Why Do People Hate Helen Flanagan?

Helen Flanagan is an English actress and model best known for playing the role of Rosie Webster in the ITV soap opera Coronation Street from 2000–2012 and again from 2017–2018. Despite her popularity and success as an actress, Flanagan has faced significant public backlash and criticism throughout her career, leading many to wonder – why do people hate Helen Flanagan?

In this article, we’ll explore some of the key reasons why Flanagan has attracted so much vitriol from the public and media over the years. From allegations of diva behavior to her controversial social media presence, let’s take a closer look at why this famous actress seems to rub so many people the wrong way.

Reasons Why People Dislike Helen Flanagan

Allegations of Unprofessional On-Set Behavior

One of the most common criticisms leveled at Flanagan is that she was often unprofessional and difficult to work with on set. There were numerous reports that she would frequently turn up late, refuse to film certain scenes, and was difficult and demanding toward producers and crew members.

In 2018, a Coronation Street insider told The Sun: “Helen has been playing up again…she went three weeks without any contact with the bosses. She turned up when she wanted to turn up and constantly kept asking for time off to go to awards ceremonies.”

These diva-like allegations have contributed to a perception among some that Flanagan lacks work ethic and commitment to her acting roles.

Provocative Social Media Presence

Flanagan has also faced backlash for the nature of her social media presence, specifically her tendency to post provocative, scantily clad photos of herself.

While Flanagan defends these photos as empowering, her critics argue they portray a lack of self-respect and set a poor example, particularly for her young female followers.

In 2021, Flanagan posted a lingerie photo of herself just 8 weeks after giving birth to her third child. The post prompted a wave of criticism from people who felt it promoted unrealistic beauty standards for new mothers.

Controversial Comments and Opinions

Flanagan has made various contentious public comments over the years that have rubbed people the wrong way. For example, she was heavily criticized in 2013 for saying she would quit acting to focus on motherhood duties if she ever had children. Many felt this perpetuated outdated gender stereotypes.

She also made headlines in 2018 when she admitted to smacking her children as a disciplinary method, advocating for corporal punishment. This led to much debate and backlash from those opposed to hitting children.

While everyone is entitled to their own opinions, Flanagan’s divisive views on gender roles and parenting have certainly contributed to her poor public perception.

Reputation for Being “Stuck Up”

Finally, Flanagan is also accused of coming across as arrogant or “stuck up” in her public persona and interactions with fans. While some of this may stem from rumors and hearsay, critics point to Flanagan’s history of name-dropping and bragging about her wealth and success as evidence that she is self-absorbed and elitist.

In 2010, Flanagan reportedly left the British Soap Awards early after discovering she hadn’t won any awards, leading to more diva allegations. While Flanagan denies these claims, the narrative that she has an entitled attitude persists among the public.

History of Helen Flanagan’s Controversies

To understand why Helen Flanagan provokes such extreme reactions from the public, it’s important to look at some key events and controversies from her career:

2000-2012: Early Acting Roles

  • First appeared as Rosie Webster on Coronation Street at age 9
  • Earned “Best Actress” award nominations as a teenager
  • Developed reputation as a rising star with teen idol status

2007: I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!

  • Appeared on and won reality TV show at age 17
  • Clashed with castmates and accused of being shallow and spoiled

2009-2011: Smoking Controversy

  • Pictured smoking at age 19 while pregnant and as a teen role model
  • Later admitted to regular underage smoking and drinking

2011-2012: On-Set Behavior Rumors

  • Reports of arriving late, refusing to film scenes, and tensions with producers
  • Took extended breaks from Coronation Street amid rumors of bad behavior

2012-2017: Break from Coronation Street

  • Left show to pursue other opportunities after 12 years as Rosie
  • Made headlines for provocative photos, plastic surgery rumors, and dating football players

2017-2018: Return to Coronation Street

  • Reprised role of Rosie amid more reports of on-set conflicts
  • Criticized for leaving early to attend National Television Awards

2018-Present: Motherhood and Social Media

  • Focused on family but continued posting risqué photos after having kids
  • Made controversial comments about gender roles and parenting approaches
  • Still faces ongoing backlash about “oversexualized” social media presence

Public Perception and Reputation Today

Today, Flanagan remains a polarizing figure in the UK. While she still has many fans who appreciate her acting work and defend her right to parent or present herself on social media however she chooses, her reputation remains tarnished in the eyes of many.

