Trollied Episode Seven, Series Six ~ Episode Review

A festive treat came in the form of the final episode of this series of Trollied, and it was an utter joy from start to finish. If I wasn’t feeling Christmassy already, I am now.

From the birth of a baby presided over by Dr Brian (Stephen Tompkinson) and viewed with disgust by Lisa (Beverley Rudd) and Colin (Carl Rice) while they each drink a can of lager and request a photograph of the ‘business end’. To the mutual wool pulling that Cheryl (Sarah Parish) and Gavin (Jason Watkins) are plotting against each other in a bid to surprise the other with a romantic proposal. To the fact that the store has run out of Baileys!!! How very dare they?

Is it the end for Neville (Dominic Coleman) and his relationship with Linda (Faye McKeever)?

The birth comes at a fortuitous moment for Dr Brian as he has been attempting to out-do his ‘rival’, the new Pharmacist. The safe delivery of the customer’s baby is what he sees as a triumph and he declares that he wants to leave his radio job behind him and return to Margaret’s (Rita May) side. Margaret is only too happy to ‘re-create’ the vacancy for Pharmacist as she cunningly mixes up the prescriptions of two customers which results in the new Pharmacist getting the boot. Naughty Margaret! At least we get the dream team back together again, though. Witnessing the birth of the unexpected arrival deters Colin and Lisa from making a baby of their own, for a start off, Lisa hadn’t realised it hurt when you gave birth…!

There’s also the continuation of the will they/won’t they plot between Katie (Chanel Cresswell) and Daniel (Samuel Anderson), I am happy to confirm that they do! Although I think it fair to say that we’ve all seen this coming from the beginning. The twists that have popped up along the way, not least the arrival of Holly (Georgia May Foote) in unwitting Daniel’s life, have all made it a fun and bumpy journey. However, as regular viewers will know, Valco founded relationships do not tend to go well for Katie, so should a series seven be on the horizon – I feel sure we won’t be treated to a happy ever after for this pair. Certainly not in the way that Mr Strong and Ms Fairweather’s romance has bloomed, anyway.

I loved that both Gavin and Cheryl wore the same outfit as one another to propose in, it also fitted brilliantly to have Cheryl propose to Gavin. She does wear the trousers, regardless of Gavin protestations and attempts to prove to the contrary. So, Sarah Parish might get her big while Valco wedding, yet! To have Neville (Dominic Coleman) spontaneously propose to Linda (Faye McKeever) only to be rejected as quickly as the proposal comes out of his mouth was quite hilarious. However, does this spell the end for them? Then there’s one more announcement to contend with, Lisa’s pregnant! She has been misreading the pregnancy tests and according to Sue’s (Lorraine Cheshire) calculations, is in fact four months pregnant. With so much to look forward to from the team at the supermarket we’ve all taken to our hearts, surely Sky One can provide us with more next year? Please!



Trollied Episode Six, Series Six ~ Episode Review

Gavin’s (Jason Watkins) healthy eating campaign has fallen decidedly flat and is affecting Valco’s sales figures, in the first of this week’s instalments. Cheryl (Sarah Parish)  doesn’t know how to tell him and Duncan (Rufus Hound) is still lurking around and being generally obnoxious, ready to pray on the fact that Gavin’s scheme has failed.

Colin (Carl Rice) is actually tired of sex, since he and Lisa (Beverley Rudd) started to try for a baby she has been wearing out the lazy butcher and he chooses Gavin to confide in, while Gavin is eating his breakfast… I’ll leave the rest to your imagination. The other hilarious storyline featured this episode involves Neville (Dominic Coleman) and Linda (Faye McKeever), Neville is teaching Linda to drive, with disastrous consequences. Sue (Lorraine Cheshire) actually starts to side with Neville having been in his shoes before and put her life into Linda’s hands as she took the wheel. It shows an interesting dynamic to the relationship of Linda and Sue, it’s so unusual for Sue to be on Neville’s side, however when Sue’s car is pranged during another of Linda’s lessons – Neville gets the blame. Normal services resumes. We also got two fantastic one-liners from Sue, “bell end” and “knob end”, two simple phrases that absolutely creased me up, demonstrating how Cheshire’s comic timing brilliantly.

“and there’s your sausages” Valcos best Butchers, Colin (Carl Rice) and Neville (Dominic Coleman)

Meanwhile, Duncan is starting to spread vicious rumours that the store is set to close and jobs will be lost due to Gavin’s healthy eating debacle. We see Margaret (Rita May) worrying about cancelling a holiday that she has not insurance for and isn’t actually going on(!) and Colin showing more concern for the fact that Duncan has claimed that Gavin sits down to go for a wee! Plus what would become of Neville? He can’t go back to the RSPCA if he’s out of a job (it’s the YMCA but Margaret has a different take on it, as usual!).

