Just lock up your troubles

Every now and then, it becomes necessary to lock friends and family in the cellar.

God knows I've done it too many times to remember.

In fact, I spent much of the past two weeks locked in a cellar myself, following an amusing mix-up involving a lawnmower repair man, a congress member of the World Bridge Federation, and a Charles Dickens look-alike.

It made for a funny story at the weekend round of cocktail parties, but it meant last week's column didn't get to the post office in time.

And plenty has been happening - much of it relating to locking people in cellars.

Two weeks ago, I brought you the news of Coronation Street's cellar-locking debacle.

Little has changed since: Chesney and Charlotte's parents are still below ground level, though at least they are untied. I wish I could say the same about the Charles Dickens look-alike, though he did bring it upon himself.

But I digress.

Since the latest Coronation Street storyline, locking people in cellars has become the activity du jour on soaps. Zac Smith (Mike Edward) in Shortland Street has got, like, totally into it.

Unlike 99% of characters on Shortland Street, Zac is not a brilliant surgeon. He began as a builder on the show almost 20 years ago, and is now a nurse.

He is also a very, very bad man.

Zac could best be described as a love-rat with an increasingly obvious penchant for extreme villainy.

He clearly spends far too much time in the gymnasium doing the Charles Atlas course for 97-pound weaklings.

Incidentally, Charles Atlas was born Angelo Siciliano. He took the name ''Atlas'' after a friend told him he resembled the statue of Atlas on top of a hotel in Coney Island.

He legally changed his name in 1922. True story.

And to think; they used to call him ''Skinny''!

Anyway, before Christmas, Zac sexually assaulted Roimata(Shavaughn Ruakere).

Then he drugged Roimata's beau, Dr T. K. Samuels (Benjamin Mitchell).

Then he kidnapped Roimata, bound and gagged her, and locked her in ... a cellar! Who can forget Roimata's first appearance - on January 26, 2011, if my memory serves me well - when she breezed on to the screen with the classic line ''Kia Ora, I'm from the bureau''.

Surprisingly, the long running, disturbingly watchable soap that TV2 runs five nights a week ended on Friday with the drama unresolved.

It was almost as if somebody did that on purpose to make you want to watch the outcome the following Monday.

Coincidence? There's no way of knowing.

But know this - under television soap rules, Zac Smith's uppance must come.

It may have already happened.

 

-Charles Loughrey