Some key aspects and perceptions of Helen Flanagan’s current public reputation include:

  • Seen as unprofessional and entitled based on rumors of past bad behavior
  • Criticized for provocative branding and self-sexualization on social media
  • Disliked by some for views on gender norms and parenting that they consider sexist or abusive
  • Perceived as arrogant and out-of-touch whenever she complains about fame or flaunts wealth
  • Considered a bad role model for young women due to sexualized image and smoking/drinking past
  • No longer seen as the fresh-faced soap star who was so popular in the early 2000s

While her history on Coronation Street still earns her recognition and acting opportunities, the constant scandals, controversies, and media coverage of her most unflattering moments have made Helen Flanagan one of the most ridiculed and reviled British celebrities in recent years for a significant portion of the public.

Helen Flanagan’s Side of the Story

However, it’s important to acknowledge Helen Flanagan’s responses to her critics and her side of the story when it comes to these controversies:

  • Denies allegations she was unprofessional on set, arguing the tabloid rumors were exaggerated
  • Says risqué photos represent her owning her sexuality, not setting a bad example
  • Claims smoking while pregnant was brief lapse in judgment, not regular habit
  • Suggests opinions on gender roles and parenting were taken out of context by media
  • Asserts she is down-to-earth person who ignores gossip about alleged diva behavior
  • Notes she has many loyal fans who know the real her beneath tabloid portrayals

While Flanagan admits to making some mistakes earlier in her career, she seems frustrated by the lasting damage to her reputation based on gossip, rumors, and her own questionable choices as a teenager thrust into the spotlight at a young age.

Factors That Contributed to Helen Flanagan’s Negative Reputation

Several factors likely contributed to Helen Flanagan developing such a negative public image and reputation over the course of her career:

  • Becoming famous at a young age – Flanagan was only 9 when she joined Coronation Street and had achieved nationwide fame by her teens. Some believe this level of success so young made her entitled.
  • Gender double standards – As a young, beautiful actress, Flanagan faced immense pressure over her looks and behavior. Male stars are often not criticized so harshly.
  • The rise of social media – Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram made it easier than ever for people to criticize Flanagan for the content she posted. Previous stars did not face this issue.
  • Britain’s aggressive tabloid culture – The UK tabloids played a major role in advancing rumors and negative narratives about Flanagan that stuck in the public consciousness.
  • Her legitimate controversies/mistakes – While unfairly maligned at times, Flanagan did make some poor choices that understandably drew criticism and backlash.

If Flanagan had come of age in the era before 24/7 digital scrutiny, things may have played out very differently in terms of her reputation with the public and media.

Helen Flanagan’s Impact and Legacy

Regardless of the negative perceptions surrounding her, Helen Flanagan has made an undeniable impact over her two decades in the public eye:

  • As an actress – She delivered an acclaimed 12-year run as Rosie Webster on one of Britain’s most popular soaps, showcasing her talent.
  • As a celebrity personality – She remains one of the UK’s most famous and recognizable celebrities, despite not always being popular.
  • As a trailblazer – Flanagan opened doors for future actresses by proving you can play both glamorous model and acclaimed actor.
  • As a businesswoman – She leveraged her fame into endorsements, partnerships, and other business ventures.
  • As an influencer – Today, Flanagan makes a lucrative living sharing her fashion, beauty, and family life with over 1 million Instagram followers.

While her legacy is certainly complicated by the controversies around her, there is no denying the remarkable longevity Flanagan has achieved in an industry where stars often burn bright but fade quickly. She has found a way to maintain relevance across multiple eras of fame.


In summary, Helen Flanagan’s polarizing reputation stems from a combination of factors such as her young rise to fame, gender biases, intensified 21st century media coverage, and her own missteps and controversial choices at times. Her alleged on-set diva behavior, provocative social media presence, opinions on gender and parenting, and arrogant public persona have made her an unpopular figure with many in Britain today.

However, Flanagan also has legions of loyal fans, argues she is misunderstood, and remains one of the country’s highest-profile stars. While her legacy is complex, she has achieved an uncommon level of enduring success and influence. Her story provides a cautionary tale about the dangerous double-edged sword of early celebrity and notoriety.

Frequently Asked Questions About Why People Dislike Helen Flanagan

What are the main reasons people dislike Helen Flanagan?

The main reasons people dislike Flanagan include allegations she acted like a diva on sets, posted overly risqué photos online, made controversial comments about gender and parenting, and came across as arrogant or entitled in public.

What incidents most damaged her reputation?

Key damaging incidents were the reports of unprofessional behavior on Coronation Street, smoking while pregnant photos, quitting shows abruptly, and social media photos soon after giving birth.

How does she respond to her critics?

Flanagan denies most accusations of diva behavior and argues her photos and comments were taken out of context. She blames sexist double standards and tabloid culture for her poor public image.

Why was she so much more popular early in her career?

Flanagan was viewed more positively when she first found fame as a talented young soap star. Controversies later in life changed public opinion.

Does she still have opportunities and fans despite the backlash?

Yes, Flanagan still has a sizable fanbase from her acting work and loyal social media following. She continues to earn endorsements and acting roles.

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