4th November 2006
Edna has been keeping quite a lot under her hat.
Tomorrow she confesses to Tom that Peter is not her
son, but her sister’s, Lily, because she and Harold
could not have children as he was gay. Hmmm. I suspect
that’s what he was telling her. When Lily wanted Peter
back at the age of five and Edna refused, Edna claims
she never got close to him, for fear of someone coming
and taking him away. After telling Tom not to
interfere, on Monday she makes up, as she has fallen
in love with him.
What is it about the hoarse whisperer that sends so
many women wild? On Wednesday Rosemary stays the night
at Home Farm, and on Thursday is invited to stay, to
escape the building work at Oakwell Hall.
Also on Friday, it’s the verdict in Steph’s trial,
and an emotional Alan finally asks his daughter
whether she killed Shelly. It’s farewell to Steph at
this point, although how that pulled-back hair has not
split her skull in two long before now will forever
remain a mystery.

21st October 2006
I’m really not happy about Victoria’s personality
transplant. The previous youngster who played her was
deemed too nice to carry on, and so Isabel Hodgkins
has been drafted in to give the character more of an
edge. Well, she is a monster, and Jack looks set to
have even more problems with her than he had with Andy
and Robert. On Thursday she and her friends antagonise
Viv by throwing eggs at the shop window, but Viv
collapses. On Friday, at the hospital, Bob is furious
and says that if anything happens to the babies, then
Victoria is a murderer. Viv decides that after the
post office raid (tomorrow night), she would be better
off closing it. The fact that she has sold roughly two
stamps in five years might be a better reason to call
it a day.
There is a bit of high drama on Wednesday, when
Emily tries to drown herself in the lake, but is
talked out of it by Sam. A pity. It was probably the
only way her hair would ever have got round to having
a good wash.

14th October 2006
Making Viv pregnant, especially with twins, was an
inspired storyline, and one that gives the brilliant
Deena Payne yet more opportunity to display her
immense comic gifts. How she has never won Best Comedy
Performance at the British Soap Awards is a travesty.
On Wednesday the plot takes another hilarious turn
when Viv starts a blog to talk about her pregnancy.
The possibilities are endless.
The news that Edna once had a sex life is one of
the more worrying storylines at the moment, and on
Monday Tom and Rosemary clearly feel the same and are
shocked to discover that Peter is her son. On Tuesday
she is annoyed that Peter has been talking to Tom
about their relationship, but she finally agrees to
attend Eve’s blessing.
Ethan returns on Thursday, hopefully with even
juicier storylines than he had last time round, when
he was way too friendly with the teenage Debbie, and
even more friendly with Laurel. He explains to the
latter that he saw Emily at a hostel and talked her
into returning Sarah, and the pair set off to see her.
They are shocked by her terrible appearance, but why?
Emily always looked as if she had just fallen out of a
hostel. On Friday she wonders if she has made a
mistake by handing the baby back to Andy, and sneaks
into the house to return Sarah’s blanket.
She is certainly something of a contrast to the
ridiculous posh people, who drink even more champagne
than the Kings have ever managed to do. “It’s
surprising what a bottle of champagne will do,” Perdy
said to Matthew on Monday. Not in that household it’s
not, trust me.

7th October 2006
Will Debbie ever cheer up? I’m sick of her sulky
expression and that ridiculous fringe like an oil
slick trying to take over her forehead. We will
doubtless see more of her misery on Wednesday, when
she discovers that Debbie is back and that Andy has
been keeping it a secret. Scott sides with Andy and
tells her that it is all over between them if she
gives up her baby, and after many tears, there is a
smile back on her face on Thursday when she and Scott
have a big win at the casino. They celebrate with a
night of passion, and on Friday decide that it was not
just a one-off. The joy won’t last. Place your bets,
please: odds on, that Debbie is back to Misery Row by
the weekend. Bet she won’t make it to the hairdresser
Do the King family get more sex than anyone else in
the history of the soap? On Monday Perdy and Matthew
end up in bed together, and Tom and Rosemary are only
stopped in their tracks when they are interrupted.
For those of a delicate sensibility, try to avoid
Friday’s episode, as a large crowd gather to see
Marlon being waxed in the pub. Somebody pass the
smelling salts, please.

23rd September 2006
Phew. I’m glad all that kidnap stuff is over; I don’t
like stress and am much happier when the locals stick
to things like pulling pints and shearing sheep (or,
in Steph’s case, bumping people off). There are
repercussions, however, and tomorrow Matthew suggests
to Carl that Chas was involved. When Carl walks in on
her holding the money, he takes it as proof and
realises, too late, that he was wrong and finds
himself well and truly ditched. On Monday Chas is
welcomed back into the King fold, but decides to spend
some time away from Carl.
Steph returns on Thursday and is horrified to find
that there is a murder mystery night at the B & B – a
bit ironic, given that just about every night is
murder mystery night there (literally) when Steph is
around. Isn’t it about time for another homicide? She
hasn’t killed anyone in months. There is concern when
she disappears during the night, but on Friday Alan
finds her asleep on the sofa and Ashley invites her to
move in. Laurel, as you can imagine, is none too
pleased – probably because this means she has moved
several places up on Steph’s corpse list.

