Former Coronation Street star Suranne Jones plays a cop-killer in ITV1’s new thriller Unforgiven, and describes it as her ‘darkest’ and most favourite character ever.

She plays 30-something Ruth Slater who is just released from a northern prison and struggles to fit back into society at the same time as trying to locate her estranged sister. It soon ebcomes apparent that there’s more to her two murders than she was convicted for.

Suranne told whatsontv.co.uk in an exclusive interview: “That’s what you look for; character’s like this come along once in a blue moon and the challenge of trying to take the audience on that story was what was beautiful about the whole story.”

But how do you make a murderer sympathetic? “Obviously I’ve seen the end and I know what happens, and the circumstances in which it happened, so I’m probably a little bit more sympathetic than an audience member who’s just joined at episode one,” said Suranne.

“This is the darkest and my favourite character that I’ve ever played. It really is the best thing for me; I got so involved in it. I absolutely adored it because I’ve got a quite close relationship with my director, which is not unusual, but with this one we were really on the same page and he really helped me.”

Unforgiven premieres on ITV1 on Monday, January 12. Click below to watch the interview with Suranne Jones.