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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Charlotte Tutton

Corrie 2023: Stephen targets Carla, 'colossal' Damon twist and 'shocking' teen plot

Coronation Street is lining up massive storylines and a mix of shocks, bombshells, devastation and joy in the year ahead.

Soap producer Iain MacLeod has revealed several characters will take centre-stage in a number of key storylines to air in 2023.

There's an unexpected and show-changing romance story, as Damon Hay 'turns heads' amid his "dangerous" actions on the street.

The soap will air the conclusion to he far-right storyline too, as Max Turner must face up to the fact he's been groomed by an extremist group.

Nina Lucas and Roy Cropper also have big scenes ahead, while the younger cast will once again feature in a big new storyline that is set to "shock" viewers.

Abi Franklin will find herself caught up in the youngsters' drama, as she's tasked with uncovering who is telling the truth - while there's other stuff for her in the pipeline too.

Stephen Reid continues to go to desperate lengths to hide his killer actions, while scenes will also see him find a new target in Carla Connor after she humiliates him.

Nina Lucas and Roy Cropper have big scenes ahead (ITV)

Todd Grimshaw, Paul Foreman and Billy Mayhew will band together to help teen Summer Spellman, amid "dangerous" scenes with Mike and Esther.

One of the men is set for a big storyline of their own, while it's also teased romance is on the horizon for a former couple.

There's also moments of worry, possible danger and hopefully some happiness ahead for Daisy and Daniel, Fiz and Tyrone and Spider.

Speaking to The Mirror and other press Iain spilled, starting with Roy and Nina: "I love this story. Essentially, Nina has bought Roy a smart phone for Christmas. Nina think he needs to get with the programme and gets him this phone.

"Comedy ensues but then it takes a more serious hue because Roy decides one day, to go on an adventure. He has given his phone away and finds himself in a certain amount of jeopardy, which draws Nina into a certain amount of jeopardy.

Max Turner must face up to the fact he's been groomed by an extremist group (ITV)

"What starts off as a lighthearted story takes on a much more serious complexion that becomes about Roy and his love for Nina and vice versa.

"It draws Evelyn into the mix as well and I'm just loving their dynamic, this kind of similar age, both clearly having a massive depth of affection there that neither of them would admit."

On the end to the far-right storyline, he went on: "It will reach its climax in the first couple of months of the year. Over the course of 2023 Max will discover the error of his ways, and what we are doing after that is about him being deprogrammed and un-brainwashed and there's redemption on the horizon after what he's been through. The after effects will last for a very long time."

Of Spider's link to the plot, he added: "Spider has a part to play in unknitting it all at the end... he's definitely mixed up in Max's story and has a moment of heroism, and endangers his life somewhat. He shows himself to be a decent bloke trying to do decent things."

Damon Hay 'turns heads' amid his 'dangerous' actions on the street (ITV)

Of Damon, Iain said: "He's a dangerous character. At first he might be seen as a more sophisticated operator than Harvey. What we discover in the not too distant future is that this polished veneer is masking something every bit as dangerous and as brutal as Harvey is.

"He upends a lot of people's lives and brings criminality to the door of a family that could probably do with moving on from their past, but suddenly, wham, they are right back in the mess again.

"There's loads of stuff to play with as he reconnects with other family members and their lives as well. As the year goes on, he's got this magnetic attraction for a notable high-profile female character on the show, who is going to have her head turned in a way that has very far-reaching consequences.

"I'm currently working on storylines for June and there's a build-up and then a colossal explosion in that story involving Damon and this love story that will be on air in June.

Harvey could return (ITV)

"I'd love to think that at some point with that character, we can revisit Harvey… I would love to think that at some point we can get Harvey out on the street and get him in a room with Damon, who by the time Harvey would be able to get out him and Damon would be absolute blood enemies. The idea to have Harvey vs Damon at some point in the future is tantalising."

Iain also teased what was ahead for Stephen, and hinted Carla needed to watch her back.

He said: "Everyone should be worried. The whole cast is worried. Needless to say no bodies ever stay buried for long, so he encounters some fairly serious jeopardy in the form of Leo's dad Teddy, who turns up and has the whiff of suspicion around Stephen and thinks he might have something to do with Leo's disappearance.

"Of course we know what Stephen did the last time he was backed into a corner, so to what lengths will he go to rid himself of this new threat? [He becomes] increasingly desperate across the next 12 months or so, there is lots and lots to come.

"He sees his first step back on the ladder to the top of the international rag trade as getting the gig in Underworld, and then trying to topple the current queen of the pile Carla. There's this really good psychological warfare which begins with those two and of course it's all freighted with the knowledge on our part that we know he's killed someone.

"So when Carla is in there belittling him and making him make tea, undercutting him in front of clients, she's just unwittingly poking this hornet's nest and obviously at some point all the hornets do come out, but not probably in the way you will expect.

"If anyone predicts what Stephen does to Carla I will eat my hat. Honestly his plan is so out there and dark I'd be incredibly surprised if anyone spots it coming over the hill.

"[Carla and Peter's] story will centre on her war with Stephen. Peter's role in that is being deeply concerned about his wife's history with mental health problems.

"He will be put offside by trying to be overprotective in situations and trying to fight her battles for her, trying to intervene in unhelpful ways. They are bubbling along nicely but it's in readiness for this story later on.

