Telly. All telly. Telly good.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

CSI vs. CSI: Miami

Because we have some delicious chicken nuggets in the oven, and because we didn't post anything last night (although we started to, but then fell asleep, naughty us), to make up for it, here. Have a little post on why we heart CSI almost more than we heart ourselves, and why CSI: Miami is rubbish.


Now, we will confess that we have sat down and watched Miami on several occasions. And we pretty much enjoy it, because it is kind of fun and the people are pretty. But then, we watch the original, and sob at what's happened to it. Ahem. These are the reasons why:

CSI's theme tune is much better than Miami's. We know this isn't very deep, in fact it's shallow, but we don't care, because we're shallow people.

CSI has Gil Grissom. Miami doesn't. Instantly, you've lost half the yayness. Let's, actually, look at the characters and see how they didn't spend as much time on Miami's.

Gil Grissom: V V Interesting, introspective character. Doesn't really have a life outside of work other than an interest in bugs. Has a good sense of humour, and is close to his team, or as close as his nature allows.

Catherine Willows: An ex-stripper, who uses her experience of the lows to influence the way she deals with her cases. She has a child and a dead husband, and a millionaire criminal possible father.

Nick Stokes: Ambitious, driven, but more lightweight than Gil - he's never going to let his work interfere with having a private life.

Sara Sidel: Gil Grissom Jr, only a lady. As driven and hard-working as Nick, she has an extra empathy that Gil has never had. Although in some cases this mars her judgement, sometimes it gives her insights other people miss.

Warrick Brown: Resident 'troubled' CSI. His addiction to gambling cost the life of another CSI in the very first episode, and he carries the guilt around with him all the time, but recently has lightened up into a lovely person.

Now for Miami:

Horatio Caine: As smug as his name is stupid, Horatio hardly ever talks to the rest of his team, looks down his noses at anyone who isn't on his team, and says stupid things like 'His mistake . . . *intense look* . . . was murder.' Well, duh.

Eric Delko: A CSI of Latin descent. This is mainly what he does. Since CSI had Warrick (who's black), Miami made Eric, who's Latino, but he doesn't actually have any other storylines.

Calleigh Duquesne: A woman. Much of her time is spent along these lines: 'Oh, I'm so pretty. I wish everyone would stop treating me like a fragile rose. Look! I shoot guns.'

Tim Speedle: The introverted one. He doesn't do very much either, it's stupid to have him as a regular because he's normally just standing in the background looking gormless.

Alexx Woods: Vaguely interesting, because her name has two 'x's. And she talks to her dead patients. She's the coroner, you see, so we don't see enough of her.

CSI knows that people watch it for the grisly murders. Yay! Miami has decided to be very moral and tell people how they should behave. But not in a subtle way. It's like having Horatio grabbing you by the shoulders and smacking you repeatedly into a wall, screaming 'THIS IS HOW YOU SHOULD BEHAVE!' Almost every episode is all about how driven Horatio is. We. Don't. Care.

CSI is funny. Not Will and Grace funny, obviously. Funny in a gallows-humour kind of way, funny that makes you think, 'Hmm, that was funny. Teehee.' Miami doesn't even try. Well, sometimes it tries, but it doesn't do very well. It's too busy being moral.

CSI has noted the value of good recurring characters (like Greg and Al, who became regulars for Season Three). There's a little core who pop up whenever they're needed, providing a getaway from the main action. The only recurring character in Miami of any note at all is the whiny widow of Horatio's brother, Who's dead. The brother, not the whiny lady. She finds the cases, wanders round looking cross, then closes them. And this episode that sparked the rant off has her looking even crosser because it's something to do with her dead brother, and drugs, and illicit babies or something. We stopped caring, so we're not sure.

And this is why CSI is better than Miami. CSI has a cast that makes you care about them while also detaching yourself so that you can look at the program with an unbiased eye. It provides murders that are awful, but that you can't help but sympathise with the victims of. It makes you want to know what happened.

Miami goes through the motions, and tries very hard to copy its bigger, better brother, but that's all it is: going through the motions. We don't care about the characters (in the case of Horatio, we'd cheer if he went away forever), and we can never be bothered to stick with the investigation.

And now we hear that they're going to make another version, CSI: New York. Please please please let it be more like the original!

(Ooh, we've just had a peek at an American site, and Gary Sinise is going to be in it. This looks promising.)

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Eastenders/Neighbours: The Coming of the Gangsters

We love Jack 'God my eyebrows are sexy' Scully. We really do. We do know he has his bad points, and we do have a strong beef with him for being so horrible to Delta Goodrem, but look at the boy. He's delicious. Especially when he does that little smile. Mm. He's slowly creeping up on Seth 'Geeky but delicious' Cohen from The OC.

