Meg tells Jill about her flat in Manhattan but points out that she is hardly ever there. She talks about the work she is doing for people that are friends of Lloyd Munro. “My flat’s empty for weeks on end” she tells Jill, and then asks when they will be ready for a second honeymoon. “I’d like to see David’s face if I dropped that little bombshell” she replies.  Meg tells Jill that she looks radiant. “I’m happy” replies Jill.  She asks her mother whether she approves of Adam. “Adam’s always been a good friend to me” she replies. “When he first came to us after Hugh’s death – I don’t know what I’d have done without him.” Jill considers this. “He’s blotted his copybook a few times since then” she points out. “You don’t expect him to be perfect do you?” Meg asks. “He’s an operator – He’s lived by it! THAT needs certain ‘skills’ and a certain disregard of the rules – but there’s never been anything treacherous about his deals. He’s always been quite candid about them – so you know what to expect!” Jill considers this. “And now I think there’s one big difference” Meg continues “He’s always had to work on the outside as an outsider – against us as a family – and against David as a major shareholder.” Meg and Jill sit down at a table. She points out that in the past, Adam has often had the right ideas – without the weight to get them accepted. “But with this marriage, he’s come into the fold!”

 

In the flat, Alison and Benny are talking. She tells him that she now has a job nearby. He asks where she is staying. She tells him that she is staying near Castlewich until she gets sorted.  Benny tells her that he is working back at the garage and that since Mr. Lee has left he has more responsibility. “Are you happy?” she asks him. He nods. “How’s your uncle?” he asks. Alison tells Benny that Reg has built himself a new life in Nottingham – and that she thinks he is going to get married. “So it’s all turned out the best in the end” she adds. Benny asks whether she has got married. She tells him that she hasn’t found the right man yet. “You found a baddun though didn’t you?” he asks.

 

Kath walks briskly into the bar since she is late meeting John. She asks for a tonic. He seems distant. He explains that the car he was driving broke down. “You had Sid’s car didn’t you?” she asks. He nods.  She thanks him for the flowers that he sent. “You made me feel guiltier than ever!” she adds. “It’s not down to you to feel guilt is it?” he asks. She apologises for her daughter’s behaviour. “She thought she’d warned you off!” she tells him. “Do you want me warned off?” he asks. Kath tells him that It might be wise to lay low until the baby is born and Glenda is occupied. He tells her that she is entitled to a life of her own – and that Glenda doesn’t seem to be letting her have one. John tries to persuade Kath to eat with him. “I wish I could say yes” she replies. She tells him that she knows he has received some bad news from the garage and invites him round to her house the following day to a dinner party – to give their relationship another chance.

 

At the flat, Sharon and Alison are talking. “Are you pleased you’ve seen Benny?” she asks. Alison says that she is. Sharon asks her a question about the flash cards that are used during Makaton lessons, but Alison’s mind is elsewhere. Benny comes into the lounge after putting Nina to sleep, and tells Alison that he has to go to the pub – since he is meeting Mac and Sid for a darts tournament.  He suggests that he asks Mrs. Hooper about accommodation for her. “Not yet” she tells him, and explains that she is so busy at school that she can’t think about moving.  He leaves.Sharon comes into the lounge with two coffees. Alison tells her to sit down as she looks exhausted. Sharon replies by saying that she has only been looking after Nina for two weeks and points out that Nina’s mum has to look after her all the time – on the dole. “She gets attendants money doesn’t she?” asks Alison. “She gets £26 a week for a full time job” Sharon points out. They discuss Nina’s attitude towards learning. “Her mind’s lazy – not wilfully lazy – it’s just the way it’s built. You have to fight it all the time.” Sharon reveals that she has been considering what Nina will be like when she is older. “No-one can say” replies Alison. Sharon asks Alison for advice for looking after Nina. “You could relax a little” she jokes. (END OF PART ONE)

 

(PART TWO) Horace Jackman walks gingerly into reception. “Honouring us with your presence?” Mr. Paul asks. Horace questions where he might find “The Mrs” (Barbara), and then gets agitated at Paul. “I know your sort –I’ve met them by the hundreds” he tells him. “You ain’t one of us are you? You’re foreign.” Mr. Paul looks down at the little man in front of him. “Quite” he replies proudly. “I knew it” Horace continues. “So don’t go tellin’ me what to do in me own country. Right?” he threatens. “I would not presume” Paul responds politely, “I gave good years of me life fighting for you lot” Horace continues. … They are interrupted by David, who offers to deal with the situation. Mr. Paul leaves. Horace says that Paul is “getting on my wick – chucking his weight about. I can see him in jackboots covered in medals…” David asks what Horace would like to see Barbara for. “To say goodbye” replies Horace. “She’ll be very sorry to have missed you – of course, but I’ll give her your regards” David tells him… Horace then changes his mind, and decides to hang on “till tomorra”.

