“It was a beautiful moment.”
Billy Mayhew in Coronation Street had a huge surprise on Monday’s episode when he found out that his boyfriend Paul Foreman had surreptitiously set them up for a religious wedding.
In front of family and friends, the couple exchanged wedding vows at the Bistro to begin their day. After declaring their union as husband and wife, Paul confided in Billy that they would also be participating in an unauthorized church ceremony.
Paul had succeeded in persuading Billy’s buddy to perform the ceremony, fulfilling the archdeacon’s dream of being married in front of his god.
Sadly, a picture from the ceremony was irresponsibly left behind in the church, thus it seems like Billy’s rule-breaking will get him into serious trouble.
The actor who portrays Billy, Daniel Brocklebank, spoke with Digital Spy and other media outlets lately on the plot.
Did Billy feel let down upon realizing that he will just be getting married at the Bistro?
Yes, naturally, Billy felt a little let down since he considers himself a holy figure. There were times throughout his Corrie journey when he was adamant about avoiding getting married because he didn’t want to do it in a secular ceremony. He insisted on doing it at a religious ceremony.
Of course, same-sex marriages in religious settings are prohibited under Church of England regulations. We are headed in the right path since I am old enough to remember a time when we were unable to get married at all.
Billy’s preference has always been to be married in a church. Undoubtedly, Billy’s choice to move quickly has likely been influenced by the fact that Paul’s condition has given him reason to believe that time is not on their favor.
However, despite the fact that circumstances are not perfect, I believe Billy has made a deliberate effort to avoid expressing any kind of displeasure to Paul. He did not want Paul to think that the Bistro ceremony was any less than perfect or impressive. He has thus made every effort to prevent it from being seen.”
Billy’s reaction to Paul’s admission that he had planned the church wedding was unclear.
Billy was pressed for time and was unable to decide one way or the other. He is aware of the possible consequences, of course, but Paul has planned everything and he knows it will be a “quick in and out job.” Since the chapel isn’t decorated or accompanied by any fanfare, Billy believes they can definitely get away with it.
“I guess it’s because Billy is so excited about getting married already. Given his tendency for rigidity, I believe that he would not have followed through if he had had more time to consider it. If he had more time, he could have concluded that this wasn’t the best course of action.”
How was it to shoot the church sequences related to the wedding?
“It was a lovely occasion. I’ve been in Corrie for over ten years, and throughout that time, I’ve performed wedding ceremonies for many individuals, so I’ve stood at the front of the church and seen them come towards me.
It was really rather emotional to be the one going down that aisle all of a sudden. The scenes have exquisite writing. It was clearly emotional for Billy as much as for me.
“As he states, Billy could never have thought that he would be doing this in front of his God in his church. He expressed his pragmatism on the wedding at the Bistro and shared his realization that God is not contained in a structure but exists everywhere. However, being married there would undoubtedly have a distinct vibe.”
Being the first homosexual male wedding and the first gay wedding that really happened, it’s a historic occasion for the show. What are your thoughts about that?
“I’m overjoyed. To tell the truth, I’m amazed that this is the first one. When it comes to LGBTQ+ characters, Corrie has always been a pioneer. Really, how long ago was that with Hayley? It’s amazing that this is the first one since the program has historical figures like Sean and Todd.
“I’m ecstatic to be involved. How wonderful it is to be a part of Corrie’s first successful homosexual marriage ceremony, not only for a man. one that took place in reality!”
It has come to our attention that a wedding picture was inadvertently dropped and left at the chapel. Could you speculate on the implications of that?
All of this has to do with Reg, whom we’ve never seen in person. It has been said that Reg the Verger is a figure that stirs things up. Clearly, he discovers the Polaroid on the ground.
“The Bishop is first prepared to look the other way. Unruly Reg, however, makes the decision to post the picture on social media, which sparks some controversy.
“The Bishop continues, saying that although this may not be his opinion, he must seem to be taking action since Billy and Paul had disobeyed church regulations. They have transgressed their permissions. Since Billy is an archdeacon, he ought to have been a bit more responsible, in all honesty.
“However, I appreciate Billy’s observation that, “Well, you know what? Paul is plainly not well, but this is my own path, and these are our decisions. We did it for these reasons, and time is not on our side. Billy is suspended by the bishop.
