Shona digs the dirt on Josh
The tragic suicide of Coronation Street’s Aidan Connor prompts David Platt to finally break his silence over his rape ordeal. During an emotional heart-to-heart with Shona, he reveals that he was sexually assaulted by mechanic Josh on their recent night out.
David is arrested by the police soon after, for failing to show up in court for his plea hearing for attacking Gary Windass.
But as the hairdresser languishes in a cell, Shona is determined to fight his cause and bring Josh to justice, as actress Julia Goulding reveals…
What are Shona’s emotions toward David after finding out that he was raped?
“At the moment, he’s not really looking after himself so she dives in there to try and save him. All of the feelings over what has happened between them in the last few months just go out of the window, because nothing is more important to her than his wellbeing.”
And what are her feelings towards Josh? Does she want to smack him?
“I think that’s putting it lightly! It’s just utter disgust. She detests him. She doesn’t want him around, and doesn’t want him near her friends or family. She wants him to pay.”
Does Josh scare her?
“Yes and no. When she’s on her missions, that goes out of the window; she knows how to handle herself. But there are times when they have one-on-ones where she is so vulnerable. He’s a big chap and he’s a nasty piece of work underneath it, and there are times where she lets her guard slip and you see a flash across the eyes of her being scared. But she does try and hold her own. She won’t be bullied by him.”
Does she worry about David’s state of mind whilst he’s in prison?
“Of course she does. He’s just not coping, and he’s being very matter of fact about things and not showing much emotion. He’s blocked himself off – or so she feels – which makes her worry all the more, because obviously he’s got a lot of feelings and if it’s not going anywhere, then how is it going to manifest itself?”
Josh insists that he and David had consensual sex. So does Shona realise from the get-go that she’s not going to get a confession out of him?
“Yes, she comes from a place where there’s a massive survival thing, so I think once she knows Josh isn’t going to budge on it and confess, that’s it; Sherlock Shona is on the case – that’s what I’ve been calling her.”
She steals Josh’s CV from the garage – what is her thinking behind that?
“She’s thinking outside the box on this one – I don’t think that’s the first place I’d have gone. But yes, she sneaks into the garage, finds his cv and is just trying to get a bit of history on Josh and see where he’s been before and what he’s done. I don’t think she necessarily thinks she’s going to find anything of significance, in the sense of finding someone else that he may have attacked before. Her first port of call is a garage called Waltham and Son, where Josh used to work, and she finds some interesting information from a certain member of the workforce. It is suggested that he has gone through the same thing as David.”
When she discovers that Josh has attacked before, does she hope that will be a breakthrough for David?
“Absolutely, I think that’s why she does it in the first place, to make him feel that he’s not alone, because she’s so helpless in this situation – she can sympathise with him, but she can’t empathise, she has no idea what he’s actually going through. So I think that by finding somebody else, potentially, that it has happened to, it might encourage David to open up more.”
Nothing can really be done, though, unless David reports the crime to the police. Does Shona feel like it’s an impossible situation?
“Absolutely. David’s got to be willing for anything to actually happen. Shona’s juggling so many balls in the air at the minute with it all, whilst trying to keep it all to herself, and keep her own anger away from the public eye.”
It’s notoriously difficult to get a conviction for rape in real life. Is it important to you that David gets justice?
“Absolutely it is, but the way Coronation Street are telling this storyline is very true to life in the research they’ve done. It doesn’t always happen in the way of ‘he’s going to get caught and get sent to prison’, and that’s the story we’re trying to tell. We’re trying to educate people into knowing that you need to report rape as soon as you possibly can. The way that David’s gone about it is how people would go about it in real life, so it’s going to be interesting to see how the storyline pans out.”
Coronation Street continues on ITV.