 

At the Brownlow’s, Kath is depressed. She lets out a big sigh. Kevin asks what is wrong and Kath tells them that John has lost the contract to supply the garage. She reveals that John had invited her to eat with him. “You might have enjoyed that” says Glenda. “You mean you’d have let me?” questions Kath. She then reveals that she has invited him over for a meal the next week.  “Wasn’t his staying here dependent on getting that contact?” Kevin asks. “They may be moving him away – I don’t know” she replies. “Oh that’s one consolation” Glenda says. “It may be dinner – but at least it’s a farewell dinner!”

 

Glenda storms out. Kevin suggests that it might be better to go out to meet John as a way of avoiding trouble. Kath smiles.

 

In the garage Sid takes a phone call from a customer cancelling a job. Mac points out that it leaves Friday morning empty. Sid asks when Adam Chance will be getting back from his honeymoon. “I don’t know – but I hope it’s after Sharon has caught up with her work” he replies – just as David Hunter comes in looking for her.

 

Sid tells David that Sharon has been given time off by Adam. “Did he know the garage accounts are overdue?” asks David. “She’s been taking them home for the last couple of nights….” explains Mac. David leaves as Benny arrives. He tells Mac that Sharon is picking up Nina from school before they both go shopping. Benny reveals that it might be Nina’s last night. Mac realises that Sharon definitely won’t feel like doing the accounts.

 

“Tramps do not belong in motels” Paul tells Miriam as they relax in his chalet. He suggests that If David had acted more tactfully he might already be gone. “I shall be glad to see the back of him” says Paul as he leans in to kiss Miriam.

 

“I should think you say that about all the guests.” she suggests. “Occasionally there is a departure that leaves me saddened” he replies. “Very soon there will be one that will leave me mortified!”. She looks at him. “Let’s hope it will never happen” she replies. “I intend to do everything in power to prevent it!” he tells her.

 

(CREDITS Special Venice Theme by Rondo Veneziano – Note captions were static rather than criss-cross)

 

In Venice, Adam, Jill and Meg speed along the ocean in a speedboat…

 

…before Meg leaves them. She is standing, waving on a bridge as the happy couple wave back at her. 

 

And then she was gone. I’ll be honest – this is a much more up-beat last scene for Meg – no longer stranded on the QE2, watching her daughter wave from the quayside with panda eyes. Instead we have learned that she is leading a successful and exciting life away from the motel. In a way I suppose this means the chances of a return to the humdrum world of Kings Oak are limited – but if it’s happened before… Even though a lot was made of Meg’s return in the press, this does feel very much like a half-hearted way to do it. One short scene with Jill and a speedboat ride wasn’t a lot – but on the other hand – I know that it was very welcomed by the viewers at the time.

 

It is nice to have reference to past characters such as Chris Hunter, Reg Cotterill and Hugh Mortimer. This is the benefit of long-running sagas. This episode feels (again) like a link to a past era of the show, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. 

 

 

 

Site Ref: Episode Available to buy on ITV:60 DVD (Network)

 

Site Ref: 24.8

 

 

Crossroads Episode: 3835: Original TX: 27-10-83 (Thursday)

   

David Hunter confronts John Latchford with a serious problem. (TV Times- Granada)

 

Writers: David Garfield, Arthur Schmidt, Alan Wiggins                     Director: Teddy Abraham

 

John Latchford walks across the reception area to the desk. David asks him whether he has had a good day. “So so” he replies. “It’s just that some folks seem to have a built in objection to reps don’t they?” David tells John that there is a query on his account “A small matter of settlement”. David tells John that he has received a letter from his company and asks him to join him in the office.

 

“There’s never usually any quibble – they always settle on the dot” John tells him. David tells him that they have indeed settled on the dot – of next Friday. “That puzzled me rather – as I didn’t know you were leaving” David tells him.  John reminds him that his booking says “indefinite stay”… He tries to come up with an explanation…. “They’ve got it all wrong – it’ll be the empty headed birds in the office” he says. David points out that the letter says that John will have to “settle his account for any further period”. John considers the implications. “They can’t cut me off without a penny while I’m still here on business” he says. John starts to rant – but David has heard enough. He offers John the use of his phone and tells him that he will be on the desk if he needs him.

 

Alison arrives at the flat and asks Sharon where Nina is. Sharon tells her that she is at the birthday party of a friend from school. Alison offers to help them with the flash-cards and Sharon agrees to do them later, although it is Nina’s last night. “I don’t just want to be a babysitter” she tells Alison.

