Friday, December 10, 2010

Molly and Ashley die in tram tragedy and Fiz gives birth as Corrie survives a few wobbles on the live cobbles

By Mail Online Showbiz Reporter

First fatality: The live Coronation Street show opened with Claire Peacock (Julia Haworth) being comforted by Audrey Roberts (Sue Nicolls) after hearing about husband Ashley's (Steven Arnold) death

Coronation Street marked its 50th anniversary last night with a breathtaking live episode that transfixed some 15 million viewers - though there were a few hiccups along the way as the drama unfolded in real time on the cobbles.

The pressure of shooting the legendary soap live got the better of some of the 65-strong cast actors, as the action continued following Monday's night's shock explosion.

But the bloopers and some below-par acting were forgiven by most as the drama unfolded - leaving Ashley Peacock and Molly Dobbs dead in an evening that Weatherfield will never forget.

Although technically near flawless bar the odd shaky camera, mistakes included Sally Webster being told she must wear a hard hat to see Molly - but then failing to wear one throughout her heartbreaking scenes.

There was another mistake when someone referred to Fiz's newly-arrived baby as a boy, noted by former X Factor star Diane Vickers, who Tweeted: 'ooop mistake in corrie .. Someone said the baby was a boy ! INCORRECT'.'

Other fans on Twitter also spotted disabled Izzy Armstrong, played by Cherylee Houston, standing up from her wheelchair - something she's never been seen doing on the show before.

However, in comparison, it seems the overall verdict from soap fans was wildly positive and that Corrie did better in their hour-long live than EastEnders did in their 30 minute live episode to celebrate their 25th anniversary in February.

The show started with the sad news that long-term character Ashley Peacock had been killed when the remains of The Joinery nightclub crashed down on him.

Walking wounded: Nick Tilsley (Ben Price) tells brother David Platt (Jack P. Shepherd) that he is saddened by Ashley's death

It didn't come as much of a surprise to Corrie fans who were taking to their Twitter pages in their thousands - which resulted in the #corrielive page crashing - after it was announced in April that actor Steven Arnold, who had played him for 15 years, was leaving the show.

Peter Barlow, played by Chris Gascoyne, meanwhile was rushed to hospital with life-threatening injuries - though his fate was left as the show's cliffhanger.

And Sally Webster, played by Sally Dynevor, insisted on going into the ruins of the Corner Shop to hold the hand of Molly Dobbs, played by Vicky Binns, who was dying.
Just before she dies, Molly confesses that she'd not only had an affair with her husband, but had given birth to his son, Jack.

More drama came with the premature birth of Fiz Stape's baby girl Hope, who was rushed to intensive care after she was born early when Fiz fell during the explosion on the street.

'Til death do us part: Leanne Battersby (Jane Danson) gets ready to marry Peter Barlow (Chris Gascoyne) after the doctors prepare her for the worst

In a further revelation in the nail-biting episode, paramedics found that Charlotte Hoyle (Becky Hindley) had a pulse while a frantic John Stape (Graeme Hawley) tried to pass her off as a victim of the tram crash - despite the fact the would-be murderer had clobbered her with a hammer.

Elsewhere, Roy Cropper (David Neilson) and hero Jason Grimshaw (Ryan Thomas) struggled to come to terms with the death and destruction that had been wreaked upon Weatherfield and Audrey (Sue Nicholls) tried to comfort a bereft Claire Peacock (Julia Haworth) - who later found a message on her voicemail from her dead husband Ashley.

Over-the-top: Many fans took to their Twitter pages accuse Jenny McAlpine of overacting as her character Fiz Stape went into early labour

Vigil: Fiz and husband John (Graeme Hawley) keep a watch over their premature baby girl

The episode also saw Becky McDonald (Katherine Kelly) and sister Kylie Turner (Paula Lane) come to blows after it emerged that Kylie had snatched her son Max.

Coronation Street bosses promised four deaths after the dramatic events and the second of the evening was Molly Dobbs, who died after the Corner Shop fell on her and baby Jack.

He was pulled to safety during Wednesday's episode, but Molly, played by Vicky Binns succumbed to her injuries.

Still alive: A paramedic treats Charlotte Hoyle who they discovered was still alive after John Stape clobbered her with a hammer and tried to pass her off as a victim of the tram crash

But in another dramatic scene, before she died she confessed to Sally that she had had an affair with her husband Kevin, played by Michael Le Vell, and that baby Jack was his and not Tyrone Dobbs.

A stunned Sally was seen walking out of the wreckage after Molly died and was greeted by Tyrone who broke down when he heard the news about her death - but Sally kept the big revelation to herself.

Moment of truth: Molly confesses to Sally that she had an affair with her husband Kevin - and baby Jack is his - though some viewers commented it was odd you could hear her confession through her mask and that Sally had no hard hat on

She's gone: Sally breaks the news of Molly's death to a devastated Tyrone (Alan Halsall)

Another scene showed Leanne Battersby, played by Jane Danson, getting married to Peter by his hospital bed after the doctors told her to prepare her for the worst.

And before the final credits rolled, his life-support machine began to beep before the sound of the flatline came in - leaving viewers wondering whether he lived or died.

There was massive praise towards the cast and crew after the show with lifelong fan Lorraine Kelly taking to her Twitter page to declare: 'I am emotionally drained and shattered - that was AMAZING - congratulations to cast and crew - brilliant! Just brilliant.'

Cliffhanger: Peter's life-support flatlines - but the credits rolled before viewers discovered his fate

However, Corrie also came in for some criticism last night - from a surprising source. Former Street legend Jean Alexander - who played the iconic Hilda Ogden - slammed the soap last night for 'losing its way'.

Talking to The Sun, she said: 'The show isn;t the same as it used to be. It hasn't got the character that it used to have. It's lost its identity somehow.

'It's too glossy now. Poor Hilda could only get a pinny off the market every once in a while.'


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