16th September 2006
The dishonest means by which the Dingles try to boost
their coffers must exhaust them far more than any job
would ever do. Cain’s latest scam is the kidnapping of
Tom, but tomorrow, in the light of Sadie’s involvement
with Jasmine’s termination, he decides to kidnap her,
too. Grabbing her by the hair, he hits her across the
face with his gun – which is certainly one way to try
to get an expression out of her. On Monday Sadie is
forced to make a call to the Kings, who on Tuesday
call the police to inform them of Cain’s ransom
demand. Big mistake. Emmerdale’s police are infamous
for their incompetency; all they do is use a crime
scene as an excuse to don a beige mac. On Thursday, in
an hour long special, the police start to close in on
Cain, but they do not reach him before the car sails
off the quarry edge. When the divers go in, however,
there is a shock in store. Don’t tell me: the cops
didn’t catch the baddie again. Quelle surprise.

9th September 2006
There was a time in Emmerdale when the biggest thing
anyone had to worry about was how long it would take
to shear the sheep. Now, all anyone ever seems to talk
about is money. Pearl ripped off her friends
financially; Sadie and Cain have hatched a plan to
kidnap Tom and pick up ransom money; tomorrow, Debbie
is forced to confess the truth about the hidden cash
to Jasmine; on Tuesday Customs and Excise tell Rodney
that he has a large bill to pay; on Thursday the
Dingles come up with yet another plan to ease their
financial strain . . . On and on and on. The place
becomes less and less like a small country village and
more and more like Wall Street every day.
On Wednesday the bailiffs arrive at Rodney’s and
seize the house, Kelly’s car and his bag of cash. The
astonishing outcome is that on Thursday Kelly promises
to stand by her lover and offers him his ring back.
He, however, is just content to have her by his side
again, and refuses. Touching. Hmmm. I’m a bit
suspicious. Does Rodney have anything going for him
apart from his money? I can’t believe that Kelly would
settle for being left his leather necktie in his will.

The plot to kidnap Tom hits a rocky patch on
Friday, when Debbie reveals to Cain the part that
Sadie played in Jasmine’s termination. It looks as if
he is set to double cross her, although don’t expect
to deduce this from her expressionless forehead –
you’ll just have to take my word for it. But to where
will Cain lure him? The cricket pavilion, probably,
even if it is a bit crowded these days. There’s always
the cellar at the B & B, although you can’t rule that
being a tad overcrowded either. Why not just get a job
and earn some honest money, Cain? I can’t help feeling
that life would be a lot simpler.

19th August 2006
There are more pregnancies per square inch in Emmerdale than in a maternity clinic, and certainly more slip-ups. Hasn’t anyone heard of contraception? Jasmine was the latest victim, hot on the heels of her friend Debbie, whose mother Charity had accidentally become pregnant with her – by Cain, who was also the father of Jasmine’s child, even though Jasmine had had a lesbian relationship with Debbie. I don’t know about you, but I’m having trouble keeping up.

Having decided that she wants a termination, Viv (whose pregnancy, for once, was planned) goes to the clinic tomorrow because she does not want to tell Bob, so soon after his daughter’s death, that she is having a baby. When he learns the truth via Terry, he rushes to the clinic; but will he be too late to save his unborn child?

Bob’s joy is shortlived when he, Jean and Terry pay Dawn’s solicitor a visit on Thursday. Because Dawn was still legally married to Terry, he gets everything. Exactly what did she have? She was recently convicted of benefit fraud when she was trying to make ends meet. Let’s hope she doesn’t leave him her collection of hair products which, if the damage they did to her hair is anything to go by, could start a small nuclear war in the wrong hands. Bob is later furious to discover that Terry has put in an offer on the B & B rather than invest all the money for TJ, but on Friday the pair come to an agreement. Bob, by the way, was married to Jean, who gave birth to Dawn, who married Terry, who is now with Jean. Phew. It never gets any easier.

12th August 2006
Has there been a Homepride flour outbreak in the
Dales? Why else would most of the characters be
sporting white lines around their mouths? The strange
make-up has been prevalent for some time now, and my
new hi-tech set now makes everyone look as if they are
in the first throes of leprosy. Message to make-up
department: ditch the white panstick, or whatever it
is you are using.
Now, why has Martin taken to lurking? Last week he
overheard Ashley telling Diane that Sam helped Alice
to die. Tomorrow, he overhears Diane having a go at
Louise and inadvertently learns how Ray died. On
Monday he decides not to act on the information, as he
loves Louise, but he dumps her nevertheless. Will
Louise ever be able to keep a man? Given her
predilection for hitting them over the head with
hideous vases, Martin is better off out of it. Knowing
that she cannot forgive Diane, on Tuesday Louise
agrees to sell her share of the pub to Rodney. From
where does that man get his money? He does nothing all
day, apart from pick up the occasional antique, turn
it over and say “I’ll give you . . . “ whatever it is
for it, then he goes to the pub. On Wednesday he tells
Paul that he has to sell Holdgate to pay for his
latest venture, but decides to go ahead before doing
so anyway, after calling in his loan from Jamie.
Presumably he will then have another drink.

