Eastender’s Monthly Update — August 2012
Jean finally realizes that something is up and keeps asking Michael for her money back, as if he would actually give it to her. What complicates things is, it wasn’t all her money. When Michael told her that these “investments” would pay off handsomely, she thought she could solve all of Alfie’s financial problems, and used the VAT money from the Queen Vic to invest. Now it’s due and she can’t get it back. Michael strings her along for a while but then when Jean gets too insistent and he thinks he’s about to be exposed to Janine, he gaslights her (not hard to do with her history) and tries to make everyone think she made it all up and is harassing him. Everyone now believes that Jean stole Alfie’s money. But now Kat is back, and she’s on the warpath and determined to help Jean. And Michael has problems elsewhere as well – namely, finance Janine. Usually it’s Janine in control, but when he gives her an ultimatum on their wedding day, halting the proceedings by refusing to sign the pre-nup, it’s he who has the upper hand. She marries him anyway, then goes into labor during the ceremony and is rushed off to hospital for a premature birth…
Lately, Ian has spent a lot of time alternately in a panic or muttering to himself. With Mandy jilting him, all his credit maxed out, Ben confessing to murder, and Phil harassing him, Ian finally snaps. He walks off, out the door and out of the Square in his robe and slippers with a thousand-mile stare. When last seen he was wandering like that along the highway somewhere… Now he’s missing and Lucy has been left to pick up the pieces, keep the businesses going and take care of Bobby, all while keeping Ian’s disappearance a secret – telling everyone he’s on his honeymoon. But Derek has it sussed, sees she’s vulnerable, and is pressing her for protection money – emptying the till daily…
Kudos to Steve McFadden and Adam Woodyatt. As Phil and Ian, these two actors have always turned in solid performances, while being (maybe) under-appreciated. But here, in this storyline, with the lead-up to Ian’s breakdown, they have had some classic scenes, bringing out nuances in their characters and doing their best work ever. If they don’t get nominated for some serious gongs for this work, it will be a crime!
Elsewhere, where Albert Square meets the real East End… As this goes to press, the opening ceremony for the 2012 Olympics has already happened. Hopefully during the ceremony, NBC will show the view of Olympic Stadium where the field is designed to look just like the title sequence from EastEnders (with the Thames going through it)! And this past Monday, EastEnders participated in the real Olympic torch relay as the torch came through Walford. The BBC broadcast a live EastEnders episode that featured the fictional Billy Mitchell being handed the real Olympic torch, to run it around the Square then pass it off to another real runner as it makes its way to the games. Congrats to Perry Fenwick (who looked nervous!) See the clip here on YouTube: www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ap9PhCvqao
Any Downton Abbey fans out there? If you are counting the days til the Season three begins in January, you can keep up with all the latest news from Downton and beyond by reading by posts Dispatch From the Downton Abbey Diaspora on PBS THIRTEEN’s Inside Thirteen blog here: www.thirteen.org/insidethirteen Just scroll down until you get to my Dispatch column.
And if you’d like to keep up with all thing EastEnders, just email me here at the Launderette and I’ll sign you up for our FREE, weekly EastEnders e-newsletter called The E20 Chronicles: E20Launderette@gmail.com
Signed, Your Faithful Reporter
Deborah Gilbert AKA E20Launderette