30 Years of Emmerdale
Date: Wednesday 16 October Time: 8:30pm to 9:50pm
Documentary celebrating 30 years of the rural soap. The
show looks back at old storylines and introduces characters past and
present. From Graham the psycho who killed Rachel and tried to drive
Kathy over a cliff, to the aeroplane disaster and Butch Dingle's deathbed
marriage to Emily, we go behind the scenes to meet the cast and creators.
ITV1 soaps Emmerdale and Coronation Street are launching spin-off magazine
Granada Television has brokered a contract publishing deal with Scorpio
Multimedia, which will see its major soap properties hit the news-stands.
A one-off title celebrating the 30th anniversary of Emmerdale launches
on October 7. Emmerdale Stars will be priced at £2.60 with 84 pages
and an initial print run of 100,000.
Manchester-based soap Coronation Street is next in line to branch out
into the magazine sector. Details of the venture are currently being
finalized, according to Scorpio Multi-media director of business development
Other soap properties have made tentative launches into the magazine
BBC soap EastEnders ran a one-off magazine to celebrate the show’s 15th
anniversary in 2000 and has its own comic strip in teen title It’s Hot.
Coming out on the 14th October is a 30th anniversary Video.
30 Years of Emmerdale -- Lance Parkin (Hardcover - Granada Media - 7 October,
£15.19 (£18.99 elsewhere) from http://www.amazon.co.uk/
The Little Book of Emmerdale -- Fintan O'Higgins (Paperback - Granada
Media - 2 September, 2002)
ACTRESS Sheila Mercier was never anyone
but Annie Sugden to the millions of fans who tuned in to Emmerdale.
In fact, the award winning ITV soap, which
celebrates its 30th birthday this week, began with her. The first
episode focused on the funeral of Jacob Sugden, Annie's beloved
And from that opening scene of Annie standing
in the farmhouse kitchen to the day she left the show, she was a
firm favourite with viewers.
Keeping the peace between her bickering
on-screen sons, Jack and Joe, quickly placed her at the centre of
action of the soap, which has been shown five times a week since
Over the years, she was caught up in dozens
of the soap's most gripping stories.
From the late Eighties, Sheila cut back
on her appearances, working only in the studio. And after she retired
in 1994, she starred in only a handful of Emmerdale episodes.
Two years ago, she came out of retirement
briefly to take part in an internet mini drama to run side-by-side
with the Emmerdale TV episodes. Sheila talked live on the Net with
her troubled screen son, Jack, played by Clive Hornby.
Today, it looks like Sheila has finally
put her days at Emmerdale's famous Woolpack behind her, but she
is still in touch with many of the cast and crew. At 83, she is
still very well and lives comfortably in Kent. Her husband, actor
Peter Mercier, died in 1993 after 42 years of marriage. The couple's
son, Nigel, is a TV sound engineer.
Enjoying her retirement, Sheila says she
is much happier out of the spotlight. She said: "I don't want to
act. I watch TV, read and live like an ordinary person."
But Sheila has been invited to return to
the Emmerdale set at least one more time to celebrate along with
the crew at the official 30th anniversary party.
As she raises a glass to the show's continued
success she can look back on a lifetime in show business.
The elder sister of actor Brian Rix, Sheila
was born in Hull in 1919. She trained at the Stratford-upon-Avon
college of drama and took a break from acting during the Second
World War when she served in the WAAF.
She returned to acting after the war, making
her television debut in a play called Exercise Bowler in 1946.
By the time she was chosen to play Annie,
she had already spent more than half of her career in the theatre.
Her 1994 autobiography, Annie's Song - My
life And Emmerdale, revealed she has been through some tough times,
She had a daughter, Janet, whom her parents
forced her to give away for adoption after she was raped by an RAF
Thirty years later, her daughter traced
her, but Sheila never totally got over the anguish of the loss.
||SHEREE KEEPS US GUESSING
Oct 12 2002
Everyone loves a big soap
wedding, says FRANCINE COHEN, but will Sheree Murphy
make it safely up the aisle this week in Emmerdale?
Sheree Murphy can keep a secret. Which is
just as well or the suspense building up to her wedding day drama
in Emmerdale - and the culmination of the soap's 30th anniversary
- would be ruined.
The big question everyone wants to know
is - will Sheree's character, Tricia Stokes, manage to tie the knot
with Marlon Dingle?
Sheree says: "I don't think there have ever
been so many obstacles against a couple making it up the aisle.
Especially as the bride's mother has just slept with the groom."
Events conspire against the lovers, but
Sheree isn't going to spoil the plot.
"Tricia wants to be with Marlon for the
rest of her life. If that is spoilt then she will be inconsolable.
Who knows? After all this is soap," she says about the hot storyline
that's been nominated for four gongs at the National Television
Awards this week.
The 27-year-old got married herself earlier
this year. She and Leeds United's Australian footballer, Harry Kewell,
whizzed off to Las Vegas for their nuptials, although Sheree would
have been just as happy in a local registry office.
But Sheree says her real-life wedding day
wasn't nearly as troublesome as the one Emmerdale fans are about
"It was much more traumatic filming these
scenes," she says. "Compared to this I just sailed through my own
wedding. But I enjoyed putting on a wedding dress again.
"I would think: `I look all right in this,
don't I?' But then I'd say to myself: `No you look really horrid'."
Of the Emmerdale storyline, she says: "It
doesn't all go according to plan. There are loads of hiccups. We
all know Tricia's mum Steph snogged Marlon. But eventually Tricia's
going to find out. And I think if she did, she'd go ape."
It's guaranteed that whatever happens, Harry,
as his wife's biggest fan, is going to watch it on the box.
"We planned a big wedding before I became
pregnant with our son Taylor," says Sheree, who has the same strong
London accent as Tricia but is nowhere near as dippy.
"After we had Taylor we just wanted to get
married and were quite happy to go to the local registry office.
"I didn't have time to organise a big wedding
what with working and being a mum. It was my mum who said to do
something fun, something to remember the day.
"She said we'd regret it otherwise."
So they shipped 24 family and friends over
to Las Vegas and got married in the Little Chapel of the West on
May 25 this year.
"It was lovely. Really gorgeous," she says.
"Not at all tacky, which I was worried about."
Sheree met Harry not long after she joined
Emmerdale as Alan Turner's long lost granddaughter four years ago,
but it was a while before they dated.
"Harry was really quiet when I first met
him, he was so shy," she says.
"I never thought I'd stand a chance because
he was so quiet. And he was thinking the same about me.
"Anyway, eventually we did get together
and start dating and it just felt right. At the same time I didn't
want to get too excited because you never know.
"I'd had one long-term relationship for
four years and I wasn't looking for anyone. It was a new life for
me. I'd moved from London to Leeds to be in Emmerdale, and was enjoying
getting stuck into my work and finding my feet."
Although they took it slowly, it was clear
the couple were in love.
"It just blossomed into something wonderful.
I can't believe what we've done in the time we've known each other
- got engaged, had a baby and got married - it's unbelievable."
Having Taylor, now 16 months, has whetted
her appetite for more children.
"Motherhood is just amazing," she says.
"When Taylor's in bed all we talk about is him. I want four children.
In fact, I'm very broody at the moment."
Could she imagine her screen alter ego,
Tricia, becoming a mum?
"I don't think she's ready for kids yet.
She'd want the best and have poor Marlon working all hours because
they couldn't afford anything.
"They are far too immature - they can't
even look after themselves."
Sheree juggles a 10-hour working day and
motherhood with the help of her family.
"My mum comes up from London and Harry's
mum comes over for a few months at a time from Australia," she says.
"Taylor has started nursery now so that
helps and Harry quite often has finished training by noon, so he
can be home in the afternoon for him."
Sheree grew up in London as an only girl
with four brothers.
"Mum was dying for a girl and I was born
on dad's birthday which was perfect," she says. "She made sure I
was girly even though I used to go to the football with my brothers."
Sheree is a product of the Sylvia Young
Theatre School and before that was the youngest ever pupil at the
Italia Conti Stage School.
"I used to dance a lot as a little girl
and I begged to go to Italia Conti," says Sheree. "Academically
I was useless. I knew I'd always be in the theatre."
She did lots of theatre before Emmerdale
and had a few lean times, but never doubted she would succeed.
