‘They don’t want to see somebody who looks like dad, being horrible’
Coronation Street actor Ian Bartholomew, who plays abusive husband Geoff Metcalfe, has revealed that he doesn’t let his children watch the soap when his character is being horrible to on-screen wife Yasmeen.
Hospital radio DJ and magician Geoff has been manipulating and controlling Yasmeen for the past year, dictating where she goes, who she sees, how much she spends and even what she eats. His despicable acts have included locking Yasmeen in his magician’s box, and murdering her pet chicken, which he then fed her for dinner.
Says 65 year old Bartholomew, who has two school age children with theatre director wife Loveday Ingram: “My kids have seen me in loads of other things. I’ve done loads of musicals and shows and plays in Manchester, Liverpool and London. They started to watch Coronation Street, and when dad started to turn nasty, they said ‘No, can’t watch it now, dad’ and I quite understand that.
“If they want to watch it, I’ll say ‘You can watch this episode because this one’s alright, but I don’t want you watching that episode, because daddy’s not being very nice.’ They know it’s not really dad, but they don’t want to see somebody who looks like dad, being horrible.”
The actor, who joined the Coronation Street cast in 2018, adds that his character’s coercive control of Yas has prompted him to question how he interacts with his own family.
“I have to say that it has made me question my own behaviour. It has to,” says Ian. “I say to myself, ‘I can be a bit like that.’
“I’m not saying that I go to the extremes that Geoff does, but I can say ‘Don’t use that pan, use this pan, it’s much better,’ and then you think ‘But that’s not my choice.’ Or: ‘Could you tidy your bedroom up, cos it’s horrible!’ and the kids say ‘It’s my room, I can do what I like, Can’t I?’ and I’m ‘No, clear it up!’
“There are boundaries and lines, but when you cross them and try to control somebody else’s behaviour, that’s when it starts to get a bit messed up, and you have to be careful of that.
“I’ve questioned some of my past behaviour and some of my behaviour around my family, and that can only be a good thing.”