Coronation Street’s Simon Gregson tells Soaplife just how unhappy Steve McDonald is…

Is Steve seriously depressed?
“He’s heading that way. Peter’s trial is awful for him. Steve was on his way to having a breakdown anyway, but that just about finishes him off. He also learns his dad has been manipulating him just to get at his mum.”

Girlfriend Michelle (Kym Marsh) is really worried, isn’t she?
“She’s trying to help Steve and being very understanding. But Steve just messes it all up and doesn’t want to admit something’s wrong. He’s in a very bad place and is becoming more and more introverted. He won’t open up to anyone about the way he’s feeling. He just wants to be alone or some place where no one knows him.”

He should see a doctor…
“He has! But because he was worried about a mole on his skin. The doctor realises he’s depressed, though. In Steve’s mind he’ll think it means he’ll have to see a psychiatrist and that really frightens him.”

How do you feel about playing Steve this way?
“Coronation Street has a moral compass and whenever we’re dealing with these issues they must be done right. Depression affects people in so many different ways, so I don’t think there’s necessarily a right or wrong way to play it. Some people suffer from depression, but you wouldn’t necessarily recognise it in every situation. I have to play this out in the way Steve would deal with it. I want to be true to him. We don’t want to lose Steve’s humour, but it’s a serious subject, so I think there’ll be elements of light and shade along the way.”

Coronation Street, ITV. Click here for times and dates.