The wonderful Nancy Banks-Smith has written a piece on The Archers for the Guardian. I assume it will be in tomorrow's G2.
My grandmother – now, we’re going back a bit – used to describe pregnancy delicately as "being confined". It’s a phrase that suits Helen very well. Ever since she became pregnant, she has been a wraithlike presence, a pale face at the window of Blossom Hill Cottage, lank-haired and wearing the charity-shop clothes her husband, Rob, prefers, making occasional disconcerting distressed forays into an oblivious Ambridge. Wilkie Collins would have spat on his hands and whistled.
This sorry situation burst into flames recently when a toad-in-the-hole caught fire. Who Torched the Toad escalated into a full-scale fight, with Helen showing a flash of spirit, Rob hitting her and five-year-old Henry, entering into the spirit of things, shoving a small school friend called Xanthe. Though, frankly, I think any child called Xanthe is just asking to be shoved.