Coronation Street ‘to introduce gay character’ after lesbian Rana dies

Josh Jackman March 26, 2019
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Kate Connor, played by Faye Brooks, cradles her partner Rana Habeeb, played by Bhavna Limbachia, on Coronation Street.

Coronation Street killed off lesbian character Rana last week. (ITV)

ITV’s Coronation Street is set to introduce a new gay character, according to reports.

Auditions were reportedly held last week to find an actor to play Kai, a talented young black footballer who will come out to his brother in his first scene, according to The Sun.

The new character, who is rushed into this revelation after a gay man knocks on the door to their family home, will not have come out to his parents when he first appears on the show.

ITV has refused to comment on the report but did not deny that the storyline was set to take place on the show.

The news about the ITV soap emerged just days after lesbian Muslim character Rana Habeeb was killed off before the show could air its first same-sex wedding.

What happened to Rana Habeeb in the Coronation Street roof collapse?

Coronation Street faced backlash for killing off Rana, who was played by Bhavna Limbachia, in the show’s March 19 episode.

Rana died on her wedding day after a roof collapse in the Underworld factory.

The character, who had been set to wed Kate Connor, played by Faye Brooks, had gone into the building to get her bag when the ceiling caved in.

Although she survived the incident, she got trapped in the factory and was killed following a second roof collapse.

Watch the Coronation Street scene here:

The couple exchanged wedding vows as Kate cradled Rana in the rubble, just before she passed away.

In her exit interview released by ITV, Limbachia, who previously hinted that Rana’s wedding day was in jeopardy, explained that it was her decision to leave the show.

She said she had wanted Rana to be killed off, explaining: “When I told Kate Oates and Iain McLeod that I wanted to leave the show to try other things, it was my decision and my choice for Rana to die because it was the only fitting end to the character.

“Kate and Rana had fought so hard to be together and they had been through thick and thin together.”

“The only way to go was if Rana were to die. Rana would never leave Kate, ever.”

Coronation Street star Bhavna Limbachia

She continued: “I felt that if they were to be separated, they had to be torn apart and it couldn’t have been their decision.

“The only way to go was if Rana were to die. Rana would never leave Kate, ever.”

The 34-year-old actor also said she was “proud to be an ally for the LGBT+ community.”

Kate Connor, played by Faye Brooks, kisses Rana Habeeb, played by Bhavna Limbachia, on ITV show Coronation Street.
Kate Connor and Rana Habeeb attracted a passionate queer following. (ITV)

She added: “It wasn’t something that I knew enough about so when I was approached with this storyline, I felt it was important to educate myself about the LGBT+ community and that has changed me as a person.”

Many fans complained that the plot line was yet another example of a show playing into the Bury Your Gays trope.

“So #corrie has decided to follow the bury your gays trope too? Disappointing tbh,” one person wrote on Twitter.

Another said: “#corrie has no excuse for its blatant, homophobic ‘bury your gays’ trope. Shame on them. F**king heartbroken.”

Related topics: Bhavna Limbachia, Coronation Street, ITV, soaps, Television, UK

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