Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Ken Barlow syndrome

spoiler alert: this post makes reference to the Feb 2 episode on CBC

What is it about Coronation Street men? Here's John Stape. He had an affair with a student. He kidnapped and locked up Rosie Webster in his Gran's attic. He went to jail. He has a wife who not only married him but has tried to help him reintegrate into society. He even has a job. But is that enough? No. Instead, John-Boy comes up with a hair-brained scheme to assume the identity of a colleague so he can get a teaching job.  John tried teaching before and was caught and dismissed from night school. So now he's trying it again, only this time he's adding identity theft to the mix.

You might think this is a hair-brained idea but think back a few weeks ago to one Joe McIntyre. His brilliant idea was to fake his own death, lie low for seven years (in Ireland) and then benefit from a life insurance policy. Easy peasy. Except that he couldn't quite do the 'fake' part

Wacky schemes seem to be a way of life for the guys on Coronation Street. But why? Deirdre Barlow certainly has a theory. I call it the Ken Barlow syndrome. Deirdre lives with Ken, the alpha-bet male when it comes to dreams and schemes. She tells Ken that you have to accept what you can and what you can’t do in this life, and get on with it.

It sounds so easy but it's something that seems to somehow evade the menfolk on the Street from Kevin Webster to Ken Barlow. It certainly seems to be something that is completely lost on John Stape. How long will it be before he ends up in jail again?

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