5th August 2006
I told you last week that it was duck season in
soapland again, and sure enough, there was the entire
village on Tuesday, holding a duck race. The idea was
to cheer up Belle, who has been complaining that the
Dingles never play any games with her. That’s because
they’re too busy taking you to see the ducks! Paddy’s
falling in the water was at least some light relief
following Alice’s death.
Forget the pond, he is in deep trouble tomorrow
when he calls Del Toni by mistake, and Del thinks that
he must still have feelings for her. Surely it would
be hard to make this kind of mistake. Toni is black
and Del white, for a start. The latter also has
breasts that cause a total eclipse of the sun every
time they come out to play. As she sat by Alice’s
bedside, talking about how Samson was to remember his
mother, her breasts looked like the eruption of
Vesuvius over her tight-fitting orange top. They
nearly finished poor Alice off long before the
morphine got to her.
The funeral is on Tuesday, but is interrupted by
the police, who have a court order to take away
Alice’s body. Sandy is horrified to discover that
Ashley has reported his suspicions about Sam’s
involvement in his wife’s death, but on Friday Cain
decides to take the rap and is charged with murder.

29th July 2006
What a scene presented itself at the Dingles on
Sunday. Diane was there with her heavily bruised face;
the dying Alice was grey and hideous on the sofa;
Shadrach was looking his usual gross self. It was as
if the cast of Fraggle Rock had come to stay. At least
such scenes are keeping the make-up department in

They have more to come as Alice deteriorates still
further. Tomorrow she asks Sam to help her die and, on
Monday, after smashing up the chicken pen in
frustration, he does so and the Grim Reaper strikes
again. Given the frequency of his visits at the
moment, he’ll have to book into the B & B.
Although the Dingles encourage Sam to cover up his
part in Alice’s death, on Wednesday he lets the truth
slip to Ashley, who on Friday is then torn between his
conscience and the law. Personally, anything that
stops us having to listen to Alice’s bleating is all
right in my book, and the vat of morphine that saw her
off could not have come a moment too soon in my book
(great performance by Ursula Holden-Gill, though; I
just never liked, nor believed in, the character).

22nd July 2006
I’m shocked by the news of yet more deaths in the village – not least because I would have thought that Noreen’s wig would have withstood the force of a dozen houses landing on it; likewise, Dawn’s wiry mop. I am particularly upset by the latter, as this means we are unlikely to see the gorgeous lifeguard Gareth again, the man whom she recently hooked up with and was moving to be near in Cornwall.

On Monday it is Noreen’s funeral, but only three people turn up. Dawn gets a better showing on Wednesday, but Viv is unable to make it owing to her getting some shock news of her own.

Alice later lays some flowers on Dawn’s grave and then promptly collapses, and on Friday she learns that the cancer has spread to her brain. Oh, yes: on Thursday Jasmine discovers that she is pregnant and that a termination will cost £500. Not what you’d call the happiest of weeks, although there is a bit of light relief on Tuesday when Simon makes a drunken pass at Diane. Why not. Everyone else has.

15th July 2006
Another day, another disaster, in Britain’s unluckiest
village. Val was extremely excited prior to the show
home’s collapse, as she saw it as an opportunity to
sign up every prospective buyer for soft furnishings.
Now it looks as if the only soft furnishings she’ll be
selling will be those destined for the inside of
Following the tragic deaths, tomorrow the Health
and Safety executives start their investigation, and
Tom and his sons are questioned about the JCB banging
into the show home. They warn the Kings that the
police might be looking into the possibility of
pressing charges for corporate manslaughter.
While all this is going on, Alice starts planning
her own funeral. Talk about timing and trying to steal
the show. Let’s hope there is extra wood on order,
especially on Wednesday, when yet another body is
found under the show home – that of Terence. The truth
about Adam is revealed on Friday and, after it is
discovered that Terence was blackmailing him, Steph is
once again in the frame for murder. She is in the
frame so often, I don’t know why she just doesn’t have
a life size wooden rectangle hitched to her body and
have done with it.

8th July 2006
Glycerine alert! Glycerine alert! Yes, it was time for
Sadie to show some tearful emotion again on Tuesday,
when Jimmy threatened to show Matthew the photo of her
kissing Cain. In an absence of real tears, the
globules rested like stalactites just below Sadie’s
eyes, and we can expect more of them on Wednesday when
Sadie visits Jimmy again to try to stop him
blackmailing her. His price? That she sleep with him.
Way too steep, in my book. Why not just come clean and
tell Matthew exactly how she was set up? After first
agreeing to meet Jimmy in an hour, she changes her
mind when she arrives home to find Matthew waiting
with a romantic meal and a diamond ring.
Her joy is short-lived, however, when, on Thursday,
she finds herself at the opening of the show home and
in the bathroom with Jimmy. Just as he is about to
force himself on her, a massive blast rips through the
house and brings it crashing to the ground. For Sadie,
that’s a small price to pay for her not having to have
sex with Jimmy, but for others it is a tragic incident
that sees death once more rock the village. With
Emmerdale’s track record, if the blast hadn’t got the
house, the local bus would have; and if the bus hadn’t
got it, closet pyromaniac Andy certainly would have
been next on the list. On Friday the rescuers confirm
that there are two dead so far, as the search for
victims continues.

