Former Coro Street writer delivers again with Love, Lies and Recordsby Catherine Woulfe
In Kay Mellor’s new drama Love, Lies and Records, sweetness and light meet bitterness and pedantry.
At work it’s even worse. Kate is a kind-hearted, capable registrar at the Leeds Registry Office: births, deaths, weddings, the whole drama-loaded caboodle. (Why isn’t this a staple, à la cops, doctors, lawyers? Rich pickings!)
Yet all her good works may be undone by her truly formidable nemesis, Judy. Remember poor old Nicola Murray, the glum, delusional Leader of the Opposition in The Thick of It? The actor who played her, Rebecca Front, summons next-level bitterness and pedantry to deliver a performance that’s by turns acerbic and Cheshire-cat smug. Judy’s expecting a promotion, and Kate gets it, and all hell breaks loose.
“Judy creates all sorts of problems for herself and more for the people around her,” Front says. “Because her standards are so rigorous and so high, almost everybody falls short of those and when they do, Judy kind of wreaks vengeance on them. She’s kind of an avenging angel in a weird way, which is great; that’s really good fun to play.”
This new drama is created by Kay Mellor, the former Coronation Street writer recently responsible for well-received dramas In the Club, about an antenatal class, and The Syndicate, following lottery winners.
“She writes these very complicated, interwoven stories,” Front says. “At the same time, they’re very rooted in reality and all her characters are recognisable. You’ll have met them, you’ll have worked with them.”
There are genuinely touching moments, all of them anchored or orchestrated by Kate. (Ashley Jensen does a terrific job of making her likable, despite all the sweetness and light).
She organises an eleventh-hour wedding for a young mum dying of cancer. And she takes in a colleague who’s decided to dress as a woman. He leaves his family and can’t bear to tell them why. As he sobs on the couch, Kate goes into full mother-hen mode.
But a much more interesting plot arc awaits: the small matter of Kate’s Christmas do fling – and the CCTV tape Judy has kept tucked away in her “petty vengeance” arsenal.
This article was first published in the August 18, 2018 issue of the New Zealand Listener.
Women with complications caused by deeply embedded vaginal mesh are being helped by a pioneering surgical technique.Read more
North Auckland farmer Fergus Riley has uncovered many important lessons in caring for his father Peter, who has Alzheimer’s.Read more
Instagram is running a social media experiment to see what happens when it hides the number of likes on photos and other posts.Read more
Duncan Smith and Annabel Tapley-Smith weren’t satisfied with producing meat of uncommon quality. So they bought a butchery.Read more
A study on biodegradable plastic bags found they were still intact after three years spent either at sea or buried underground.Read more
Amid the agony of defeat, we must remember that the UK is in such terrible shape politically that it deserves to cherish this flickering flame of...Read more
Caretaker and unionist Ernie Abbott was killed almost instantly when he picked up the suitcase containing the bomb.Read more