Coronation Street star Sue Nicholls has spoken out on criticism the show is becoming too dark.
Talking to RadioTimes.com at the unveiling of the soap’s extension to the set featuring the previously-unseen end of Victoria Street, the cobbles legend, who has played Audrey Roberts for almost four decades, addressed recent claims the soap is focusing too heavily on grittier plots, including Pat Phelan’s killing spree and Nicholls’ on-screen grandson David Platt’s rape.
“It’s good to bring this subject into focus, although one wishes it didn’t have to be,” says the actress. “David finds it difficult to talk about but maybe when it comes out it might help people if, God forbid, it happens to them so they can speak about it straight away.
“Although it’s a difficult subject and I know it depresses people to have all these storylines, and a bit of me understands, unless you can prove it does harm it can only do good. I know it will be done well and there has been a lot of research.”
As to the much-discussed current balance of light and shade in the show, Nicholls acknowledges the negative reaction from some quarters. “I’ll be honest when you see it on paper all the various issues coming out you think ‘Let’s have a bit of light’. But when you see how it materialises on screen it’s done so well and so accurately you realise it’s brought some things out into the open which is good.
“At the end of the day people are still watching, and there are lighter moments. One shouldn’t be too judgmental.”
Here’s our tour of the brand new Corrie set, dubbed ‘Wider Weatherfield’, which appears on screen from 20 April:
You can watch a 60-second rundown of next week’s episodes of Coronation Street below.
And visit our dedicated Coronation Street page for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers.