Langford on Soaps: James Sutton returns to “Hollyoaks”



I guess I shouldn’t be shocked that now that Chris and Aidan are back together, they’d return to their old roles of supporting players in everyone else’s drama. Sadly, we don’t even get any scenes of them enjoying being back together or working to get the point they were before the split as they were nearly living together back then, though Chris did casually mention they were taking things slow. Let’s hope we get some insight to their relationship as it goes forward, though given this show’s history, I have my doubts.

As for the drama we did see, I really find Chris’ endless support of Andrew to be annoying. As Tash and Summer rightfully pointed out, Andrew screwed Chris over and would do it again. And he barely apologized for nearly ruining Chris’ life and almost bankrupting Chris’ family. In fact, in that scene between Chris and Andrew it seemed to me that Andrew was making Chris feel guilty because Andrew did the right thing and told the truth about the accident, which put him on bad terms with his father.

Can Chris and Aidan get a life?

For someone who swore he’d stand up for himself, and does so with other people, Chris certainly doesn’t do it in regards to Andrew. It almost makes you wonder if Chris is still attracted to Andrew, but I doubt the show is going to go there. At least Aidan told Andrew they weren’t friends as long as Andrew continues to blackmail him.

As for the storyline revolving around Andrew’s epilepsy, I had to admit it remains an interesting and well written story, though I’m ready for Andrew’s friends and family to learn the truth. He’s kept it secret for far too long, to the point where it’s starting to strain credulity.

Good Times, Bad Times

And that’s that. I guess the resolution to Bilal and Lucas’ relationship had a realistic end, with Bilal still unable to come out of the closet, despite his feelings for Lucas. As I said before I think the storyline was really well acted and the writing for the various individual scenes was well done.

As a whole, though the story just didn’t work. I still don’t buy that Lucas and Bilal were all that in love. They were totally mismatched to me and I don’t think for a minute their relationship would really work if it had come out into the open because they were just too different. And besides, the chemistry just wasn’t there. With the way things ended, I can’t help but think Bilal will probably meet another woman and marry her, but find a man to cheat with on the side. Thankfully, Lucas was unwilling to do that.

I’m also wondering what the point of the storyline was. Lucas did show a little bit of personal growth during the arc. I don’t see why the show bothered giving Lucas this very brief romance, especially since it has been so long since Edwin died. Of course there’s the chance that Bilal could always come back, but I honestly hope not. The story was misguided and wrong-headed to begin with so there’s no need to revisit it. I just hope the show gives Lucas a viable, long term and out of the closet love interest soon. Two coming out stories in the space of two years is more than enough.

*Thanks to GTSTfanMark for the clips!

House Husbands

I got a kick out of last week’s episode. Kane and the guys’ adventures at the strip club were hilarious and showed the spirited interaction and chemistry between the ‘house husbands’. It was a lot of fun, especially the ‘olive incident’. And the talk between Tom and Kane was thought-provoking as well as they discussed Kane’s desire to have more children. The show is headed for its season finale and I suspect that the foster child storyline will come into play in the show’s second year. But I’m curious about Stella’s status as regards to Kane and Tom.

I know that Tom is Stella’s guardian, but has he adopted her? More important, it would seem to me that Kane should be doing something to gain legal rights to the child. We know he has none because when Stella was sick, the doctor hesitated to tell him anything because he’s not her legal guardian. The only reason she did say anything was because the doctor was Kane’s sister. You’d think since he is the child’s primary caregiver and he and Tom are in a long term relationship, they would handle such issues as a matter of course.

Overall, this show is charming and loveable, but I’d like more insight to Tom and Kane’s relationship as a couple. The actors are great and I find their easy comfortable chemistry of a pair who have been together for a long time believable. I do realize that the show’s focus is on fatherhood and the relationships between the four leads, but it would be nice to see Tom and Kane interact as a couple and not just deal with parental concerns. There have been tiny hints that Tom kind of resents that Kane seems himself as a father before anything else so that might be a storyline worth looking into. The show has promised they’d deal with Tom and Kane’s relationship in the coming season so hopefully that they’ll keep that vow.

Hotel Caesar

Hmmm… I guess it’ll be interesting to see how Juni handles Måne being gay, that is, if he actually goes through with it and I don’t think he will. Maybe. That is, if he actually goes through with it and I don’t think he will. My guess is Måne will chicken out and as a result, Stellan will dump him. Then maybe perhaps he will come out, but it’ll be too late, either Stellan will have moved on or he just won’t want to be bothered with the drama again. I guess we’ll find out in next week’s column.

As for the moment, I can’t say that I’m really riveted by this storyline. It’s another coming out saga and it’s not a particularly interesting one. And it just seems strange that a sixteen-year-old kid is worried about making his way in big business rather than if he’ll pass his algebra test or playing video games. Of course it could be something I’m missing, but for me, the writing is limp and the acting is barely passable. Hopefully that will change soon. Maybe a new plot arc is the answer.


