On Friday (16 March), the ITV soap divided viewers when it aired scenes showing Josh Tucker drugging David Platt and preparing to sexually assault him.
While fans didn’t actually see the assault taking place, a spokesperson for broadcasting regulator Ofcom confirmed they have received 122 complaints since the episode aired, in a pre-watershed slot.
They will now have to assess the complaints before deciding whether to investigate, as is standard procedure.
A spokesperson for the soap has downplayed the complaints, telling HuffPost UK: ”‘Coronation Street’ has a long and successful history of tackling serious and thought provoking issues alongside the balance of drama, romance and comedy that the soap is famous for.
“We are mindful of our transmission time and therefore the attack was implied rather than explicit, there was also a warning issued before the episode and info on how to access help and support at the end.
“Subsequent episodes will focus on David’s mental health as he keeps what has happened to him a secret and struggles to come to terms with the attack.”
The complaints come after ‘Corrie’ boss Kate Oates insisted she would not let any negative reactions change any plans to the storyline.
Speaking to the Daily Star, she said: “I do take things on board, but I don’t think it changes the narrative because I know what storylines I want to tell.
“When I’m reading storylines I will sometimes say to the team ‘this is a really dark episode…we need a lighter story and maybe some humour’.
“I like the viewers to stay in touch. But it doesn’t change the narrative drive because I believe in that.
“I’ve made decisions with my team and we’re on board with that. We hope we’re doing storylines that will serve the show well long-term.”
To ensure the storyline was handled sensitively and accurately, ‘Corrie’ bosses worked closely with Survivors Manchester, an organisation set up to help men and boys affected by sexual assault.
Ahead of the scene airing, HuffPost UK caught up with their founder and chief executive Duncan Craig about why this is an important turning point in British soaps.