Anyway, the reason for today's love of Jack (like we need one) is that he was very funny with the rest of the Scully clan (Steph, Lyn and Joe) when they were trying to make a home video to promote them to the makers of 'Making Mansions', a reality show that will give the Scullys their dream home. As long as its in Ramsay Street, mind you. They're the best family there and I'll be cross if they leave.

Fortunately, we were offered a slight reprieve from the Tragic Tale of Karl and Susan, and were instead given Toadie trying to convince his gangster client not to use violence to kick some people out of a building, or something (we don't really care, we were looking for Jack). What is this, Eastenders?

Oh, and Lou and Trixie left for their tour of Asia. Yay for them. Although we are a bit disappointed that Lou left on bad terms with the new improved Stroke-Harold, who, despite how fun it is watching him get drunk and eat sausages, we wish would come to his senses and go back to normal. In time for Lou's return, of course. That way maybe he'd notice that Serena isn't taking anyone's advice and is continuing to see Scary Pervy Photo Man, who is a little over-excited about her impending 16th birthday. We smell trouble on the wind . . .

Speaking of wind, we were quite impressed with Pat 'Tyson' Butcher in today's Eastenders, when she dealt Janine a blow that gave the Street's Karen a run for her money. However, we are a little concerned that Pat has become so cross that she never speaks without parting her teeth. This is called lockjaw, and can be very serious. How will she eat? We call for a doctor to come and make her all better.

Elsewhere in the Square, the Ferreiras (who, incidentally, have kidnapped Ross from Friends, did anyone notice?) cleaned their house. Running short on storylines, are we?

Far more impressive, we thought, was Home and Away, who devoted almost the entire episode to Leah and how she's having a nervous breakdown now that she's building a Cookie Empire to rival Australia's other big cookie manufacturer (does anyone know who this is? Tell us!). She has drafted in Hayley and Jesse to help, except Jesse still loves her. Ah well, this should be fun.

Meanwhile, Chris and Seb having taken to spending a lot of time together since Nick has made it very clear that he's not overly fond of Chris - who, when Seb was all shocked that he'd never had a kiss, decided Seb would be the perfect first candidate. Seb was surprised at Chris leaning in (well, wouldn't you be?) and there followed a moment of awkwardness before Chris ran away.

Here we have to point out that it's taken Home and Away about five minutes to introduce a character, make him gay and start lighting the fireworks. Coronation Street's gay storyline, at last count, has been running for approximately five million years. Sort it out! (Having said this, although we're not big on spoily previews, we can hope for some gayness in the coming weeks. Yay! And there's even a new gayer headed for The Bill. Now we just need one each on Casualty, Holby City and Eastenders, and we have a full set.)

Speaking of Holby, we're a little concerned at the way everything seems to be going mental. Both Kath and Chrissie are applying for the Clinical Matron post (where did this come from? Have we ever seen a Clinical Matron before? No, we haven't), and Kath has herself a sexy eccentric boyfriend in the shape of Larry, but she keeps getting cross when he's spontaneous. Tom's applying for a consultancy position (well, that's not really mental, but we're bored of him now. Why didn't he stay gone before?) and Ed's cancelled his surgeon's exams. Why? So he can look after his heart transplant-y father, that's why. Damn fool boy! We're getting annoyed with Ed as well now, so can he and Tom please go gay and run off together?

Meanwhile, Jess, who seemed to be getting much more sensible following the untimely death of boyfriend Nic (hold on a minute . . . we must be strong . . . oh, but we miss him so much. He was the first properly nice character in ages) is going out with Rob, who survived the crash that killed his pregnant girlfriend, but who wasn't pregnant (the girl, not Rob), and now he's rifling through her bag (Jess' bag, not the girl's). What are you thinking, girl? When was the last relationship that went well in that accursed hospital? Oh, that's right, there wasn't one! If you want a boyfriend, you're going to have to leave. But don't, because we love you.

Oh, and Mickie delivered her first baby on her own. Ahh. But can someone please get that woman some valium? She is the most nervous midwife we have ever seen. Would you really want her handling your slippery-with-womb-water newborn? 'Whoops, butterfingers! Hang on, I'll just retrieve your baby from the gutter.' We think not.

And Donna tried to leave after Ed snapped at her. But didn't. Dammit!

Most Important Question of the Day: Why, on Holby, do surgeons always say, 'See you in theatre'? We would hope the patients weren't going to see them, otherwise someone would need to have a quiet word with the anaesthetist. Ooh, but then again, it's Art Malik. Would you want to be the person to correct Art Malik? Nope, us neither.

Most Important Question of the Day 2: Most Important Question of the Day 1 reminded us, why is it that since Art Malik joined the series the lovely wheelchair-bound anaesthetist has vanished? And the way they play it, every operation hinges on whether Art Malik (yes, we know that his character has a name, but we like pointing out that Holby's got a proper actor in it) feels like it. What did they do before?