"I knew I'd get there. Hard work always
wins out. In this business you get knocked back all the time but
you pick yourself up and just carry on."
Her screen mum is played by her first choice
for the part, Lorraine Chase. Sheree explains: "When Lisa Riley
was in the show we'd make up who would be cast as certain characters'
family. We always said Tricia's mum would have to be Lorraine Chase."
Lorraine is an older version of Sheree -
both are tall brunettes with the same strong London accent.
"It's great working with her. We have such
a laugh," says Sheree.
And working with Mark Charnock, who plays
Marlon, is another dream.
"I couldn't wish for anyone better. I think
people believe in us as a couple on screen because we work so well
together. He's a lovely bloke."
So what does she think Tricia sees in the
slightly spacey Marlon?
"In the past Tricia went out with some real
lookers but they all let her down. Then along came Marlon who fancied
her like mad.
"He makes her laugh and gives her everything
she wants. It's easy to see why they are together."
Sheree is delighted to be playing the Woolpack's
sexiest barmaid as Emmerdale celebrates its 30th year.
"I'm really proud to be part of it," she
says. "This is the best storyline I've had and definitely the most
Even though Sheree loves being in Emmerdale
she doesn't know how long she will stay.
"The most important thing to me is Harry
and Taylor and that we stay together as a family. So if Harry gets
transferred, that would take priority."
And the lure of a new challenge is hard
"I'd love to try something else," she says.
"I'd like to do a Victorian drama or something like that - anything
that involved wearing a corset."
For the time being, Sheree is happy to be
at the centre of the soap's birthday celebrations.
Emmerdale, ITV, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday,
7pm; Thursday, 7pm, 8pm
IT wouldn’t be a traditional soap wedding without some last-minute
hitches. And that’s certainly the case for Marlon and
Tricia’s nuptials during Thursday’s 30th anniversary
Mack kidnaps the wedding cake and holds it to
ransom against payment of the building bill. Marlon and Tricia pay
up, but they are left so broke that they even consider cancelling
As they agonise about what to do, the stag night gets seriously
out of hand and amorous prospective mother-in-law Steph
makes a full-frontal assault on horrified Marlon.
“It should be the happiest time of Marlon’s life,” says Mark Charnock,
who plays the luckless bridegroom, “but Steph turns it into a nightmare.
“Marlon really loves Tricia and he wants their big day to be perfect.
He just can’t believe how everything keeps going wrong.”
Steph simply refuses to leave Marlon alone. As she joins the other
Emmerdale calendar girls for their nude photo shoot, she saucily
tells Marlon he mustn’t look.
Meanwhile, Mack and Syd use the distraction to sneak into The Woolpack
and steal the wedding cake.
“Marlon finds a ransom note where the cake was and he is really
upset,” says Mark. “Mack insists that the cake is only the start,
so Marlon and Tricia are forced to hand over £7,000.
“With their dream house now just an impossible fantasy, they are
skint and actually consider calling the whole thing off.
“But the Dingles are great in a crisis and Lisa and
Zak give them hope. Lisa insists they must go ahead
and that they will all pull together to make the wedding work. Besides,
Zak is horrified at the prospect of cancelling the stag night.”
Marlon is cheered by this support and he tries to put his problems
behind him by getting plastered as his stag night gets under way.
Best man Paddy gets a clout when he mistakes a
heavily made-up woman for the stripper, just as the genuine article,
dressed as a nun, turns up.
Marlon is very drunk but he manages to make an early exit to avoid
any Dingle devilment. Poor old Ashley is captured
instead and bundled into a van with the stripper.
“But there’s a much worse fate for Marlon,” says Mark. “He is staggering
home when he is spotted by Steph. In the dark and under the influence,
Marlon thinks it’s his bride-to-be and pulls her in for a kiss.
“He’s too drunk to realise it but he’s snogging Steph and, worse
still, they have been spotted by Emily. Next morning, Marlon is
ashamed, terrified of being found out and horribly hung over! And
it gets worse when he discovers that Emily and
Paddy know everything.”
The Dingles rally round and gatecrash another wedding to gather
some missing essentials for Marlon and Tricia. But Marlon is desperate
to stop Steph chasing him once and for all.
“When he tries to talk to her, she insists he’s the man for her,”
says Mark. “She says he can’t marry Tricia because he should be
Marlon is furious, but he won’t let Steph stand in his way.
Things get bad for poor Tricia, too, when she hurts her neck after
Latisha gets some chewing gum stuck in Tricia’s
As Marlon and best man Paddy wait nervously for the bride, Tricia’s
in a neck brace, with her mother insisting she go to hospital.
And with Steph still smarting over Marlon’s rejection, will she
ruin everything, or will the happy couple’s love conquer all?
Also this week:
- Viv gets her wish when she is called in to
replace Angie in the calendar shoot.
- Pregnant Zoe tests negative for HIV. But the
village gossips think it’s Charity who is expecting
and Scott gets scared when the truth starts to
- Tension grows between Gloria and Glynis
as they fight over who controls Pollard’s political
30 Years Of Emmerdale (Weds, ITV1) goes behind the scenes and celebrates
the soap’s history.
Marlon and Tricia’s wedding will be the 36th in Emmerdale’s history,
but the show began with a funeral on its debut on October 16, 1972.
Farmer Jacob Sugden died of pneumonia, leaving his brave widow
Annie to look after the family.
Prodigal son Jack came back to run the farm and
he is still there to this day, although he is now played by a different
actor, as Clive Hornby took over from Andrew Burt in 1980.
Over the years, the countryside has certainly been a dangerous
place, with 51 deaths, including eight murders and two suicides.
Poor Sharon Crossthwaite was strangled while the show was only
a few months old. Denis Rigg was killed by a bull and three people
were shot dead in the bungled raid on the post office in 1994.
Headmistress Miss Strickland was killed by joyrider Marc Reynolds
and his pals in 2001.
Some families were extra unlucky. Dave Glover died following a
rescue of his lover Kim Tate’s baby from a fire in 1996, and a year
later his sister Linda perished after a car crash caused by the
drunken Lord Oakwell.
Rachel Hughes was pushed off a cliff by crazy teacher Graham Clark
in 1999. Then Graham himself plunged off a different cliff nine
Today, the countryside soap is a prime-time hit, often getting
But it began as a twice-weekly daytime show with characters such
as farmhand Matt Skilbeck, who was so dull he was
often upstaged by the sheep.
It was given just three months to prove itself, but it caught on
and gradually the show was made racier
as younger characters were introduced and sex and drugs and infidelity
hit the Dales.
The serial has always been open to change. It began life as Emmerdale
Farm, but the ‘Farm’ was dropped in 1989 to reflect the focus on
village life rather than the Sugdens’ home.
And in 1993, an aeroplane dropped from the sky to clear away some
of the worn-out characters in a horrific crash sequence.
Its longest surviving character Seth Armstrong can
get through 24 woolly hats a year, with most of the old hats donated
And the rest of TV takes its hat off to Emmerdale this week
- happy anniversary!
|12th October 2002
- Soaps by Alison Graham.
The Titch and Quackers of Emmerdale - Marlon and Tricia - get married this
week, though Tricia's dreadful mother (how on earth did posh Alan sire someone
so mouthy and common?) almost puts the kibosh on the whole thing when she
makes her intentions towards Marlon spectacularly clear.
And there is also a plot to hold the wedding cake hostage, but doubtless
this is what passes for a good time in Emmerdale.
AS the nation's favourite rural soap celebrates
30 years on our screens this month, this programme marks the occasion
with a tribute.
The show recalls the sizzling storylines
that have kept the soap's 10 million strong audience gripped over
a mammoth 3288 episodes, and introduces the characters past and
present who have endeared us to the soap.
It reminds viewers that in the early days,
if the cast weren't sitting around Annie's table eating breakfast,
they were spending their days milking cows, shearing sheep or plucking
Fond memories, but they soon made way for
sex, intrigue and action, with blockbusting storylines that have
had audiences of up to 16 million tuning in.
Among the many highlights is the story of
He was a quiet schoolteacher turned serial
killer who rocked the village in 1999 when he bumped off Rachel,
then later tried to drive Kathy over the cliff, before ending up
at the bottom of it himself.
