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Carla Connor is a fictional character and recurring protagonist of the British Soap Opera Coronation Street.
She first appeared as a central character in 2007 and went on to become one of the show's central protagonists from 2008 onwards, during which Carla has at times developed an anti-heroic streak due to her fisty and no-nonsence characterisation.
The character is currently portrayed by Alison King.
Carla Connor first came to Weatherfield in 2007. Beforehand it has transpired that she had grown up on a rough estate with half-brother Rob Donovan and their mother Sharon. Furthermore, Carla had married her estranged husband Paul Connor in 1999 and eventually left her old life behind.
When Paul had died in 2007, Carla had inherited his share of his knicker factory Underworld - working alongside his brother Liam Connor. It was then she became romantically involved with a businessman named Tony Gordon. The two began dating and they eventually married, but then Carla ended up having an affair with Liam. She subsuquently used the affair blackmail Liam into selling his shares to Tony, otherwise she'd expose the affair to Liam's pregnant wife Maria.
Eventually Tony discovered the affair and plotted revenge against Carla and Liam. First he hired his henchman Jimmy Dockerson to kill Liam in a hit and run before terrorizing Carla over the impact of her death. Tony would end up being caught and arrested in the end, but later on he escaped prisoner and took Carla and her employee Hayley Cropper hostage. He also convinced his fellow escapee and prison cellmate Robbie Sloane to accompany him in his plans; Carla was unable to warn Robbie about Tony, who soon betrayed and killed Robbie by shooting him dead. Carla then urged Tony to let Hayley go and the he then set the factory on fire, intending for them to die together. However, Carla escaped just in time whilst Tony died in the factory explosion.
During this time, Carla is shown to be a fearsome employer who firmly keeps her factory staff in line. But sometimes she would show her more softer side, especially when her colleague Sally Webster told Carla she was diagnosed with cancer and Carla allowed Sally to have as much time off she can to recover.
In 2011, Carla started a business partnership with entreprenur Frank Foster. This quickly evolved in a relationship that was initially threatened when Maria told Carla that Frank tried to rape her, but Carla dismissed her sister-in-law's warnings about his nature. As such Maria and her boyfriend Chris Gray confronted Frank in the factory office, which forced Carla to have them leave the building. Soon she and Frank were engaged, but then Carla developed romantic feelings for local resident Peter Barlow - thus she realized that she doesn't want to marry Frank and wishes for them to remain friends having a potentially successful business partnership.
She eventually told Frank about this and wanted to call off their wedding, which makes him unhappy in response. That night, their argument leads to a horrific incident when Frank rapes Carla after he refuses to let her walk out on his life. Carla soon told Maria what happened and they reported Frank to the police; he was arrested and later charged for Carla's rape. It is then Peter along with the other residents, including Carla's other sister-in-law and best friend Michelle Connor, learned about what happened and most of them turned to Carla for support; though Peter's wife Leanne Battersby becomes sworn enemies with Carla after Peter cheats on his wife by having an affair with Carla in light of the situation.
In 2012, Frank was put on trial for Carla's rape; his mother Anne was there to support him along with Sally, as both women refused to believe that he raped Carla. In the end, Frank was found not guilty and he later took revenge on Carla by swindling the factory from her in an elaborate scheme with her supposed friend Jenny Sumner. Later on that night, Frank is murdered and by the next day Carla is implicated as the prime suspect; she later discovered that Frank's killer was actually his mother Anne - after the latter had discovered her son's true colors upon overhearing him goading to Carla about her ordeal and how he got away with the crime.
From then onwards, Carla resolved to settle herself with Peter. Their relationship continued and he tried unsuccessfully to get his and Leanne's son, Simon, to bond with Carla when he rejects her as a potential stepmother. That same year, Carla reunites with Rob when he is released from prison. Eventually Peter and Carla got married in 2013, but is unaware that Peter is having an affair with Simon's nanny Tina McIntyre behind her back.
As the affair continues in 2014, Carla becomes sidetracked after she had earlier found out that Hayley is dying from cancer. Both she and Hayley's husband Roy Cropper resolve to support Carla at all costs. Later on one night, Carla visits the Cropper residence at the local cafe just as waitress Anna Windass is closing the place for the night. The women then check up on the couple and are saddened to see that Hayley has died in front of a devastated Roy. The follow-up of Hayley's death and subsuquent funeral sees Carla and Roy developing a close friendship with each other.
Months later, Carla finds out that she is pregnant with Peter's baby. But eventually she finds out about Peter's affair with Tina and breaks up with him. Carla then sets out to confront Tina that night, but ends up finding her beaten and left motionless on the ground - moments before Leanne and her boyfriend Kal Nazir walked in on her body. Tina was taken to hospital and she died. Carla and everyone soon believed that Peter killed Tina. As such, Carla ends her marriage with Peter and their relationship all but collapses after she suffers a miscarriage from being pregnant with their unborn child. Peter was later arrested and charged for Tina's murder, not long before his father Ken reappears after several months away and Carla informs him about what has happened.
When she later learns from Peter's friend Steve McDonald that the latter's imprisoned father Jim has been terrorizing Peter in jail, Carla begins to believe that Peter is innocent and sets out to find out who killed Tina. Her quest continues when Peter is trialed and later found guilty for Tina's murder. Carla eventually assumes that Peter's half-sister Tracy, who is engaged to Rob in the meantime, is responsible since she and Tina were sworn enemies. Carla tells Rob about this, only to ultimately learn that it was Rob who killed Tina. She reluctantly reports him to the police to clear Peter's name; in turn Rob disowns Carla before going on the run until he is eventually arrested for Tina's murder.
