After a harrowing few months, the Bethany Platt grooming storyline reached its most traumatic moment yet on Friday as the teenager was gang-raped at a sex party held by her ‘fiancé’ Nathan.
But while viewers thought the episode would bring the storyline to its conclusion – and see evil Nathan start to pay – it seems that it is actually set to continue.
Despite Nathan being arrested on child exploitation charges after his sex parties were discovered, Bethany was shown putting her engagement ring on and kissing it in a clear sign that she’s planning to stay with him.
The episode saw Sarah race over to Bethany to rescue her – but too late to stop the abuse by Nathan and his friends.
Despite Sarah’s heartbroken pleas, Bethany also refused to have a physical examination that would potentially have helped to have him convicted.
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The storyline has been building up for a few months now with Thursday’s episode seeing complaints made to Ofcom. The episode involved Nathan burning Bethany with a cigarette.
The soap’s been airing at 9pm this week because of the Britain’s Got Talent semi-finals so the episodes have been on screen after the watershed, though many people feel it’s still too harrowing for that time slot.
The Corrie team have defended the storyline, and the important message its conveying.
A spokesman told Mail Online: “Coronation Street viewers will be aware that evil Nathan has been grooming vulnerable Bethany for many months.
“It’s an extremely complex and thought-provoking story which has been meticulously researched and hasn’t been undertaken lightly by the programme’s production team.
“In accordance with strict compliance regulations, what happens to Bethany was intentionally implicit and viewers were warned prior to transmission.
“Viewers affected by what happens were also directed to seek advice from the NSPCC who are supportive of this storyline and have advised the programme about the depiction of Bethany’s story.”
Let’s just hope Bethany leaves awful Nathan as soon as possible (and we can stop holding our breath for the whole of Corrie).