Monday, March 22, 2004

Hello Dolly! Parton it ain't

Ah, Trixie. Bless her heart. I know none of the Neighbours mentioned it, but who's she kidding? With her 'glam', 'showgirl' outfit? Firstly, it's difficult for people to take 'as many pictures as they want' when there are only two cameras. Secondly, buy a push-up bra. Your boobs were all squished. Thirdly, how many more Madges can they fit in to one programme? First there was Rosie (aka Madge Mk II), and now Trixie (Madge Mk III)! Make a new character! Give them a new face! It's no wonder Harold had a stroke. Speaking of Harold, he was very rude at the goodbye party. Ah well.

Oh, and Karl and Susan are still living together, but Karl doesn't love her anymore. And it doesn't help that that chlamydia-ridden bitch Izzy wiggles her boobs extra hard whenever they're together.

Note: At no point in Neighbours has there been any mention of Izzy actually having contracted chlamydia. I'm just pointing that she strikes me as the chlamydia type, if such a thing exists. Chlamydia Girl, if you will.

And poor Stuart isn't exactly rolling in the support for his application to join the police. Steph's wary after previous experiences with the police (when? For what? Did we miss something?) and Lou thinks that there's no way he'll have the discipline. Nicely set up for 'My goodness you did it' storyline when Lou gets back, then.

Back in Blighty - Coronation Street to be exact - Karen's a little happier now she's managed to force Liz out of the Street. And we're actually happy about that. Despite the mentalness of recent times, and the fact that we don't like Steve very much, we'd quite like to see this relationship succeed. If only in the hope that it'll make Tracy cry. Unfortunately, we can't see that happening while Steve's skulking around paying her lots of money. I didn't realise Satanism paid so well. Where do I sign up?

Meanwhile, Shelley tried to resist Charlie's charms. Not for very long, mind you, about half an episode, actually, but still, you know, points for effort. Then she decided that, to play hard to get, she'd lock all the regulars in the Rovers. We have absolutely no idea, either. Anyway, Fred, who was already cross because he'd just seen Evil Penny driving off with Smarmy Mike, wasn't best pleased, and shouted so loudly that Shelley quit as bar manager. What a voice! We normally feel sorry for Fred, proposing left right and centre, but he was quite rude tonight, so grr to him. Bev, as usual, tottered round looking like a confused monkfish and was no help at all.

Ashley and Claire's romance looked much more promising, when he whisked her off to a posh hotel in an attempt to get away from the continued presence of Fred. Unfortunately, they played chess with the minibar (wish I'd thought of that), and Claire got very drunk and fell asleep. Normally, that's the man's job, but seeing as the man involved is Ashley I think the explanation is very clear here.

Also, sigh. Did we not mention just yesterday that we're bored of how long Gay Todd's taking to admit he's gay and have sex with Properly Gay Karl? We think we remember Karl saying that he had a boyfriend, but never mind about that, we can soon get rid of him. Tonight, they had a record one and a half minutes of screentime (out of a whole hour of a double episode).

What was that? ITV1 afraid to spend time on a gay storyline when C4 introduces them fully-fledged? Don't be silly, I say to you, ITV1 has a long-standing tradition of excellent gay characters. There's Bob from Bob and Rose. Oh, except he turned straight. Well, how about Conrad and Noah in Footie Wives? Well, true, Conrad's not really and Noah's going mental. Well, then of course there's the . . . um . . . well . . . aha! They had a gay couple in Where the Heart Is! Except they were hardly in it. Ha! You can't argue this one! The Bill! There was Sergeant Gilmore! Oh, right, he went mental and left. PC Ashton! Nope, he wasn't sure so he left. PC Gemma Osbourne! Went mental, left. DC Becker! Oh, right, died. DS McAllister! Oh, yeah, she's forgotten about it now. No, you're right, ITV1 are rubbish at doing gay storylines.

Anyway, tonight Todd and Karl (they'd better start speaking fast - before you know it their slots are going to be confined to a golf cart trundling past the screen: 'If you can't say it in the time it takes to travel five feet, it's being cut') went for a drink to celebrate Todd's job as a porter. Before Todd told Sarah. Yes, this is all well and good but we don't care that Todd told Karl before Sarah. We'll only care if they start shagging.

Most Important Question of the Day: Has Mandy from Hollyoaks gone mental? She's put Frankie and Debbie in charge of Washed Up. Because of the Deans' previous success in . . . what, exactly? Arguing? Admittedly, a valid quality in Hollyoaks, but still.

Saturday, March 20, 2004

Yay! Violence!

Avid readers of this blog (that's you, Steve) will know that we at Square Eyes are not averse to the occasional bit of violence on the telly. In fact, we love it when people have a fight. Especially two women.