As Cheryl considers signing on the dotted line to allow a new energy drink from Duncan’s company to be sold in store, the future looks bleak for Ms Fairweather and her Gaveroo…

All of the cast, including some of the newer additions all play their roles so brilliantly and naturally that I find myself forgetting about the actors behind them. Surely that is the mark of an all-round epic comedy series.


Trollied Episode Five, Series Six ~ Episode Review

It’s Cheryl (Sarah Parish) and Gavin’s (Jason Watkins) eleven month anniversary and Gavin has been putting his artistic skills to dubious use, by producing a painting of his beloved, but with monstrously big hands! Meanwhile, Duncan (Rufus Hound) is on the prowl, causing havoc and poking his red face in where it’s not wanted. When Duncan invites Cheryl out for a meal before Gavin manages to get around to asking her out for an anniversary lunch, he becomes even more nauseating. Although I’m confident that true love will win the day for Cheryl and Gavin, they’re a match made in Valco heaven. The scene of the episode has to go to the lovebirds, where following a lengthy alcohol-fuelled lunch with Duncan, Cheryl winds up drunkenly fumbling in the canteen with Gavin, before he declares that it’s too much! Parish and Watkins are an absolute dream team, I say it in almost every episode review, they truly have the right chemistry to make this on-screen relationship work.

Holly (Georgia May Foote) is also back and trouble-making, unhappy with Daniel’s (Samuel Anderson) decision to invite Katie (Chanel Cresswell) to accompany them to the pub, the young Store Manager sets about making sure that Katie doesn’t take him up on it. Psycho is not the word with this one, she is beyond tapped! Claiming that Katie is being mean to her and faking a violent outburst from her ‘love-rival’. Kudos to Georgia May Foote, as Holly is so different to her Coronation Street character, Katie – she’s really impressed me with her versatility.

Trollied.Series 4.Episode 2..? Jon Hall for Sky1 2014
Stephen Tompkinson as Brian in Trollied

As if there wasn’t enough bonkers situations in this episode, we then have a dose of Dr Brian (Stephen Tompkinson) shock-jocking on the radio. He’s giving terrible advice during the phone-in and catalyses an outcry from angry listeners. However, he surprises everyone, including himself, when he is asked to make a return visit to the radio station! Maybe things are looking up for the psychotic Pharmacist?

Another epic episode, although I did miss Sue (Lorraine Cheshire) and Linda (Faye McKeever), even their short scenes have me in stitches and their absence was noticeable. Can’t wait for some festive times at Valco, though!


Trollied Episode Four, Series Six~ Episode Review

When one simple scene involving the word “boo” and hysterical laughter from two lovely ladies on Customer Services is a highlight in itself, you know that Trollied are still onto a winner. Lorraine Cheshire as Sue and Faye McKeever as Linda have yet to take centre stage in a storyline of their own, but their contribution to this laugh a minute comedy never fails to impress me. Coupled with Sue’s use of a rice cake as a drinks coaster, they were a force to be reckoned with, as ever.

This hilarious instalment also saw the return of Georgia-May Foote as Holly staking her claim on Daniel (Samuel Anderson) as she stuck close to Katie (Chanel Cresswell), it seems that Daniel’s new lady is not as air headed as it may have first appeared.  Her suspicions about Katie’s interest in her beau are raised when Katie pretends that Colin (Carl Rice) is her boyfriend and that his name is also Daniel. Lisa (Beverley Rudd) and Colin are having enormous fun winding up the situation, although Lisa does experience a fleeting moment of jealousy, this is quickly overcome when Colin assures of his devotion. The fact that he is so devoted to her due to her dirty antics is typical of this pair.

Meanwhile, Gavin is still promoting his healthy eating ‘scheme’ and Shai (Nikhil Parmar) is helping him by placing footprints on the shop floor. Small foot prints, by all accounts, the template of which is from Gavin’s (Jason Watkins) foot! Much teasing ensues, including Margaret (Rita May) singing “The Wizard Of Oz” despite having claimed that it wasn’t the film she was bringing to mind when she mentioned the yellow brick road. Nobody can carry that madcap ditzy character off quite like Rita can, Margaret is the lynchpin of the show, in my opinion.

Rita May as Margaret

The challenge between Duncan (Rufus Hound) and Gavin also made for epic viewing, kudos to the pair of them for the sit-ups accompanied by dialogue!