Iain also teased what was ahead for Stephen, and hinted Carla needed to watch her back (ITV)

"Carla suddenly finds herself thrusted into Stephen’s crosshairs and in a certain amount of danger as a result of that, so that will be the thing that brings them back together again."

On Todd, Billy and Paul's looming storyline he revealed: "Romance is in the air for two of them, I will leave you to try and guess which of them it might be.

"I know historically there were very strong feelings from people who are team Todd and Billy, and then on the other side of the argument it's Paul and Billy.

"We've been back and forth with this with the writing team for years. We picked a team but actually whatever team ends up being a couple at the end of it, the story will be about all three of them.

Stephen Reid continues to go to desperate lengths to hide his killer actions (ITV)

"We see a lot of heart from Todd and a lot of deviousness in places. We also crash a huge story onto one of them that sort of causes fallen enemies to become best friends in secret. It's an interesting year for them. They are at the centre of one of our biggest stories."

Adding on the Mike, Esther and Summer surrogacy plot, he said: "It's gonna end badly for some of them. She finds herself in a certain degree of mortal danger... it's all quite exciting. Really it's in there to tell a story about that family group.

"In the end it's her three dads who save her from oblivion and reconnect her with who she was before she lost her way a bit, so we have got a nice, heartwarming aftertaste."

Iain also detailed the huge plot set to rock the teens, telling us: "We thought there's a huge story we can tell that features the young cast right at the heart of it.

"It's very relatable, very teenage. We're hoping it will be one of those stories that shocks people a bit and provokes awkward conversations in front of the television.

Abi Franklin will find herself caught up in the youngsters' drama (ITV)

"We're very fortunate as a show that we have got that cross-generational appeal where younger people might sit with their nan and watch Corrie. This storyline will encourage conversations that you'd never normally have in that cross-generational way, because it's tricky tonal territory.

"I'm very pleased with it, we're working across a number of charities to get the details right and fundamentally it's just about those brilliant young actors being the superstars they are.

"Much like with the Seb and Nina story, that drew in Roy and Abi, drew in cross-generational characters, this is exactly one of those. There's huge stuff for the people directly involved but then their parents, loved ones and families, the ripples spread out across the whole show."

On Abi's link to the plot, Iain revealed: "She is embroiled in one of the storylines I have mentioned. She becomes a key confidant to one of the youngsters in the big socially responsible issue story we're doing with these characters.

"She becomes their sort of surrogate mum and then has a big dilemma to face. Whose version of events does she believe? Who will she side with? It causes her to investigate her own history of substance abuse over the years.

Iain also detailed the huge plot set to rock the teens (ITV)

"There's a couple of things on the table we're toying with [for Abi], both of them are quite happy in flavour. One of them we really want to do but it's a bit too similar to another story we're telling at the moment so we're just having to wait.

"But essentially it involves Abi reconnecting with somebody from her past who transpires to be the last possible person you'd expect to find in Abi's backstory, and it will be a massive culture clash about Abi meeting somebody from her past she's got this historical connection with, who is like the polar opposite.

"That's in the pipelines. We're very keen to see Abi happy. We want her and Kevin to be happy but not too comfortable, because then it's a bit boring. So happy, but we will throw stuff at them."

For Fiz and Tyrone, he shared: "Hope develops this toxic curiosity about her dad that leads into some fairly interesting sort of blackly comedic territory. She becomes sort of obsessed with John Stape which causes problems for Fiz and Tyrone.

"So Fiz and Tyrone themselves, their troubles are behind them but they have some difficulty parenting Hope going forward. Without giving too much away Hope's behaviour ends up in a fairly acrimonious feud with one of her adult neighbours, that involves a chinchilla."

On Daisy and Daniel, he teased the arrival of her mother - while also spilling on their wedding, and a dangerous new plot for the couple.

He told us: "It's a story about a young woman being on the internet and the dangers that face influencers and high profile people.

"Daisy has a certain online following and essentially that brings her into a certain degree of danger as the wedding approaches. Most of the story is lighthearted, it's culture/class comedy between Daniel and Daisy. There is good fun to be had there but in the background, there's this creeping danger that arises from Daisy's online life.

"It takes a while for Daniel and Daisy to notice this danger is brewing, and by the time that lands we're into a really interesting, current, socially important story with a far-reaching psychological impact that runs across the whole of 2023, and threatens their relationship and leads to Daisy's faith in Daniel being shaken as she maybe has her heard turned.

"We do meet her mum in the middle. Her mum is chaotic, selfish, hates Jenny... she knows karate as well. She is played by Amy Robbins.

On Daisy and Daniel, he teased the arrival of her mother - while also spilling on their wedding (ITV)

"The moment I clapped eyes on her audition tape for that part it was just her. That provides a lot of lightness in the run-up to the wedding. It also illuminates some of Daisy's backstory. She presents as this very together, comfortable in her own skin, confident glamorous young woman but we discover her past is slightly sadder than that.

"We round out a lot of her backstory, I really feel for Daisy across this story. It's gonna be a really important story for us and one I don't generally see on television, and it's a long-runner so there's lots to play with for the new year for those two."

Iain ruled out any returns for the time being, but was hopeful Sharon Bentley could make a reappearance at some point. He also teased a "will they, won't they" romance story for Brian and Mary.

Coronation Street airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV1 and ITV X.

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