Hello Soapsters, welcome to another slice of soap. Let’s get to it…
Phil Daniels has decided to call it a day on EastEnders. I can’t say that I blame him. I mean, he’s been in the soap since 2006 and in all honesty I don’t think the man’s ever had a decent storyline…come to think of it, neither has anyone else (apart from our hero Gus of course). I was shocked when I first heard that Phil Daniels had signed on the dotted line; some of you may only know him as the Cockney geezer in Blur’s video for Parklife. But for fans of Brit flicks, he’s the guy who starred in Quadrophenia, a seminal British film which also featured Phil Daniels’ contemporary, Ray ‘the daddy’ Winstone. To put it into even starker perspective, for me, it was a bit like hearing that Tom Cruise was gonna star in one of those cheesy American daytime soaps – The Young And The Restless or Guiding Light. Bit of a come down really.
Still, I thought he might be the person who could breathe a bit of life back into the soap just as Martin Kemp, another big name (he played Steve Owen) did. Sadly, as a character, Kevin Wicks never really convinced – totally lacking in depth and development. I firmly blame the writers of EastEnders for that – they didn’t do poor old Parklife! Phil any favours. They never really created a persona the audience could universally warm to and Phil Daniels ended up being an irritant instead of a stimulant. Two-dimensional, not three-dimensional, Kevin was taken in increasingly daft directions, something the ‘Enders writers are exceptional at. You only have to look at Sonia (I’m a lesbian, oh no I’m not a lesbian!) or Vicky (I’m an American, oh no I’m not an American!) to see the damage they can do. They gave Parklife! Phil so many poor storylines (sleeping with his ex Shirley while engaged to Denise was a load of rubbish) that it’s easier to try and list his decent ones. Errmmm….can’t think of any.
The flat characterisation was bound to have an effect – indifference. In the final analysis, he simply won’t be missed. He brought nothing to EastEnders, apart from his annoying children Carly and Deano Wicks, played by Kellie Shirley and Matt Di Angelo. At least they’ll be going with him. Hooray! When there’s a roll call of legends in this soap – we’ll be talking of Dirty Den (before he rose Lazurus-like), Angie, Simon Wicks, Cindy Beale, David Wicks, Frank Butcher, Alfie Moon etc There will be no mention of Kevin Wicks and for once, a major name leaving EastEnders will not be a disaster. He simply won’t be missed. In the end, Parklife! Phil turned out to be a big star who looked about as comfortable in Albert Square as Posh Spice would in a KFC. Sad really, considering that Ray Winstone has gone on to make American movies with the likes of Martin Scorsese while Parklife! Phil has wasted a year or so of his life. And ours too.
That’s it for now. Join me again on Friday for more. Got a comment about your favourite soap, this blog or anything else? Share it with me here.
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