So yay Coronation Street for finally giving us what we wanted - a brawl between Karen and Tracy! And yay that it wasn't so much of a brawl as Karen kicking Tracy's lily-white ass. Of course, this being Corrie, they weren't going to have a quiet argument in the corner somewhere; instead Karen dragged Tracy round the christening of Amy/Patience/Scarred For Life like an old rag - and displaying a rather powerful right hook that we would be afraid to be on the receiving end of.

Meanwhile, Gay Todd went for the interview for the full-time porter job, after getting a lot of encouragement from Properly Gay Karl. I swear, if we have one more episode of Todd looking longingly at Karl/the two of them touching for longer than is necessary I'm going to scream. Today, Todd cancelled a celebration with Sarah (a celebration of what? Surviving? He hasn't got the job yet) to go out with Karl. Why don't they just have sex and get it over with?

Over in Hollyoaks, Ellie's worrying about the website trying to free Dan and reveal Dead Toby as the killer. I don't know why. The rate this storyline's unfolding she'll have died of natural causes by the time anything actually happens. Honestly, how long has it been going now? I seem to recall it starting around the day of my birth. In a previous life as a gold-digger in America.

And, finally, Evil Cindy's gone gallivanting off to Spain now she's managed to weedle money out of Hairy Max and Mandy. However, Max is annoyed that the money came from Tony buying out the business, and now, apparently, wants nothing to do with anyone. Bye then, Max, don't let the door hit you on your way out.

Down in the sunnier climes of Neighbours, Max (different Max) is sponsoring Connor to allow him to stay in Erinsborough. Erm . . . why did no one think of this at any other point in the past three years Connor's been there? Never mind, at least we get more of his 'twinkly Irish charm'. Oh, and Stuart's asking Libby for a recommendation so he can join the police. Honestly, that woman has done more since she left than she ever did while she was there.

Most Important Question of the Day: Why doesn't Karen buy a cardigan that fits? The whole episode she was throwing that thing around on her shoulders like a dead rabbit. Zip it up, woman!

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Mental Telly

We apologise to the nation.

Normally at Square Eyes we're very good at noticing imminent gayness on TV, and cover it (unless it's the rubbish bisexual storyline on Family Affairs, we flush that down the toilet). However, we confess that, in the case of Home and Away, we didn't at all realise that Chris is in a sexual crisis! Despite hanging out with Seb and Nick, who, let's face it, aren't the most attractive of people, but then we are biased towards the lovely Noah, who's played by a man called Beau. Love!

We were also slightly touched by Colleen leaving for Adelaide and then pelting straight back to Summer Bay. Nobody pelts back to Corrie, do they? There's no beach there.

Ellie in Hollyoaks is annoying us now. It was all very fun and dramatic when she couldn't really remember what had happened, but now that she's making out that Dan killed Toby, we're cross. Toby was mental! Come on!

Oh, and Ben and Izzy are arguing. Yawn. And Mandy's having a breakdown. Again. That poor girl.

Because of our bladderedness Tuesday, we couldn't watch Holby City. But! We recorded it and watched it tonight! Two new nurses arrived, Mickie in maternity, replacing Lisa (who we thought was replaced by Rosie, but never mind) and Donna on the surgical ward, who we don't like because she's a bit like Vicky Pollard in a nurse's uniform. Mickie managed to make a pregnant lady fall down some abandoned stairs (why are there abandoned stairs in a hospital?) and Mubbs was cross. And Donna was very lazy and annoyed Kath, as well as Diane when it turned out the slimy Peter slept with Donna the previous night. Oh, Diane, we could have told you Peter was trouble. What kind of radiologist is that good-looking?

Speaking of trouble, we're worried about Jess' interest in Rob, the survivor of a car crash whose not-pregnant girlfriend died. Jess told him the girl wasn't pregnant and now they're going out for drinks. What?

Something that does worry us recently is the general level of mentalness on The Bill. Since killing off six characters and becoming more like a soap, it's developed its fair share of mad storyline, which we at Square Eyes applaud, as mad storylines are generally the best on TV (ie Footballers' Wives). However, recently The Bill has become even more mental.

First there was Superintendent Tom Chandler, who got DC Debbie 'How have I not been fired?' McAllister pregnant then killed himself. There followed a period of relative calm, marred only by a serial killer and PC Nick 'Monkey' Klein getting addicted to drugs. They had a lesbian join, make Debbie lezzie, then die. Then came a real slow-boiler, the incredibly insane PC Cathy Bradford, who went round randomly killing TDC Brandon Kane's lesbian ex-wife and her own fiance, before kidnapping his kids and hiding in the Sun Hill boiler room. PC Gabriel 'Evil' Kent saved June from a rapist, had lots of sex with her then told her he was her son. And then that he wasn't. So now we're very confused. Especially since he should be in Eastenders. And dead. PC Des 'Grr' Taviner, who started the fire that killed the aforementioned six, felt very guilty, ran round being mean for a while, then drove himself and Reg into a building, ran off, came back, found out his baby was dead, kidnapped Cameron, ran off, came back and now he's dead. Despite the killer confessing to killing him, all evidence pointing to this fact and the general routineness of the situation, it is only just that Sheelagh has been cleared. Weird.