1st July 2006
How on earth is anyone managing to get any work done
these days? Viv and Bob are obsessed with having a
baby, Donna is planning to be her surrogate in return
for a house deposit, Jimmy is arguing with Jack
(again), and on Tuesday Ashley decides to shelve his
vicarly duties when he turns up at the Woolpack to
have a go at Cain when he discovers he has been
sleeping with Jasmine. Why not just take it as an
opportunity to give a sermon on the subject of
Jezebels? Oh, I forgot: Ashley only gives three
sermons a year, and Christmas is a long way off.
Anyway, the upshot of all this is that Cain drives
away from the village, but not before telling Sadie
that he cannot wait until she loses everything.
Jasmine’s affair might also bring the curtains down
on the vicar’s marriage, as Laurel knew about it. On
Wednesday Ashley cannot forgive his wife and refuses
to accept her apology. She claims not to have told him
because she knew he would over-react. Can you blame
him? His niece is put into his care and first she
becomes a lesbian, before deciding that playing the
local bike to the local criminal is more fun. The
Virgin Mary she ain’t.
Dr Adam “Crippin” Forsythe is in sinister mode on
Friday, when Steph returns home and discovers he has
two passports. She forces a full confession, and
unbeknown to him, is recording it all. After a
struggle, she is left lying unconscious and Adam
coldly points out that one more murder won’t make any
difference. Oh, for the days when he just handed out
antibiotics for the occasional bout of tonsillitis.

17th June 2006
Debbie has had some bad shocks in her time. Finding
her mother, losing her mother; finding out that Cain
was her dad (which would be enough to give anyone
nightmares); getting pregnant; becoming a lesbian (I’m
exhausted just as a viewer; heaven help anyone
actually going through it). Now, in the light of her
discovery of Cain and Jasmine’s affair, on Monday she
vows that Cain has lost her and Sarah forever.
Jasmine’s not exactly smiling, either, when Cain tells
her that he only used her to get at his daughter.
It’s all change for Dawn, too. Having also
discovered a secret – that her mother is sleeping with
her ex-husband – on Tuesday she tells Jamie that she
will not have to tolerate the situation for much
longer. On Wednesday Bob overhears Jamie telling Scott
that Dawn is moving away, and when Terry finds out he
drops a bombshell that could change everything. After
the fallout from the last one he dropped, I imagine
Dawn will be well prepared and have her hard hat on.
The latest Dingle scam drags on, and on Thursday
Belle discovers Shadrach’s involvement with it. Like I
The King/Sugden feud also continues on Friday, when
Jack disrupts Jimmy’s attempt to show an estate agent
round the development. The Kings might as well give up
now. Who remembers the last development – the holiday
village? Where is it now? All we want is the Woolpack
and the cricket pavilion.

10th June 2006
Most people in Emmerdale fail to do a full day’s work because they are so busy trying to get their neighbours into bed, and, it seems, the rabbits are no exception. Tomorrow, Buffy the rabbit gives birth to a surprise litter (so it’ll be rabbit pie on the menu at the café for a few days, then), which Viv sees as a positive sign regarding her own fertility.

On Monday Bob suggests that they try surrogacy which, in storyline terms, would be a joy. The idea of some poor woman having Viv on her tail, checking up on her every womb movement for nine months, is a great opportunity for comedy. When Marlon and Donna are refused a mortgage, Viv hits upon the perfect solution: she will pay their house deposit in return for the use of Donna’s womb. Joy upon joy. I can’t see it happening, though. Donna’s first port of call is surely going to be having her own child with her husband; giving birth to your half-sister might prove a little too much even for the resilient Donna to take.

There are lots of secrets being kept under wraps at the moment, and on Monday Cain asks Jasmine to end her relationship with Debbie. On Wednesday Debbie sees Daz with Jasmine and assumes that they are a couple, but then on Friday is devastated when she sees her girlfriend kissing her dad. Why not just go to school and do the things that normal teenagers do, Debbie? I can’t help feeling that GCSEs would be a lot less hassle than everything you’re going through in the village.

3rd June 2006
The growing relationship between Del and Paddy is all rather touching, but do they ever stand a chance of making things work with Toni still hanging around? On Thursday Marlon decides to help the couple’s cause by preparing them an aphrodisiac meal, despite the fact that “Have you seen how lovely the cricket pavilion looks at midnight?” is all the come-on anyone ever generally needs. But yet again, a jealous Toni turns up and, deliberately, hangs around as long as possible. But when Toni finally goes, will Del and Paddy pick up where they left off?

Three is a crowd on Monday, too, when Katie plans a cosy night in with Andy, only to have Jo come home early and start tucking into their wine. Come on, Katie, you had your chance, and I, for one, don’t want to see Andy’s heart broken again. It looks as if Andy’s attention is going to be even more diverted on Wednesday, when Daz decides to move back in with him. How on earth does Andy manage to get any farm work done, with such a lot going on in his personal life? He must hunger for his days as a closet arsonist and gunman.

27th May 2006
There are many reasons that Dawn could have chosen for deciding not to go to Spain, but she decided that “The grass in Spain is brown” was reason enough. Even brown grass can be greener on the other side, however, and when she discovers that her mother and her ex-husband are an item, she’ll be on that phone to Iberia airlines before you can say tapas. That day can’t be far away, because tomorrow, when Tom sees Terry and Jean leaving the police station, they have to confess that they have been dating for some time. Tom, never a man to under—react, instantly fires them.
  There is also romance in the air for Paddy on Tuesday, after his brave attempt to save Del’s puppy Titch after he is hit by a car (you see what I mean about people in soaps never able to drive a car without causing an accident?). The couple share a kiss, but their joy is shortlived on Wednesday, when Toni says that Paddy is on the rebound and that he has confessed his love to her. Realising her error, on Thursday she tries to patch things up. Two gorgeous women after Paddy at any one time? It’s barely two minutes since he was rolling on the floor with Viv, too. Oh for the days when all he had to worry about was whether the bedsprings could support Mandy’s weight.

