They’ve only been married for a few months but Sarah Barlow (Tina O’Brien) looks like she’s single again after husband Adam Barlow (Sam Robertson) walked out over his suspicion she is covering for killer Gary Windass (Mikey North). Is it all over for the Coronation Street newly-weds?
Aggrieved Adam asked his wife outright if she thought her bad boy ex murdered missing loan shark Rick Neelan, and despite Gary confessing to her he did the crime to protect her, the torn Mrs Barlow continued to keep the deadly secret – why is she jeopardising her marriage?
“Sarah feels a huge responsibility about what Gary did,” O’Brien tells RadioTimes.com in an exclusive interview. “He did this for her, even though it’s awful. She’s very ambiguous with Adam and doesn’t admit Gary confessed, and just says if he did do it, then it was in self-defence and she doesn’t believe he deserves to go to prison for that. He’s got kids, he’s about to get married.
“It’s a massive error of judgment and she doesn’t agree with what he did,” she continues. “And she hates herself for lying, but she knows what Gary has been through in the past with PTSD in the army. She does not want to be the person to tell the truth and throw him under the bus.”
All Adam can see is a big betrayal from his wife to her old flame, so he packed a bag and went to stay with Daniel Osbourne believing Sarah doesn’t love the legal eagle as much as the brooding builder.
“She feels stuck not being able to confide in Adam, plus Gary knows her secret about being involved with Callum Logan’s death and he’s protected her so far. I think the marriage is doomed at the moment but you never know. She definitely still loves him.”
As the week continues Gary prepares to marry Maria Connor, but has a wobble when Adam angrily tells him he thinks Sarah is still not over him. This leads to a charged moment between the exes which may be the final nail in the coffin for the Barlows’ happy ending, and is just the latest repercussion of Sarah lying to the police about.
“I don’t agree with what she is doing,” O’Brien candidly observes. “But that’s what makes it interesting to play and put yourself in someone else’s position. People are good at having opinions and disagreeing, a character might not behave necessarily within your standard of values or choices, but I have to see this situation from Sarah’s perspective to get why she is doing this.
“Sarah is coming from a misguided place of protecting Gary because of her feelings of responsibility and guilt, and not wanting to be the one who ruins everything for him.”
Never mind the damage done to her marriage and future happiness, by covering up a crime there must be more consequences around the corner?
“This will obviously have to come back to bite her and she’ll have to face the repercussions – or maybe she won’t. Not many people know the truth about Callum, that’s never come out. It’s varying shades of grey, there is no right or wrong in her decisions.
“Protecting Gary and not being honest with the police doesn’t make her a bad person – although it doesn’t make her a good one either! It just makes her flawed, but maybe everyone is?”