Then there's the endearing love story of
Edna and Batley the dog which ended in tears earlier this year when
Batley had to be put to sleep. Actress Shirley Stelfox reveals it
wasn't just the viewers who reached for the hankies during that
A plane crash in 1994 changed the face of
the former village of Beckindale forever.
The village name was changed to Emmerdale,
and viewers tuned in to a special effects spectacular and a stunning
example of how the soap says goodbye to its favourite characters.
In 2000, a barnfire killed Sarah Sugden.
Actress Alyson Spiro speaks about what things were like in the heat
of the moment.
Butch Dingle's involvement in a bus crash
in 2000 sent shock waves through the hearts of soap fans. Actor
Paul Loughran reveals he had a little extra help playing his deathbed
scenes with Emily (Kate McGregor), courtesy of his leaving party
the night before.
Essential viewing for any Emmerdale aficionados
The Men Who
Wiped Out Billions
THE programme reports on a massive scandal
which has already wiped out £3billion in savings.
Heavily promoted by some of the best-known
names in British finance, the investments at the heart of this scandal
were aimed at cautious kind of investor - people who are uncomfortable
with the stock markets.
These so-called Zero investments promised
safe, predictable, above-average returns with minimal risk to investors'
money - a far better deal, promoters insisted, than a bank or building
society could offer.
With this low-risk message, Zeros were easy
to sell. But when stock markets faltered, a nasty secret was revealed.
Far from being low risk, many of these Zeros
began to collapse and investors were shocked as their savings evaporated.
What Not To Wear
TRINNY and Susannah give fashion misfits
a much needed makeover.
This week's target is unusual for two reasons.
First of all he is a man, and secondly, his wife, Maria, appeared
in the first series of the show after he nominated her.
Sweet revenge, perhaps?
Matthew is a curtain and blind-fitter from
Surrey. The only problem is that since Maria opened her wardrobe
to Trinny and Susannah, she has noticed that Matthew has a fashion
deficiency and has ordered a swift course of posh style supplements.
Trinny and Susannah duly oblige, with a
view to creating a What Not To Wear first, for man and wife, a union
in high street chic.
Will it be a match made in heaven or will
there be marital unrest over Matthew's stylish makeover?
Celebrity Fit Club
EIGHT celebrities continue their quest to
get fit and lose pounds for charity.
Weighing in at Fit Club are MP Ann Widdecombe,
Pop Idol finalist Rik Waller, gardening guru Tommy Walsh, Kay Purcell
from Emmerdale, former weatherman Ian McCaskill, soap star Nicola
Duffett (Family Affairs), TV presenter Coleen Nolan and DJ Jono
In tonight's episode, the celebrities weigh
in for the first time under the Fit Club regime.
Some are delighted with the results while
others are visibly disappointed. The results hit Emmerdale actress
Kay Purcell the hardest and she considers quitting Fit Club.
Meanwhile, soap actresses Nicola Duffett
and Kay Purcell attend the National Soap Awards and succumb to temptation,
while Rik Waller finally faces up to the truth about his weight.
Fat Friends (ITV, 9.00pm)
Hosting You've Been Framed isn't
exactly a stretch of Lisa Riley's acting ability, nor was her stint
in Emmerdale over- endowed with sterling thespian moments.
But she certainly proves her
worth tonight as she takes centre stage in the latest episode of
As criminally-shy Rebecca Patterson,
she has only joined the slimming club because of pressure from her
overbearing mother Norma.
Though she's in her 20s, Rebecca
still lives at home with her overweight parents and agrees to become
a slimmer for a quiet life.
Green-fingered Rebecca works
at a local garden centre where her joy in life is co-worker Sean.
She's organised a visit from
celebrity gardener Diarmuid Gavin (playing himself) and can't wait
for the big day.
But a face from her past returns
to bring back memories of horrific psychological bullying.
PRIME-TIME flop Fame Academy is fast becoming
Lame Duck Academy.
The BBC's costly reality show lost almost
a million viewers for Tuesday night's second show.
Now it is in danger of pulling EastEnders
down with it.
Just 4.6million viewers tuned into last
Friday's disastrous opening extravaganza and that figure had dropped
to 3.7million by Tuesday.
EastEnders, which followed Fame Academy,
felt the knock-on effect with only seven million viewers.
Fame Academy lost out to ITV's Emmerdale
which had almost three times as many people watching.
Even the panned Chris Moyles Show on Five,
which has struggled to make an impact, pulled in its best audience.
Around 700,000 tuned in to watch the DJ
rather than the BBC's prized wannabes.
A Beeb insider said: "The top brass won't
let EastEnders suffer because Fame Academy is a flop.
"Unless the show starts improving dramatically,
it could be shunted from the slot."
Fame Academy, a mix of Big Brother and Popstars,
is costing the BBC £4.5million.
It is a huge embarrassment to BBC bosses,
who have devoted hours of prime- time over the next 10 weeks to
There is also support programming on digital
channels BBC Choice and CBBC, as well as an interactive website.
The dwindling audience figures come days
after the academy's headmaster, ex-Radio Clyde DJ Richard Park,
slammed the programme for its "prancy, cheesy" style and said: "We
need to do it differently."
But a BBC spokesman said: "Fame Academy
does not live or die by individual programmes, and we still feel
strongly about its future success."
On Friday, three of the 12 pop wannabes
holed up in a £35million London mansion face eviction.Viewers and
fellow students will decide if they stay or go.
SO, WE'VE been visiting the Dales for 30
years. Is that all? And to celebrate, we're getting a wedding horror
The (un)lucky bride and groom are Marlon
and Tricia, and all sorts of things go wrong.
He snogs her mother the night before; vicar
Ashley, mistakenly taken for Marlon by the blokes, gets kidnapped
and deposited miles away on the stag night; and Tricia gets chewing
gum in her hair and ends up wearing a neck brace down the aisle.
Oh, and they have to pay Mack and Syd beforehand
and are skint. So the Dingle clan steal decorations for them from
another wedding. It's riotous. As all soap weddings are.
Elsewhere in the Dales, Zoe, who can't remember
how she got pregnant, decides an abortion is the only option, and
goes horse riding with Charity. She doesn't care if she falls off,
she doesn't want the baby anyway.
And please don't miss 30 Years Of Emmerdale,
on Tuesday night - it will either make you laugh or cry. Relive
wondrous moments, like Rachel's brown wig, worn when she was madly
in love with insane Graham. Much more interesting than her murder.
Oh, and there's lots of stuff about the
early days when people worked on the farm and everyone didn't just
shag every day.
FOR a few nights only, Gary Lucy is back.
Oh, my God, wait while I set my video recorder - not.
Yes, taking time out from running into shot
in the ridiculous, but brilliant, Footballers' Wives, Mr Sleaze
himself is back as Luke for mum and dad Morgan's second marriage
- to each other. And Mandy is delighted.
Yes, his brother has full use of his legs
and other important body parts - I said important, okay?
So, poor old Adam, even though managing
to stand at the wedding, is relegated to the subs bench once more
by the blond bint.
Zara ends up in a ridiculous bridesmaid's
frock for the wedding of the year, and it all goes off smoothly.
There's the usual rubbish with Anna, this
time getting annoyed at Max. She'd be better on her own, someone
ought to tell her that. And there's those new blokes who are hunky,
Oh, and look out for Luke getting all macho
and fronting up to Scott. It's almost as good as Footballers' Wives,
seriously. Oh, okay, I jest. It's not.
SHARON proposes to Tom, who says no. Well,
he's a bit doubtful about the whole idea actually.
And Sharon, not in on the brain tumour secret,
But Patrick tells her that Anthony knows
what is wrong, so it won't be long before she's knocking at his
door trying to find out. Poor Sharon. She's not got a lot of luck,
But he was never right for her. His head
was too long, I always thought.
Anyway, Little Mo is still all over the
place because Trevor is playing mind games. Honestly, can we have
the denouement to this story please, and get him out of here? Maybe
he could take Sam the bam with him.
IS RAY dead. Well, it has seemed that way
for ages, hasn't it? But maybe this week he really is.