Days of Our Lives

I know many loved that Lucas got over his issues about Will and Sonny’s relationship. And they were nicely done scenes, well acted by all parties. But it’s all too neat and easily resolved and to me that’s not realistic. It just doesn’t ring true that everyone like Adrienne and now Lucas would so quickly get over their issues about Will and Sonny. It also doesn’t make very interesting television. I like drama in my soaps, lots of it. Soaps are about conflict and this relationship doesn’t have any of that. It never really has.

Will and Sonny got together, developed a relationship (mostly off screen) and now have these cutesy scenes together. I know fans are squeeing all over themselves over this fluff, but for me it’s boring, especially since I don’t think Will and Sonny are written like any young gay men I’ve ever known. The relationship and their interaction is far too sickeningly sweet for my tastes and is devoid of anything resembling passion. Of course, it might help if they actually had chemistry, which they don’t and never have.

Enough with the hand holding! Can we have a storyline please?

I also wish some of these characters were actually written like their history would suggest. For example, there’s no way Victor would be hesitant about asking Sonny about his relationship with Will. A buttinksy by nature, he would have been direct and to the point about his questions. And while it’s nice that Kate told Lucas he had to accept Will and Sonny’s relationship, she’s never been the type of woman to accept her children’s romantic partners, having had tried to kill one of Lucas’ wives to get her out of his life. You think Lucas might have mentioned that during his talk with Kate.

I’m not saying that Lucas should try to poison Will with a green apple (which is what Kate tried to do to Chloe), but why not have Lucas scheme and plot to break up Will and Sonny? It certainly would be dramatically interesting and much more watchable than have everyone fall in line and be oh so accepting.

Winners and Losers

I’ll start off by saying that while there is much to love about this show, there are a few things about the most recent episode that bothered me to the point of distraction. But I’ll start with the positive stuff first. I love Jonathan and Rhys. I think they make such a charming and delightful couple. They are fun and engaging to watch and the actors have terrific chemistry. It doesn’t hurt that the men in the roles are cute as a button.

I do wish we could have seen more of the relationship develop on screen because I think things happened kind of fast between them. That said, the end result has been so enjoyable to watch that I’m willing to let it slide. Besides, to be fair, the focus of the show is the four female leads and Jonathan and Rhys are supporting players so I guess that’s to be expected to some extent. And I do love their relationships with the women on the show, especially the bond between Jonathan and Frances, whose friendship rings very true. I also appreciate getting to see Rhys’ ongoing struggle to come out of the closet and I hope we get to see what happens when he finally comes out to his family.

But while I enjoyed all that, I really had big problems with last week’s episode. As a rule, I get tired of gay bashing episodes so I wasn’t looking forward to this one. Thankfully, the show didn’t have some graphic, violent assault or make the tone of the storyline heavy or overbearing despite the subject matter. But it bothered me that Jonathan and Rhys were taken out by one man and neither of them were able to protect themselves. Can’t the gay guys get a few punches in just once?


And while Rhys’ reaction made sense in that he wanted to not be so open about his sexuality in public, especially since he was still coming out, Jonathan’s reaction was puzzling. On one hand, while he insisted he didn’t want to hide who he was and stop being himself no matter where he was, he was all too willing to just accept that people out there will attack and beat you up and there’s nothing that you can do about it.

For someone who is willing to fight to be who he is, I just find it odd that he was backing down to bigotry and homophobes. Isn’t letting them get away with beating you up handing them the victory? Then again, if Jonathan didn’t take that attitude, the entire story arc of Frances getting a new job because of her legal battle with the club wouldn’t have played out like it did. And that was the real point of the story, I guess. I just wish the writing for Jonathan wouldn’t have been so out of character in the process.



I wish I could enjoy this storyline because it had such potential. Unfortunately the show has completely botched it with lazy storytelling and rushed plot arcs. The biggest problem is that Syed’s behavior makes no sense. Sure, he’s desperate to make a buck and I can see him falling in with Danny on his business schemes, but Syed’s attraction to Danny and his cheating on Christian fails as a story because the show hasn’t bothered to explain why Syed is so drawn to Danny.

Yes, Danny is very attractive and engaging, but not only does Syed barely know him, there needs to be a reason why Syed would stray. It’s not as if he and Christian have been having problems or he was unhappy in their relationship. Syed has always been a stick in the mud and certainly not one to freely express himself in any way, especially in a sexual way. So I just find it hard to believe Syed would be sneaking around with Danny and making out in a public place where he could easily be spotted (just like he was).

It’s a shame because Marc Elliot and Gary Lucy actually do have chemistry and it would be nice to see a real relationship and bond form between these two as they got into business together. But it needs to happen over time, not over a few episodes. Instead, Syed comes off as a total idiot giving his money to a man he barely knows with little details or promises that it would net him any profit — not to mention being a cheat for his out of nowhere romantic involvement with Danny. But EastEnders has a bad history of taking good ideas and ruining them when things actually begin to play out.

