Vera's big exit

PUBLISHED: 09:44 18 January 2008 | UPDATED: 19:26 05 July 2010

THE Journal's Soapbox expert EMMA DELF takes a look at what to expect in the episodes over the next seven days...

THE Journal's Soapbox expert EMMA DELF takes a look at what to expect in the episodes over the next seven days.

It may only happen once in a blue moon but when the producers of a soap bother to film more than one ending for an episode it's worth tuning in for. So while the end is nigh for Veronica 'Vera' Duckworth, the precise nature of just how she makes her way to the great Blackpool Illuminations in the sky is - at the time of writing - more tightly concealed than Emily Bishop's underpants.

Vera has been in Coronation Street for almost 34 years and so deserves a suitably unusual/ poignant/ shocking exit although she'll have to go a long way to beat the demise of Ken's Barlow's first wife (by faulty hairdryer) or Alan Bradley (death by Blackpool tram.) Given her husband's former favourite pastime, a pigeon-related fate seems quite apt but alas it is not the preferred choice among the bookies. The good news is that while Vera's funeral is reported to be a tear-jerker, it's still an excuse for estranged and permanently shifty prodigal son Terry Duckworth to temporarily emerge from his Sheffield exile, Terry's shiftiness only rival to that of Nick Cotton and his doom laden visits to Albert Square.

But while Nick may be around no longer, Dot's lot is still set to be an unhappy one. Dot has recently had to contend with not only the hospitalisation of her husband and the tawdry mud-slinging of her grandson's marriage break-up, but has also suffered the guilt of missing the Queen's Christmas Day speech in favour of watching some rubbish home-made DVD.

This week, armed with only a packet of Silk Cut, Dot finds herself the target of the unimaginatively titled 'E20 Gang' a group of wayward Walford youths who include Albert Square's very own Jay Dyer among their ranks. To impress his fellow anarchists, Jay breaks into Dot's house to mess with her chintz and scatter cushions, only for his conscience to kick in shortly after. But a conscience rarely gets you very far in Walford and Jay's remorse earns him a knife attack at the hands of the gang leader and to add to his agony, a bout of bedside angst from his confused father.

While criminal activity is rife in Albert Square, Emmerdale is lucky enough to have two police officers in residence although it does seem a tad unprofessional that Ross and Donna are always picked to be first on the scene whenever there's a hint of wrong-doing in their own village.

Unsurprisingly then it's an off-duty Ross who realises the package Sam Dingle is transporting for Eli is decidedly suspect. Although to be fair, Ross's suspicions should have been aroused the minute the words 'Eli' and 'package' were uttered in the same sentence, it hardly needed the appearance of the actual cannabis to prove it. In a breath-taking example of just how fast the wheels of justice can move in Soapland, Sam barely has time to call on the might of the Dingle clan before he's spending a night in the cells, with a social worker in tow, facing the prospect of two years in the clink. Perhaps the Emmerdale constabulary have created an express queuing system for the surname Dingle?

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