Mike wishes his son was, as Josh causes
more havoc in Brookie - this time dying the washing pink. Oh, the
storylines, they just get better. I tell you, Brookside, keep this
up and you will drive me to River City. Yes, that is how bad it
Maybe the reappearance of Lindsey Corkhill
later in the year will make a difference. Something will have to,
that's for sure. Emily is also preparing for her graduation. I didn't
know they did courses in how to be a Scouse tart. She gets the St
Tropez out to celebrate.
Oct 12 2002
We can't resist soap stars
who lose the plot
Following the news that Brookside is facing
the axe, we asked readers which soap storylines had them gripped.
From affairs to shootings, they made compulsive viewing
The ups and downs of Den and Angie's Queen
Vic reign - ST.
In EastEnders, both Phil's decline into
alcoholism and his shooting - S Jnr.
Charlene marrying Scott in Neighbours. Not
a dry eye in the house - VM.
Evil Trevor Jordache from Brookside. The
sound of his voice had you hiding behind the couch - LQ, Glasgow.
I have hardly missed an episode of Brookie
since it started. I will miss it. Crossroads has gone. They should
axe River City.
The storyline that had me glued to my telly
was on Brookside when they had the body- under-the-patio story -
It's got to be the demise of Dirty Den in
EastEnders. It had the nation gripped - CC, Glasgow.
I am devastated at the end of Brookside.
I never miss any of the soaps. They fair brighten up my day - FC,
The incest between Nat and Georgia in Brookside
was pretty shocking - J, Lanarkshire.
Luke's rape in Hollyoaks. Brilliantly dealt
with - DB.
When Jimmy Corkhill was fighting with Grant
Mitchell and the two of them got barred from the Rovers Return!
- the Ayr Mad Squad.
In EastEnders, when Arthur stole the Christmas
club money and was sent down. My hero - MD.
EastEnders when Grant plays the tape in
the Vic of Sharon telling Michelle about her affair with Phil. The
whole storyline was brilliant - PJ.
1986 Brookside - Who raped Sheila Grant.
The current storyline in The Bill about
Superintendent Tom Chandler about to get his comeuppance for rape
- Billy, Hamilton.
The Bill takes some beating at the moment
- H. G, Wishaw.
I don't know about the best, but the worst
was moaning Lisa's constant howling before she left EastEnders -
Maxine Peacock's affair with dirty doc Matt
Ramsden in Corrie was sensational. Poor Ashley's reaction when he
found out reduced me to tears - K. Callaghan, Saltcoats.
Jack Sugden in jail in Emmerdale. They should
have kept him in - Lorna, Edinburgh.
Mike Baldwin's affair with Deirdre in Corrie.
The storyline lasted for years. In fact, I think Mike still holds
a torch for her and her, him - JB, Glasgow.
Who shot JR in Dallas. The whole world was
gripped - Celia, Lenzie.
Madonna and Guy Ritchie's new film has been
slated - but what's the biggest movie turkey of all time?
TEXT US ON 07740 101101
From The Sun 11/10/02
I'd rather be in Yorkshire
By KATY WEITZ
EMMERDALE star Emily Symons has brought a touch of Aussie sex appeal
to the northern soap.
But the gorgeous actress with sparking blue eyes, shock of white-blonde
hair and a ready smile has a confession.
For Emily, once dizzy hairdresser Marilyn Fisher in Home And Away,
hated the glamorous, beach-bound life of her former soap.
The 33-year-old says: “Most people think I’m mad because I left
Sydney to come to cold Yorkshire where the warmest thing is the
“But honestly, I wasn’t a very good beach babe. Shooting scenes
on the beach meant there was a lot of sand and wind in my face.
“And for some reason Marilyn liked to run up and down the sand in
her stilettoes so it was a big workout on the calves.
“At lunchtime the production crew all used to go surfing. Everyone
surfs in Oz — but not me.
“I’m terrified of the sea. I got really badly dumped by a wave once
and nearly drowned and I just hate it.
“The best thing about being in Emmerdale is the fact that we’re
allowed to have winter at all.
“In Home And Away we weren’t allowed to show winter, so when it
was cold we all had to wear summer clothes.
“I was always dressed in a tiny top and a postage stamp for a mini
skirt, slowly turning purple from the cold.
“Here they give you coats and thermal underwear. I like getting
up at the weekends, pulling on my wellies and going for a big stomp
in the fields with my Labrador, Star.
“I’ve got a cottage in Yorkshire for weekdays when I’m filming and
a cottage in Henley in Oxfordshire where I live at weekends.
“They’re both bang in the middle of the countryside and my Yorkshire
place has two lovely log fires. It’s so cosy and warm.
“I love gardening and walking in the Dales. I don’t go to the gym
— I hate gyms — so that’s the only exercise I get and I love it.”
It has been a good move professionally, too. Emily has been nominated
as Best Newcomer for her role as barmaid Louise Appleton in Tuesday’s
Sun-backed — National Television awards.
As a child Emily dreamed of being an actress and her earliest memory
is of her mum ferrying her to drama, dance and singing classes.
She was just 17 when she appeared in her first Australian TV series,
In 1989 she joined Home And Away but she gave up playing Marilyn
in 1990 when she met Brit Nick Lipscombe, a drummer.
They were married in Britain in 1992 but split three years later
and disillusioned Emily returned to Oz.
She resolved to stay away from the limelight and started working
in a hat shop until the Home And Away producers lured her back for
a further four years.
Although Emily has been brightening up Emmerdale for just over a
year, she arrived in Britain this time in 1999, when she fell for
Southampton footballer Matt Le Tissier.
However, they soon split and Emily was faced with the prospect of
going it alone in Britain, 12,000 miles from home. She is still
She moved to Chiswick in West London, near her actress pal Isla
Fisher, who she had met on Home And Away.
Emily said: “We were both single and used to sit in my flat chain-smoking
and watching telly.
“Isla was brilliant for me. She’d force me to go out.
“I really pushed myself to do things I’d never done before because
I’m quite shy. There were lots of lonely bits but as time went on
I got stronger and happier.”
It is hard to imagine livewire Emily as anything other than extrovert
— she is constantly joking, throwing her arms about in dramatic
illustration and widening her eyes in mock surprise.
But she insists that when she first broke up with Matt her confidence
was at a low ebb and it has taken her years rather than months to
get it back.
Landing the role of Louise certainly helped restore some of Emily’s
She had always been a fan of the soap and was delighted to build
up her profile again.
From The Daily Star 10/10/02
A crash decision
EMMERDALE chiefs have decided to interview sur- vivors of the plane crash
which devastated the fic- tional soap village. The spoof documentary will
mark the 10th anniversary of the disaster that gave producers the chance
to revamp the set and bring in new characters. Programme chief John Whiston
said: "It would be quite bold and exciting introducing a sort of show-within-a-show.
It's the sort of thing that would happen in real life on the anniver-sary
of such an event." The 1993 jet crash killed off many characters, including
Mark Hughes, Elizabeth Feldmann, Archie Brooks and Leonard Kempinski.
The disaster documentary will reach our screens some time next year.
Pure Soap Did You See
p3 of 7 | Next update: Fri 18 October
Did You See... last week in Soap?
Last week's highs
Zoe's pregnancy. It's got to be the ultimate
soap storyline; the immaculate conception of the
schizophrenic lesbian vet.
Except of course we all know there was nothing
immaculate about that quick fumble
with Scott in the back of the Range Rover. Now there's an odd couple
if ever there was one &
Neighbours robbery. Steph's ex
boyfriend Mitch went to visit her at work, and
ended up snatching the till at gunpoint.
That girl certainly knows how to pick 'em, doesn't she?
Tricky Dicky on the spot. Richard 'Killman'
had some fast talking to do when his ex wife's pal Charlotte
put him on the spot about Gail's bracelet.
You could tell he was just wishing he had a spade
Q: This week's lows?
A: Next page...
Ashley: Zoe, that's a lampshade not a hat!
© Yorkshire Television 2002
Carlton and Granada in £2.5bn
merger to halt ratings slump
New ITV plc plans to fight back against
BBC and pay-TV firms
John Cassy, media business correspondent
Saturday October 12, 2002
Granada and Carlton, Britain's
dominant commercial television broadcasters, yesterday unveiled a long-awaited
£2.5bn merger to create a single ITV company in an effort to halt a big
slump in ratings.
The agreement brings together the producer of Coronation Street, Pop
Idol and Emmerdale, with the company behind Inspector Morse and Kavanagh
QC to create a group employing 8,000 people.