Meanwhile, PC Andrea Dunbar isn't really a PC at all, she's an undercover reporter who's not very subtle. And honestly, that woman's been told more slightly incriminating off-the-record facts in three episodes than anyone else in three years. And she's only just started! Tonight she found out that Superintendent Adam 'I brood so hard it's dangerous' Okaro has a chequered past. Of course he does. How else did he get a job at Sun Hill?

Speaking of mental police shows, we also love ITV1's new drama series Murder City. It's witty, it's got a dash of the absurd comedic touch, and it stars Amanda Donohoe, who is one of our favourite actresses ever. We at Square Eyes saw her in the theatre and cried. Because she was good at portraying emotion, not because anyone had thumped us or anything.

Anyway, the only minor problem with Murder City was that the cameraman clearly trained in the NYPD Blue school of cameramen, but didn't quite finish. He has the jerky, gritty, 'real-life' feel of NYPD (except, we notice, for the bits with Amanda in, which make her look like she's glowing), except it never stops. Once the camera went to an important document, jerked sideways along the man's arm, trailed for a couple of seconds through thin air like a disconcerted butterfly, swung back, missed the man's face and finally settled on a close-up of his nose. Which was beautiful, but really.

It did have a mad psychic, though, something we do always love. Especially when at the end there's a moment where you think 'Ooh, maybe he is psychic.' To the point: we love this and will watch it some more.

Most Important Question of the Day: Why is Dean still in The Bill? His only lines that weren't 'Sierra Oscar receiving' were in his first episode and he hasn't done anything since. Even his wheelchairyness is completely beside the point because you always sit down in CAD anyway. We demand he be given a storyline. Ooh, we could make him gay. Since getting rid of all their gays at once, Sun Hill is a gay-free zone. Although it does have a PC named Honey.

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Schizo Party!

Earlier, we at Square Eyes were condoning violence against Emmerdale's Chloe 'Fly, my pretties' Atkinson. We must apologise. We were gravely mistaken and should not have said the things we did. Instead, we should have said:

Death to Chloe! Start a witch hunt! Find some villagers! Make burning torches out of Chloe-shaped bits of wood! Because' we're very cross. She's running around making all sort of ridiculous accusations about Sid being a wife-beater (when, frankly, we're not sure Sid can beat the clock) and making the whole village think he's evil! Chastity - 'I wonder if I could swallow a horse whole?' - is the only one who believes him, but suspicions are being roused as people slowly realise that a beaten wife probably wouldn't sail jauntily off to both lunch and a party the next day. Intelligent, that lot, aren't they.

And Dawn and Scott are being awkward with each other after their rubbish almost-shag. We don't care. Do you? I don't know why anyone thinks Dawn's semi-infidelity is that shocking. There's barely one person in that village who's actually been faithful. And it isn't Val, who has become something of a schizo with a hangover recently. We're a little worried all those notches on the bedposts are catching up with her. Plus, she's old.

Speaking of schizos, yay Sally Webster! After spending a whole morning telling Rozi! that Grease went fine (when by Rozi!'s own admission it really didn't), Sally was furious to find that Ken's review didn't exactly sing Rozi!'s praises. Plus they called her Dozi. Which we think is very funny. So what did Sally do? Make a phone call to the paper? Well, yes, we think so, but she also pounded the pavement up and down Coronation Street until she finally ran into Ken and gave him what for. We would have smacked her. He didn't.

Ahh, but whose hearts weren't warmed when Todd and Sarah went for the baby's 20-week scan? All right, so they had to bypass Gail the Uber-Mum to do it, and yes, Todd's gay. That doesn't mean they can't be happy at the minute! Just that in a couple of week's Todd's going to go fully gay and the family will be torn apart.

Still, if Sarah needs any advice on torn-apart families, she can just go to Karen, who found out last night that Tracy tried to cancel the McDonald Wedding (at which, we were disappointed, there were no McChicken Sandwiches). Go on, Karen. Kill her.

On the topic of killing, The Bill was reeling from the shock of Des being beaten to death inside his cell. It's not surprising, really. We fell unconscious last Thursday, and it wasn't till the Wednesday of next week they got some medical help? No wonder he's dead. A scary murder-investigation officer (why is it always someone new? There's a whole Murder Investigation Team over in MIT, and there's that scary DCI Ross bloke who always seems to pop up. Why don't we use one of them) thinks that Sheelagh put Des in with Mr Danger on purpose. Fool! Sheelagh's lovely and Irish, she wouldn't do that!

All this, of course, gives Andrea the super-unsubtle journalist lots of juicy gossip for her chain-smoking boss. We don't think she's going to last very long. She phoned him from the middle of a busy corridor to cancel a meeting, and then again in the locker room at the end of the day. Because they're both places that she's not likely to be overheard.