 

They go through to the kitchen and discuss one of the boys from Nina’s school. Alison tells her that the system he is working on isn’t working. “I don’t think he’ll ever be able to read” she says. Sharon talks about his mother…“I did wonder –she had that strain in her voice – trying TOO hard, hoping TOO much.” Alison tells her that a lot of the parents do that. “Wouldn’t you – if Nina were yours?” she asks. “I’d try and love her for what she is” Sharon replies. Alison points out that she has to grow up, take care of herself and live in a community. “You have to push her every step of the way - just to do the ordinary things that we do” Alison says. Sharon asks about the little boy they were discussing. “I believe in miracles. Once you believe in the big ones – little ones are easy” Alison replies.

 

John Latchford bursts into the garage office looking for Sharon. It seems he has been given a message. Neither Mac nor Sid can help him though. Sid is on the phone to a Mrs Hythe, who is “wetting herself” about an oil leak. Eventually Sid tells John that Sharon has been too busy to sort anything further with Go-Col, but he invites John out for a drink.

 

Back at the flat, Benny arrives just as Sharon is about to leave to pick up Nina. Benny asks her to phone Mac – something to do with Mr. Hunter. Sharon says that she knows what it is about. She says that she will be going out for half an hour – but invites both Alison and Benny to stay to tea. “We’ll make a party of it” she tells them. Before she goes, Sharon hands Benny a pack containing the photos of Nina that they took the week before. “Pity we couldn’t go to the zoo innit?” he asks. Sharon tells him that it wouldn’t have been possible in the rain. Alison suggests that they take Nina to the zoo tomorrow instead. Sharon agrees that it would be a great idea, and suggests that Benny take the afternoon off. She leaves. Benny shows Allison a photo of someone. “Guess who that it – I did cut the head off!” he laughs…

 

In his chalet, Horace Jackman is packing up. “But why?” Barbara asks. “Time” he tells her. “You were a great help” she tells him. “Was I?” he asks. She told him that he has been tremendous. She goes on to say that there a few outstanding points that she would like to cover. “It don’t do to get too used to things missus – it softens you up” he tells her. She asks him to consider whether the work they have been doing has been too difficult. He isn’t really sure what she is talking about “Talking then?” she suggests. “You don’t call THAT work do you?” he asks. “It’s the sort of preparation I need.” He tells her that she doesn’t need to tell him about preparation. “I know all about that – don’t you worry – I’ve done some!” he tells her. He reminisces about getting up at 5 o’clock in the morning with his son, Danny. “I was ALWAYS there, watching” he adds. “I had a sharp edge on him… He was ready – no doubt about it…. But it weren’t to be….” Barbara is still unsure about what he is talking about, but responds with a “Shame…” Horace responds to this. “Yeah – it’s a crying shame” he agrees. “There was tears alright. Plenty. I ain’t ashamed to admit it. We cried like babies – me and his mam… For all the good it did.” Barbara doesn’t really know what to say, but tells him that she is glad that he will stay to talk some more. “I’ll stay” he agrees. “What’s the difference?” (END OF PART ONE)

 

(PART TWO) Sid and John are having a drink in the bar. Sid is confirming to John that his deal is dead in the water. John is concerned that Kath will think he is only after a mad night’s passion because he will have to leave the area shortly. “At your age? You’re joking” Sid tells him. “She’s a nice woman – you’re not a bad lad yourself” he goes on. “Would you believe her daughter doesn’t think it’s right?” John asks him. “In her condition she makes it difficult for everyone at the moment!” Sid tells him. They are joined by Kevin, who is looking for Kath. John offers him a drink, but he refuses as he is expected home to do some wallpapering. “Have you been told to keep away from Latchford the Enticer?” he jokes.

 

In the office, Mr Paul and David Hunter are looking over some pre-bookings for New Year’s Eve and Christmas. David comments that they are pretty well booked up until Christmas as well. Paul remarks on the awkwardness of one of their best chalets being blocked by “Barbara’s little experiment” (i.e. Horace) David asks “Do you have any idea how long Mrs. Brookes is likely to be with us?” Mr. Paul corrects him “Mrs. Cartwright” but David corrects him – “She booked in as Mrs. Brookes” Paul replies by telling him that ‘Miriam’ has not yet given a time for her departure. “However I do have certain plans of my own!” – He tells David that he is thinking of getting a flat in the village. “Does Miriam feature in these plans?” David asks him. “Oh very much so” Paul replies. “But don’t worry – this is NOT another quiet fling. After all there is no Mr Brookes to put in an appearance now”. Their conversation is interrupted by Barbara, who has come into the office to tell them that Horace Jackman is staying. “Oh good” David replies, in a less than believable way. Barbara picks up the phone and calls a friend on the local newspaper. She asks him to look up a Danny Jackman. “Please don’t tell me he’s inviting his whole family!” Paul laments as he gets up to leave. “It’s his son – and he’s dead” Barbara tells him. “Please give him my condolences” Paul answers immediately.  Barbara tells her friend on the  phone that she has nothing to go on except the name – and asks him to get in touch if he hears anything. When she gets off the phone she admits to David that the biggest mistake she made was pretending that she knew what Horace was going on about. “There’s no going back on that” she admits. She thanks David for persuading Horace to stay. “Nice to know that you care” she tells him. (He doesn’t admit that it was an unwanted side-effect of their conversation)