My only disappointment with this week’s instalment was the noticeable lack of Dominic Coleman, Stephen Tompkinson and Sarah Parish, they play three of my favourite characters. However, I do comprehend that there is a degree of realism in that they wouldn’t all be in at the same time for the same shift at all times.

Overall verdict? Still the funniest programme on telly at the moment and this series in particular is such a treat, I am ever hopeful for series seven!

Trollied Episode Three, Series Six ~ Episode Review

It’s health eating initiative time, and Gavin (Jason Watkins) or should that be Gaveroo… has been putting his hexagon together to explain his theories to the staff and ultimately, the customers. Unfortunately for the hapless Store Manager, the staff have no comprehension of what he is blithering on about and his girlfriend (and boss) Cheryl (Sarah Parish) is trying her best to be supportive in spite of herself. The friction and competition between the two is the sticking point in their relationship, but the goofy edge that the two characters have and the obvious love between them always wins through. Much as the beauty of Trollied is that it’s set in the one location, I really feel the need to see Gavin and Cheryl at their jazz tap class and Gaveroo in his leg warmers. Anyone else with me? No…..?

Gavin (Jason Watkins) and Cheryl (Sarah Parish) are at loggerheads

Meanwhile, Daniel (Samuel Anderson) receives an unexpected revelation from Lisa (Beverley Rudd) when she rocks up late and pukes in the fruit peel bin. The reason being a hangover? No! Morning sickness! Does Colin (Carl Rice) know? No! So Daniel fills him in and Neville (Dominic Coleman) offers advice, for which he is charged a fiver. Well, this is Colin after all, the man literally takes Neville’s lunch money and the mild mannered ‘butcher’ decides to have a crack at a veggie burger that they’ve been serving up to customers. Except they’re not veggie burgers because Colin didn’t replenish the stock and has reverted to meat. The chemistry between Colin and Neville is one of my favourite aspects of the show. They’re a completely dysfunctional double act and the two actors are doing an incredible job of making these characters real. When Neville shoulders the blame and tells Colin that he is not going back to the YMCA and that it doesn’t resemble the song, I thought that was a genius line and who better to deliver it than Coleman? Oh, and Lisa’s not really pregnant… although now, she might be…

Over at Customer Services, Sue (Lorraine Cheshire) and Linda (Faye McKeever) are busy. Well, busy playing a mind reading game, Sue is predicting every sentence that comes out of Linda’s mouth, correctly! A great aside as usual and yet another brilliant double act in Valco.

Margaret (Rita May) is in charge of health checks as part of Gavin’s healthy eating promotion, she’s in charge of BMX’s, no make that BMI’s. Brian (Stephen Tompkinson) had been waiting on a diseased heart from the morgue to be biked over, but given Gavin’s disapproval, he opts for a pig’s heart instead. Still not really what was required and certainly not a customer drawing exercise. Oh, Brian!

Trollied, you are nailing it! More, more, more, please!!



Spotlight On… Star of Sky One’s Trollied, Stephen Tompkinson

Trollied came back with a brand new series on Sky One at 9.00 pm on Monday 7 November and with Sky’s kind permission, I have had the great pleasure of interviewing a number of the cast members. So, let’s see what Stephen Tompkinson who plays Brian in the show had to say about the new series…

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg, Stephen, what can we expect from Brian in the new series of Trollied?

Ah, Brian, the psychopathic Pharmacist that we all know and love! He’s as mad as ever, partly because he’s permanently tortured in his private life, his brother, his wife and his kids are all doctors and he’s the only one who’s a Pharmacist. In order to out-do those at home he comes out with outrageous medical theories which have no basis of medical back-up whatsoever. So that’s still going on and he’s still absolutely joined at the hip with Margaret (Rita May). They have become rather dependent on each other, they’re like a mother and son really, they have a deep love. This series, Margaret got addicted to scratch cards and it was Dr Brian who bailed her out! Meanwhile, Gavin’s on this healthy food drive so Brian is straight in there with the idea of doing a medical demonstration with something gruesome from a pathology lab so that he can show the customers how dangerous fatty foods can be. Later on in the series, Brian answers a phone-in on a radio station, he becomes a bit of a radio hit, something of a shock jock! So, suddenly he is being offered something more permanent on the radio and he’s outgrown Valco. However, he begins to miss Margaret and comes back to find that they have a replacement, so he toys with whether he’s made the right decision or not.

You have become a great comedy double act with Rita May who plays Margaret, what’s it like working with her?

I have worked with her before, I first got to work with her in a series called In Deep. It’s lovely to work with her again.

What do you think works well on the series?

