Gareth Gates left Coronation Street fans reeling on Wednesday 20 March when he leaked which character died in the anticipated Underworld collapse before the episode aired in its entirety.
The Pop Idol singer took to Twitter and Instagram during the ad break to praise his fiancée Faye Brookes, who plays Kate Connor on the long-running soap. After months of build-up, Kate was supposed to marry Rana Habeeb (Bhavna Limbachia) during the episode but the pair never had the chance to tie the knot since Rana got trapped – and later died – under the factory debris.
On both accounts Gates wrote: “So proud of my lady [Faye Brookes] in [ITV Corrie] – such amazing TRUE acting. Sad to lose the beautiful and incredibly talented [Bhavna Limbachia].”
— Gareth Gates (@Gareth_Gates) March 20, 2019
His followers were quick to point out that she was “still alive on screen” at that point, while others said he “ruined it.”
One social media user even tweeted: “Let this be a reminder to zip it in future. Millions of [ITV Corrie] fans don’t want you blabbing your mouth off and spoiling the end scenes. What an idiot.”
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Another user defended Gates against those criticising him for revealing all, saying: “Was obvious she was going to die! I worked it out last week she was leaving. Not rocket science. Ignore it.”
Whether they saw it coming or not, Rana’s death didn’t go down well with some watchers. A small number of them even called for the soap to be boycotted since it seemed to be playing into the harmful ‘Bury Your Gays’ television trope for the second time – Sophie Webster’s girlfriend Maddie died in an explosion back in 2014.
Limbachia appeared on This Morning on 21 March to explain why Rana’s death was necessary in allowing her to leave the show.
“It was [my choice]. I would stay forever, but I’ve always wanted to take a few risks and that’s why I decided to leave,” she said.
“I was trying to come up with a reason for why Rana would leave Kate, but they have fought so hard to be together that I was racking my brains for weeks trying to come up with a reason.
“She would never leave Kate. I believe their love is so pure, they’ve worked so hard to be together. The only way she would leave is if it was taken out of her hands.”