Season 1 Episode 64
Sky One Transmission Date:
Wednesday 20th May 1998
Conor, Sean, team
Zoe, Conor, Lynette, Des
GS: Biloo Kapur (Hari Dhillon) Doug Hastings (David Kennedy) Doctor Timothy Mersh (Ian Price) Frank Leboeuf (as himself)
Dean and Natalie are packing for their honeymoon; a fortnight in Barbados in which Dean predicts they will be spending more time in their hotel room than on any beach. In the youth team dressing room, the lads await Frank for their fate, and Conor and Sean wonder if Warren will turn up. Conor is first in, and to his surprise Frank tells him it has been decided he is being released from the club. Conor is confused, as well as shocked, and brings up the fact he has just signed a contract only a week ago. Frank explains to him that as a part of the original deal with his parents they gave him that contract when he turned seventeen, but have now decided he doesn't have a future with Harchester. But the club will still be paying him for the rest of that contract so he won't have to worry about money for at least a year.
Warren has arrived, and whilst unsure about themselves, he and Sean both believe Conor will be successful. Warren reminds Sean how he tried to punch the manager in the mouth so his own chances are even more reduced. Conor wants Frank to tell him why he came all the way to Ireland to bring him back when he now seemingly has no faith in him. Frank tells him he felt he deserved the opportunity but it just hasn't worked out, explaining when the game is on, Conor doesn't get going. Frank reminds Conor of David Platt's story, how he was told the same thing at Conor's age, but he dropped down a few leagues and ultimately proved himself. Frank offers to fax Conor's details to other clubs, hoping he will prove him wrong one day. Conor has to go back to the lads and tell them he's been sacked, and they are stunned. When Sean and Warren tell him he's got to fight this, Conor replies it's a decision all of the management have made. Morale is even more lower for the lads now, and Sean is in next.
Biloo pays Stephanie a visit at the hospital, where she tells him they are awaiting the latest tests with Georgina but she remains very ill. Biloo tells her a problem has arisen with the planning permission regarding BAJ's deal, and it's now in jeopardy. He suggests resurrecting Clive's deal. Stephanie tells him this can't be - she spoke to them this morning and everything's sorted, not to mention having the contract faxed over from the council. Biloo was not aware of this and Stephanie can tell. As Frank goes through the motions with Sean, he is expecting the worst, especially just after Conor. But Frank reveals Sean was an obvious choice for a professional contract. Sean is over the moon, especially after hearing he'll be getting the best wage he's ever had even before appearance money or win/draw/scoring bonuses. Frank reminds Sean he hopes he knows how important it is to keep his feet on the ground over this.
Dean is waiting for Sean outside, and Sean comes out to break the news... that he's made it! The two brothers celebrate loudly, but calm down when Conor appears. Conor congratulates Sean, who feels awkward and can only tell Conor how sorry he is for him. Stephanie has worked out that Clive has offered Biloo money. He tries to put out his story again that objections over planning will put the BAJ deal back for up to a year, but Stephanie tells him she's not stupid and knows planning permission doesn't work like that. When Biloo states it's entirely up to Stephanie she replies yes it is, and there's one thing for certain - she will never sell her club to Clive which Biloo can tell him personally - now she's fired him! Des goes into Conor, and Conor tells him he's flying home this afternoon, not knowing how he's going to tell his parents, as they really believed he was going to make it. Conor admits he himself wasn't so sure, and feels he did a lot of this for his parents, and then Frank for going to all the effort of asking him to come back.
Natalie is desperate to hear Sean's news, and then wants to celebrate his pro contract by making him look the part of a footballer. When Sean mentions how he hasn't been paid anything yet, she holds up her card and says he can pay her back, before they head off to do some serious shopping. It is finally Warren's turn, and Ian is sitting in with Frank for this one. Frank tells Warren that having reviewed his disciplinary record, they will be offering him a one-year-contract. Warren already flies off the handle, adding they can't for what he tried to do to Coates. Coates smirks that he could handle a maggot like Warren, but is impressed with Warren's passion and wishes some in the first team also shared it. Zoe has heard about Conor, and comes in to hug him. She asks him to stay until the end of the week but Conor needs to leave now. He says he'll show Zoe the sights of Newry when she comes to visit, and they share a kiss.
