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Coronation Street fans are sure that notorious serial killer John Stape could still be alive after they 'solved' the identity of Hope's messenger 'Mad Dog'.
Hope has been engaging in an online battle game with a mysterious stranger online, and during Monday's episode her pal Sam Blakeman quizzed her on who she was texting.
"Is it Mad Dog again?" he asked, as Hope implied that things are "over".
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During their discussion about school projects, Hope said she intended to talk about her online games, while Sam would discuss chess – but could his identity finally be revealed if she slips up during the presentation?
Now fans think it could be John Stape messaging his daughter, after he was 'killed off' on the soap back in 2011.
The killer, who kidnapped Rosie Webster and took the lives of Colin Fishwick, Joy Fishwick and Charlotte Hoyle, was fatally injured in a car crash.
But despite his on-screen death, stranger things have happened in Soapland, as one Facebook user wrote: "Yes [Mad Dog is] John Stape!"
Another agreed on Twitter: "#Corrie Hope’s on about Mad Dog again… her dad’s deffo still alive!"
A third user even suggested John could be behind the death of Stu's apparent murder victim Charlie Walters, as they posted: "Oh no, did John Stape kill Charlie too?!"
Further speculation about Mad Dog's identity suggested it could be Hope's half-sister Jade Rowan, her dad's oldest child.
Fiz's ex Phill Whittaker's name was also thrown into the ring.
One fan tweeted: "I thought it was Phill, then his mum or even Phill’s ex. My last thought was Hope’s sister Jade."
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Another suggested: "#Corrie newspaper reports Twitter followers have worked out who Mad Dog is believing it's Phill, personally more likely to be her sister Jade Rowan."
"Hmmmmm who is Mad Dog? Could it be Phill?" a third echoed, while someone else said: "Who is this mad dog on Hope's iPad, Phill? Trying to get revenge maybe?"
Elsewhere on the cobbles, Hope and Sam headed off for their first year of high school, with Sam being targeted by a gang of bullies who pretended to be interested in chess.
Mistaking their sarcasm for sincerity, Sam offered to teach them the game and rushed off to get his chess set.
Coronation Street airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8pm on ITV.
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