Nick Tilsley is to be left fearing for his health next week after he loses his temper with Bethany’s tormentors. Nick – who used to suffer extreme mood swings following a brain injury – will grow concerned that his old problems have resurfaced when he grabs old of bully Lauren’s handbag and throws it across the street.
The incident comes at a fraught time for the Weatherfield businessman who has just learned that the deal to buy a restaurant has fallen through. Couple that with fiancee Carla’s secret about her recent one-night-stand with Robert and you have to wonder what reaction Nick would have should he discover the truth.
Here, actor Ben Price reveals all about Nick’s demons and what the future holds for his and Carla’s relationship as their wedding day nears…
Nick’s health seems to have been under better control recently – so why do you think he suddenly loses it with Bethany’s bullies this week?
He’s moving into a place where he’s not got a business, which was important to him. He’s a bit lost. He gets the news of his new restaurant purchase falling through – he’s the type of man who likes control and now he’s out of control. The thing with the bullies catches him completely unawares. He’s stressed and they’re quite rude. And he really loses it.
How does he process what’s happened and what is he most scared of?
He realises how extreme his reaction was. The lack of control scares him – Nick’s all about control.
When incidents like this happen, does he feel resentful towards David for causing the crash?
No, I don’t think he does. They talk about it, actually. I think he feels, you know, that he’s a grown up. He slept with his brother’s wife after all.
Why does Nick insist on keeping his fears to himself and ask David not to tell anyone?
He doesn’t want people feeling sorry for him, plus he’s worried and doesn’t want Carla to know. He’s not sure what to do.
Where does Nick go from here? Is he brave enough to confront the problem head on?
He is brave but right now Nick’s panicking that he will lose Carla because she’s not tough enough to take this. Leanne is, funnily enough. Carla would like to think she is, but she isn’t.
How does Nick feel when Sarah asks him to be Harry’s godfather?
I think he’s set himself up as the man of the family, the patriarch, that man who is missing for all of them – David’s father, Nick’s father, a sensible male for Gail! So I think he’s very happy to be asked.
Are his health issues likely to distract him in the lead up to his wedding?
His injuries are coming out gradually and he’s getting a bit snappy. His patience goes. Like others who have had this kind of head injury, it could affect him for the rest of his life. Whether that’s the reason if it all collapses, I don’t know.
Do you feel sorry for Nick, knowing that he is still in the dark about Carla’s night with Robert?
I guess, but Nick’s pretty stable. It’s not nice that he’s in the dark, but he’s not a jealous guy and he’s quite willing to admit his own shortcomings.
Alison King has said that she loves Nick and Carla’s relationship and didn’t want Carla to cheat! Do you feel the same since being paired up with her?
You could see these characters were very different, but could find something in each other. The affair thing’s difficult because, in an ideal world, it wouldn’t happen. But I can see why they’re doing it. For once, Carla had found love and she wanted that happy ending.
What is Alison like to have as a leading lady?
She’s amazing, she’s a fantastic actress.
Are you looking forward to filming the scenes in which Nick inevitably finds out about Carla’s betrayal? Potentially he could really let rip?
Yes, I’m sure he would, but I think he’d get past it. It’s not black and white for Nick like it is with David – there are grey areas. He’d think about it and get angry. but then he’d go, well, who am I?
Do you get members of the public in the supermarket trying to warn you about Robert?
Hardly at all. I get more people asking me not to leave, because Ali’s leaving. That’s what happening at the moment.
Nick’s friendship and partnership with Leanne is really sweet after everything they’ve been through. Are you glad they overcame their difficulties?
Yes, I am. Leanne has been through a great deal but she’s been incredibly forgiving. He was in love with her once too.
Do you think Nick has it in him to ever recover from Carla’s betrayal?
Yes, I do. Nick is similar to Leanne in that they’re both forgiving. They’re always looking at things from a position of forgiveness. Unlike someone like Tracy, who’s always looking for someone to blame.
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