It also bothers me that Syed is acting like such a jerk and Christian plays the clueless boyfriend. Christian is not a stupid man and he should be able to figure out something is going on with Syed, especially since Syed is not good at lying or hiding when he’s lying. I do like the growing bond between Christian and Syed’s family though as they truly come to accept him and his place in Syed’s life. That actually makes sense. And it’s because the show took the time and care to actually let that story arc play out over time.

Coronation Street

Not a lot to say here as not much happened. Marcus and Maria are kind of in denial over what happened between them, half-heartedly throwing themselves into relationship with their respective partners. I suspect that will be the status quo for awhile until something else throws them together. I look forward to seeing what that something is, not to mention what happens when they can no longer deny their feelings and the drama that will ensue when everyone finds out about them. Bring it on. And soon please.



EastEndersIt’s Syed and Christian’s stag party in celebration of their impending wedding and Syed is stunned when Danny shows up at the party. Syed insists Danny leave, but Danny suggests that Syed’s plan to marry Christian is a bad idea and that they could have a life together. Syed insists he only wants Danny as a business partner, but Danny tells Syed that the money he invested went bust and they lost everything. Still, Danny continues to pursue Syed, until Masood arrives.

Syed says Danny is just there on business, but Masood reveals he saw Danny and Syed kissing the night before. Syed tosses Danny out, but Masood thinks Syed shouldn’t marry Christian as he’s cheating on him already. Syed swears he doesn’t want to give up on his relationship. Later, Zainab genuinely apologizes to Christian for the way she’s treated him and welcomes him into the family. Syed witnesses this moment and when he sees a family picture that includes Christian, he can’t deal with the guilt.

Syed says he can’t go through with the wedding and Christian demands to know why. Syed confesses his financial woes, but not his romantic involvement with Danny. As Christian insists that’s not reason enough to call off the wedding, Masood arrives and assuming Christian knows the full truth, lets it slip that he saw Syed and Danny kissing. Despite it all, Christian forgives Syed and wants to marry him, but Syed doesn’t know if he should as he has doubts about himself and what he wants. Christian tells Syed he’ll wait for him at the altar and Syed can come he wants to get married.

After some thought, Syed decides what he really wants and he and Christian are married. However, as everyone celebrates, the bailiffs show up and announce that the mortgage on the restaurant hasn’t been paid on four months and the property is being seized. Tamwar realizes that it’s Syed’s fault that this has happened, but protects his older brother by taking the blame himself. Christian, who knows this is Syed’s doing, wants Syed to come forward and admit the truth to his family. But instead, Syed has run off and vanished.

Secret Lives — Lari sends Elias a text admitting his feelings for him, but Elias has been too busy to answer. A hurt and angry Lari confronts Elias about his non-response and things get romantically intense between the two boys. But Elias and Lari have bigger problems when Tale decides he’s had enough of keeping Lari’s secret. Elias and Lari are afraid Tale is going to tell everyone about Lari’s cheating with Elias behind Eva’s back….


Olli and his new found sister deal with the past…

Forbidden Love — Olli and Bella struggle to deal with the lies that have kept them apart…

Days of Our Lives — Nick is bothered by Gabi and Will’s past…

Good Times, Bad Times — Lucas arranges a date for his mother…

Hotel Caesar — Måne’s inability to be honest about his sexuality could cost him Stellan…

Neighbours — Chris helps Sophie with her recovery…

Hollyoaks — Brendan is upset when Cheryl refuses to let him help with Lynsey’s wedding…



One of Hollyoaks’ most beloved characters returns…

Last week we told you that Bryan Kirkwood, former executive producer of Hollyoaks was returning to the drama and it looks like he’s bringing one of his most popular characters along with him. James Sutton, who played gay teenager John Paul McQueen, one of the soaps most beloved players is returning to the show after a four year absence. Sutton is currently filming on the show and will begin to appear on screen around Christmas. According to the show, Sutton’s stay is long term and he will have a major storyline that they are keeping underwraps.

When we last saw John Paul, he was leaving with his boyfriend Craig Dean as they set off to start a new life together in Ireland after a tumultuous love affair. Of course, since Craig, played by Guy Burnett, isn’t returning with John Paul, many fans who loved that teen couple are wondering what happened to that duo. In fact, more than a few viewers of the show are annoyed with the show for possibly breaking up John Paul and Craig, spoiling their happy ending, just to have Sutton return to the show.

Fans aren’t happy to see Jean Paul and Craig’s ‘Sunset Ending’ compromised…

Of course, this columnist thinks such clinging to the past is ridiculous and bringing one of the show’s most popular characters ever is a good thing and not something to be derided to protect the sanctity of an off screen relationship. There’s no word on what brings John Paul back to the village, what his storyline will be or if he’ll cross paths with any of the show’s current gay characters: Brendan Brady, Ste Hay, Doug Carter or George Smith. Personally, this columnist hopes that his return has nothing to do with Brendan or his group. They’ve got enough story (and airtime) on their plates.

We’ll have updates as they come.

And that’s a wrap for this edition of Langford on Soaps. See you next time!