Although viewers will notice little change, executives say the deal will
help the merged group to fight back more effectively against a cash-rich,
ratings-hungry BBC and stem the loss of viewers to the pay-TV world of
satellite and cable.
The deal also consolidates the positions of Carlton's multimillionaire
founder Michael Green and Granada's Charles Allen at the end of a year
in which they have been vilified for a string of high-profile disasters,
including the £1.2bn collapse of ITV Digital, yet have resisted calls
for their resignations.
Mr Green will crown a long career in commercial TV by becoming chairman
of the combined group, to be officially known as ITV plc. Mr Allen will
assume the chief executive role and control of day to day operations.
However, the two men have seldom seen eye to eye and industry observers
are predicting a series of bust-ups.
"A single ITV is within sight," Mr Green said yesterday. "In a rapidly
changing broadcast industry we need to combine to compete effectively.
Delay is not in the interest of viewers, advertisers, stakeholders or
the future of broadcasting."
Rival broadcasters including Channel 5, Channel 4 and BSkyB are expected
to lobby hard against the deal. ITV plc will have a 52% share of the TV
advertising market on which commercial broadcasters largely depend for
revenues. Rivals fear they could abuse their dominant position.
A merger became inevitable after a litany of disasters. A fall in the
share prices of both firms has wiped more than £2.5bn from their value
since original merger talks were abandoned in February. The collapse of
ITV Digital had cost them £1.4bn and much more in terms of reputation.
The court battle with the Football League that followed - over £183m that
the clubs claimed they were owed on a broadcasting rights deal - was defeated
but it was a public relations disaster.
The final straw was ITV's failure to lure highly-rated Channel 5 boss
Dawn Airey to become its new director of channels.
The government's communications bill proposes to clear the way for a
single ITV company, but competition regulators are expected to scrutinise
the deal, and the investigations could take up to nine months. Advertisers
and Channel 4 have already expressed concern that the enlarged group would
"While advertisers can see some benefit, we have some very serious concerns
over competitive effect on the airtime sales market," said Bob Wooton,
the director of media and advertising sales at the Incorporated Society
of British Advertisers.
"We will call for a competition inquiry. The only way broadcasters could
head it off is if they talk to the media buyers and install safeguards
Jobs will also have to be cut. City analysts estimate the creation of
ITV plc could save around £30m in costs due to widespread duplication
of offices and staff.
The nitty gritty of the merger deal is likely to take considerable management
time and effort at a time when ITV cannot afford to take its eye off the
battle it has with the BBC and BSkyB. Since 1992 ITV1's share of viewing
has almost halved to 24%, according to the ratings body Barb.
Channel 5, Britain's youngest terrestrial channel, is grabbing a bigger
share of advertising revenue, while BSkyB is taking audience - particularly
the young, wealthy viewers attractive to advertisers - into the fast-growing
world of multichannel television.
Mr Allen insists that ITV plc
will be in a better position to fight back. "The proposed merger provides
a clear route to a consolidated ITV. It would make ITV more competitive
now, in an increasingly competitive market."
BBC viewers find Fame Academy
Friday October 11, 2002
The BBC's £4.5m Fame Academy is living
up to its 'Lame Academy' nickname by limping along in its early evening
slot with poor viewing figures.
Almost half the BBC1 audience switched over as soon as the Six O'Clock
News ended and Fame Academy began at 7pm.
The reality talent show attracted just 3.6 million viewers, according
to unofficial overnights.
Fame Academy's 18% audience share compared unfavourably with the 30%
share achieved by the regional news that preceded it.
The viewing figures for ITV1's Emmerdale - a 9.1 million audience and
46% share - prove Fame Academy must try harder.
Channel 5 got a gold star for screening Keanu Reeves' high quality sci-fi
thriller, The Matrix, at 9pm.
The movie attracted 3.4 million viewers and a 20% audience share. This
was enough to rival The Vicar of Dibley on BBC1, which had a 24% share.
However, ITV1's 9pm drama Fat Friends beat the opposition as 6.6 million
people (31% of the audience) tuned in to watch the latest trials and tribulations
of the diet club members.
Not content with producing TV shows such as Big Brother and Changing
Rooms, Peter Bazalgette popped up on Channel 5 to present a programme
about the achievements of his great, great grandfather.
Sir Joseph Bazalgette was the civil engineer who designed London's sewer
system and helped end the capital's cholera and typhoid epidemic.
A respectable 1.5 million viewers (a
6% share) tuned in to The Great Stink at 8pm to find out more about the
Bazalgette family's obsession with sewage.
defends Fame Academy
Academy loses a million viewers
Academy is ratings flop
turned down 'derivative' Fame Academy
Academy star lambasts show
prize for Fame Academy winner
unleashes Fame Academy on prime time schedules
chooses Fame on Fridays
Behind the scenes
Brother meets big house for BBC fame show
tastes high life with latest 'reality talent' show
Academy beckons Deeley
MediaGuardian special reports
|Fame Academy still a ratings flop
Fame Academy has lost another million viewers according to unofficial
The first episode of the show attracted 4.6 million people - little more
than BBC2's Gardener's World.
But last night's edition, when the students were told who would
have to Sing For Survival, had just 3.7 million viewers.
Over 9 million people were watching ITV1's Emmerdale at the same
Meanwhile online bookmakers Blue Square have made Nigel their 6/5
favourite to be voted out this week. Ashley is being quoted at odds
of 7/4 and Pippa is 4/1.
Story filed: 12:31 Wednesday 9th October 2002
I'm no beach babe - Emily
Emmerdale and Home and Away star Emily Symons
has revealed the real reason she was so willing to leave Summer
Bay - she doesn't really like the beach.
The star, who has been nominated for the best
newcomer prize at Tuesday's British Television Awards, told The
Sun: "Most people think I'm mad because I left Sydney to come to
cold Yorkshire where the warmest thing is the beer.
"But honestly I wasn't a very good beach babe.
Shooting scenes on the beach meant there was a lot of sand and wind
in my face."
Emily, who plays Louise Appleton - co-owner of
the Woolpack - was more than happy to swap surfing for walks in
the Yorkshire Dales with her labrador Star.
And she says wellies make a pleasant change from
her Home and Away character loopy Marilyn Fisher's trademark high
"In Home and Away we weren't allowed to show winter,
so when it was cold we all had to wear summer clothes," she said.
"I was always dressed in a tiny top and a postage
stamp for a miniskirt, slowly turning purple from the cold.
"Here they give you coats and thermal underwear."
If Lance Parkin's weighty tome on
Emmerdale's 30th anniversary is a bit
pricey, try The Little Book of
It also weighs a few pounds less,
and is written by the gloriously
named Fintan O'Higins.
It contains a wide selection of
potted Emmerdale biographies from
Jack Sugden to Laurel @otts. And as
a bonus, there are even some classic
quotes from characters in the long-
``````````` by Phil Penfold ``````5/8``
`````````` / EMMERDALE ````````````````
The Emmerdale producers were more
than happy to give away a few trade
secrets at the show's recent 30th
For instance, all the houses in the
village have chimneys fitted with
small smoke machines. They are turned
on and off by the flick of a switch.
Some of the properties have also been
sprayed with yoghurt and manure to
encourage lichen to grow quickly on
the exteriors. Front door steps have
been ground down to look older.
`````````` / EMMERDALE ````````````````
Another Emmerdale book is on the
shelves, supporting the Anthony Nolan
Trust, which fights leukaemia.
In Boris And The Emmerdale Bus,
priced at #3.99, Boris the loveable
Clydesdale horse outwits Eric
Pollard who is caught thieving and
sentenced to muck out the stables.
"I hope it raises awareness for this
marvellous charity, said Chris
Chittell, who plays Eric. "I was
bowled over when they wrote me into
the plot, it's a great honour."
Win an Emmerdale video 128
The days when Annie Sugden's was the
only important farm in Beckindale are
long gone on its 30th anniversary.
I can think of at least 10 in the
area including Keller Bottom, Ridge
Farm and Winslow's.
"Everything is carefully documented
and given a history," said an
"All the places in it have a history
and Emmerdale is very much a living,
Win an Emmerdale video 128
Sugdens bond "like real family"
Teenage Emmerdale star Kelvin Fletcher, who plays
Andy Sugden, says that his screen father Jack (Clive Hornby) treats
him almost as another son.
