Eastenders Round-Up ~ Week Commencing 17 April 2017

Sonia’s (Natalie Cassidy) back and inserting her trumpet into general conversation, again – as well as causing chaos as she tries to protect her daughter. Add a funeral and a spot of heckling at the Mayor into the mix and it all bodes well for a happy week in Walford! Here are some highlights…

‘Woody’ Woodward (LEE RYAN) – (C) BBC – Photographer: Nicky Johnston

Bump it with a trumpet ~ Sonia may be back fleetingly to see her bullied daughter. She may have wreaked a spot of havoc, too by launching herself at Sharon (Letitia Dean) in the Square – that was funny! However, why oh why does Sonia’s trumpet have to be brought up on every given opportunity? Cassidy’s returns are becoming a ‘spot the word trumpet’ game for yours truly!

New Character (Hands high when we fly by!) ~ Lee Ryan (from Blue!) has joined the cast as Woody, sent by Linda (Kellie Bright) to help out at The Vic. His arrival did not go down well initially but it seems that he is having a positive impact on the pub’s takings – so we’ll see…

Bullying ~ Sonia’s intervention has brought Bex’s (Jasmine Armfield) ordeal to a head and although Louise (Tilly Keeper) is let off (should she have been? I don’t think so!) the two main culprits have had some comeuppance. Although they look set to transfer their wrath to Louise. Possibly not wise, have they met Phil (Steve McFadden)?!

Funeral ~ It’s Sylvie’s funeral and Tina (Luisa Bradshaw-White) has gone all out and ordered a ‘MUM’ wreath from Billy (Perry Fenwick) at late notice. It seems rather extravagant when there is a distinct lack of turn out, but Shirl’s (Linda Henry) arrival heralds some sense of occasion and the pub is quite well patronised by Sylvie’s mates, so all is as it should be. RIP Sylvie!

Steven surprises Lauren by suggesting they shop for an interview outfit – his treat. Lauren Branning (JACQUELINE JOSSA), Steven Beale (AARON SIDWELL) – (C) BBC – Photographer: Jack Barnes

Lauren’s lament ~ Lauren (Jacqueline Jossa) is on tenterhooks as she awaits news of a potential interview. When she finally cottons on to the fact that the email may have gone to her spam folder, she is delighted to discover that she has been invited to the interview she has been pinning her hopes on. Steven (Aaron Sidwell) is supportive as ever, although his dreams of a family are somewhat dashed. On the day of the interview, Lauren arrives to discover that her photocopier man is not the photocopier man. Playing with fire, Lauren…

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Morgana Robinson’s The Agency ~ Episode Review

A whole episode dedicated to a day in the life of ‘Natalie Cassidy’ aka Lesbian Sonia! Surprising, given the mixture that the previous episodes have readily supplied. Not as entertaining as the earlier instalments either, if ‘m honest with myself and you.

Yes, Robinson is uncanny as Ms Cassidy, plus the script was firing on all cylinders as usual and Perry Bendon put in another fine performance as Cassidy’s ‘dad’. However I feel like the decision to throw this one in has allowed the series to lose its momentum. I suppose what doesn’t help is that I have become emotionally invested in all of the ‘characters’ and I particularly adore Mel and Sue.

The everyday practicalities that are explored each time Cassidy’s ‘life’ is visited are a great base for comedy and certainly goes some way towards convincing me that life as a soap star isn’t all glam! It’s a great little twist that Natalie has never been seen on set or at any of the awards functions. Her sister is brought down a peg or two in this episode which was needed. Cassidy is painted as nothing if not kind hearted and she helps her sister out of a sticky situation with her modelling ‘career’. There’s also romance on the cards when Cassidy’s ex boyfriend turns up with van-load after van-load of shopping ordered by mistake. I can’t imagine I was alone in feeling slightly disappointed that they didn’t get together! From the perspective at least, I was drawn in to the plot.

I see that next week is going to feature Miranda Hart, if this is solely about Miranda, I already have my doubts about how engaged a viewer I will be… however, bring it on, say I!

Morgana Robinson’s The Agency ~ Episode Review

Ah another instalment of Morgana Robinson’s The Agency to have a good old titter at! This really is one of the best belly laugh-inducing comedies out there at the moment. The old favourites are all put into new scenarios in this week’s episode and with hilarious consequences, as always.

Kimberley Walsh from Girls Aloud is introduced and yet another famous face that Robinson is able to impersonate brilliantly. Using Walsh as competition for Natalie Cassidy’s Fame School was inspired and it’s still heartbreakingly funny to see Cassidy portrayed as this ‘never mind, every cloud…. and all that’ type of person.

