Using the dead parent as a reproach


Is pretty low, I think. Who else has done it apart from Will last night? Elizabeth to Freddie, I’m pretty sure, though I forget the occasion.

Having said that, it is almost as bad as its opposite: ‘Your Mummy would be so proud of you’ which Mia got again and again for her skivvying which she seems a bit put out that she’s no longer allowed to do.

(I must just mention that this board thinks my topic is similar to one entitled "I don’t think it would be worth entering a sheep". Ah, yes, that was you joe, nice one!)


It was a low blow, certainly. Mia has more excuse for behaving like a not terribly pleasant adolescent than Will does, because Will is thirty-six and she is thirteen. But before Will lost it and retaliated, it would have been difficult to recall a sulkier brat than Mia in TA. Monosyllabic in the car, not prepared to talk to him on account of nothing he had done wrong at that point, snubbing his telling her first of anyone about the holiday he was planning and the things he had thought up to make it even more fun for her and making her contempt for the whole idea obvious, and then openly discarding him in favour of her absentee genetic sire … She was beastly. That he was then beastlier in response doesn’t make her behaviour any less graceless and grudging.

(This board is clean nuts about similarities.)


Sulky little madam, wasn’t she? About what, precisely, I wonder. As I said, she seems put out that she is no longer allowed to do all the skivvying. I can understand her getting impatient at Will taking charge and then screwing it all up by forgetting to order Poor-Little-Mite’s snack bars as so on. (Obviously in TA men just cannot do these things efficiently.) But can neither of them use a little common sense about sharing tasks? Or consulting each other about the online order?
It’s as if ‘OK, you’ve complained about being over-burdened, so you’re not allowed to do anything at all from now on’. Where’s the sense in that?
So to mix up a) treating the characters as if they were real and b) talking about it as a soap - which is what I normally do - I can only conclude it’s a plot device to ensure conflict between Mia and Will.


I should think the general Poor Little Mia and What A Monster Will Is responses I have seen must be making the editor rub his hands about his success in creating a new villain for the programme.

All that is needed now to put a cap on Will’s misery would be if Nic’s mother turns up in order to berate him; I expect she’ll come in her car to take all Mia’s stuff away to Andrew’s house. Why she is so pally with the man who walked out on her daughter, and left Nic with a toddler and a baby to bring up on her own, I do not know.


That was Andrew Mark I. Mark I wasn’t even very reliable with the maintenance, was he? The New Andrew is quite different.

I do wish they hadn’t put those words in Will’s mouth about the dead Saint Nic being ashamed of Mia. But they did. Now it’s one more thing he has to apologise for.


Unlike most in Ambridge, Will does see what he has done wrong and apologise for it, rather than simply finding someone else he can blame as is the usual behaviour there.



Can you remember Elizabeth doing likewise to Freddie, i.e. telling him his father would be ashamed of him? I can’t place the incident, but I’m pretty sure she did say that. I always think words like that are hard to take back. Meaning an apology is not enough, the sting of them would remain.


Yes, she did. I too forget what it was about, though.


To be fair one needs the opportunity.

I look forward to Toby using it on Rosie. Preferably before shes mastered talking.

I’d say the same concerning Helen, but it could be decades before Henwee strings a sentence together. I suppose Gideon would do.




…I rather fancy the ghost of Nic turning up to haunt the wretched Wywyum (and the rest of TheGrundgies to boot!).
Oh, goodee! …an Exorcism seems to be necessary! (…better lay in a supply of mince-pies & misc other tuck!)


Leaving the ghost all alone in Causa Perdida (or whatever the bloody house is called this week.)


Indeed she did seem miffed.

She very much took this stuff on off her own bat initally iirc. Were she real, I might wonder if there was something funny going on in her head: either early-onset Martyr Syndrome (or Munchausen’s by Poppy?) or some kind of magical thinking which requires everything to be done Nic-style to ward off further Dreadful Happenings.

As she is Not Real, however, my main response is irritation with the ladling on
of multiple miseries and chores.
Do they fink we’re fick or summink?


Absolutely. That’s our job.


Apart from the bleedin’ obviouses, namely being the age she is and having had her mother up and die less than 18 months ago, I mean.


I suspect this is going to be This Year’s Ishoo:

When will they learn that giving these SLs to generally disliked characters is not the best way to rally support?

Then again, they don’t really have any option, do they? (That’s what happens when you’re stuck in a “drama ≡ conflict” mindset.)


o joy.

Maybe if we’re very good they’ll chuck in some incest and bestiality at some stage. Well, it would almost certainly be funnier than the Feckin’ Bunting


That’s also what you get when all your characters are generally disliked.


That’s what I meant. If you believe drama can only be derived from conflict—and particularly if you also equate conflict with shoutiness—then characters have no option but to be unpleasant in one way or another. Their sole function is to provide drama, so there’s no room for someone simply to be pleasant. The last characters I can remember being generally decent, Hayley and Nigel, have both been written out; even Jill is now complicit in deceiving one of her own children. Paul was perfectly pleasant when he first appeared, but was subsequently reinvented as a controlling git. Stimpleton is on record as saying that Rob was rewritten on SOC’s orders; there was no sign of what he later turned into when he was introduced.1 A bit nosy, as has been remarked, but I always interpreted that as a “New Listeners Start Here” device.2

1It seemed obvious, to me at least, that after Paul was killed off Rob MkII was given some of his unused scripts.

2IIRC his first appearance wasn’t long after AmEx was launched, so I suspect they were preparing for an influx of new, younger, listeners, fresh from R4X.3

3After all, nothing thrills Da Yoof more than endlessly looped re-runs of Dad’s Army and The Navy Lark


The legendary lost Attenborough script