Footballers' Wives has long been a fountain of mentalness in an otherwise ordinary world, but now, it's getting even more mental. Amber's an actual psycho. Conrad found out, wasn't very happy, and had gay sex with Noah. Who's now in love with Conrad (you can tell, because of his longing looks). Kyle keeps hitting his mother, and in return keeps getting hit by her boyfriend Webbsy. Elaine his physiotherapist has run off in shock, and Paddy the heshe baby is going to have to go to counselling with Amy/Patience/Scarred For Life after nearly falling in the pool. Tanya's back on the cocaine, and Frank's dead. Yay! Oh, and Amber's gone to a voodoo doctor, or something. We lost track, we were trying to rewind the TV to get back to the bit where the men kissed each other.

Some of you may have seen that this is dated Wednesday. You're right, I didn't write it Wednesday. It's Thursday. I was still recovering from bladderness yesterday. I'm devious. I know.

Violence Against Chloe: Always Right

We at Square Eyes enjoy the imbibing of alcohol. Everyone does. You may have noticed that last night there was no update on the night's TV. This is because we were bladdered. So here it is.

Hollyoaks saw a welcome return to the 'student japery' portion of the show, with Joe and Dannii battling Robbie and Mel in some kind of competition. There were balls involved, but we don't do sport here so we're sailing past that. Mel was furious at the way Dannii was treating Joe, but Joe refused to accept Mel's comfort. Look, Joe, we're getting very cross. You're very pretty, but you're being silly. You like Dannii, when it's quite clear she's going to be doing something awful very soon. Everyone thought she was in the Mafia, for heaven's sake. And look at all the leather she wears. Mel is lovely and nice, and looks as though the only leather she's ever seen is in . . . well, as though she's never seen any leather. This shouldn't be hard. Think about it! And failing that, go out with Nick (who is currently with Corrie's Todd in the 'Underused Gay Character' bin). We'd like to see a bit of man-on-man action there, please.

Over in Emmerdale, Chloe was furious when Sid, with Chastity's help, seemed to be breaking away from her evil spell . . . but when they finally had a proper argument, Sid smashed a plate and Chloe, fled, announcing to the whole village that Sid was a wife-beater. Now, this is silly. Apart from the fact it's all lies, if we lived in Emmerdale and we thought that Sid had smacked Chloe, we'd be inclined to give him some kind of medal. Or at least a new set of clothes. Oh, and Bob told Sexy Scott to stay away from Dawn. Yes, that'll be easy. Considering he's her boss.

The award for the most staged slap of the week goes today to . . . Eastenders! Watch the omnibus. Wait until Smarmy Andy tells Kat that he wants sexual favours in exchange for £10,000 (in a PC, pre-watershed way, of course), and watch as she slaps him. It's like Singin' in the Rain, it's that well choreographed.

And try as we might, we just can't seem to care about Paul and Natalie. Natalie decided she was going to move in with Paul. Then he got a phone message from Janine, that Natalie overheard. Because Janine asked Paul, in said phone message, to go to her office because she didn't want him seen and she wanted to be discreet. Considering Janine's the TV equivalent of an SOS flare, it's difficult to believe that she'll ever be discreet about anything.

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

This is the house that Jack built. Sorry, we mean chest of drawers

Why do the residents of Erinsborough ever bother to do anything?

It doesn't seem to matter what they do, something goes wrong. Today Sexy Jack (I really like his eyebrows) decided that, to get his dad to let him build houses with him, he'd spruce up an old chest of drawers. (Chest of drawers . . . house. They're a slightly different kettle of fish, Jacko.) Still, the thought was there, but obviously Joe didn't appreciate it at all, because it was rubbish. Well, it wasn't rubbish, but since we only saw the back of it, who knows? Unfortunately, we at Square Eyes, although we're hoping to receive a naked calendar of Jack any time soon, do have to agree with Joe here. Jack isn't exactly the most focused of individuals. Remember the time he went to England to be a professional footballer? Hmm? And Nina, the love of his life? Hmm? And Lori, the other love of his life?

Oh, for anyone wondering, Audrey's fine. Well, she's in one of those doggy neck brace things, but that's about it. Clearly it wasn't a very heavy car. And Toadie and Stuart feel suitable ashamed that they didn't notice their new dog Scruffy was actually Audrey the Mystery Dog.

But even Audrey's recovery wasn't enough to save Karl and Susan's ailing relationship! Mal (who we fear is reverting to Evil Mal now he's planning to sell Max's house) barely had time to hotfoot it back to the invisible Cath before Karl was telling Susan he didn't love her anymore. She was, of course, very shocked. No, hang on, we don't know why she would be at all. It has happened about five hundred times before.

