It seemed a good time to take a look at some of the comments that readers have been kind enough to send in recently. First up is one from Zoe, who says:
Has the Pied Piper of Ambridge struck again? It seems ages since we've heard (rather than 'heard of') Johnny, Josh and Ben, Freddie and Lily, Jamie, Ruairi, the awful George, Jake and Mia. –Zoe
Quite frankly, looking at Zoe’s list, I reckon the Pied Piper has done a terrific job – whatever he charged, it was worth it. But it’s not just the children that have gone awol – we have commented on more than one occasion that Darrell just seems to have been written out and disappeared without trace. At least when Matt left (or was pushed) there was a covering story that he had legged it to Costa Rica, but as far as Darrell is concerned, it is as if he never existed.
There are a number of other absentees too – it has been months since we heard from Wayne, and long may it continue, plus Kathy has been quiet recently. As for Will, the strain of being nice to Ed at the latter’s marriage and of letting him and Emma have the house on the Green at a reasonable rent must have been too much for him and he has had to lie down in a darkened room for a few months. Whatever the reason, we haven’t heard from him for a while.
Christine is doing her usual trick of being referred to, without actually appearing, although one assumes that, if she and Jim go to the Italian-speaking dinner party at Caroline and Oliver’s, she’ll have to say something.
Much the same is happening to Jazzer, with Toby referring a couple of times to things that Jazzer had said in the pub, without us actually hearing from the man himself. PC Burns is another who has been conspicuous by his absence – perhaps he’s under cover somewhere? Neil too hasn’t had much of a speaking part recently, although, being married to Susan, he’s probably used to not being able to get a word in edgeways.
No doubt you have your own favourites who appear to have gone walkabout, or those that you’d like to send on a long trip somewhere. Presumably it won’t be long before Pip vanishes for a few months, unless Toby Fairbrother’s lascivious ambitions are realised.
Comment number two comes from Phil, and it concerns Rob Titchener. Phil asks:
Are there betting odds on which of the different possible ways that Rob will crash and burn will hit first? So far we have:
- Jess's baby (he hasn't told the truth about the paternity test);
- The blocked drain;
- The cooked books;
- The blocked drain;
- The cooked books;
Have I missed anything? And who gets to deliver the coup-de-grace, or does he ever more improbably escape detection? Given that the man is now doing everything apart from skulking around Ambridge in a black cloak and hissing "a-ha!" like a pantomime villain, even the preternaturally dense inhabitants of Borsetshire must have noticed something's not quite right with the man. – Phil
Yes, there’s something of the Jekyll and Hyde about Rob – he can be very charming and then exhibit a nasty turn of temper. When under pressure from Charlie, he was snappy with Henry and Helen when he returned home. OK, I agree with him that it wasn’t very professional of Helen to take Henry and biscuits to see him while at work, but it wasn’t that big a deal – even Charlie laughed it off.
Surely he will get his come-uppance one day (we have said before that nobody usually gets away with a bad deed in Ambridge)? The question is, will that be before he has talked Helen into having his baby? If he is forced to leave Ambridge, will Helen go with him? Even more important, who will replace him in the cricket team? I suspect that, if Charlie keeps turning the screw and Rob feels the net closing in on him, Rob’s flashes of anger and bad temper will become more frequent. Will the scales fall from Helen’s love-besotted eyes? I reckon Rob would have to beat her up for that to happen, and even then, she’d say it was her own fault. We await developments with interest.
Our third comment, from Mr/Ms Anonymous is in more serious vein and concerns Kenton:
Not a light comment - but Kenton is showing classical signs of depression, and hopefully someone picks up on the not-very-subtle mention of suicide. It's just not true that those who talk about it never attempt it, sadly.
I know that Kenton has done his level best to alienate seemingly every member of his family in recent weeks, but surely Jolene could appeal to somebody in the extensive Archer clan for help, couldn’t she?
Thanks for your comments – it’s always good to get feedback and to know that the blog is being read and, hopefully, enjoyed!