8th April 2006
For a small village, Emmerdale has a murder quota well
above the national average (well, apart from the
villages around Midsomer, which average about three a
week). It looks as if there might be another one on
Wednesday, when Adam, determined to put an end to
Terence’s attempts to blackmail him, drugs him and
drags his body down to the cellar (that place has seen
some action, too). On Thursday both he and Steph have
to fight Terence off, and luckily there is a fire
extinguisher to hand with which to whack him.
   Why did it take Terence so long to discover Adam’s
secret, anyway? Surely a Google search would have
thrown up everything he needed to know. At least it
has given the doctor something to do other than keep
his hair in place.
   Paddy is not having much luck on the romance front
on Wednesday, when Toni arranges to meet Jimmy in the
pub to be interviewed for the PA job. On Friday,
though, he tells her that Chas has the job, after he
realises that Toni would have slept with him purely in
order to land it. Now that really smacks of

25th March 2006
Are the Kings capable of doing anything remotely
normal? How on earth could Sadie go through with her
marriage to Alasdair, only to dump him in favour of
Matthew immediately afterwards? She claimed to know
where her heart truly lay. The surprising aspects of
that statement are one, that Sadie has a heart, and
two, that anyone in the King family knows where
anything lies other than the champagne bottle.
   Tomorrow, Sadie and Matthew return to Pear Tree,
only to find that Tom has put Jimmy in charge. Bad
move. It always is. Jimmy couldn’t sell a corpse to a
fly, and after making a low offer for Jimmy’s shares
on Monday, he is left in the lurch again on Thursday,
when Sadie rips it up. Her plan is to fleece Alasdair,
but she hasn’t bargained for the arrival of his
mother, Rosemary, who is determined that Sadie will
not see a penny of her son’s money.
   On Friday it becomes clear that Sadie is already
one step ahead, and a cunning plan results in Rosemary
offering her a £1 million out of court settlement. But
is Rosemary going to be that much of a pushover? I
suspect not.
   Sadie is not the only one confused about her
feelings. On Monday it is clear that Jasmine’s
feelings for Debbie go deeper than friendship, and on
Tuesday the pair break into the pavilion. Well,
everyone has to; it’s never been clear who holds the
keys to the place, which is just as well, given its
propensity to double as a brothel. There have been
more maidens bowled over in the pavilion than ever
there have been on the pitch.

18th March 2006
Oh, Andy, Andy, Andy. Will he never learn. Just as his
life was back on track, along came Katie to mess it
all up again. On Monday it is clear that the pair
still have feelings for each other, and on Tuesday
Katie decides to stay in the village rather than got
to Greece to start a new life with her mother. That’s
a decision that borders on the insane, and when Andy
sees Jack and Daz’s reactions, he might well think the
same. Let’s not forget that it was Daz who first
caught Katie with Robert, and it was she who dropped
him in it by claiming he was lying. On Friday Daz
gives Andy an ultimatum - it’s him or his ex.
   With Zoe out of the village, the place has been a
bit low on lesbian action, but Ashley thinks he has
discovered some on Thursday, when he discovers Jasmine
with her arm around Debbie. Any normal person would
just think they were a couple of mates who had fallen
asleep, but not Ashley, who has clearly been watching
too many hot chick flicks. The girls later decide to
wind up both Ashley and Cain by snogging each other.
They claim it’s a wind-up, anyway. But great oaks from
little acorns grow in Emmerdale. Ask any woman who
came within breathing distance of Zoe.

11th March 2006
It took fishmonger Simon to tame Nicola, but she never
really recovered from being jilted by Carlos the chef,
who was having an affair with her sister, Bernice.
Those braces she wore for such a long time can’t have
done her confidence much good either, but we all have
our crosses to bear in life. Tomorrow we get to see
just how vicious Nicola really is (as if last week’s
lies were not evidence enough), when she still cannot
bring herself to tell the truth about Ivan. Launching
into a character assassination of all, including
Simon, Paul and Rodney, she is dragged out by Ivan and
sent on her way – but not before being given a cheque
by Rodney. It clears the air between Rodney and Paul
on Tuesday, but bridges are harder to build with Ivan
and there is another argument. Why can’t they just do
what other gay men do and make up in a Liza Minelli
   Having decided to leave the village after a row
with his dad on Tuesday, Jamie changes his mind on
Wednesday, and on Thursday bags himself a job in the
café. I think that makes it about five people working
there, which means staff now outnumber customers by at
least two to one.
   Also on Thursday, there is a curry-oke night at the
Woolpack – curry and karaoke, geddit?), when Louise is
laughed off the stage. Not for the first time in her
life, one suspects.      