I feel what makes Trollied such a success is the fact that there’s such a great team of writers. Even when you come in as a newcomer, the writers watch what an actor does with the character and write to their strengths. I always show an episode to my daughter and my partner, Elaine first and they think it’s the best series so far. We’ve worked with directors that we’ve worked with before and it feels like everyone is on top of their game.

Plus, they keep finding different areas of the supermarket to discover, Pharmacy was one that they’d never used before and it’s great that they found a new home for Margaret.

Did you watch the series before you joined?

I did and I knew Jason Watkins before I started working on the series as we were at drama school together and indeed on the football field together years ago! There was also a link with the Producer, he worked on Wild At Heart for years. I had also worked with Paul Harrison, the Director on Wild At Heart, before.

Would you be keen to do a seventh series if that was on the cards?

Oh yes, wild horses couldn’t drag me away. We have a great time filming and the set is wonderful, it’s the biggest set I’ve been on. We have no night shoots and we stay in one location. It’s the nearest things to a 9 to 5 job I’ve ever had.

Finally, what would you say to encourage viewers to carry on watching Trollied?

It’s going to get wilder and wackier, it’s a bit like Christmas, everything comes at once and you’ll feel bloated and happy at the end of it!

Thanks to Stephen for his time and a great interview, I agree that this series of Trollied is rather special.

Photo credit: Sky TV

Trollied Episode Two, Series Six ~ Episode Review

The second episode of the new series of Trollied got off to as flying a start as the first one, there is such a feeling of unity among this cast and they’re all on it when it comes to their roles. Almost as though playing these hilarious characters is second nature to them.

In this instalment, Cheryl (Sarah Parish) and Gavin (Jason Watkins) are still incredibly lovey dovey and very silly, what a great pairing they are – Watkins and Parish are a fantastic double act. They were also quite a force when it came to the Managers’ meeting and Cheryl, as Area Manager, was seemingly against Gavin’s health food ideas. It was a plan they’d cooked up between them and it worked, these are characters that I want to see triumph, so I was rather pleased that the garden path Cheryl had led her Managers up was all a ploy. Valco’s couple are a great strength of the show and long may all of them continue.

Speaking of love, Linda (Faye McKeever) pushes her boyfriend, Neville (Dominic Coleman) forward to take over as Store Manager during the absence of Gavin and Katie (Chanel Cresswell). Katie is horrified at this suggestion, but goes along with it, reluctantly! The new recruit is also handed over to Neville’s care, which also has hilarious consequences. The observational quality of the script is superb, especially when both Sue (Lorraine Cheshire) and Linda both decline Katie’s offer of the Valco reigns, how many work colleagues do we all know who would react the same way they did?

Another day at Valco for Lisa!

Unsurprisingly, Neville’s temporary stint as Store Manager results in an automatic door crisis which sees Neville stuck, Ian (Victor Maguire) denying all knowledge and the new recruit offering to go to Morrisons! Not to mention that Lisa’s (Beverley Rudd) playing Neville’s ‘promotion’ to her own advantage and taking great delight in moving from till to till as well as winding up a school teacher in the process. Lisa is one of my favourite characters, she’s bawdy and doesn’t care, but she represents quite a number of people I’ve encountered in the past!

 Meanwhile, back onto the theme of love, there’s a love triangle developing between Daniel (Samuel Anderson), Katie and Holly (Georgia May Foote). I thought that Holly was a great addition to the cast, ditzy, giggly and you kinda wondered how on earth she was in the job of Store Manager. She’s unwittingly stirred things up with Katie in regards to Daniel, so I’m expecting a green eyed monster situation.

Overall, another laugh-a-minute episode that in my opinion, BAFTA need to have on their radar!

Photo Credits: Sky TV

Spotlight On… Star of Trollied, Lorraine Cheshire

Trollied is back with a brand new series on Sky One at 9.00 pm on Monday 7 November and with Sky’s kind permission, I have had the great pleasure of interviewing a number of the cast members. So, let’s kick off with Sue from Customer Services! Welcome, Lorraine Cheshire….

Thanks for talking to Break A Leg, again, Lorraine – it’s a pleasure to be able to be able to chat to you for a second time this year. What can we expect from series six of Trollied?

I can’t give away very much, you know, but I can say that something happens with Gavin (Jason Watkins) and Cheryl (Sarah Parish) which is very lovely and happens around Christmas time.. Meanwhile Neville (Dominic Coleman) and Linda (Faye McKeever) are still a couple and he’s going to teach her how to drive and Sue (Lorraine’s character) gets terrified because she knows that she tried to teach her and it ended up in disaster. There’s also something lovely happening for Lisa (Beverly Rudd) and Colin (Carl Rice). Rufus Hound is playing a character in this series, he comes in as a Rep, Sue gets the measure of him straight away and he gets the measure of me. He takes a liking to Linda, too. Other than that, I can’t tell you very much, you’ve got to watch to find out!

