Patricia Greene (Jill Archer)
There's no doubt that Jill has got a hard edge to her character – we have said before that she could be unfeeling as far as Kenton is concerned (although his marriage to Jolene appears to have made him more acceptable) and now she's having a go at Shula over Darrell.
At Daniel's birthday tea, Darrell wells up when talking about Elona and goes to his room. "Poor Darrell" says Shula, to which Jill replies sharply "Pull yourself together – you've got to get him out of here." When Shula asks where would he go, Jill suggests the Grundy’s or Neil and Susan. To my mind, the first comes under the heading of 'cruel and unusual punishment' and the second is impractical, with Ed, Emma and the children living there. Why the big rush? True Daniel has come home, but it was only a few weeks ago that Shula was saying "we've got all this space" when making the case for taking Darrell in, so how many rooms does Daniel need? In fact, although everyone seems to want Darrell out because of the effect on Daniel, he's sanguine about the whole affair and doesn't seem at all worried.
However, things are looking black for Jill – almost literally – as we had another reminder about her eyesight problems. When viewing the DVD that Jim has prepared for David and Rooooth's Silver Wedding, Jill remarks to Josh that her memory must be playing tricks, as she seems to remember that it was sunny that day and has Jim toned down the colours as the sky doesn't look very blue? Josh replies that it is sunny on the DVD and it looks fine to him.
The panto is still trundling along, with Robert Snell the latest to be dragged into the cast, as Friar Tuck. He originally said 'no' but we all knew he was doomed, as should he, having spent all these years with Lynda.
Kirsty is still uncomfortable about having to act alongside Rob but she tells Tom that she's just going to ignore Rob and enjoy the play. However, the best laid plans and all that; Lynda gives Kirsty the lyrics of a song to learn and she is horrified when she realises it is a love duet between her and Rob and she'll have to gaze lovingly into his eyes while singing it. Wouldn't it be a good story if they fell in love? That would make for an interesting atmosphere between her and Helen at Ambridge Organics.
It appears that Kirsty is really getting her feet under Tom's table; not only has she bought new crockery (including a milk jug – it will be fish knives next, mark my words) but is banging on about getting a real Christmas tree and buying new decorations. We also learn that she and Tom have chosen a new bed – if I were her, I'd have made sure it was of the bunk variety.
Elsewhere, Eddie is trying to drum up Christmas turkey business and he tells Joe that Christmas is going to be difficult this year, despite there being bumper crops of holly and mistletoe. Joe is happy, however, as he has received his compensation cheque. Eddie moans because the solicitors have taken £600 of the £3,000 as their fee (in real life they would probably have taken the £2,400) and his mood is not improved when Joe tells him that it's going straight into his savings account. Bad luck Eddie!
Ian takes Helen out for a meal and a heart-to-heart, telling her that Adam had told him about her and Rob (thanks Adam!). They are at cross purposes, as Ian says that one day all this will seem a bad memory, someone else will come along, etc. Helen, however, says that she doesn't want anybody else and if Rob came to her tomorrow and wanted to get back together she'd say 'yes'. She also wonders whether she should tell Jess the sort of man she's married to – "Isn't that what he deserves?" Now, I may be wrong here, but I can't help feeling that if my erstwhile mistress told my wife what had been going on (presumably leading to said wife either leaving me or throwing me out) then I would not be very kindly disposed towards the mistress and the chances of getting back together would be minute at best
Going back to Josh, he is fresh from his triumph over his Dad in choosing the steer for entry in the Primestock show – they chose different animals and we had an episode where they were filming the beasts so that Pip could decide which was the best. This was not the most exciting piece of radio, but at least not as yawn-inducing as the bit where William and George were trying to train Baz, the gun dog – that's five minutes of my life I'll never have again.
Pip sided with Josh and David agreed, so it's Josh's choice Castor (one of a twin, along with Pollux, and no, that isn't rhyming slang) that will go into the Primestock show. You have to wonder about Josh's intelligence, as David asks if he can use Josh's laptop as he's looking for the perfect weekend break for him and Rooooth but he wants it to be a surprise, so if he uses the laptop, she won't be able to trace what he's doing on the farm computer. "Are you going away then?" Josh asks. Tell you what - not much gets past this boy, does it?