Coronation Street star Lucy Fallon has defended the soap’s dark storylines, saying they raise crucial awareness about issues.
The actress was at the centre of a grooming plot, when her character Bethany Platt was targeted by Nathan Curtis (Chris Harper) and a gang of abusers.
The soap has also seen harrowing storylines such as the suicide of Aidan Connor (Shayne Ward) and the rape of David Platt (Jack P Shepherd).
Fallon said: “Personally I prefer watching the darker stuff anyway.
“All of the Corrie storylines we have done like the suicide, the grooming storyline, Jack’s rape storyline, they have been so well done and so amazing and raised so much awareness.
“The phone lines for things went up 1,700% and stuff like that.
“So in that respect I don’t think they should stop doing the dark storylines and I think Corrie is really good at having the dark storylines but characters like Sally and Tim (Metcalfe) keep the light-heartedness as well.”
Asked about the criticism from of the plotlines from the soap’s older fanbase, Fallon said she wanted to please both older and younger viewers.
She said: “Both audiences are important but my opinion is, if you were watching something like the rape storyline or the grooming storyline or the suicide storyline or whatever and you think ‘This is too uncomfortable, I cant watch this’, I feel that says more about you.
“These things are raising awareness and people are actually sat at home who do know someone who killed themselves or does know someone that was raped and for those people it is so important that we do these stories on a platform like Corrie so we raise that awareness.
“Someone sat in the comfort of their own home saying they found it uncomfortable I think is quite sad. We do it so well, the balance is really good.”
Lucy added that her character is still dealing with the fallout of her grooming ordeal, adding: “We’ll always see those things come into any storylines that come up in the future, because when we spoke to survivors who’d been through similar things, one thing they said was that this is something that stays with you forever.
“It’s not something where in a year you say ‘OK I’m fine now’.
“That’s something that is quite important and will remain in any storylines that we do, that she will always have that with her.”
Coronation Street continues on ITV at 7.30pm.