How do you think the character of Sue has developed over the last five series?

I just think that she is still the same woman, she doesn’t move on, does she? She doesn’t care about the customers! You know Sue’s got five kids, but you never see them! You just saw that one baby that I had at Christmas. She doesn’t have a back story that we know about but maybe her husband doesn’t work and she’s the only one that works? I keep saying that Sue’s not married, though because she doesn’t wear a wedding ring!

What do you think of the relationship between Sue and Linda?

Oh they love each other, they have those awful spats too of course, but then and again they spend that much time together. Sue’s let Neville ‘in’ now even though she’s still not keen, because Sue wonders why Linda is with him.

What would you like to see happen for Sue?

I’d like Sue’s partner to come in and for one of her kids to come and work at Valco.

Who do you think gets the best lines on the show?

Oh, Rita (Wilkinson, who plays Margaret) gets the best lines ever. I’ve worked with her before, of course and she’s great.

What do you think the programme has that makes the viewers want more?

I think it’s quite real and very every day, people who work in supermarkets say that it’s very accurate, too. The set’s fantastic as well, because it is a proper supermarket set.

Finally, what would you say to encourage viewers to watch the new series?

Well there’s so much going on, Cheryl has left Lauda and come to work at Valco, now. Plus, we have Rufus Hound and he’s great, he’s really took to his character, it’s a really rough and ready man. This character has an agenda, and we’ve all got to go against his agenda, he likes the women and tries to get in with Cheryl. So I encourage viewers to stick with it because it’s changing all the time with new people coming in.

Huge thanks to Lorraine for her time, it was amazing as always to chat to her – looking forward to more Trollied!

Photo Credit: Sky TV


Spotlight On… Star of Trollied, Faye McKeever

Trollied is back with a brand new series on Sky One at 9.00 pm on Monday 7 November and with Sky’s kind permission, I have had the great pleasure of interviewing a number of the cast members. So, without further ado, here’s Faye McKeever who plays Linda…

Thank you so much for talking to me, Faye, you’ve been in the show from the start, what’s it like to be part of it?

It’s like a big family, Helen, it’s a joy to go back to. You get the scripts you turn up and really enjoy the six or seven weeks working in Bristol and it’s always in Bristol so we know it inside out.

You work closely with Lorraine Cheshire who plays Sue, how do you two get along?

We get on so well, even when we’re supposed to be scrapping on screen, we always end up laughing, we still find something to laugh at. I think people can relate to that though, you’re in work and trying to take it seriously and then in this case, a customer comes in and asks for something that’s so funny that you can’t keep a straight face!

What can we expect from Linda in series six?

Sue and Linda have a bust up and that’s been coming since series one! We’ve always had a bit of a scrap but never a full blown one. It was quite fun to do because Sue and Linda hated each other! As always, Neville (Dominic Coleman) is in the middle of it all and Linda sides with her best friend Sue at the end of it.

What do you think of the relationship between Neville and Linda?

Dominic is so funny to work with, how I can keep a straight face I don’t know! From when the series first started Linda was looking for love and unlucky in love, she was looking for a man, any man and nothing was happening. Around series three I had just broken up with my partner in real life and a good six to twelve months afterwards I said to the writer I wanted a hunk written in for Linda. I said it’s about time that Linda found someone and he said they’d see what they could do. About four weeks later I got the script and I’m snogging Dom at the Christmas party! I thought, I don’t think you quite got the message! Dom is such a lovely man and the difference between Neville and Linda just works. I wasn’t sure whether the viewers would buy it or not, but they seem to get that she just wants a man to look after her. She does love Dom, though and they do write well for us both on the show.

When you first read the script and you were at the casting for the show, what did you think of it?

I thought the scripts were so funny and everyone has been to the supermarket so everyone can relate to it, we’ve all had holes in the plastic bag that we’ve put the oranges in. The character of Linda was supposed to be the same age as Sue to start with, but I’d worked with Lorraine before on a show called Massive and the casting director decided to put us together. When we tried some scenes together, I think that because we knew each other already we were able to bring it to life.

Finally, what would you say to encourage viewers to watch series six?  

We’ve got some lovely new characters, we’ve got Rufus Hound coming in as well as Georgia May Foote and it’s half an hour of good fun and comedy!

 I’d like to thank Faye for her time and I can’t wait to see what the new series has in store for Linda!

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