Saturday 16 December 2017

Coronation Street forced to apologise after 300 complaints over 'racist' remark in Audrey's salon

Eva Price, played by Catherine Tyldesley, said
Eva Price, played by Catherine Tyldesley, said "I have more roots that Kunta Kinte". Photo: ITV

Coronation Street bosses have apologised after the soap was accused of racism for a comment a character made about her hair.

The episode on Bank Holiday Monday saw Eva Price, played by Catherine Tyldesley, visit Audrey's hair salon, where she remarked: "I have more roots than Kunta Kinte.

"No idea who that is, by the way, just something my mum used to say."

Kunta Kinte was a character from the novel Roots: The Saga Of An American Family, which was adapted into a hit TV miniseries.

Based on a real-life ancestor of author Alex Haley, it tells the story of a young man taken from Gambia and sold as a slave.

Viewers complained about the comment on Twitter.

Shiv Henry wrote: "Really Coronation Street? I think you need to have a word with the scriptwriter!"

Epic Mase RCG wrote: "So what's up with the cultural insensitivity on Coronation Street? 'I got more Roots than Kunta Kinte' That's kinda racist..."

Monica Rambeau wrote: "White people shouldn't feel comfortable to make Kunta Kinte 'jokes' let alone write them into scripts.."

Aaron Moffat-Jackman, a trainee vicar from Old Trafford, told the Manchester Evening News: "What it did was trivialise a horrific traumatic time for many people.

"Particularly at a time when things are ongoing in America, with many black people getting killed by police, by white people. I think it would be very welcome for ITV to apologise."

A spokeswoman for the soap said: "We apologise if this dialogue has caused offence."

TV watchdog Ofcom said: "Ofcom has received 278 complaints about Coronation Street, which aired on Monday.

"We will assess these complaints before we decide whether to investigate or not."

Press Association

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