Coronation Street's Carla Connor fights for her life as flames engulf Underworld in a terrifying armed siege that leaves two characters dead.
In the most expensive episodes ever filmed for the soap, murderous Tony Gordon, played by Gray O'Brien, breaks out of jail next week to exact his revenge on those he believes have wronged him.
With the help of new henchman Robbie Sloan (James Fleet), the convicted killer takes ex-wife Carla Connor (Alison King) and Hayley Cropper (Julie Hesmondhalgh) hostage.
Former lover Maria Connor (Samia Smith) also becomes embroiled in the plot when she makes a surprise appearance at the knicker factory.
As the tension mounts, crazed Tony splashes petrol around the building and sets fire to it.
Although the identities of the casualties are being kept under wraps, two characters lose their lives in the dramatic episodes, which took four weeks to film and used a purpose-built set.
Actress King underwent gun training before shooting her scenes as Carla, and insisted on doing some of her own stunts.
She even needed emergency oxygen after filming in the smoke-filled room.
Coronation Street will broadcast six episodes, instead of the usual five, next week as the plot unfolds on screen.
The first episode will air on Monday at 7pm, followed by a 9pm show that night and for the next four evenings. For the first time, the episodes will also be broadcast simultaneously in high definition on ITV1 HD.