Cosy crimes and gritty sagas by Corrie Blog editor Glenda, published by Headline. Click pic below!

Tuesday, 21 June 2022

Spider returns to Coronation Street. Corrie Blog interviews Martin Hancock

When Coronation Street announced the return of 90s Corrie legend Geoffrey ‘Spider’ Nugent, the Corrie fan fraternity went into a Twitter meltdown! For those of a certain age (aka, me) who’ve been watching the show for 25 years, my heady Britpop memories merge nicely with those of Toyah Battersby's teenage crush on Emily Bishop’s hippy echo-warrior vegan nephew, Spider. For those who aren't, ITV3 Classic Corrie repeats have only cemented Spider's legacy in Weatherfield fan folklore. 

I was overjoyed to be invited to an ITV Coronation Street online press event to chat with Martin Hancock (who plays Spider) to learn more about this epic character revival

Hi Martin, Welcome back to Coronation Street!!! How does it feel to be returning after 25 years away? 

It is really exciting and a little bit scary. It's lovely and I'm really happy!!

Have you always been interested in a return, and if yes, why did you feel that now is the right time? 

I always said if I was to be asked to return, I would always say yes. I’ve gone off and done other things - you'd be amazed the places that Corrie reaches around the world -or not. Then it was last Christmas, Georgia (Taylor - Toyah Battersby) posted a picture up online, an old one, of Toyah and Spider together, arm and arm with each other, and it went in the papers. My mother-in-law, who is the oracle on all things #Corrie, saw it, rang me up, and said ‘Eh ah duck - you're in the papers’ (Martin said this is a faux Yorkshire accent, so I'm assuming she is) I got sentimental upon seeing the pictures, and my wife said 'You’ve always said you’ll go back, and you're not getting any younger, so pull your finger out!' I called my agent, my agent then rang Corrie, we had some toing and froing, and here I am! 

How easy has it been for you to slip back into the role of Spider? 

Ahhhh! I want to say it's been difficult and challenging, but you know what, part of me is Spider - obviously. I've always carried a bit of that militancy with me, not to the same extent as he has, I'm more Spider-lite. In that aspect, it has been quite easy to step back into it but at the same time, a bit odd. The funny thing is, going through the years, whenever there’s been any sort of echo news story in the papers around the world, it does make me think back to Spider and how he would react. I think to think Spider is my better self!

Were you nervous to start filming again, and what has the reception been like? 

Yes, extremely nervous! I did have sleepless nights and I was very nervous. My first day back was for orientation as it's a new studio, and the first person I bumped into was one of our assistant directors, who was my first when I started originally on the show. The first cast members I met were Georgia (Toyah) and Jane (Leanne) That was just brilliant. A huge warm blanket of love was thrown over me! I was near the dressing rooms and saw some of the older cast members, the years just rolled back! 

Are there any new cast members that would particularly like to work with? 

Well, he’s not that new, but yes, Joe (Duttine - Tim Metcalfe) because I went to drama school with him. In our 30-year careers, we've never worked together. I think his character is brilliant, I love it. It would be great to work with him. 

So why is Spider back in Weatherfield? 

The story is that Toyah has a protest with the council - about the recycling and them not meeting up to their responsibilities. Toyah puts a call out to the activist community and Spider answers the call. I think he was around, he happened to hear about it and went anyway. He clambers through a crowd of people and just jumps into a bin wagon that Toyah is sitting in, he's next to her and says’ whatcha - long time no see’ very cheerily like he's never been away. I thought it was just what Spider would be like. Toyah asks him what he’s doing there - and he says he's still around and still in the (protesting) game

Is he the same Spider that we’ve always loved, or has changed somewhat over the years? 

He’s a bit creakier than he used to be - but aren't we all! No, he will be pretty similar to the Spider we know and love, without giving away anything. 

Toyah and Spider have such a long history together. They both left the street together in 2003 but we viewers are unsure as to what happened next. Do you think there is any unfinished business between them? 

Whenever they've parted ways, it's always been with love in their hearts and kind words - they've always been friends. Spider thinks the world of Toyah and she’s the same as Spider, they've always been that way. They are a partnership and a partnership for life. 


Toyah has been through a lot recently. When Spider hears what she’s been through, is he more than happy to be a shoulder to cry on or is he hoping for a bit more? 

Ooh, saucy! I think that Spider is a man who wants the best for everyone and for those he cares about. He’s happy to be a shoulder to cry on and who knows what else? : you never know with Spider!

Thanks, Martin!!

Spider and Toyah were a brilliant on-screen couple who left Weatherfield together for London in 2003. We don't know what happened next but they did split up again, and quite sometime before Toyah's return to the street on Christmas Day of 2016. 

Is Spider’s return a retcon? Did something happen, that we don’t know about, during 2003 - 2011 that is now about to reemerge? Is this going to be relevant to Toyah’s mindset and maybe mitigate the death crash? Will Toyah and Spider reunite again in the face of adversity? Spider’s return to Coronation Street airs in Episode 10679 on Friday 1st of July 2022 so make sure you're tuned in!

I am @rybazoxo Coronation Street Blog Blogger and ardent Corrie Superfan 

All original work on Coronation Street Blog is covered by a Creative Commons License


Auntie Andrea said...

I can hardly wait for Spider's return. He stole our hearts and then broke them when he went off with Emily to save the world.
Welcome our Spider, you'll be a breath of fresh air!

Anonymous said...

It's too bad that Norris has passed away as I think Spider owed him an apology for manipulating Emily to throw Norris out due to his suspicion that Richard murdered Maxine Peacock and attempted to murder Emily as neither Emily nor Spider believed Norris [who was right]and unfortunately Spider left with Toyah before the truth came out.

Anonymous said...

So didn't Emily go to Peru to stay with Spider? Is he going to mention her?

popcorn said...

Oh dear - in Canada we'll have to wait even longer. One minute later would be too long for me. I love Spider!


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