Coronation Street managed to pull off the soap shock of the year so far when they revealed Andy Carver wasn’t dead as everyone had assumed, but very much alive and being kept prisoner by Pat Phelan.
However, it would seem eight months in captivity is quite enough for Andy and he’s determined this week is his chance to escape.
Viewers were stunned on Friday night when it was revealed Andy, who we thought Phelan had killed with a laptop in January, was actually being held hostage in the cellar of a derelict house.
So the reason Phelan’s been acting so shady (even more so than usual) is now clear: his bags of shopping, his mysterious injuries, and his confession to the priest that he regrets something he’s done and “something [he’s] still doing.”
In tonight’s episodes, Andy decides the time has come to fight for his freedom and with the help of a handy rope, he waits for Phelan to come down those stairs.
Arriving in the basement to check on him, Phelan is taken aback when Andy pounces on him and tries to overpower him with the rope.
It’s obvious from Phelan’s other injuries this isn’t the first time his hostage has tried this, but will this be the time he succeeds?
When Phelan later returns home with a fresh gash on his face, it’s clear there’s definitely been a struggle. He’s snappy with daughter Nicola and he obviously has a lot on his mind.
Does that include how to find Andy and bring him back – or finish him off for good – before he exposes Phelan’s true colours to everyone?
Or did the baldy builder manage to get the better of his prisoner again, but is now realising he needs to tame Andy and stop him attacking him once and for all?
Not fully trusting her new-found father yet, Nicola is getting suspicious of his strange behaviour and decides to follow him.
Forced to think quickly, Phelan tells her he’s renovating a derelict house and it’s taking up a lot of time and energy and that’s why he’s so stressed. But will she buy it?
It might be a good story – until she sees him disposing of a mattress – will she think more of it than he realises?
And just why is he getting rid of the bed? Is it because he no longer needs it? Has he offed Andy for real this time? Or is he taking his victim’s only comfort away to punish him for trying to escape?
The net is certainly closing in, but now we know Phelan isn’t technically a killer, is there actually a redemption storyline in sight?