I haven’t finished writing about Eastenders yet, but before I start on that I must just “thank you” to Vodafone. Specifically, Jessy and Charlotte. This is how the story runs:
I tend to keep my mobiles on vibrate in the office. (Note to self, put the ringer on and then you won’t get so many complaints that you don’t answer your ‘phone.) I digress.
I have been receiving a number of missed calls, but if people don’t leave a message, I tend not to ring back, unless I recognise the number, and sometimes not even then. Monday, just after noon, the ‘phone went and this time I answered it.
“Hello, this is Dave from Vodafone. How are you today?”
“Not great, actually,” said I, “How can I help you?”
Dave put the ‘phone down on me. Hmm, I thought, that’s unusual for Vodafone. I rang back. There was a recorded message but it wasn’t very clear, something about partners and press 1 if you don’t want to receive anymore calls. I pressed 1. Then I went online to Vodafone and asked for a “chat.”
Enter Jessy stage left. I explained what had happened, Jessy asked for the number, and checked told me that it wasn’t on their list of partner numbers, and that they had had a spate of people doing something fraudulent. After my recent experiences, I was extremely pleased that I had spoken to Jessy, and I am extremely pleased that I can warn anybody who reads this to be very, very careful. There are a lot of scammers out there. Anyway, as I was online, I asked Jessy if I could speak to someone about an early upgrade, so she put through to Charlotte.
Ladies and gentlemen, if I were in a senior position in Vodafone, Charlotte would be given a massive, massive pay rise! She very nearly sold ice to the Eskimos! Not that I’m an Eskimo, of course, but you take my point. There was no hard sell, she was lovely. We had a little chat (yes, Eastenders did feature!) while she was finding out what I wanted and how she could best suit my needs. There is a psychology behind this, and I know that, but it didn’t feel as though that was happening, so Charlotte was either very skilled or maybe she is just naturally good at selling. (Please get in contact Charlotte; I may have a little sales proposition for you, as a side line.)
I ended up with a ‘phone that I wanted that I didn’t think I could afford and it turns out I can. If I hadn’t had my sensible head on, Charlotte would have sold me more. I so wanted more, but I have to be sensible. Well done Charlotte and well done Vodafone. And I hope that she does get a pay rise as a result.
Now, back to Eastenders. Am I the only one who feels cheated that the murderer was Ben Mitchell? I take nothing away from the acting, particularly as it was live, but seriously? I was always taught, when writing fiction, that you should give the reader a few hints, and if the hints point to Colonel Mustard in the library with the lead pipe, the reader will feel cheated if it turns out to be the butler in the bedroom with the revolver. And that’s how I felt. At no time did I get a sense that Ben had any feelings of animosity towards Lucy. In fact, the child doesn’t say very much at all.
Of course, we all knew that DC Summerhayes had met someone in the park, near the café, and said,
“But it’s still murder,”
so we knew it wasn’t someone that she was afraid of. I imagine that was supposed to be Jane she was speaking to.
Then the writers threw us off the scent completely when she was killed. Ok, I know it wasn’t Nick Cotton’s fault that she died, she didn’t appear to be his target, although you’d never know with Nasty Nick, and he would have seen it as a result that he’d “offed a copper.”
And then there’s the return of Kathy Beale! What the…..? Talk about Bobby Ewing and his resurrection in Dallas! That was daft enough. I still have to watch the last couple of episodes of Eastenders on catch up (who am I trying to kid, I record it) so I don’t know how the plot has played out since Monday, but I shall watch with interest, I really will. What on earth possesses a woman to not only walk away from her children (I can understand that, in some circumstances) but to allow them to think that she is dead for what? Twenty years? Who’s trying to fool whom?
I said in my last post that I do not think screen writing is easy and I still stick with that. And I’m absolutely certain that to keep writing plots for the same programme week after week after week, keeping them fresh and keeping viewers interested is not easy either. But come on now. Let’s keep it real. If writing were easy the whole world would be doing and there’d nothing in it for those of whom [some] editors think are good enough to write for their publications.
Will my displeasure at the recent storylines stop me watching Eastenders? Probably not, they haven’t quite upset me enough for that yet, although I wouldn’t rule altogether. There are a number of programmes I’ve loved and watched and then canned because I got bored. Think Lost after the first series (I understand that ended being extremely unrealistic too), think Grays Anatomy, to name but two. I’ve lived in the East end for a number of years now, although I am not, myself, an Eastender, and I think I know it pretty well now, so if the writers fancy a little break, I’m very happy to cover for them for a few weeks whilst they get their mojo back.
© Susan Shirley 2015