Okay, so next weekend is the weekend of homosexual angst, where katie__pillar and I rewatch the whole of the John Paul and Craig love story from Hollyoaks, all seventeen hours of it. It has come to my attention that some of you out there don't actually have a clue what I'm talking about, therefore I bring you the world's most rubbish primer, in the vain hope that maybe someone, somewhere will request it for yuletide and I will FINALLY get to write their epic happy ever after. Okay, so it's more a quick overview of their story with accompanying pictures than a primer, yeah yeah.
(Mostly this is for roga, who unfortunately said "who are John Paul and Craig?" when we were discussing poor Matthew's broken penis and yuletide nominations earlier.)
note: I do already have at least three notebooks full of versions of their happy ever after. I'm not even kidding. There are probably more but these are the three from the shelf behind my head:
Firstly, this is John Paul McQueen.
And this is Craig Dean.
When the story starts, Craig – who has previously been a bit of a comic character, always coming up with schemes to make money or get girls – is just about to start upper sixth (final year in high school) for the second time, after he didn't get the A level grades he needed to get into Trinity College Dublin, his university of choice. All of his friends have left school and he doesn't really know anyone, and the first person he meets is John Paul McQueen, who is just about to start upper sixth for the first time.
John Paul is the only son in a family of very strong women (Jackie, Mercedes, Tina and Michaela) who all have different fathers and are basically only just on this side of the law. Jackie is just out of prison. Craig's mum has married the landlord of the local pub, and Craig lives above the pub with his sister Steph and occasionally, his older brother Jake, and his dickhead stepbrother, Darren. Jake has ~issues~ and has just knocked down and killed a woman in the street, who obviously is the mother of one of the kids in Craig's new class at school, Sonny. Craig has always been reasonably popular and now he is not popular at all, and Sonny won't leave him alone.
And then, very quickly, he becomes BFF with John Paul, who is hiding a secret. What's that? OH YES. John Paul is gay, and has a crush on Craig. Craig is oblivious, and spends some quality time trying to get the pretty girl in their class to date him.
This is Sarah.
She is super pretty and as such is never allowed to wear anything normal. She is always being dressed in the most stupid clothes, and once they make her a model later on, her clothes get even MORE ridiculous. She starts going out with Craig, and so that they can double date, her best friend Hannah starts making a play for John Paul.
This is Hannah.
She is besotted with John Paul, poor thing, but John Paul is gay. Anyway, John Paul isn't out yet and he tries to not be gay by dating Hannah, but obviously it doesn't work out and he tells Craig he's gay and in love with him and Hannah and John Paul split up and Hannah's descent into anorexia becomes the focus of Hannah's storylining for a while.
But how does Hannah find out that John Paul is gay?
Um. She walks in on this. You can see her in the background.
Yes, that is Craig kissing John Paul. Not that Craig is gay. Or in love with John Paul. Or has any feelings for him at all(the dialogue for this moment is Craig saying "I love you. I love you." Yeah.)
There are two major problems with this particular Hollyoaks storyline.
1. Hollyoaks has clearly never heard of bisexuality. At all. Craig spends two years saying "I'm in love with Sarah. I'm in love with John Paul. HOW CAN THIS BE. I still like girls! I CAN'T BE GAY" which is a little frustrating bearing in mind there is a whole label that accounts for liking both boys and girls. It's a nice label, I subscribe to it myself.
2. It is essentially a cheating storyline, which normally I do not like.
Sometimes you have to put such things aside however, for the sake of two people in love.
So, stuff happens, and Craig keeps on going out with Sarah, and John Paul is lonely and alone because he and Craig aren't friends after the kiss thing, because Craig is NOT GAY, and he is determinedly not gay for his vaguely homophobic family. John Paul is most determinedly gay, now, and his family are pretty awesome about it, and his mum, Myra, is really great about it.
During this time, Craig has some serious angsting going on, and he decides the best way to demonstrate this is by some pretty spectacular cardigan choices. Please see my icon for a example of his cardigan of homosexual angst. katie__pillar and I like to dress up in our cardigans of homosexual angst for our annual viewing parties. Well, mine is a jumper, and last year it was a scarf and socks, but the intention is there. Fairisle is not cheap. Luckily Primark mens have a selection of delightful angst sweaters this year and I have partaken. Here is the cardigan itself. Mine is a homage to the original, and has deer instead of snowflakes. I feel Craig would approve.
Then Spike shows up. Spike is a DJ, like John Paul wants to be. Spike is awesome and hot and has tattoos and also: likes John Paul.
John Paul and Spike start going out.
This is Spike. Don't ask the context. Sometimes it's better not to know.
Craig is SUPER SUPER SUPER JEALOUS, and keeps trying to tag along with John Paul all the time and he HATES Spike and has no idea why. His jealousy is ridiculous. Poor Craig. In Hollyoaks no one knows what bisexuality is. He thinks he needs to fit in and only like girls or boys. Poor boy. He's never going to achieve self-actualisation like that.