Frank tells Warren there are terms of his contract; he will be paid only £150 a week because he is not yet fit or strong enough for Premier League football. Warren does his best negotiating skills until Coates agrees to raise it to £200 rising to £300 when he puts on a stone in muscle. Frank goes to the Baker's to see Conor before he leaves, and tells him he meant what he said about dropping down a few leagues and then coming back. Conor says thanks but he's decided not to. Frank tells Conor he's a better person for coming back like he did, and knows he will be all right, before saying it's been a pleasure knowing him.
Dr. Mersh gives Stephanie the latest on Georgina - the liver is too damaged and he doesn't know how much longer it will function. Stephanie asks about the transplant and Dr. Mersh says they are looking but it's difficult. When Stephanie says money isn't an issue and she could fly Georgina somewhere, Dr. Mersh tells her in this timescale it wouldn't make any difference. Stephanie asks the hardest question that if a donor isn't found her daughter might die, and Dr. Mersh says she should prepare herself for that possibility. Stephanie is devastated.
Conor says goodbye to the Baker's, and as his taxi pulls away Warren comes chasing after him. Conor congratulates Warren on getting his contract, and Warren congratulates Conor on getting sacked, but tells him he's all right for a Paddy. They shake hands and Conor's taxi pulls off. Sean and Natalie are now looking at expensive sports cars, but Sean still hasn't his licence, so Natalie has to take them for a test drive. Warren returns to his flat to be met by Doug and another dodgy associate. Doug informs Warren they've heard he's signed his professional contract, and, clearly on behalf of Kenny, have come to do his knees in. Warren manages to make a quick getaway, only it involves him jumping from the balcony... with quite a fall to go!
AFTER THE CREDITS... In Zoe's room Sean says he's just seen Dean and Natalie off on their honeymoon. Zoe adds she's really going to miss Conor. They decide to go and celebrate being the ones left behind with a drink. Ian and Frank are having a drink in the boardroom looking forward to next season when Frank Leboeuf and has agent Chantelle walk in. Ian tells Frank he and the other Frank (Leboeuf) used to play together, and it would be great to bring him in to strengthen up their defence. Frank (Leboeuf) is up for it, and they go to have a guided tour of the ground with Ian while Frank (Patcham) wants to talk about how he once kicked Michel Platini.
· The first of DT’s end-of-season exoduses, though one of the smallest amounts of cast departures in the run, possibly owing down to several of this season’s departed regulars (Mike Jacobs, Vincent Osamabiku, Lucy Patcham) having spaced-out exits during the season.
Last appearances of Conor McCarthy (Michael Legge), Zoe Baker (Sam Loggin) and Stephanie Jacobs (Eva Pope).
· The Best: The youth team lads each finding out their fates, with crushing disappointment for Conor, but some great excited reactions from Sean and Warren. Stephanie letting Biloo know she's no fool when it comes to business, and her spectacular firing of him. Stephanie being told Georgina's final prognosis, also being what the viewer is left with too.
Continuity: Frank asks Sean to remember him to his dad when he gives him the call with his news.
· Additional Info: Frank Leboeuf, as seen here during his time as a defender with Chelsea (1996-2001).
Soundtrack: Blur: "Song 2", Pulp: “Help The Aged”
· Behind The Scenes: In what was probably the only case of it’s kind in DT’s whole run, with younger characters generally having a more prominent place in the show’s stories, the character of Zoe Baker actually became redundant before that of her parents. A reason for this being the character’s career ambitions and life journey now having no relevant place in the show’s settings. Whilst Des and Lynette had a strong connection to the show’s heart, the club and at this point youth team, Zoe’s destined university place had no purpose to be shown, and she would most definitely not have joined the canteen girls in the following season. We are told Zoe leaves during the summer for a gap year travelling in India, something that fits so much more with her character.
TV and Satellite Week episode synopsis
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