The love triangle between Craig Manning, Manny Santos, and Emma Nelson formed in the second season of Degrassi: The Next Generation. Craig was in the center of the love triangle.

Love Triangle History

Season 2


Craig, Emma, and Manny use sidewalk chalk with Angela.

In When Doves Cry (1), Emma presumably mentions something to Manny that implicates that Craig is a ninth grader, as Manny asks, "So, he's in grade nine?" Emma verifies that he is, informing her of having seen Craig walking out of Mr. Simpson's homeroom earlier that morning. Manny blatantly expresses her attraction to Craig upon learning that he is indeed in the ninth grade, as she asks, "Why do the niners get all the hotties?" Craig enters the library and approaches the girls. Manny sees him walking toward them and whispers, "Shh, there he is.." Manny and Emma simultaneously turn around and attempt to appear indistinct behind their books, as their crush on Craig renders them insecure around him. Craig walks over to where the girls are seated and engages Emma in conversation regarding her connection to his younger half-sister, Angela Jeremiah, whom Emma babysits. Emma did not recall having formally met Craig prior to their current confrontation, though then correctly identifies him as being Angela's half-brother. Emma explains to Manny that Craig is the half-brother of Angela, after which Manny says while dazing admiringly at Craig, "Oh.. Oh, hi.." Craig returns the favor by politely nodding and greeting her as well, though is fixated more so on gathering more information from Emma on Angela. Manny watches diligently as Craig walks away, then adds in excitement, "He's coming tonight!", referring to Craig attending a party at Emma's house.

In Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Craig accidentally bumps Emma as she and Manny are walking in the hallway. Craig asks the girls if they will be attending the dance Degrassi is hosting that evening, to which Manny replies that they can't, as they are not upperclassmen. Emma then adds that they already have plans, a movie night with Emma's mother. Craig states that there is always next year for them to attend as he walks away. An attentively observant Manny watches Craig as he leaves, then tells Emma, "It's so obvious that Craig likes you." Emma questions Manny on the veracity of Craig's alleged interest in her, though seems quite pleased with the idea of it being true.

Due to conflicting schedules with Emma's mother, Manny and Emma decide to crash the dance. While getting ready for the dance, Emma states that her mother didn't date "dweebs" like Mr. Simpson, her mother's current partner, when she was in high school. Manny replies, "Yeah, she dated guys, like Craig.", putting emphasis on "guys", implying that Craig has the attractiveness that epitomizes him as being the type of guy that another would find appealing. Playfully mimicking Emma's infatuation with Craig, Manny says, "Oh Craig! I love your eyes, and your hair, and your smile!" The girls then begin to jump on Emma's bed, and while doing so, Manny adds, "We are so gonna see Craig tonight!"

While chatting about the dance, Joey Jeremiah asks Craig if he has a "hot date" for the night. Craig answers, yes, though adds that she won't be attending. It is later revealed that he was referring to Manny.


Manny dances with Craig in front of Emma.

When they arrive at the school, they hide in shrubbery to avoid being caught sneaking in. They manage to spot Craig standing outside of the school, and they discretely call him over. Craig responds to their calls for him saying, "Hey look, Valley Girls!" Craig asks them what they're doing, and Manny informs him of their plan to crash the dance. Emma then adds that they will need his assistance doing so, as their principal, Mr. Raditch, is supervising outside of the school. He agrees, telling them to meet him at the back entrance in ten minutes. Craig is met by the girls at the back entrance, where they proceed to sneak into the school. Regardless of almost being caught by Mr. Raditch, they manage to sneak in without further complication.

Craig is seen frequently watching Manny from afar during the dance. As a slow song is played, Craig approaches the girls. Manny whispers to Emma, "He's heading right this way!" Craig smiles, greeting the girls and asking if they're having a good time at the dance. Manny answers, "Yeah, we haven't had this much fun since," she pauses, "Well, ever..." An overzealous Craig replies, "Great!", after which sharing a brief moment of eye contact with Manny, who then repeats, "Great." Craig then hesitantly asks Manny to dance. Taken aback by his offer, Manny asks, "Me?", unsure of whether or not to accept or decline out of respect for Emma, who she knows harbors feelings for him. Emma, however, gives Manny her blessing, telling to go dance as she waits for them. Manny accepts Craig's offer, after which they hold hands while moving onto the dance floor. Craig wraps his arms around Manny's waist as she clings her arms around his neck, and they are shown slow dancing to the song.

Emma leaves the dance and heads home. She later tells Spike about show she is upset because she and Manny both liked a guy, who they thought liked her, but instead liked Manny.

Season 8

While arguing about boys that she and Manny had both liked in With or Without You, Emma mentioned Craig. Manny pointed out that they were twelve at the time.