4th March 2006
The Hotten Courier journalists haven’t a clue what
makes a good story. While murderers roam amongst them
(Steph and, possibly, Eric, whose wife died the night
of the infamous plane crash many years ago), all they
can summon up enthusiasm for are local nuptials and,
at present, Alice’s wing walk.
   Tomorrow, the journalist who has been following
this mind-numbingly boring story comes around with fan
mail for Alice, and the pressure mounts on her to go
through with it and confront her fears. On Monday she
completes it to prove to the world that cancer does
not stop people from doing things. Fine, and all very
worthy; but goodness, it makes for rotten telly.
   Carl faces his fears too on Monday (his vertigo
phobia), when he follows Alice’s example. It’s all to
prove his love for Chas, and it’s the final sacrifice
that convinces her that she should marry him.
   There is less good news on the romance front for
Ivan and Paul, when on Wednesday Nicola lies to Rodney
and tells him that Ivan took advantage of her. The
fact that she all but has Take Me Now tattoed on her
forehead is beside the point, but Ivan’s rejection of
her is more than she can take. On Thursday Paul dumps
Ivan, and Simon, also wanting to move on in his life,
throws Nicola out and paints the living room lime
green. Whatever floats your boat, I suppose.  

25th February 2006
Is it me, or is anyone else having trouble telling the
difference between Daz and Alice? I know that she’s
just finished the chemo and her hair is growing back,
but I keep wondering why Daz has taken to lying on the
Dingles’ sofa and nursing Samson. It’s a bit creepy.
   So, tomorrow, should you be confused, it is not
Alice who is hanging about at Butler’s Farm with Jack
and Andy, chatting about dead sheep, but Daz, and he
is very subdued because he thinks an opportunity has
been blown to nail the Kings. Jack is equally furious
when the police tells him that he will take away
samples of the ditch for analysis, but that he is not
optimistic about the outcome. Andy and Daz get their
own back on Monday, when they trash the Kings’
development site office. Mutton curries all round next
week, though. Again.
   Why is Steph being so unforgiving towards Alan? He
forgave her for kidnapping Shelly and for trying to
kill him; his not believing her over Terence is small
fry compared to that. On Tuesday she relents and
agrees to a partnership in the B & B, although why is
beyond me. Apart from the doctor, there is no one
staying there; and why doesn’t Adam get his act
together and get somewhere more permanent? Something
as permanent as his hairdo, perhaps.

18th February 2006
“Some people have to watch reality TV to see stuff
like this,” said Betty, at the wedding reception that
saw yet another son turn up for Bob. They do, and
there may be the promise of much more to come, as it
was Kelly who caught Donna’s bouquet. It made her
almost as happy as the Platinum credit card Rodney
handed her made her, and Kelly’s gleeful gloating over
Nicola make such scenes all the funnier. The wonderful
Adele Silva gives her all to Kelly, and the humour is
as much down to her wonderful comic timing as it is to
the brilliant writing. How she manages to stay
standing upright in those breasts, however, is a
miracle of science.
   It looks as though Sadie might beat Kelly to the
altar, though, when on Thursday a man called Alasdair
turns up and she claims he is her fiancé. Matthew is
furious, and even more so on Friday when Sadie invites
him to the wedding. Why the sour grapes? It was he who
chose the business over her – trash versus trash, a
tough choice – and he has only himself to blame for an
empty bed (that’s something of a first for him).
   There is bad news for Andy on Monday, when he hears
that ex-wife Katie has been in a car accident that
killed her father and left her in a coma. They are
fond of their comas in Emmerdale, and they might well
outnumber sexual encounters when adding up the hours
people spend lying on their backs. On Tuesday she is
out of it, and Andy has to tell her about her dad. He
is happy to be her rock, but is this going to reignite
his feelings for her? On Friday Daz is worried that
Andy is falling in love with her again, which he
   Also on Friday, after Alice’s interview with a
local reporter (Another one! Aren’t we ever going to
meet the editor of the Hotten Courier), donations
start flooding in for her cause. Is it just me, or is
this the most boring storyline since records began?

11th February 2006
There was an awful lot of shouting and aggression this
week, and way too much time spent up at the Dingles,
where Lisa and Debbie were at each other’s throats.
Even Shadrach managed to say more than a few grunts,
but it was all very depressing.
   There is a lighter week ahead, as final
preparations for the double wedding (and double
episode) on Thursday forge ahead. On Monday Viv is
distressed to learn that she will never be a mother
again, when Bob refuses to have his vasectomy
reversed; and Marlon is also distressed when Viv tells
him that the stag party has been moved to the next day
– the date of his and Tricia’s wedding anniversary. On
Tuesday it is enough to make him want to call off the
wedding, as he looks to a future with Viv as his
mother-in-law. There is more trouble in store on
Thursday, when Donna decides to confess that she was
in love with Max. Not a good time for the “No more
secrets” act, just as you’re about to walk up the
   So, will either couple tie the knot? It looks
unlikely, what with Donna’s wobble and then Bob not
having come back after his stag do. But then Emmerdale
is renowned for dodgy nuptials, and I remain
cautiously optimistic that at least one of the couples
will tie the knot – even if it is likely to be around
the other’s throat. I also remain very optimistic that
if the weddings do take place, there will be many
years of married hell ahead for both parties.
   On Friday Sam and Alice prepare to bring Samson
home. Dull, dull, dull. Too many Dingles spoil the