In 2015, Carla and Tracy become sworn enemies as their feud escalates - particularly when Carla begins to look after Steve and Tracy's daughter Amy on some occasions. At one point Tracy rescues Carla in a bus crash, but later on Carla finds out that Tracy and her business partner Tony Stewart are sleeping together behind the back of Tony's fiance and Steve's mother Liz. It is then Carla reveals the truth to Liz, which results in Tracy vowing revenge on Carla. That night Tracy attempts to kill Carla, but changes her mind at the last secon. However, Tracy unknowingly sets the house on fire that nearly kills both Carla and Amy; the pair are rescued but both Kal and fellow neighbour Maddie Heath are killed from the impact. Tracy then makes Carla believe that she started the fire that killed both Kal and Maddie. Soon enough she attempts suicide, but Tracy eventually reveals the truth and Carla attacks her. Tracy is later arrested for her crimes, but gets away with it despite losing her credibility as a result. Carla later finds out that supposed uncle, Johnny, is actually her biological father - henceforth Carla is the half-sister of Johnny's children Aidan and Katie respectively.
In 2016, Carla starts a relationship with Peter's archenemy and Leanne's former husband Nick Tilsley and the pair are engaged. But then Carla cheats on Nick by sleeping with his business partner and Tracy's ex-spouse Robert Preston. It is then Tracy discovers Carla's affair and begins blackmailing her in the build-up to the wedding. On the day of the wedding, Carla marries Nick but their relationship ends when her affair is exposed. Carla then attempts to run over Tracy, but misses and causes fellow driver Tyrone Dobbs to crash his vehicle in the house where Nick's family are living at; the result leads to the deceased body of Callum Logan, a drug dealer and nemesis of Nick's half-brother David Platt, to be discovered. Soon afterwards, Carla decides to leave the street for a while.
In 2017, Carla returns to help out with her family's business troubles. She and Peter ruenite and they nearly have a conflict when he suspects her of planning to seduce his half-brother Daniel Osbourne, but then Carla dismisses Peter along with his relationship to Leanne's half-sister Toyah Battersby. A few months later, Carla attends Michelle and Robert's wedding that ends up turning to a lethal siege when local villain Pat Phelan barges his way into the ceremony - having shot his estranged daughter Nicola whilst attempting to escape Weatherfield for good. Carla is among the people taken hostage and offers to be Phelan's captive when he takes Michelle hostage. Moments later Phelan shoots Michelle in an attempt to escape, but then he is finally killed by Anna - whom he had raped and terrorized years earlier.
A few weeks later in 2018, Carla and Peter reconcile after he tells her that his relationship with Toyah ended - Toyah had been faking a pregnancy to Peter when in reality her and Leanne's half-sister, Eva Price, was pregnant with Aidan's baby not long before he committed suicide. Furthermore she helps Peter and Leanne defend Simon from being terrorized by a gang led by his enemy Tyler Jefferies.
In 2019, Carla finds herself alienated by most of her closest friends and ex-relationsips. Soon the factory collapses and results in the death of Katy's fiancee Rana Habeeb. It is then everyone suspects Carla is to blame for the factory collapse, when in reality Anna's son Gary was the culprit; Carla is eventually proven innocent whilst Gary also covers his tracks by framing his loan shark Rick Neelan, whom he would later murder to escape death, for the incident.
Towards the end of the year, Carla supports Michelle when her marriage to Robert collapses after he had an affair with Tyler's mother Vicki - whom he also got pregnant in the process. Later on Christmas 2019 Carla comforts Michelle when Robert dies after being accidentally shot by Gary's client Derek Milligan, who has also died whilst trying to kill Gary that same night. It is then Michelle leaves the street and Carla defends her when the pair encounter her enemy Ray Crosby, who had swindled Michelle's restaurant from her after he propositioned her against her consent.
In 2020, Carla cheats on Peter by having an affair with his nephew Adam just as the latter's wife Sarah has become Carla's new business partner. Soon enough Peter discovers what happened and their marriage is threatened. Carla later hears a man is hurt and fears that it is Peter, but is relieved to hear that he is fine and that the deceased is that of Sally's abusive father-in-law Geoff Metcalfe. In 2021, Carla and Peter reconcile and they continue their relationship. A year later in 2022, Carla defends Peter when he has a liver transplant and he nearly died after his doctor Henry Thorne had been exploiting the situation to his advantage.
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- Carla's most villainous and nasty bitchiness occurred in her first 3–4 years on the show, which earned the actress "Best Bitch" Award at the British Soap Awards. Her villainous deeds include:-
- Covering up an immigrant factory worker's death when she was illegally working. However on a slight plus side, this guaranteed the worker's family her life insurance which wouldn't of happened if police discovered she was illegally working during the night. (2007)
- Manipulating Liam Connor to sell his shares to her new partner Tony Gordon (as listed above).
- Having an affair with Liam Connor, whilst he was married to Maria and she was engaged to Tony. However in a sort of act of redemption, she left Liam when learning his wife was pregnant (which he was unaware off) but he unfortunately died in a hit and run organized by Tony.
- Left Weatherfield when discovering Tony was behind Liam's murder, then returned to try and blackmail him to leave (because he entered into a relationship with Maria). She left again when his henchman Jimmy tried to kill her, but she returned shortly after his imprisonment.