Over Christmas and into the New Year, lovers Peter Barlow and Tina McIntyre (Michelle Keegan) narrowly escape being caught in their illicit affair at least twice…
And while it all unnerves Tina, as Chris Gascoyne has been explaining, there’s no panic for his Corrie character Peter Barlow, given that this is not the first time he’s cheated on a wife!
But is he going to find his confidence leads to his downfall?
Here’s what Chris has been telling ITV about what’s ahead…
Q. Does Peter have any regrets about marrying Carla?
I wouldn’t say he has regrets about marrying Carla. She’s the love of his life, and I think he always intended to go through with it.
If anything, he’s maybe just relieved the wedding is over. Carla had become quite obsessed by the planning of it all. Even though it was Peter she was marrying, he was almost jealous of the attention Carla was paying to it!
Q. What are his feelings for Tina? Marriage hasn’t really stopped him wanting to pursue her…
While Carla was busy planning the wedding, Peter was given the chance to take his eye off the prize and had his head turned by someone who he felt was more understanding of him at that time.
The problem with Peter is temptation. He can never resist, and he just couldn’t help himself when Tina was giving him so much attention before the wedding.
But then since marrying Carla, I think Peter’s been making an effort to end things with Tina and he tells her they need to quit while they’re ahead. Whether he means it or not is another question…
As far as he’s concerned, he’s technically doing the right thing by ‘trying’ to end it. He tells Tina it might be best if she stops minding Simon, but then he can’t help but get jealous when he hears something’s been going on with her and Rob. He’s extremely confused.
Q. Peter knows Tina kissed Rob – how does he feel about this?
He’s insanely jealous about it, but at first, he tries to make out that it’s because he’s looking out for Tracy. But when he sees Tina getting out of a car with Rob, he ends up losing it. If Peter feels like something or someone he desires is slipping away from him, he doesn’t like it.
Q. So has Rob worked out that Peter fancies Tina then? Is it this that makes Peter attack Rob? Doesn’t he realise this makes him look more suspicious?
Peter has a go at Rob, but tries to do so in a way that sounds as if he’s just looking out for Tracy. So when Rob nearly blows Peter’s cover by mocking him for fancying the babysitter, Peter completely sees red.
Ironically, I don’t think Rob actually thinks Peter fancies Tina. He’s just winding Peter up because he’s created such an issue about Rob kissing her. Peter has to backpedal quite a bit after that. Tracy, Carla and Tina all demand to know what’s got into him.
Q. So when Tina storms round to the flat to ask him what he’s playing at, how does Peter react?
At that point, Peter has no choice but to admit to her that he’s incredibly jealous of her and Rob, and confesses that he madly desires her. Tina finds that hard to resist and they both struggle to control themselves at that point.
Q. When he hears someone coming up to the flat, how does he react? Does he assume it’s Carla?
They have to think very quickly. Luckily, Peter’s used to thinking on his feet and covering his tracks (laughs). In the end it turns out to be Roy, who has left a bag in their flat.
Peter bundles him back out of the door and Roy’s none the wiser whilst Tina hides in the bedroom. It’s Tina that struggles with that I think. She’s not used to being in this situation, whilst Peter is much calmer about it then she is. He has more experience and he’s no stranger to being unfaithful!
Q. Does Peter want a full-blown affair with Tina, or does he think a quick fling will get her out of his system?
When he tells Tina that he loves Carla and that he wants to forget about the kiss they had, he does means it, to an extent. He has no intention of leaving Carla. He loves his wife, although he does desire Tina. I think while he’s getting the best of both and not getting caught, he’s fine with that, but the worst thing that could happen would be for Carla to find out about Tina.
Q. Is he considering Tina’s feelings in this at all?
At the very beginning, Peter warns Tina off him. He says to her directly that if she gets involved with him, she’ll be on a journey to hell and back…
Once he’s married Carla, he does tell Tina that he loves Carla and won’t leave her. I think he does that to spare Tina’s feelings – he can probably tell she’s falling for him a little bit. In Peter’s mind, as long as he’s warned Tina about how dangerous it could all get, then he’s done all he can to protect her.
It’s up to her then if she wants to continue what they’ve got. He definitely doesn’t take advantage of her in that way.
Q. Is it fair to say Peter likes to live dangerously? Does he need constant thrills?
Peter repeats all the same patterns and all the same mistakes over and over again. It’s almost as if he can’t handle things going well for him. He and Carla have had such a struggle to be together, and now they’ve finally got married, he’s putting their relationship in jeopardy. He’s got an addictive personality, and if temptation comes into his sight he can’t resist it.
Q. Has he considered the repercussions of starting something with Tina? It wouldn’t just be his marriage but his career, too, if Carla found out?
Yes, I think that’s why he tells Tina they need to stop what they’re doing and tells her that he loves Carla, not her. But when he starts to see Tina as being unattainable when she kisses Rob, that makes him want her all over again.
He can’t help himself. I doubt Peter will get away with it forever though. I’ve no doubt there’ll be catastrophe on the horizon!
Q. Is temptation all the greater because they’re together a lot – with Tina minding Simon?
Yes I think so. Tina has not only been paying him attention, but is also very nice to Simon, which makes him warm even more towards her. So when he and Carla have got married, he knows he has to tell Tina it would be best if she didn’t mind Simon anymore – even though he knows Simon will be devastated, he thinks if he doesn’t have to see her then she won’t be a temptation.
Q. How does Peter feel when Tina says she can’t be around him and she’s moving away?
Even though he’s told her they have to keep their distance, and that nothing should have ever happened between them, he really panics when Tina tells him she’s moving away.
Deep down he probably thought that something would happen between them again, despite him telling her it had to stop. He never thought she’d up and leave. He might say he doesn’t want her, but he does – and when he starts to feel as though he could lose her, he wants her even more.
Q. Would he try and make her stay?
I think he would set out on a charm offensive to make her stay. He’d probably tell her not to uproot because of him.
Q. If it came to it, would he choose Tina or Carla?
I think Tina’s already tried to push for that. Even just before the wedding she told him he didn’t have to go through with it – but he did. Carla’s his wife but Tina’s his temptation. If it came down to it, Peter would know which side his bread was buttered.
Do you think Peter and Tina are going to get caught?
Here’s a look at Christmas on Corrie…