The Doctors had a difficult day of it as well. Poor Faith barely had time to bury Jerry (ooh, a rhyme! No, wait, this is serious) before she saw pictures of Helen's cleavage in the paper. This made her cross, as apparently women aren't allowed to have boobs if someone's died. We don't know, either.

And Jude the GP/psychiatrist/police doctor/busybody decided to intervene when a mental couple wanted their daughter sterilised. She's hardly one to talk about responsibility, though. She's leading a series of double lives as we speak! Jude the Doctor, Andrea the policewoman in The Bill, Andrea the journalist, how many identities does this woman have? And while we're on the topic, Jude, we don't think that that leather jacket is entirely suitable for a doctor on her rounds. OK?

And Ben got flustered when Nathan's adoptive father came into the surgery. If I worked there, frankly, I'd be more flustered if a patient came in. What do these doctors do? They only treat about one patient a day!

Monday, March 15, 2004

Eat Nappy, Steve!

Here at Square Eyes, we applaud creativity in the world of soap women (and men). Having chided Karen just yesterday for her rubbish usage of chips in Corrie, we now feel that the balance has been redressed. Clearly, finding the psycho-bitch who gave birth to your husband's baby semi-naked (thanks to Amy/Patience/Scarred For Life throwing up - well, wouldn't you, the start in life that child's had?) in the living room and blithering about child support is far more grievous than meeting her in the street, and therefore this little meeting resulted in Karen throwing a bag full of dirty nappy in Steve's face. Much better.

Meanwhile, Sarah is building bridges with Gail since the Nick/Maria situation. You'd better, love, your boyfriend's gay. And - horror of horrors - Rozi! couldn't take her mother's pushing anymore and ran away from home. Here at Square Eyes we feel quite sorry for Rozi!, as she's being forced to fulfill her mother's dreams. Although, we suppose it's better that her mother's dreams involve the stage and not the back room of a Weatherfield brothel. Question: Does Weatherfield have brothels? We want to see them.

Over in Emmerdale, things are going much more smoothly. Pah! Of course they're not! Katie is being driven to distraction by Robert/The Sexy Brother and his new floozy Donna, and Andy/The Minging Brother is no help. Sexy Scott, the Man with the Clearest Enunciation on TV, is trying to shag Dawn, and Bob's giving out relationship advice. Another question: Why? And evil old Val is stringing along two men at either end of the age spectrum! And she's not even that pretty!

Of course, special mention needs to be made of Chloe 'My hair's as red as my forked tail' Atkinson. Although we're not sure whether smacking Sid makes her good or bad, in our books . . . why don't all these people just leave? Then we can move the cast of The OC in and drool all the time, instead of just when Robert or Scott are on.

Someone we do love, though, is Ben 'Gosh, where's my top hat?' Fogle. While Kate Humble spends the whole of Animal Park asking questions and pioneering experiments to learn more about the wildlife, Ben's clearly happy to have as much fun as he can pissing about in Pet's Corner (not literally pissing, clearly, that would be gross). An example of a typical Ben Fogle interview:

Ben Fogle: So why do the meerkats display this kind of behaviour then?
Bemused-Looking Zoo Keeper: Well, Ben -
Ben Fogle: Oh! Look at its little face! Ahhh, it's on my arm! Look, look at this (forcible grabbing of camera and ramming into face of meerkat), it's looking right at me! Oh, aren't you sweet?
BLZK: The reason for their behaviour is -
Ben Fogle: Oh, where are you going, little meerkat? Come on, let's see where goes! I'll be back later with more updates from the cute little rabbits! Meerkat . . . here, meerkat . . .

Which is the kind of interview we love.

Speaking of hairy animals, Hairy Max in Hollyoaks is getting hairier by the day. For the love of God, man, get a haircut!

Most Important Question of the Day: How is it that no matter how much is going in the lives of the residents of Weatherfield, they always manage to have a crisis in time for the double episode on Monday?

Everything Has Consequences

I love Des and Mel.

I really do, sometimes I wish that they were my parents (if such a thing would be possible without breaking up their families and mine, and if it wouldn't be icky with the age difference and stuff). They're just so much fun! I only ever see the first forty minutes (damn you, schedulers!) because I have to turn over for Neighbours, but I love that forty minutes, because Des and Mel clearly can't be bothered to do it properly so they just have as much fun as possible! And it works! For example, today they were playing with a new floaty throwing toy-type thing and they managed to hit the cameras a total of four times. You wouldn't get that on Parkinson .

Speaking of Neighbours (we were, keep up) everybody in Ramsay Street was very cross today. The New Improved Stroke-Harold was cross because Lou and Trixie are off to Asia for three months with Trixie's show. Mal was cross because Karl wouldn't tell Susan that he's not in love with her anymore. And Joe was cross with Lyn because she was obsessing over the Kennedy Problems.