4th February 2006
“A little of what you fancy does you good,” said
Terence this week. Hmmm. Not when it’s your sister it
doesn’t, Terence, so I’d keep any more little adages
to yourself for the foreseeable future.
   This depressing storyline, which has dominated in
recent weeks, goes on the back burner tomorrow, when
another depressing one takes over – Debbie’s feud with
the Dingles over Sarah. When Belle lets slip that
Sarah is coming back, Debbie packs her bags to go to
London to find Charity. Reacting to Lisa’s fury, she
tells her that if they bring Sarah back, she will have
her adopted. On Monday there is another row, which
results in Cain throwing her out, and on Tuesday the
Dingles disown her when she decides she wants her baby
back in order to get a Council flat.
   The words pot, kettle and black spring to mind. In
fact, it’s amazing that Debbie has turned out as
normal (relatively) as she has, living in that
menagerie. The only thing she is really guilty of is
being drunk in charge of an absurdly long fringe. It’s
a good job Sarah does not have to be confronted by it
last thing at night. Hairy spiders are bad enough in
your dreams; when they start coming into your cot, you
know it’s time to move on.
   There is a bit of humour amid all the doom and
gloom on Friday, when Donna and Viv’s hen party
arrives at Craggley Springs, which Viv discovers, to
her horror, is an outward bound centre.

28th January 2006

If I were to predict the future, I would say that
Nicola and Simon will break up. If I were to apply my
psychic powers to the past, I would say that they
should never have been together in the first place.
Now, Psychic Jaci can tell you that on Monday, local
palmistry expert Noreen dismays the local ladies by
predicting a less than rosy future – hinting that
Nicola’s lovelife might be in trouble.

   Trouble doesn’t begin to describe it on Tuesday,
when the couple have yet another row and Nicola ends
up throwing her engagement ring away, and, back at the
pub, Simon admits to his mother that he doesn’t love
his fiancée. On Wednesday they split up (again), but
neither agrees to leave the house, and on Thursday she
turns to Ivan for comfort. The big question she poses
to Rodney on Friday is whether Ivan is really gay.
Come on, Nicola, this is Emmerdale, there’s a 90-10
chance. One lurking under every stone, as far as I can

21st January 2006
Goodness, it’s depressing at the moment. Alice has
secondary cancer, Scott won’t leave Dawn alone,
Jasmine’s been expelled from school . . . Can’t we get
back to the days when all anyone did was drink
champagne at Home Farm and jump into bed with the
   There is more gloom to add to the mix tomorrow,
when Terence returns to upset Steph. She resorts to
put the abuse to the back of her mind, but on
Wednesday is gutted to discover that he has found a
job logging deliveries for the Kings. What deliveries,
pray – apart from Oddbins, of course? On Friday she
threatens to expose him if he stays in the village,
but Terence is determined that his sister is not going
to mess things up for him.
   It’s hard to have any sympathy for Steph. Let’s not
forget that this is the woman who bumped off Shelly
and then tried to kill her own father. I suspect that
Terence might soon be going the same way: just don’t
book any boat trips.
   There is another row about money between Simon and
Nicola on Tuesday, and on Wednesday Simon confesses to
Lesley that he is uncertain whether he still loves
her. His feelings are also confused when his ex-love
Tash turns up again, and they reminisce about the time
when they worked in the fish and chip van together. As
memories go, it’s not exactly one to hold on to
(battered cod is never much of a party piece), and I’m
pretty sure Simon could do a great deal better for
himself. On Friday Nicola tries to prove that she
loves him irrespective of whether he has money and
plans a budget-friendly DVD night in. That’ll be
another one for the scrapbook, then. Come on, Simon,
there’s a wide world out there.

14th January 2006
They really know how to name those Dingles. Charity, Chastity, Cain, and now baby Samson. Someone, somewhere, is really hitting the Bible bigtime. The great sadness is that Alice does not have Samson's strength, and tomorrow she is even more depressed because the early Caesarean means that she cannot produce any milk. On Monday she learns that the NHL has spread to her nervous system, and she tells Sam that she is on her way to the cemetery.   

Ever the sensitive soul, Sam accuses her of negativity, but she is adamant that she still wants no treatment. On Tuesday, however, she changes her mind, which is good news for all of us. Let's be honest, we need some cheering up at the moment. It was depressing enough when Alice talked chickens dawn till dusk, and when she has her first lumbar puncture on Wednesday you can't help thinking with joyous nostalgia of the days when the length of a beak was the only thing on her mind.   

Also on Wednesday, Ashley decides that his father can stay at the vicarage on a permanent basis, and on Friday Jasmine's future with them hangs in the balance when Ashley sends Luke and Emma a wire asking them to return from Mozambique.

31st December 2005
I have heard that the ITV duty log that takes comments from viewers about programmes has gone into overdrive about the relationship between Paul and Ivan. It is incredible that a show can feature storylines about rape, murder, theft, violence etc. etc. and raise barely a whisper, but show two men kissing and the country is up in arms.    There is more on its way between this pair, so lock up your children now! On Monday, when Paul gets into trouble with some homophobic youths (probably the blokes ringing up the duty log), Ivan comes to his rescue, and there is another kiss before the two decide that they are an item. Despite attempts to keep the relationship under wraps, on Tuesday it is all out in the open, and Ivan is not pleased. Still, luckily for Paul, Kelly is there to lend an ear - which makes a change from her bed.

24th December 2005
If the King family spent as much time running their business as they do talking about who should be in charge, they would be a great deal more successful than they already are. The latest round of musical chairmans makes it look as if tomorrow is going to be an unhappy day for the family, but when Tom assures Jimmy of his love, the latter returns home. But then there's more. On Boxing Day Jimmy discovers that Sadie has been encouraging Tom to retire, and on Wednesday Tom ponders his last day as head of the firm.   