Kelvin arrived on the show six years ago as a
nervous 12-year-old but Clive took him under his wing.
Now he is even following in Clive's footsteps
romantically. His real-life girlfriend Sammy Winward plays his screen
love Katie Addyman - rather like Clive, who went on to marry Helen
Weir who played his wife Pat.
Kelvin told Inside Soap: "I look up to him as
a real dad, we have a good bond.
"Clive has got a son who is about the same age
as me so he knows what it's like."
He added: "He's always there to give me tips and
hints which is great because I am still young and still learning."
Emmerdale actress Sheree Murphy may be married to a premiership star
but she says her life is a far cry from those portrayed on ITV1's Footballers'
Sheree, who plays the Woolpack barmaid Tricia Stokes, married Leeds United
midfielder Harry Kewell in July and is a regular at matches. But she says
life as a footballer's wife is not quite as glitzy as some might assume.
"I loved Footballers' Wives but it was completely different to my lifestyle.
It would be great to live like that - well, maybe," she says.
"Life at Leeds United is not like that at all. Maybe it might be a bit
more glamorous at some of the bigger clubs. But everyone at Leeds is really
down to earth.
"You don't have to dress up to go and watch the football. You can go in
just your jeans and trainers. I go to all the home games. I used to go
to all the away ones too but I can't really take Taylor.
"I don't even get people batting an eyelid when I turn up at the ground.
I sit with all the season ticket holders and they have seen me there for
the last four years.
"It's good sitting out in the crowd and there is a great atmosphere. I'd
hate to be stuck in a director's box.
"All the girls have their own jobs and lives unlike the characters in
the TV show. They are all pretty independent. It has taken me a long time
as an actress to get where I am. I have my own identity and would like
to keep it."
Tricia 'braced' herself for the big day.
© Yorkshire Television 2002
Soap Psychic... on Emmerdale
14 Oct - 28 Oct: it shall come to pass
Well aisle be!
Marlon and Tricia overcome all the obstacles and marry - aaaaah!
Zoe decides not to have an abortion. She wants the baby adopted.
Giz a ring!
And with my crystal ball on overtime…
Angie lets Syd seduce her - eventually. But she strings him along first.
Steph moves in with Nicola as her lodger.
Katie and Andy are desperate for some privacy.
And Glynis ruins Pollard's political plans by outing their affair. Then
Gloria takes over running for MP!
Ratings Update : Orange Today 9th October 2002
Fame Academy still a ratings flop
Fame Academy has lost another million viewers according to unofficial
The first episode of the show attracted 4.6 million people - little more
than BBC2's Gardener's World.
But last night's edition, when the students were told who would have to
Sing For Survival, had just 3.7 million viewers.
Over 9 million people were watching ITV1's Emmerdale at the same time.
Meanwhile online bookmakers Blue Square have made Nigel their 6/5 favourite
to be voted out this week. Ashley is being quoted at odds of 7/4 and Pippa
Story filed: 12:31 Wednesday 9th October 2002
|LATEST NEWS AND GOSSIP From Teletext
Fame Academy slides in ratings again
By Derek Robins
BBC1's much publicised Fame Academy has lost almost one million
Only 3.7m people saw Tuesday's show - less than one in five viewers
- as it was crushed in the ratings by ITV1's Emmerdale which clocked
A BBC spokesman remained upbeat about the series being a success.
He said: "We are not looking at individual shows. Fame Academy
does not live or die by individual programmes and we still feel
strongly about its future success."
The audience for Tuesday's show was 1m less than a Watchdog inquiry
into clairvoyants in the same slot last week.
The debut episode of the talent show last Friday attracted only
4.6m but BBC bosses and Fame Academy "head" Richard Park have predicted
Another episode goes out on Thursday at 7pm, but higher ratings
are expected for the first student eviction on Friday at 8.30pm.
7th October 2002: We're not EastEnders'
Emmerdale notches up 30 years of melodramatic existence on October 16,
ignored by metropolitan trendies but loved by middle-aged northerners
tolerant of its ludicrous storylines.
Steve Frost is 30 too, making him the youngest producer of the UK's third
most popular soap. He is currently guiding the pride of Yorkshire Television
- which attracts between 9-10 million viewers a night - through its latest
extreme storyline, a "phantom" pregnancy for Emmerdale's mixed-up vet,
Zoe. All the drama is played out against a purpose-built village in rural
north Yorkshire where stone buildings are falsely aged using a coating
of manure and yoghurt.
Frost has had a meteoric rise to power despite having no formal TV training.
An English graduate from Cambridge, he enjoys American literature while
Spanish playwright Lorca is his favourite. "I was very, very highbrow
and extraordinarily elitist in my tastes at one time", he says.
However choosing popular television "never struck me as an odd thing to
do. People talk about TV as something old. I still think it is the most
immediate form of entertainment and mass communication. It fits with people's
lives with no effort, not like logging onto the internet.
"I didn't set out to go into television, I was convinced at the time I
was a writer. I came to London [in 1995] and to support this idea worked
as a runner, then assistant director on pop videos. I never wrote anything."
But a friend worked on Sky One's football drama Dream Team and Frost was
involved in two series before helping run a third as script editor. He
also freelanced on episodes of Hollyoaks and Brookside.
Jane Hewland, who hired him, says, "He was a second assistant director
which means booking the extras, calling the cast. He was a smart guy.
I've fired more script editors than I've had hot dinners. If you can survive
Dream Team you can do anything. He has a pretty populist touch."
Frost says: "Script editing means nitty gritty control. It was a surprise.
But that's what I enjoyed. The great thing about soap as a producer is
that it is much more in your hands than, say, a six-part drama series.
There's a much more artistic input."
He saw an advert for the Emmerdale story editor - basically deputy producer-
in the Guardian media section three years ago. Two months after he joined
it went from three to five episodes a week. A year later producer Kieran
Roberts left to ginger up Coronation Street.
Frost admits he had never really watched Emmerdale before getting the
job. "It's the old London thing. I wish more people in London did; 7pm
[when it begins] is a terrible time. One thing I did was to try to make
a very high turnover drama on a [low] budget. There's no point trying
to script things you can't achieve under those constraints. That discipline's
essential for Emmerdale."
He has no specific agenda, only to keep a mass audience happy by not making
too many clunky changes. "The mistake last year was to have too many young
storylines, it left older people feeling they had been ignored," he admits.
Notably a hit and run story, in which a group of children ran over the
headmistress. "It was too specifically targeted." There was also Soap
stars, the failed bid to copy Popstars, which led to a cast revolt.
"A lot of the time Emmerdale is tongue in cheek. Storylines can be ludicrous.
I sometimes get aggrieved that people want it to be hard-hitting - to
tackle issues such as rape in marriage - which is not something we do.
Emmerdale is not EastEnders. We'd tell any story, use the same raw material,
but not without bringing a touch of humour, a salutary ending."
Does he have bigger aspirations? "I hope one day to make a Boys from the
Blackstuff, a Cracker ... they were so much fresher than the stuff around
"The writing in other dramas is often execrable - Ultimate Force, for
instance. That's not what I want to be making. And it annoys me when just
because something is an hour long it is credited with greater artistry
and substance than soap.
"I love the management of a very unruly thing. The only thing which is
hard is when people feel they are not being provided with decent storylines.
People come and knock on your door. They all want to be at the top of
the big story. A fallow period must be highly frustrating.
"Unfortunately, many see soap as a breaking ground for drama. But it's
not a first job. There's no space for getting it wrong. It's tough to
learn it on the job. It's on screen before you have chance to ask, 'Is
that the way to do it?'"
Then Frost smiles: "If it's not the best thing you've ever done, it's
quickly forgotten. You have another chance."
IT JUST gets worse. Zoe is pregnant. And she thinks
she was raped. And she's a lesbian. How could this have happened?
Well, I will tell you. Avid Emmerdale fans will
know that around five months ago - and Ms Tate is 20 weeks gone when she
finds out - just as she was beginning her journey to la- la land, Zoe
got steaming drunk and had sex with Scott. So the baby's his, end of story.
But of course it won't be, it'll go on and on,
and on and on.
