Coronation Street boss Kate Oates hit back at Kate Garraway after the Good Morning Britain host described same-sex kissing as “shocking” TV.
Interviewing Oates alongside co-host Charlotte Hawkins, Garraway asked if soap was going too far with David Platt’s rape storyline.
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“I suppose what parents might worry about is it feels like Corrie is getting more and more shocking. I remember – because I am very old – the first lesbian kiss on Brookside and the first gay man kiss on EastEnders,” Garraway said.
“Now in tonight’s episode of Coronation Street we’re going to see the character David Platt drugged and sexually assaulted in a gay sexual assault.”
Oates, who was appearing on the show to discuss the upcoming storyline, responded, “I’ve got two points to address there really. First of all, you used a gay kiss as an example of shocking television and it’s really, really important that nobody thinks a gay kiss is shocking television.”
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) March 16, 2018
Garraway then clarified that she had meant the kisses were “groundbreaking thing at the time”, a point Oates used to strengthen her argument.
“Exactly,” she said, “and that’s what’s interesting – it was at the time and now it’s been normalised – quite rightly, because to think that a gay kiss is shocking television is really, really disturbing.”
“This is life, this is how people should be free to live,” Oates continued. “With something like a rape storyline, male sexual assault happens. One in ten rapes that happen in the UK will be with a male victim.
“This needs discussion. Do it carefully, do it with consideration. I’m really delighted you mentioned those kisses as something that soaps have done to help change society for the better.”
Earlier this week, Oates also addressed viewer’s concerns in the latest issue of Radio Times.
“I realise that, at the moment, Corrie is divisive and I will quite happily accept that it’s darker,” she said. “But one of the reasons we’ve decided to portray male rape in the show is to raise awareness over an important issue.”
She added, “With a culture of silence, and a lack of encouragement or support around emotional literacy, many men struggle to talk, not just about sexual assault but about a range of issues. And this has a huge impact on our society.
“I am proud that the team at Coronation Street are doing our bit to bring into daylight an issue that is all too often hidden away.”
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