 

At the Brownlow’s Glenda is polishing one of Arthur’s bowling trophies when Kevin arrives back with the wallpaper for the baby’s room. “Ooh – you can get curtains to match this – and a lampshade” she gushes. Glenda asks Kevin where her mother is. Kevin lies that he couldn’t find her at the motel. “She’s not with Latchford is she?” Glenda asks. “He’s not such a bad bloke you know – he offered me a drink” Kevin tells her. He goes on to say that John has told him that he won’t be taking Kath up on her offer of a meal. “Oh I see – all palls together is it?” she asks.  “I wonder whose side you’re on” she asks. He tells her that there aren’t any sides. Glenda suggests that the fact John and Sid were sharing a drink when John has missed out on order goes to prove that he is trying to cheat his way with Kath. Kevin gets cross and tells Glenda that he has had enough of the petty squabbles. He tells Glenda that even if Kath decides to marry John, it would be OK by him. He walks out and tells Glenda he is going to get the wallpaper paste. “Can I mix it?” she asks. The irony of the question isn’t lost on him.

 

In the motel office, David is on the phone to Sharon. He tells her that her figures are two days overdue – and that he needs them to be able to complete their accounting. “Tomorrow is not good enough…” he begins – but the line has gone dead.  He walks across the office and picks his coat up from the stand – just as Barbara comes in. “Feel like an early lunch?” she asks. “I feel like a holiday – but I haven’t got time for either” he replies. “What’s happened to Sharon Metcalfe? She used to be so on the ball…” he asks – before leaving. Paul comes in as David leaves. Barbara tells him that she has heard that he is looking for somewhere to stay in the village. “Something just big enough for two” he replies, smiling. “I must say it came as a bit of a surprise to me” she confesses. “I’ve surprised myself” he admits. “You fall in love too easily” she tells him. “Never before like this” he replies.

 

In the garage office, Sid asks Sharon whether she has had time to organise something for a customer. She tells him that it will have to wait until she has finished what she is doing. “Life is more important than work” she tells him. Sharon tells him that she is planning on giving Nina a good send-off. Sid leaves to get on with his own work, as David enters. Sharon tells him that she is ready to give him some preliminary figures. He tells her that estimates are not good enough – and that he needs the actual figures. “I can have them done for tomorrow” she promises. “They should have been done when they were due – on October the 10th!” he replies crossly. He then softens and tells her that his accountant will be able to pick them up on his way home that evening. Sharon promises to get them done by tomorrow – and to drop them round personally to his office in the morning. “I’m not going to put him off again. He needs those accounts TONIGHT!” he stresses. “I’m sorry – but it just can’t be done” she replies. “It HAS to be done!” he tells her again.

 

(CREDITS)

 

“I’m only here until three” says Sharon.

“How long you’re HERE depends on YOU – I mean in this office – in this job!” 

 

So after the excitement of the Venice trip, it is very much “back-to-business” in this episode. The tedious animosity that Glenda has towards John continues to rumble on – but actually – his casual sexism towards the “empty headed birds in the office” really annoyed me today and I have started to find myself agreeing with her – just as Kevin has decided to man-up and stand up to her. I wonder whether it was seen this way in 1983…

 

One definite change from 1983 to today is the ease at which Barbara would have been able to find out about Danny Jackman in the Google-age. It is sometimes difficult to imagine just how different life is now to 34 years ago. I am sure Sharon would have found it much easier to keep track of the accounts with modern computers – she could have sent an email, rather than offer to drop them round in the morning.

 

The change in Sharon is mind-bending – from hard-faced career woman – running the garage with an iron fist to the soft – absent minded person we today is both disturbing and intriguing in equal measure. I can understand David’s frustration though – and the quiet rage he displays at the end of the episode really emphasises how underplaying scenes can work much more effectively than over-the-top melodrama.

 

 

 

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