Billy discusses his choice in public on Radio Weatherfield, isn’t that right?
“Yes, Billy believes that in the end, he has an obligation to both explain and defend his conduct. He believes this since the majority of the parishioners’ harsh and slanderous remarks are being viewed by individuals on social media.
“Rather than going looking for Weatherfield Radio, people come to Billy. ‘Actually, actually, I believe this would be a terrific chance to be able to explain why we’ve done this,’ he thinks after first saying no.
“Billy argues that because it’s ultimately about two people who are in love with one other, he believes it’s unjust that same-sex couples are not permitted to get married in a religious setting.
“Why should such individuals be barred from attending a religious event if they identify as religious? The Bishop learns of this, and that’s when Billy’s situation starts to go a little wrong.”
How will Billy feel about losing his job as a result?
Fortunately, Billy is still being paid for the time being, so that’s okay! He is still receiving a paycheck since he is just suspended and not fired. That would have created an additional degree of stress if they had ceased paying him.
“Billy is certain that, for the time being, this is where we are. None of his other skill sets apply. What the devil will he do, he has no idea! Nor do I know what else he could accomplish. I don’t know, maybe he would make a wonderful therapist. There was no doubt Billy would need to retrain.
“Paul and Billy are aware that their time together is limited. They simply seem to be making the most of things, even if they have no idea when that may happen.
Paul’s disability is always evolving and becoming more severe. Billy is only attempting to support him through his physical limitations, his changing mental state, and all of the other associated issues. Therefore, I believe that they just bunker down and go on.”
What kind of response do you anticipate from the religious wedding?
“A variety of responses will always occur, and that’s okay. It’s perfectly OK for everyone to have an opinion; that’s what makes a democracy work. Everyone is free to express their thoughts. You are not required to concur with one another. That’s nice as well.
“I’ve seen a significant shift in the short time I’ve been playing Billy. The amount of homophobic material I encounter is almost half of what it was when Billy first moved here.
It’s considerably happier now, akin to the recent scene by the lake. Naturally, some strange people complained that it was too explicit. Brokeback Mountain, someone said. We most definitely weren’t wearing cowboy hats, and I can’t recall them being in a lake!
“I believe there will always be a response. That’s beneficial because it sparks discussions. Naturally, I’m bracing myself for the expected backlash to homosexual couples marrying in churches, since Billy does defy the law.
“The mere existence of regulations does not guarantee their accuracy. It’s important to remember that the individuals who concealed Anne Frank were breaking the law.
“Although this is a distinct situation, the idea remains the same. Essentially, I believe Billy is saying that something is not always correct just because a law or regulation says it is.
“Some people are going to love it based on the response from the public.” We’ve made that step, and some folks are going to be quite happy about it. Some will detest it to the point of extreme hatred. We can constantly improve as a society and learn from one another. So it’s fantastic if it sparks a dialogue.”
Given the MND experiences of your late grandpa, we are aware that you are emotionally invested in this scenario. How is it going to film Paul’s sickness progression?
I mean, it’s extremely multi-layered. This tale is being written by our staff, and I am very pleased. Often times, while I’m reading a screenplay at home, it reminds me so much of the experiences our family had.
It’s not just my family though, as I’ve known a great deal of individuals with MND and their families throughout the course of my 23 years of employment with the MND Association. With it, our staff has been very genuine, accurate, and considerate.
“They’re not avoiding the challenging problems that those who care for those with motor neuron disease (MND) encounter. This implies that my workdays from Monday through Friday may be highly emotionally charged.
“Fortunately, Pete [Ash, who portrays Paul] and I click like crazy and laugh a lot. Even in catastrophic situations, we do our best to discover the positive aspects of the situation. We make every effort to maintain its buoyancy.
“Whether you have multiple sclerosis (MSD) or another terminal condition, you will have colorful and brilliant times in your life. Not everything is as bad as it seems.
“We’re clearly a long way ahead of what’s on screen—what I’ve been recording today, for instance, won’t be on until November—so it’s intriguing. The contrast between what I was recording that day and what’s on screen is very noticeable when I view it at home.
“That’s undoubtedly due to Pete’s absolutely incredible performance as well as the outstanding script. He’s portraying a really brutally realistic person with motor neuron disease, and he’s doing a fantastic job at it. Being able to travel this journey alongside him is an incredible honor.”