Matthew's takeover is not plain sailing, however, and when Tom discovers his affair with Sadie, he expels the pair from Home Farm, the business and the family. Hmm. Only 48 hours earlier, he had been saying to Jimmy that having lost one son, he was not prepared to lose another. On Thursday he is clearly having second thoughts about Matthew's expulsion, when he asks him to choose between the business or Sadie. That should be an easy decision and, inevitably, he chooses the business, and Sadie breaks down in tears. Still, at least he gelatine they use to glue tears to her face will get another airing - and also on Friday, when she leaves the village, again in tears. Frown lines might prove a little harder to achieve.   

It's a tearful day for Nicola, too, whose New Year's Eve party ends in tears when she sees Toni trying to seduce Ivan and so brings the party to a swift end. Boyfriend Simon's a nice guy, but you have to feel for Nicola. One minute he was coming home smelling of fish; the next, bins. And not even a bottle of perfume to quash the stench.

17th Decmeber 2005
There's not much joy in the Dales at the moment. Ashley hates his father, Steph is traumatised over the abuse she endured as a child, and Debbie is still having problems bonding with her baby. Cain is worried about Debbie tomorrow, and rejects Lisa's suggestion that she is suffering from post-natal depression. I'm not surprised; half the village most of the time appears to be sufferering from PND. This time, the situation ends in violence, with Cain grabbing Emily by the throat, which must be about the most exciting thing that has ever happened to her (well, apart from the days when she goes cardigan shopping).   

The outcome of all this is that on Wednesday, Debbie hands Sarah over to Emily, who leaves the village with her (what an exciting week this is turning out to be for the lass). By Friday it appears that they have gone for good, when the police tell Andy there is nothing they can do to bring Sarah back. Really? This smacks of police lethargy even by Emmerdale's lax standards. Exactly what else are they going to be doing over Christmas? Tracking bearded men in red carrying large sacks on their backs?  

10th December 2005
Phew. Thank goodness he's gone. "We shall all miss you, Jarvis," said Edna, as the misery drove his car away to start a new life in Spain. No, we won't, Edna; not one little bit. His departure feels as if every cloud in the sky has been lifted in one fell swoop. The man was a walking Mogodon.   

Sandy, by contrast, is a real ray of sunshine, and despite his appearing to want to compete in a Shadrach Dingle lookalike competition, has settled quickly into village life. On Sunday he and Ashley have a heart to heart, with the vicar admitting that he will never be able to forgive his father for assisting in the death of his mother. Given how much Sandy drinks, I'm amazed he can assist himself to the bathroom, let alone tend a mercy killing, but on Monday it is clear that on this score, Ashley is unforgiving. When Jasmine accuses him of being heartless, kicking his father out so close to Christmas, Ashley relents and asks him to stay for the festivities.   

Carl is forced to admit that it is Chas and not Del that he wants on Tuesday, and sets off to Chas's barracks to try to win her back. His mission goes disastrously wrong and Chas ends up in an ambulance, but on Wednesday she forgives all and decides to give the relationship another go. Don't worry, Del. There are plenty more Kings in the sea.

3rd December 2005
It's been a long time coming, and an even longer time requested, but on Monday Jarvis finally packs his belongings. It's not without a final ticking off from Edna, who attacks him for being miserable, but when he and Freda declare their love for one another, there are smiles all round (especially in my house) when the pair pack up and go to live in Spain.   

There appears to be a bit of Spain coming to Emmerdale, too, as the Kings continue to plan their glamorous development. From where are they getting the money to fund it, exactly? And where do they find the time to make any money? Jimmy is a walking brewery, Matthew spends most of his days, let alone nights, under a duvet, and Sadie must exhaust herself with all that effort to extinguish any expression from her face.   

On Tuesday Tom admits to Sadie that he is fed up with all the grief that the business causes him (yes, all that lifting of champagne glasses must be shattering), and Sadie hatches a plan to wrestle it from his grasp for Matthew, with her at his side. On Thursday she has to up her game, when Tom says that he knows Matthew is the right person for the job, but feels that Jimmy deserves a shot at it. Fat chance. The only shot Jimmy is ever likely to get is from an optic in the Woolpack.

26th November 2005

After an eventful week in Spain, life gets back to normal next week (well, as normal as it can ever be in this village), and tomorrow romance is in the air both for Dawn and Danny and Paul and Ivan. Paul, however, is a bit confused, as he has never been out with a bisexual before (You can't hear yourself speak for the sound of closet doors opening in that place these days).    

There must be something in the air, because on Friday, in an hour long episode, Tom makes a pass at Sadie. Why not. Everyone does, at some stage. It's the Kings' Open Day (yet another excuse to crack open more champagne), yet Tom reckons that his success means nothing because he has never been so lonely in his life. Sadie, however, does not return his affection, and later declares her love for Matthew, with whom it is reciprocated. At the rate Sadie is going through the Kings, Max must be counting his blessings and just be feeling grateful that he is six feet under.   

On Friday, however, Sadie wants to delay the announcement of their relationship, claiming that the timing is not right. Of course it's not. Better to wait until there is a packed pub and an audience.   

The best news of the week was the departure of Alice, who allegedly needs time to think. That should take all of ten seconds. What did the woman ever have to talk about? First chickens, then cancer. Not exactly what you'd call party pieces, are they?