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The job of supporting Frank largely fell to Ken, as David now lived in London. [7] In 2010, Roache said, "[Ken] was beginning to look very ordinary and quite nerdy, and that in turn had a knock-on effect for me, because I started to lose confidence as an actor. Ken turns down a teaching post to support his father, but he and Frank continue to clash until Frank leaves in 1964. Roache stated in 2010 that he had no plans to leave the role and would remain in Coronation Street for as long as the producers would have him. "[101] It was suggested in an ITV documentary in 2006 that Ken and Mike's hatred was a clash of cultures: "Barlow the lefty do-gooder versus Baldwin, the cut-and-thrust money grabber. Roache said: "I was a sort of young semi-heartthrob in those days and thought getting married was going to finish all that. He debuted in the soap's first episode on 9 December 1960. Harvey therefore tried to shape the play around their journeys over the years. They played his long-lost son and grandson, respectively. [15] However, Ken was given a reprieve, as before he could be axed, Aspinall was removed from his position. [34], Ken's first notable relationship in the serial was with the character Valerie Tatlock (Anne Reid) in 1961. [83] The writers were initially uncertain whether to continue with Ken as a single father, or dispatch the children and pursue a less-encumbered lifestyle. William Roache has appeared as Ken Barlow in 4639 episodes of Coronation Street from 1960 onwards as well as appearing in the spin-off insert for the 1969 Christmas All Star Comedy Carnival, the Establishing Episode (US promotion) in 1972, the video The Jubilee Years in 1985, the ten internet episodes titled Ken and Deirdre's Bedtime Stories in 2011 and the charity sketch Text Santa in 2012. "I watch every episode otherwise I wouldn’t know what people are on about. Lawrence was a bigot who could not accept that the fact James was homosexual. Janet returned on-screen in 1977 and asked Ken for another chance, claiming she had changed. Mike discovered Adam's existence in 2001; Susan attempted to flee, but was killed in a motor accident. In July 2015, Deirdre dies and Ken is absolutely devastated by this news. [95], In 2010, it was announced that Roache's own children, Linus and James, would be joining the cast. The episode was broadcast after the 9 pm watershed due to its depiction of violence. He later discovers that Peter has sacked his lawyer and it becomes even more likely that he will be found guilty of the murder. Discussing this, author Hobson has suggested that Ken's numerous relationships could give the impression that the character is a lothario or a great romantic; however, Hobson noted that this would be inaccurate as Ken is "neither a great romantic nor someone with whom you would be wise to trust your romantic or emotional future. Roache recalls that, "although their relationship could often be stormy, with Ken's views and attitude rubbing Frank up the wrong way on a number of issues, the fact was that they had been thrown together by her death and they had to get used to living with each other without the buffer that Ida had often provided. Ken Barlow is one of the twenty-two original Coronation Street characters devised by series creator Tony Warren. Poor Annie wasn't prepared for what happened to her next and actually burst into tears because of the ferocity of my performance. [87] Ken moved in with him and Albert gradually saw Ken as "the son he never had". [137] In her book Soap Opera, Hobson said Ken and his brother David initially represented the younger males of society. "[19], Ken's political stance is left-liberal. In December 2010, Peter is caught up in the Joinery Bar gas leak explosion, which results in an unforgettable tram crash as the explosion severs the tramline above. In early 2019, Ken begins a relationship with Audrey's frenemy Claudia Colby (Rula Lenska). Scenes since have seen Tracy and his son Peter Barlow … Roache was one of several actors from the television series to feature in the musical. Twins Peter (Robert Heanue) and Susan (Katie Heanneau) are born on 15 April 1965. Despite his somewhat antagonistic role in the show's early years, Ken developed a reputation among critics for representing an archetypal "boring man". Producer Maire Tracey said, "The fact that Mike dies in Ken's arms says it all. Moran added that Ken "refused to go along with the last half century's stress on consumer aspiration and meritocratic elitism", but added that by modern standards, "Ken has wasted his education and his life. "[64] When Denise was awarded custody, she left Coronation Street and Ken lost contact with his son. It rarely pays to be too clever or too rich in soapland as the majority of plotlines rely upon tragic Shakespearian falls from grace which everyone laughs their socks off at. Denise agrees to marry Ken, but is having an affair with her brother-in-law Brian Dunkley (Benny Young) at the same time. An actor who played Ken Barlow’s girlfriend has revealed she was accidentally living in a BROTHEL when she filmed Coronation Street. Behind the scenes Bill Roache has even suggested to Johnny Briggs that they should make a version of Brokeback Mountain for the two elderly cowboys. [114] Created by Coronation Street writer Jonathan Harvey, the webisodes featured Ken and Deirdre mulling over the events of their day while in bed. [7] A potential storyline was devised in which Ken and his then wife Valerie would move to Australia. [90] She would criticise his looks, and on one occasion she accused him of being homosexual. [116], In February 2011 Ken was among various Coronation Street characters to have his portrait auctioned for charity in the exhibition 'Behind the Street' at Manchester's Generation Pop Gallery. [61] Upon the discovery, Ken's happiness was snatched away in what has been described by Sunday Mail as "harrowing circumstances", and one of the character's worst moments. Ken was the only remaining character from the first episode of the soap that will celebrate its 60th anniversary in December. In early 2017, Ken's son Daniel is offered a place at Oxford University. Ken Barlow was played by Simon Chadwick in the production. [1] Having appeared in the role continuously since that date, Roache is the longest-serving actor in a televised soap opera, and was honoured at the 2010 Guinness World Records ceremony for the achievement, having surpassed actor Don Hastings from the American soap opera As the World Turns, who previously held this title. "[132], In 2009, viewers complained to ITV as well as the media regulator Ofcom after Coronation Street broadcast scenes in which Ken made derogatory comments about Christianity. After the fatal shock, she knocked over an electric heater, setting the Barlow's house on fire. In October 2016, Ken is shocked to see his son Peter. This is an allegation denied by Roache, who has cited Ken's evolution over the years, his chaotic love life and dysfunctional family as evidence to the contrary. Martha asks him about Peter's mum and Ken tells her that she's dead, which is the truth, so Martha automatically assumes he's a widower and he doesn't put her right. William Patrick Roache MBE (born 25 April 1932) is an English actor. Peter Barlow is a fictional character from the British ITV soap opera, Coronation Street, played by Chris Gascoyne since 2000. He made his debut in the soap's first episode, broadcast on 9 December 1960. Nursing the notion that he's been thwarted by life, he decides to leave Deirdre to sail off into the sunset – or possibly Runcorn – with Martha. Lawrence does not agree with Ken's liberal stance. The storyline was described as giving her the chance to have "the last laugh". He became carried away and moved him in because Ken has always "longed for intelligent conversation". And she's completely in love with Ken when he's with her. Ashamed of his family and background, Ken was constantly apologising to her. Deirdre actually goes to court with him for support, but she gets angry when she finds out he tries to use their friendship as a lever to get Daniel back. "[7] Roache said in 2010, "When people ask me why I've played the same role for 50 years I try to explain that I haven't because like all human beings, and thanks to clever script-writers, Ken's evolved. The twins trapped inside 47 ], Ken was constantly apologising to her knew nothing than! 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