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Last Updated: Saturday, 24 September 2005, 20:31 GMT 21:31 UK
Street bosses dismiss Hilda jibe
Jean Alexander
Jean Alexander played Hilda Ogden for 23 years
Coronation Street bosses have dismissed comments by one of the show's former stars that it lacks comedy, focuses on sex and has over-long storylines.

Actress Jean Alexander, 79, who played Coronation Street's Hilda Ogden for 23 years, made the comments to the Manchester Evening News.

A soap spokeswoman said 12 million people were "entertained by the drama" in the show every week.

"We don't subscribe to Jean's opinions," she said.

There used to be so much more comedy
Jean Alexander

Hilda was recently named the UK's favourite soap star in a survey by TV Times magazine.

Alexander, 79, who left the show 18 years ago, said: "I don't like so much emphasis on sex and I also wish there was more fun in Coronation Street.

"There used to be so much more comedy.

"Whereas a storyline would usually be played out within three weeks, today certain storylines seem to drag on forever," she added.

The actress will never return to the show, her agent Joan Reddin said.

"She thinks the character of Hilda Ogden moved on to bigger and better things, and it wouldn't work if she came back."

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