Presumably they are shooting for the relatively unpublicised ‘Ironic Character Name’ award, and failing. However, I have seen variousboard speculation as to why this menace has chosen to infest Ambridge while the oft-mentioned Rochelle (really! these people have to look themselves in the face. How do they do it?) is in, is it Leeds? Somewhere far away, anyway. Also queries as to Joy’s marital and financial status.
I can clear all this up for you. Cheques to the usual.
Joy’s marriage was short-lived. In fact, after doing the deed as expected on the wedding night and discovering that she didn’t stop talking all the way through, the poor bastard did a runner the next morning and has never been seen or heard of since. Presumed dead after seven years, etc, so she now would have the status of a widow, were she willing to go into details, which oddly enough she is not.
However, that isolated act bore fruit in the unlikely shape of Rochelle, and an unhealthily close mother-daughter relationship persisted throughout Rochelle’s (look, I can’t keep doing this. R will do) childhood and adolescence. Some call it co-dependency, others call it batshit. I am one to judge, so batshit it is. Joy was a working mother, and made a sufficient income doing daytime shifts as mini-cab control and a bit of outsourced book-keeping when R was safely tucked up in bed
with 293 teddies.
When R went to university a respectable 100+ miles from Shieldfield, Joy thrilled her by renting a two-bedroom flat nearby, letting out the house, and taking her transferrable skills to the exciting new city which R was off to discover. Graduation occurred and R went off to see the world, was gone the best part of three years. She returned to the UK, and began working in her chosen industry (we have been told what it is but I forget) and - being junior and job-hungry and having Joy for a mother - moved around A Lot). Joy is back in Shieldfield, chewing the carpets and the ears off her neighbours. And then R meets A Feller. All the usual farts and hoses and they marry. They settle in Leeds. Joy lets out the house again and rents herself somewhere nice and handy to give motherly advice and generally be omnipresent. R and husband both work long hours, play hard, and the Sunday roasts cooked in their kitchen and the stuff for the fridge for the week make up for Joy’s presence at the said Sunday roast and those couple of drop-ins on a Monday and Wednesday evening. Time moves on; careers progress. Then R gets knocked up. At round about that time, a concatenation of deaths - both of R’s sire’s parents (he was an only and they didn’t update wills much) and the second of Joy’s die. Joy has a lovely time shiteing on at solicitors and so on and gets the probate sorted and is very nicely situated, thank you very much.
Now, the horror of impending fatherhood gets R’s husband thinking about what his life is going to be like. Being unable in all decency to disimpregnate his missus, he focuses on a more fixable nuisance, the missus’s mother and informs R that basically it is Joy or him She, poor cow, points out that of course it is him but why hasn’t he stood up to Joy more and what kind of a man is he anyway and where the sweet **** is the raspberry icecream and Branston pickle that she needs, don’t you care about me and our baby, you bastard?.. [Sorry]
Well, cutting it short, the standing up fails. Zero boundaries still apply where Joy is involved but on the other hand she is a useful babysitter, particularly when sprog 2 is born to R. But husband by this time is at the end of his rope. R is getting pretty antsy too, and the spawn erupt in eczema and hives after too much Granny Joy and exhibit strange rocking behaviours.
So, R starts applying for other jobs, very loudly. Gets a sniff of one in Birmingham, while really pursuing the one in Glasgow. Feeds Joy info re the Birmingham opportunity, she and husband have weekends away (to ‘look at houses in Birmingham’ - a phrase that becomes a staple of their sex routine) leaving the spawn to become more traumatised and dermatalogically unsatisfactory with Granny Joy.
Unprompted, Joy decides to buy a house in nice commuting distance of Birmingham (so it can’t be too far from R, can it?) as a surprise: the young folks will thus still have babysitting and Sunday roasts and utter soul-crushing boredom on tap. Oh, how lovely, say R and husband. That will make it all just like home. Only unfortunately the Birmingham job’s tits-up. We’ll stay put for now but R is still looking… In Ulan Bator, last I heard.
OK, that might be somewhat prolix - wonder why? - but I think it covers the essential points.