Babies are on young Katie's mind this week too,
as she finally breaks down when she sees Andy selling the pram. It all
comes flooding out, but the young lovebirds decide to get married and,
well, all's well that ends well then. For now...
All is not well with Marlon, who is being felt
up by Steph at every opportunity. Now he knows Tricia has fallen out with
her mum in the past because of her tendency to try and steal her daughter's
boyfriend, Marlon just doesn't know what to do.
He does know what he doesn't want to do though,
and that's get any closer to Steph. Yeuch.
And Viv is still trying to get in to the nude
calendar. Oh dear...
Record Celebrity Profile
CELEBRITY PROFILE Oct 5 2002
SHE'S the roly-poly TV star who turned her back on the Yorkshire Dales to
get her teeth into the meaty role of a bullied slimmer in ITV drama Fat
Friends. Ladies and gentlemen, feast your eyes on Lisa Riley.
The big lass who walked around Emmerdale in Lycra mini-skirts and high heels?
The very one. As Mandy Dingle, Lisa brought a little bit of colour to the
farming community and raised a few eyebrows among the locals with her questionable
dress sense. After six years on the soap she decided to head for pastures
Very droll. So what field, ahem, of work did she go into?
Lancashire lass Lisa's made something of a career for herself laughing at
other people's misfortunes and barmy pet pranks on You've Been Framed as
well as turning her attentions towards drama.
Soap star made good then?
Lisa's had the odd TV drama role here and there but her latest project,
Fat Friends, has been the biggest departure of all. In a bold move, she's
shed her bubbly image to become a lank- haired misery-guts as bullied slimmer
No more Lycra for her then?
Perish the thought. Rebecca's more of a glasses-wearing, woolly jumper sort
of woman rather than a mouthy man- eater like Mandy Dingle.
Does Lisa live to count calories?
For a long time, Lisa didn't let her size 20 figure bother her but, after
a number of health scares in her family, doctors advised the Riley clan
to lose weight together.
Has she ditched Mars Bars for aerobics?
It seems so. She's hired a personal trainer and shed two stones.
Fat Friends, Thursday, ITV, 9.00pm
October 2002 Radio
Times - Soaps by Alison Graham.
Charmingly, this week there's another engagement on the cards, as Andy
goes down on one knee to Katie. This cheers her up no end after her miscarriage,
and soon the happy fiancés are buzzing around town making plans for the
big day. In one of those happy coincidences that abound in soap, Andy
gives Katie his grandmother's engagement ring; eagle-eyed soap addicts
will note that Jamie in EastEnders recycles Ethel's ring when proposing
to Sonia. Bad news for soap jewellers, if there are any.
But for every joy, there's always a shedload of misery, and it's dumped
(yet again) on Zoë. Zoë is a fragile little flower, so an unexpected pregnancy
isn't what this doctor would have ordered. Trust the scriptwriters to
take it just that little bit further, though, by plunging Zoë into an
episode of mental illness that leads her to believe that (a) the "thing"
growing inside her is a demon, or (b) she's experienced an immaculate
conception. It's a Yorkshire rewrite of Rosemary's Baby, with blasphemous
overtones, which has to be a first.
October 2002: The Sun Online:- Your Guide To This Week On Emmerdale
Sun Newspaper Online - UK's biggest selling newspaper
LESBIAN vet Zoe is
horrified to discover that she is pregnant.
She is upset by a sequence of anxiety
attacks, and fears her illness could be returning.
But when she goes for a check-up at
the clinic, she is told that she is pregnant. Zoe is shocked.
A scan later reveals that she is at
least 20 weeks gone and Zoe decides an abortion is the only
“It’s shattering,” says Leah Bracknell,
who plays the troubled Miss Tate.
“And it comes as such a horrendous surprise
after everything else she has been through. She can’t believe
Before she discovers the shocking truth,
Zoe thinks she’s having a relapse. “She feels she has something
moving inside her and is convinced it’s a demon,” says Leah.
“When she opens up to Chris
and Charity, they persuade her to
visit the clinic. Zoe is terrified that history is repeating
But next day the diagnosis is much more
down to earth. After a thorough check, a doctor tells Zoe
“Zoe claims it is impossible,” says
Leah. “Chris and Charity are both shocked as well. Chris can’t
accept that she would not have known, and the doctor explains
that she could
have mistaken the symptoms because of her medication.
“Chris makes a comment about a virgin
birth, and Charity hardly makes her feel better by suggesting
Zoe might have been raped and says she should be tested to
see if she has contracted any disease.
“It all makes Zoe feel much worse. Charity
finds her in the kitchen just as she is considering taking
an overdose of her medication, thinking it will cause her
to miscarry. Charity takes charge and stops her.
“Zoe is grateful but she is not thinking
straight. She admits to Chris that she has always wanted to
have a baby but now she is so confused.”
Chris is convinced Zoe was made pregnant
at the clinic and wants to take legal action, but Charity
takes Zoe for a scan. They discover Zoe got pregnant five
“But Zoe decides she can’t bear to have
the baby,” says Leah. “She tells Charity and Chris straight.
She wants to
have an abortion.”
There’s finally a happy ending for Emmerdale’s
very own Romeo and Juliet when Andy asks
Katie to marry him.
Katie is delighted to accept, and their
fathers Jack and Brian give them their blessing
- though Brian warns Andy he must always
look after Katie.
“Katie is over the moon,” says young
actress Sammy Winward, who plays the pretty schoolgirl.
“She really does love Andy and at last
she seems to be dealing with her feelings over her miscarriage.”
But the beginning of the week is traumatic
for Katie. She bursts into tears in the middle of a game of
rounders, when she sees Andy selling their pram.
“Katie’s bottled up all her emotions
since she lost the baby,” says Sammy. “It is just her way
of dealing with it.
“But the sight of Andy getting rid of
the pram really gets to her. They are playing rounders and
when she misses an easy catch, Robert yells at her. Then the
Andy rushes to her side and orders the
others to give them some space. He sees she is really upset.
“Then it all comes tumbling out,” says
Sammy. “Katie sobs her heart out as she tells Andy how she
really feels about losing the baby.
“Andy is terrific. He is really gentle
and helps her to accept her grief.
“Events have pushed them apart for a
while, but in a few moments they’re close again. Only they
know how they feel.”
Katie takes a few days off school to
spend some time with Andy, and as they walk by the river and
talk about the baby, Katie accepts that she was not ready
to start a family.
“She jokes that they should have eloped,”
says Sammy. “And Andy tells her he couldn’t imagine loving
anyone else. He gets down on one knee and asks her to marry
“Katie’s stunned, but delighted. It
feels so right.”
Jack and Brian have to agree the couple are obviously in love
so they give their blessing.
Jack gives Andy his gran’s engagement
ring to give to Katie, and Brian plants a rose bush as a memorial
to the baby.
Also this week:
- Marlon feels awkward
as Steph and Tricia kiss
and make up. And the Dingles plan a wild
stag night for Marlon.
- Louise attracts
a secret admirer.
- Syd gets advice
from Marc and pretends to be a keen biker
as he chases after Angie.
Oct 4 2002
Rick Fulton Exclusive
Gorgeous Emmerdale barmaid Sheree Murphy
is ready to quit the soap at the end of the year.
Producers feared the actress, who plays
Tricia Stokes, would leave the popular show last year after the
birth of her son Taylor Jay, but she came back.
However, as Tricia prepares to marry Marlon
Dingle on the soap's 30th birthday at the end of this month, Sheree
has delivered the bombshell which will send shockwaves through the
Sheree's contract is up in December and
she says: "I'd love to leave and try something else.
"You don't know if Tricia and Marlon are
going to live happily ever after or not, do you?
"I hope they're going to keep Tricia and
Marlon together, but you never know what will happen."
Sheree, 27, who is married to Leeds United
hunk Harry Kewell, wants to exit the soap to do more heavyweight
She reveals: "I've always loved period dramas.
They don't make so many nowadays, but I hope that if they do one,
I'll be involved.
"I'd like to do a Victorian drama or something
like that - anything that involved wearing a corset."
That would make a big change from the revealing
outfits and skimpy tops that she dons as the Woolpack's Tricia.
Sheree smiles: "I love clothes, but I like
to keep away from the styles that you see me wearing in Emmerdale
when I'm off the show.
