Written by Phil Redmond. Tx 11th January 1980
Tracey asks Duane how his father reacted to the loss of his bike. When he turns around she can clearly see – he’s sporting a black eye. Today this would have been developed as a major plot point, but here it’s just a fact and isn’t followed up. It’s not the first time during the early series that children either fear, or receive, domestic abuse from their parents. And as we’ll see later in this series, some of the teachers are also quite handy as well. It’s one of the clearest examples of how times have changed.
When the first year head Mr Curtis (Neville Barber) spots Duane’s black eye he asks how he came by it. When Duane tells him, all he does is sigh and lets the boy leave. He then shakes his head sadly at Miss Mooney and the matter is closed.
The friendship between Tracey and Duane is put under strain. Tracey finds herself teased by Karen, taunted that Duane’s her boyfriend, whilst Duane becomes friendly (after a shaky start) with Pogo. We also see the first signs of Pogo’s acquisitive nature – he sees putty in the windows and decides to take it. The downside of this is that it makes the new windows fall out!
Whilst Tracey and Duane had been friends at primary school, different interests now push them into different directions – and eventually Duane will team up with Pogo whilst Tracey and Karen will become best friends.
At present, Karen is friendly with Sally Forsyth (Sarah Summerfield). She’s complained of feeling ill and faint several times- this is another example of seeding a plot-point which will only come to fruition in a later episode.
The putty pilfering comes to an end after Mr Curtis impresses on everyone how dangerous it can be. But it’s put to good use by defacing the pictures of the teachers on the notice board. Mr Baxter, for example, is given a very fetching set of horns!