Now. The Kennedys. I love them, I really do. But does anyone else think it's about time they made their bloody mind up? Karl's had about five hundred affairs and a battle with alcoholism, Susan loved him all along but then she lost her memory so she didn't love him and then she got it back so she did, then they were happy and now Karl's decided he doesn't love her anymore! Make a choice, people! Is it really any wonder Mal was driven to run over little Audrey?

Well, actually, it's not like he ran her over directly because of the argument. He was very stressed out and drove out of the drive, while Audrey the Mystery Dog ran out behind him - and Karl and Susan, the Wonder Couple, heard this from inside their house and went racing out, where Karl realised - gasp! - it was Audrey! Now who would've thunk it?

On another note I'm disappointed that, despite Susan's visit to Billy, we saw nothing of him. Preferably wearing no clothes. Ah well, such is life.

Another thing that disappoints me is the current Family Affairs bisexual storyline. What's wrong, scriptwriters? Could you not think of a new story? Was it really necessary to use the exact same storyline you used when Ben turned gay, but with the word 'gay' replaced by 'bisexual'? I don't think it was, now, do you?

Instead, you could take a leaf out of Corrie's book. Make Todd/character of choice kiss Nick/character of choice, leave to stew for a week, then shove it to the back to avoid the complaints. Three months later, introduce Karl/character of choice, smack him together with Todd/character of choice, leave to simmer for another few weeks, and eventually, maybe, just maybe you'll have your very own gay!

Seriously, what is going on there? Todd, you're gay. Never mind that you're engaged to the girl you got pregnant. You like men! Karl does too! See, you're on common ground already! Admittedly, it's a comedown from Adam 'I'm Just a Pretty Face' Rickitt, but still . . .

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Eat Chips, Steve!

We've all been there.

You thought you had a perfect relationship, everything was going great, till the day of your wedding the psycho-bitch who lives down the street turns up and tells everyone that your fiance is the father of her baby. You get married anyway and go pelting off on your honeymoon, but when you get back you keep catching said fiance/husband chatting with said psycho-bitch. What do you do?

Well, if you're Karen McDonald from Corrie, you throw a bag of chips at his feet. Unsurprisingly, Steve didn't look much the worse for wear from this upsetting event.

Speaking of mental women, let's have a big cheer! Gail 'How many surnames have I had now?' has managed to lose yet another child! First it was Sarah and the baby, and now Nick! All she needs to do now is forcibly drive out David and she's done the whole set! Not that you need an excuse to be horrible to David. Does anyone apart from Gail actually like the little demon?

Has anyone noticed that Cindy 'I'll act, but don't expect my face to move' Cunningham, as well as having some kind of body transplant, has returned to Hollyoaks a much meaner person? When she left, she was all 'Ooh, I'm running away with my baby' (does anyone know where this baby is? Lost in the post? Sold to slavers?), now she's all 'Sell everything we own because I'm greedy!' When did this happen? Also, didn't she used to have red hair? . . . Obviously, that fades into insignificance with the whole 'body transplant' situation.

On another note, I'm a bit worried about the state of the nation's paramedics, a prime example being last night's Casualty . Although part of me is very impressed. You see, Fin 'I was on Celebrity Fame Academy' and Comfort 'I had a drink and now I'm an alcoholic' were called out to where a teenage boy had gotten squished by a boat, in a bizarre sequence of events that involved his pregnant ex-girlfriend (in the world of TV, is there any other kind?) hopping in the boat and swingin' about like some kind of drunken monkey. Comfort was looking after said squished boy and Fin decided they needed another ambulance. Before he even knew the other girl was injured. That impressed me. What impressed me less was when Fin went wandering off and left Comfort to help the squished boy, and then when Fin (again, that man is trouble) watched said pregnant girl's father get electrocuted by a bizarrely live shed, and had a quick chat with Comfort before realising, oh, better shock him back to life . . . Honestly, it's no wonder no one trusts the emergency services anymore. Ambulances . . .

. . . or the police! Seamless, I tell you, seamless. But a word of warning, if you live in Sun Hill don't rely on the police to do anything. They spent all last week in The Bill arguing . . . DI Neil Manson threatened to tell on DCI Jack 'Bulldog' Meadows about his affair with a prozzy if Jack mentioned Neil's father-in-law's penchant for underage boys . . . and poor DC Eva Sharpe got transferred out in the crossfire! (But it's OK, Eva-lovers, she's not gone far . . . to the second series of MIT , if you're wondering) Meanwhile, PC Reg Hollis got kidnapped by former PC Des 'Grr' Taviner (soon they'll be starting a club. He's kidnapped most of them, anyway) and they had a final showdown that resulted in Des being beaten up in prison cells by a gentle giant . . . yes it really was this random. Ah well, don't cry over spilt milk.

Most Important Question of the Day: Roy and Hayley always look very stressed when they have nothing to do but serve fried breakfasts. How on earth did they manage to run the cafe and look after Amy/Patience/Scarred For Life?