For an all-too-brief period, Coronation Street was home to one of the most beautiful men ever to walk the face of Manchester. Rob James-Collier, fresh from modelling in the Argos catalogue and for knitting patterns, and a guest appearance in Casualty, brightened up Weatherfield with his portrayal of Liam Connor. Liam was part owner of the factory, but he was one of the nice guys. He’d let you have the morning off to take your cat to the dentist and he wouldn’t dock your pay, either.
He did have a dodgy taste in women – Leanne Battersby, for heaven’s sake! And Maria the fluff-headed hairdresser – but it was his love for former sister-in-law Carla Connor that did for him, and he was murdered in most foul style by a henchman of Tony Gordon.
Actually, what did for Liam Connor was Rob James-Collier’s acting pretensions. After missing out on any “best actor” awards, and finding his mantlepiece filling up instead with “best looking” gongs, he decided that he wasn’t being taken seriously and quit the show (possibly I’m being a bit unfair to him there but that’s how it came across at the time).
So where is he now? The RSC, perchance? Fielding offers from Hollywood? Getting his nose stuck into some seriously arty scripts? Your guess is as good as mine, because nothing’s been heard of him since. I still harbour hopes that he may turn up as the new surgeon in Holby (Rob in scrubs – oh yes). Heck, I’d even watch Heartbeat if he was in it.