Basically, what happens is that Craig hits breaking point, walks out of an A level exam and goes over to John Paul's to tell him how he feels. Which leads to this:
Yes. They do a lot of lying around partially clothed. There's one sex scene where they end up wearing more clothes than they did before they started. Theirs is a special kind of love. The 6.30pm weekday evening clothed kind. Anyway, this leads to a couple of months of them sneaking around and being in love and John Paul begging Craig to pick him over Sarah, and Craig refusing to, and telling John Paul he loves him but being too scared to be gay. OR BISEXUAL, HOLLYOAKS, OMFG.
And then, because Craig is very, very mixed up and so screwed up he's a total dick, he asks Sarah to marry him, and John Paul is devastated. So devastated that he arranges it so that Sarah discovers John Paul and Craig in bed together at their engagement party. Seriously, they're all dicks, but they are also young and this is a soap where they seriously cannot write for shit, even when they have a good storyline to play with (see also: Luke). I once devised the Hollyoaks fire triangle:
Where oxygen = actors, heat = storyline and fuel = script. With Hollyoaks you never, ever get all three at the same time. With John Paul and Craig you either screw up on the script or the storylining front, it's ridiculous.
ANYWAY. What happens now is that Craig comes to his senses and tells Sarah he loves her and he's sorry, but he can't be with her, and tells John Paul that he loves him. They come out to everyone! It's great! Craig is about to leave for university in Dublin, and he asks John Paul to come with him! IT'S A HAPPY ENDING.
OR IS IT.
(for those of us living through the actual story as it happened live: THIS WAS SHIT)
They get as far as the airport, and John Paul realises that Craig is still ashamed to be seen with him. He can't kiss John Paul in public, or hold his hand. So John Paul leaves him, and goes home, and Craig leaves for Dublin.
FOR GOOD. HE LEAVES THE SHOW.
I take to my bed in protest.
Then get up again.
Wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff happens. Time passes. John Paul gets two texts from Craig over the course of the year, telling him he misses him. John Paul falls for a Catholic priest named Kieron.
This is Kieron.
Don't be surprised, this is Hollyoaks. Kieron leaves the priesthood for John Paul, and they set up home together in a flat owned by their friend Niall. Now, because this is Hollyoaks, Niall is secretly John Paul's evil half-brother, who John Paul's mother Myra left on the church steps when she was thirteen years old. Myra and Kieron are, unbeknownst to Niall and the rest of the family, trying to find out what happened to baby Niall. Niall is a total nutjob and has plans to take revenge on Myra and the family she chose to keep.
Kieron asks John Paul to marry him, and John Paul says yes even though he's unsure and still in love with Craig. It happens. He's trying to find a way of getting out of the engagement without hurting Kieron when, one day, he's sitting outside the smoothie shack and who does he see over the top of a strawberry smoothie?
Craig. Fresh from a year at university.
Look, he's all grown up now. He has stubble and everything. Craig also wants John Paul back, and he's grown up and matured and John Paul is in love. They have sex, it's awesome. John Paul goes back to break things off with Kieron.
(Everything in Hollyoaks happens in the wrong order. You have to let those things go, because John Paul and Craig are an awesome couple, aside from that).
Anyway, here is the worst thing Hollyoaks has ever done, except for hitting Max with that taxi: Niall, evil Niall, has found out that Kieron has figured out that Niall is Myra's secret baby, and because he can't have anyone find out, he kills Kieron. Yes, that's right, he KILLS HIM. Only he makes it look like suicide and John Paul obviously blames himself and oh god, you have to pretend this part doesn't happen. You have to, otherwise it all goes to shit. In my head, John Paul and Kieron break it off, and Kieron goes to find a wonderful guy who is right for him and isn't in his first year at university, and John Paul feels guilty for cheating on him that one time with Craig and not telling him how he was feeling before he went and had sex with his ex (you see how I could write this better than Hollyoaks can?) and John Paul is sad.
But in actual Hollyoaks and not in my head Hollyoaks, John Paul is sad, and then he decides to make a go of it with Craig, but not before Niall has tried to kill him too. (Obviously) (Ignore this part too, it makes for a better story). Only! When he gets to Craig's place, CRAIG HAS ALREADY LEFT.
CAN JOHN PAUL MAKE IT TO THE TRAIN STATION IN TIME TO CATCH CRAIG BEFORE HE LEAVES FOR THE AIRPORT.
YES, yes he can. He catches up with him in front of a POSTER OF A SUNSET.
AND THEN THEY GET THEIR SUNSET HAPPY ENDING WHEN CRAIG TELLS HIM HE LOVES HIM AND KISSES HIM, IN PUBLIC, UNPROMPTED.
And then they ride off into the sunset together, not even kidding.
AND HERE ARE SOME FANVIDS.
Pretend trailer for the first half of the story:
Fanvid to TOGETHER IN ELECTRIC DREAMS. No, you didn't dream that:
And seriously, this girl makes the BEST fanvids. The clips she uses are great. She used to have a lot more but she's only got seven vids on her account now, which is a shame, because she is ace.
And next weekend Katie and I are going to rewatch the whole thing, as is our tradition, and such things are made of magic.
Also the M button on my keyboard is buggered and I like that letter. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm Bugger.