Coronation Street fans are reeling from the revelation Robert Preston (Tristan Gemmill) has not only had a secret fling with feisty single mum Vicky Jefferies (Kerri Quinn), he’s got her pregnant – but has now dumped her for another try with old flame Michelle Connor (Kym Marsh).
Friday 14th June’s hour-long episode saw Robert’s dreams come true by reuniting with ‘Chelle, who begged him to take her back following their emotional split back in March 2019 when they clashed over their differing opinions on having a child.
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Viewers then saw Robert sneak off to see Vicky, introduced in September 2018 as the gobby mum of teenage tearaway Tyler Jefferies (Will Barnett) who corrupted Simon Barlow (Alex Bain) and got schoolgirl Amy Barlow (Elle Mulvaney) pregnant. Vicky has popped in and out of the show ever since, clashing with numerous locals, briefly working at Underworld and being on the receiving end of loan shark Rick Neelan’s (Greg Wood) angry side as one of his clients.
As it transpired Robert and Vicky had been in a secret relationship for a while. He cruelly dumped her insisting he wanted to focus on his business, not admitting he was actually back with his ex. Later, we saw crying, rejected Vicky home alone with a Father’s Day card intended for Robert telling him he was about to become a father… Meanwhile, Robert is making plans to propose to Michelle!
RadioTimes.com hears from Gemmill, who leaves the Street later this year, about Robert’s dilemma and double life.
How will Robert react to the news he is going to be a dad?
At the moment Robert obviously doesn’t even know Vicky is pregnant and is completely unaware he has all of this to come. As he is getting things back on track with Michelle finding this out will definitely come as a shock, and make his life a lot more difficult than he would hope.
What do you think of Robert having a secret double life juggling two women?
You do hear these crazy stories where people intended to live these double lives don’t you? I don’t think that’s the case with Robert though. He gets into it by accident, he and Michelle had split up and he had this fling with Vicky. She obviously takes it a bit more seriously than he does, but he thinks he’s doing the decent thing as soon as things are back on with Michelle and tells Vicky that whatever they had, it’s over now.
How does Robert deal with lying to Michelle?
The lies catch up with him really… He intends to tell Michelle at some stage he had a little fling when they were apart and she probably understand. But Vicky being pregnant complicates that and he is obviously sensitive towards Michelle with all the horrendous experiences she has been through losing Ruairi. So, he keeps it from her to protect her feelings – but of course the longer he keeps something like this quiet, the heavier the weight will be. Now it’s about time for Robert to come clean, but will he?
Will this affect the audience’s opinion of Robert?
I’m sure they will see him as absolute cheat and a snake, because you can’t do anything to harm the Connor women – they are the heart and soul of Coronation Street! It’s going to be interesting, I hope the audiences come on his journey a little bit and realise he’s in a bit of a corner as it escalates out of his control. Robert spends a lot of time trying to fight fires.
What advice would you give to Robert?
Just be honest! I’m reading the script thinking, ‘Dude, just tell her! Michelle loves you, you love her. If you are meant to be together, this is the sort of thing you could probably get over!’
Do you think Robert and Michelle will have a happy ending?
I’d like to think so, but this a soap opera so there are always many obstacles thrown in the way! Robert has a very tricky period ahead of spinning two plates at the same time, without one plate finding out about another plate’s existence. Sooner or later all the plates will come crashing down!
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