Waterloo Road: The Return

Posted by MTonge on August 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

Waterloo Road: Series 8

by Mark Tonge

It's been many a month since I last walked through the doors of 'Waterloo Road' back in Rochdale as an extra, and theres a sense of excitment as the new series drew closer and closer, and finally it's back, although I'm slightly dissapointed that I could not take part in the series, after taking part in the last 3, due to its move to Scotland. Now Waterloo Road is back for a magnificent 8th series, of course this time it's not based in the dreary suberbs of Rochdale, which to some people is a massive mistake, but in my opinion the series enjoyed 7 excellent series in that school and it had outgrown it. It was time for a change and the Scottish were calling. 

Taking only a small number of the old cast with it, 'Waterloo Road' is now a new school under the same name. A place where the pupils don't have to pay a penny thanks to Lorraine Donnegan (Daniela Denby-Ashe) who is a multi-millionaire investing in the school. The origionals from series 1; Grantly Budgen (Phillip Martin Brown) and Tom Clarkson (Jason Done) are still amongst the cast and merge seamlessly into their new environment. Other recurring cast members include; Janeece Bryant (Chelsee Healey)Josh Stevenson (William Rush), Daniel Chalk (Mark Benton), Jodie Allan (Katie McGlynn), Michael Byrne (Alec Newman), Sian Diamond (Jaye Jacobs), Tariq Saddiqui (Naveed Choudhry), Harley and Pheonix Taylor (Kane Tomlinson Weaver & Kaya Moore) and Maggie Croft (Melanie Hill). Amongst these old timers joins a new set of pupils and teachers trying to make their own special mark on 'Waterloo Road'; Audrey McFall (Georgie Glen), Christine Mulgrew (Laurie Brett), Gerard Findley (Alex Norton), Jade Fleming (Paige Meade), Angus Hancock (Benjamin Gur), Drew Kelly (Max Fowler), Connor Mulgrew (Shane O'Meara), Rhiannon Salt (Rebecca Craven), Imogen Stewart (Kirstie Steele), and Lulu Tsibi (Marlene Madenge).

If the first episode was anything to go by then we are in for one dramtic series, but then again when are we not. The school can't just have a quiet term (but thats why we love Waterloo Road). The series started with new pupils 'Jade Fleming' and 'Drew Kelly' joining the school using false names and addresses so that the school don't find out their past. They claim that they are brother and sister which must have been weird for them as they are actually boyfriend and girlfriend. Of course this news didn't stay hidden for long as the teachers instantly knew something was wrong and set about to find out what was up with them. Over the course of the episode we find out that Jade is actually pregnant with Drews baby, and is taken away to hospital after Drew pushes her over. Drew finds it hard to accept that the school is trying to separate the two of them to help Jade and the baby out, so goes to attack Michael Byrne (headmaster of Waterloo Road). This attack fails when Michael talks to him and realises that Drew needs help. Drew is then taken away by the police due to his mental state and the attack on Michael Byrne, and Jade is offered a place in the Waterloo Road student living house under the watchful eye of Maggie Croft and Grantly Budgen. I'm sure that this string of events is not over yet and there will be more to come from the pair.

For those who have watched Waterloo Road religiously for the last few series, we know that Daniel Chalk (Mark Benton) has had a crush on Janeece Bryant for a while now and many have been wondering if 'Chalky' will make his move. Finally he asks Janeece on a date to the cinema to which Janeece says yes. What will come of this who knows, as we know that the actress Chelsee Healey is departing the series after being in the series from the start. Who knows, but we here at 24ent definitely want something to happen for Chalky, after all he deserves it.

We hear at the beginning of the episode that Denzil Kelly (Reece Douglas) was killed in the car accident which happened at the end of last series putting an end to months of speculation of who got hit. Denzil will be missed around the school by many of his fans. We also find out that Tariq Saddiqi (Naveed Choudhry) was hit in the accident and is now paralysed from the legs down and is in a wheelchair, which leaves this avenue to be explored in later episodes.

We know from past experience that 'Waterloo Road' never lets us down with its plot, some which may seem far fetched but nevertheless entertaining that this series will be exciting as usual and will provide us with drama, suspense, tension, and will leaves us feeling down, happy, sad, and with an overwhelming sense of joy as we watched the series and its story unfold. 

You can catch Waterloo Road every Thursday at 8pm on BBC1, or on BBC Iplayer anytime after this. It's worth a watch I promise you.

Categories: TV

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