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Morgana plays Russell Brand, brilliantly!

Russell Brand is still peddling his Utopia project, trying and failing to make millions with his hair-brained scheme. I feel that Robinson improves as Brand every week, definitely one of her strongest ‘male’ performances.

This week also saw the P.A. at the agency missing out on birthday celebrations due to an arduous press event for singer, Adele. It really is quite spooky how well Robinson takes off the singer, it’s not even too far a stretch of the imagination that Adele could be in the Butchers shop, canting! It’s even funnier that the birthday girl’s day is topped off with Danny Dyer and his selfie stick. I’m still not entirely convinced by the accuracy of the Danny Dyer voice, but the scrapes that ‘he’ gets into have been thought out so innovatively.

The show is not complete without Mel and Sue, they are my favourites by far and Sue’s hiding Tim’s belongings to prevent his going to the Pride of Britain Awards was yet another excellent ‘plot’. I’m thinking that Mel and Sue could have their own show as a Morgana Robinson’s The Agency spin-off.

If you haven’t discovered the talent of this amazing comedian and actress, yet, I urge you to, because there isn’t enough of this sort of comedy on the telly, and what’s more, this woman is clever!

Photo Credits: BBC

Morgana Robinson’s The Agency ~ Episode Review

Another side-splitting episode from the extraordinarily talented Morgana Robinson. All of the characters from last week’s instalment were re-visited, although there was more emphasis put on some than others, which kept it a fresh and exciting format.

I enjoyed the focus on Joanna Lumley, in particular, Robinson was quite scarily accurate in her portrayal of the legendary star. Having her visit a hotel in Potters Bar was a genius move and the ensuing chaos was even funnier. Cheryl from Girls Aloud (I call her this, because I don’t know which surname she goes by these days!) was so well mimicked, that I was forced to close my eyes to check whether there was any difference in the voices at all. The plot involving Cheryl’s pets coming and going as quickly as her husbands was close to the knuckle, but it made for hilarious viewing. I was delighted that Mel and Sue made a come back as well, to be able to impersonate them both so perfectly is quite a talent. I am rather too invested in the idea of their living together with Mel’s long-suffering husband, now. I love that they have pets and that Sue acts like a bit of a spoiled child!

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Morgana is an absolute ringer for Natalie Cassidy – absolutely brilliant!

The character of Natalie Cassidy is another of Robinson’s strong points, setting her up for an audition with Morgan Freeman and having her dad (Perry Benson) along was one of my favourite plots. A portion of Sonia’s bad luck has been dolloped right into the ‘caricature’ of Ms Cassidy and I find myself doing a double take every time ‘she’ makes an appearance.

I am galloping around (like Miranda) with excitement at the prospect of more from this series!

Morgana Robinson’s The Agency ~ Episode Review

The first episode of Morgana Robinson’s The Agency burst onto BBC Two on Monday 26 September and it was television comedy gold. Robinson is a gem of a mimic and has selected a fabulous mixture of celebrities to put under Mann Management!

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Morgana as Gregg Wallace

There’s Mel and Sue, who play Connect Four while Mel’s husband takes himself to bed! Miranda Hart is bouncing around the agent’s office, trying desperately to convey that she no longer does the ‘stuff’ that she became renowned for doing in her popular television series. The likeness to Adele is brilliantly pulled off as well as the voice, and Natalie Cassidy is probably one of my absolute favourites. The put upon Eastenders star spends much of the episode excited about the impending National Television Awards and the rest of it staying at home with her father while her sister takes her place! Then there’s Fearne Cotton, mannerisms and voice are spot on and the spiel about Fearne meeting her sixteen year old self and congratulating her was hilarious.

Programme Name: Morgana Robinson’s The Agency - TX: n/a - Episode: n/a (No. Episodics) - Picture Shows: Episodes 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 & 7 Adele (MORGANA ROBINSON) - (C) Happy Tramp - Photographer: Matt Leete

Not only is Robinson adept at impersonating current female celebrities, but she’s also having a crack at the males too! Gregg Wallace was an inspired choice and his scene was one of the highlight for me. Danny Dyer was not her strongest impersonation, but it’s still obvious who she’s supposed to be taking off and the storyline that’s used for him is inspired.

This laugh a minute comedy show is what has been missing from mainstream telly, it’s witty, well written and this lady’s abilities are seemingly endless. I can’t wait to see what else she has in store for us and I can’t wait for next week’s instalments. Thank you, BBC, more of the same, please!

Photo credits: BBC

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