"Tricia wears those sort of tops that are
perfect for pulling pints. But I'd never wear anything like that
Sheree also has her own taste in drinks
when she's not pouring pints in the Woolpack. She reveals: "I love
a good red wine, or a half-a-Guinness when Harry and I go for a
pub lunch near where we live."
The couple wed last May, and like to watch
each other at work. Sheree laughs: "Harry always watches me on Emmerdale.
He will ask if I'm in an episode before he switches the telly on,
but if I'm not in it, he'll go away and do something else. I think
he gets bored with it."
Sheree is proud of her husband and is a
regular at Leeds' Elland Road ground. She beams: "I love going to
watch him play. It's hard for me to get to the away games, but I
go to every home game that I can."
Of course, she could travel away from home
when she is not tied down to Emmerdale - and Sheree already knows
exactly how she wants to exit the soap that has made her famous.
She wants to follow the lead of Malandra
Burrows, who played Kathy Glover in Emmerdale until last year, when
Marti Pellow sang goodbye to her character.
Meeting the former Wet Wet Wet heart-throb
is one of Sheree's top memories of her time in the soap.
She says: "I had one of the first scenes
with him. I was very, very nervous - and I think he was just as
nervous as me.
"But he was a lovely, charming man. He had
to sing the song over and over again - and he sang it crystal-clear
She laughs: "I'd really love for someone
like Marti to sing to me when I leave, but I'll probably just go
for a bus up the road!
Sun Online: PICK OF THE DAY - What to watch tonight
(3rd October 2002)
Emmerdale (ITV1, 7pm)
Even though Marlon is not the sharpest knife in the box, even he can
tell whenhe has beenhit on.
Mother-in-law-to-be Steph kisses his cheek but the way she grips his
arm and stares longingly into his eyes tells him she wants to get to know
him a whole lot more. Oo-er!
Teletext Diary 2nd/3rd October 2002
So what does the autumn hold for Emmerdale? Quite a few surprises, by
Zoe Tate, played by Leah Bracknell, is going to have a bumpy ride as
her illness returns, and she finds herself pregnant. And she hasn't got
a clue who the father is.
Woolpack landlady Louise (Emily Symons) is going to become the victim
of an unwanted admirer, and soon to depart WPC Angie Reynolds is going
to exit in a dramatic storyline.
`````````` by Phil Penfold ```````5/8``
Lorraine Chase has revealed m re about last year's horrific car crash
in which her ear was severed ant where she suffered major injuries
"There's no doubt about it, I'm lucky to be alive," she says. "It all
happened in an instant, and I still have no idea why my car went off the
road. It turned three times over and went down a 30-foot drop."
Miraculously, her only scars today are a tiny nick under her chin and
a small line behind her ear.
Chris Chittell, who plays conniving Eric Pollard in Emmerdale, is taking
a detached view of his character's political ambitions.
"I have a rather dim view of councillors and MPs I'm afraid," he says.
"Most of them seem to be in it for themselves.
"I'm sure that a few of them are people who have the best intentions,
but it seems to me that, instead of servhng the public, they often end
up feathering their own nests."
The cast, crew and production team of Emmerdale breathed a hearty sigh
of relief as the soap's birthday celebrations drew to a close.
Scores of the world's showbiz media writers, photographers and broadcasters
descended on the set, just north of Leeds.
The weather stayed fair and warm. "We'd been dreading a bad forecast,"
said a show press officer. "But in the end it was one the best autumn
days you could dream of."
Soap Psychic... on Emmerdale
7 Oct - 21 Oct: it shall come
'You've taken biting your nails too far Katie!'
© Yorkshire Television 2002
Hand me down
Jack gives Andy his grandma's wedding
ring after the youngster proposes to Katie.
A happy ending ahead? Not on
Also showing in my crystal ball &
It's Tricia and Marlon's wedding day.
But hold that confetti! Potential disaster zones
ahead include &
Marlon's ratted on his stag night
and is set up with a stripper! He accidentally
snogs his mother-in-law-to-be!
The wedding cake's held hostage!
And Tricia gets chewing gum stuck
in her hair before her big day!
September 2002: The Sun Online:- Your Guide To This Week On Emmerdale
Sun Newspaper Online - UK's biggest selling newspaper
MARLON is mortified when
his future mother-in-law Steph makes a pass at
But just as he’s about to tell Tricia,
she confides in Marlon that her rift with her mother was caused
by Steph sleeping with one of her previous boyfriends.
“Marlon is horrified,” says Mark Charnock,
who plays him. “He can’t tell Tricia history might be repeating
Marlon wants his wedding to be perfect. But
he and Tricia are still getting hassled by Mack over the bill for
the renovations to Edith’s house.
Tricia tries to get Marlon to concentrate
on the wedding fair, where she wants to choose their outfits for
their big day.
But she’s upset when they see an estate agent
showing buyers around the house they had thought would be their
Marlon comforts Tricia, and Steph is clearly
impressed by her daughter’s man. Later, at the wedding fair, Steph
drools over how handsome Marlon will look in his wedding suit.
“He is embarrassed but he doesn’t think too
much of it,” says Mark.
“He’s more interested in a fabulous wedding
dress that Tricia falls for. He secretly buys the dress, though
it’s very expensive. Tricia is delighted - and Steph seems very
“She then gives Marlon a kiss on the cheek.
It takes him by surprise, and then she gazes into his eyes and touches
him on the arm. It’s clear to Marlon what Steph is thinking and
his blood runs cold. She is making a pass at him.”
Poor Marlon agonises over what to do. And
next day he’s even more upset when Steph gives him a little squeeze
when Tricia isn’t looking.
“Marlon is stunned,” says Mark. “After all
he and Tricia have been through, he doesn’t want anything to get
in the way of the wedding.
“He confides in Bob that
he intends to tell Tricia. Bob advises him not to - but before Marlon
can blurt it out, Tricia confesses that the reason she fell out
with her mother was because Steph slept with her boyfriend.
“Marlon starts to see how dangerous Steph
can be. He says nothing to Tricia, but he’s petrified Steph won’t
leave him alone.”
Guilt-ridden Eric Pollard admits
his affair with Glynis to his wife Gloria.
Distraught, Gloria lays into him and slaps him across the face.
But next day, Pollard is stunned as Gloria calmly tells him to carry
on seeing Glynis.
“It’s a total shocker,” says Chris Chittell,
who plays the oily would-be MP.
“Pollard is trying to be honest for once.
He really loves Gloria and doesn’t want to lose her.”
Glynis is becoming increasingly demanding
as Pollard’s campaign to be the new MP gathers pace. But after another
energetic session with her, Pollard has had enough. He tells Gloria
that he’s pulling out of the campaign, and confesses
“Gloria is really upset,” says Chris. “She
hits him and hurls things at him in the office.
“Pollard pleads with her to forgive him. He’s
gutted when she walks off and leaves.
“But next day she shocks him by saying she
wants him to continue to see Glynis until they can find a way out
of the mess. She warns him to be convincing with his lover.
“Gloria doesn’t seem upset then, but she’s
hurting inside. Her reaction stuns Pollard and it isn’t what he
wants. At first, he refuses to even consider the idea but he has
Pollard meets Glynis at a hotel and carries
on their affair. When he returns home, he assures Gloria that Glynis
“But Pollard feels awful,” says Chris. “Gloria
may have ordered him to carry on, but he has no feelings for Glynis
and he’s starting to hate himself.”
Also this week:
- Cain sneers when Syd
charms Angie into going for a drink.
- Viv is furious when she
isn’t picked to bare all for the calendar.
- Rodney gives Danny
a lesson in bargain hunting.
- Chris and Zoe
get closer despite all their problems, but she collapses
at the end of the week.
- Katie and Andy
rebuild their relationship.
September 2002 Radio
Times - Soaps by Alison Graham.
Eric Pollard, the Richard Nixon of Emmerdale, finds himself embroiled
in a bizarre trap with the lubricious Glynis. His rather splendid wife
Gloria finds out what's going on, but her reaction is not what you'd expect,
mainly because she's as keen to further his political ambitions as he
And Marlon has plenty to worry about when Torrid Tricia's brassy mother
starts showing a rather unhealthy interest in him. All three of them are
going to a wedding fair, but Steph's eyes, and hands, wander.