Corrie’s Will Mellor teases explosive Harvey prison scenes where ‘cracks will appear’

It’s hard to imagine Will Mellor not dressed up and strutting around the dance floor these days. But despite his fabulous turn on Strictly Come Dancing, he’s still got his day job on Coronation Street playing evil gangster Harvey Gaskell.

Will first appeared in the soap in March 2021 and viewers thought they had seen the last of the nasty drug lord when he was sent to jail but Sam Blakeman [played by award winning young actor Jude Riordan] wants answers about his mum Natasha’s death and there’s only one person who can give them to him.

So his father Nick [Ben Price] finally relents and allows him to visit Harvey in prison. And it appears that we might finally get to see a more human side of the bad boy as Will, 46, who’s married to dancer Michelle and dad to Jayden, 18, and Renee, 14, tells us.

“He just wants it over and done with then Sam will leave him alone. He wants to put a lid on it now but it doesn’t go to plan because Harvey starts to crack under the pressure of a little boy,” he explains.

“Sam is very intelligent and it's actually Harvey who starts to crack and snaps and gets angry. Sam points out he’s not the one who’s upset here, he's looking at this little kid going nobody talks to me like that. But he’s struck a nerve and Harvey’s the one who storms off,” he intimates.

“He tells him not to come and see him again, he's angry because he's woke up all the emotions that Harvey’s buried deep about his own mum who he lost when he was younger. He's still angry, but he's buried these emotions because they make him weak.”

This is the first that viewers will have heard about Harvey’s backstory. Losing your mother in your formative years has a huge impact on any child and Will believes that the crux of the character's issues stem from this.

“He didn't have anything, his mum died and I think he grew up with not much love,” he says. “He found his way on the street, got in with the wrong crowd and realised I’m a somebody here.”

Expressing empathy for the character Will says: “Probably all he wanted was a bit of love and attention and care, like any kid, and then if you end up being on the wrong side of the street, with crime and drugs and no-one caring, this crowd became his shield, his barrier. These people groom kids, he was groomed himself and he ended up becoming one of them.”

Will also revealed that Sam’s interrogation could actually be the thing that gets through to Harvey.

“I think some of what he’s said has hit home a bit. Then when he sees him it's like having a session with a psychiatrist and Sam starts touching a few nerves. Nobody talks to Harvey like this but he asks questions of him and makes him look at himself a little bit,” Will explains.

“He starts to feel I might owe it to this kid, to give him the time. Also, he wants to stop the letters because I think they're affecting him. In prison you need to get stuff out of your mind, you can’t be weak, he has a reputation as this guy. But then Sam is pushing to find out why Harvey is the way he is and I think some of what he’s saying is right, no one is just evil or born bad. I think he has his reasons behind why Harvey is the way he is and Sam is asking questions of him.”

While viewers may remain on the fence about Harvey despite seeing this other side to him Will is absolutely loving the character arc he gets to play.

“I love playing Harvey, every character should have layers, I never wanted to be two dimensional, I wanted to show there's more that you don't know about him,” he says.

“He has an underbelly, it’s just that nobody gets to see it. This is the first time you’re going to see a few cracks appear and it’s little Sam who’s brought that out of him because he can't take the pressure and at some point the lid’s got to blow off.

“Harvey’s in his own pressure cooker in prison and he can’t look weak. But it just gets too much for him, the memories of his mum, the memories of growing up, what he's done to this kid and it all spills over.”

And showing far more integrity than his character Will claims that he wouldn’t even have returned to the role if he thought it would diminish his previous work in the show.

“I love playing this character, that's why I came back, I wouldn't have done it if it was going to weaken the character in any way because I think what we did with it last time was enough but what I did like is, let's explain a little bit why these people behave the way they behave. I think it's interesting to dive into that.”


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