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'Hollyoaks' Jennifer Metcalfe interview: 'Mercedes will self-destruct'

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Jennifer Metcalfe as Mercedes McQueen

© Channel 4

Hollyoaks' troubled mum Mercedes McQueen reaches breaking point next week as she is haunted by terrifying memories she'd rather forget.

Mercedes and the rest of the villagers are left stunned when the local newspaper announces that evil Silas Blissett won't stand trial for his sinister crimes, having been declared insane by the authorities.

While the cunning serial killer will remain locked away in a secure facility, Mercedes feels that justice hasn't been done. Recalling her horrifying experience in Silas's vault, Mercedes struggles to cope and her behaviour soon starts to spiral out of control yet again…

Digital Spy recently caught up with Jennifer Metcalfe, who plays Mercedes, to hear her thoughts on the storyline.

How does Mercedes react to the news that Silas won't stand trial?
"Mercedes tries to put on a good front, so at first she pretends that she's just put the whole thing in a box and left it there. But deep down, she's feeling quite anxious about the whole thing. She thought that it had all been put to bed, but seeing the newspaper headlines stirs things up again.

"You'll see that Mercedes is feeling quite low, scared and lonely. She also starts suffering from nightmares, which you'll see in a few scenes."

Did Mercedes ever fully recover from her ordeal with Silas?
"Well, when things upset her, Mercedes is quite good at putting them in a box and leaving them there. But I think the box is getting pretty full now! It's overflowing and the stuff with Silas is the first thing to pop back out. She'll have to deal with it now."

The newspapers stir up feelings amongst the residents of Hollyoaks.

© Lime Pictures



How does Mercedes cope with the news?
"Mercedes pretty much goes into self-destruct mode. She's hating herself and she's looking for a distraction from it all, so she calls up Doctor Browning and ends up having sex with him again.

"That turns out to be quite a big mistake, as Riley later gets wind of all this from Lynsey. Riley confronts Mercedes and he thinks that she's charged Doctor Browning for sex. He says that he doesn't want the mother of his son doing this kind of thing - and he wants her out of Bobby's life, basically!"

Does Mercedes talk Riley round?
"Well, Riley soon realises that Mercedes has made a mistake and she didn't take any money from Doctor Browning. Once he knows that, Riley soon forgives Mercedes."

Does Mercedes confide in anyone about how she's feeling?
"Mercedes confides in Lynsey as they've become quite good friends. Lynsey actually gives Mercedes some sound advice and it shows that Lynsey does care about her."

Have you enjoyed the chance to portray a proper friendship for Mercedes in her scenes with Lynsey?
"I've absolutely loved it! The thing is, pretty much all my scenes and storylines up until about a year ago were with men, so it's been quite nice to see Mercedes form a good bond with Lynsey.

"On top of that, it's great to have the friction between Mercedes and Mitzeee as well. It's been quite nice working with women for a change! Mercedes usually doesn't like women, so it's quite endearing to see that her and Lynsey have built up a bond."

Lynsey tries to get Mercedes to remove Silas from her mind.

© Lime Pictures



Why has Mercedes found it so difficult to get over Riley?
"She still loves him, but now I think it's almost become a bit of an obsession. Because Mercedes can't have him, she wants him - and when she sees him with someone else, she doesn't like it!"

Could Riley ever forgive Mercedes?
"I don't know, it's soapland - anything could happen! I think they had quite a good bond together, but for me, I feel like that's finished with now. But we don't know whether the writers might want them to reunite - we'll just have to wait and see."

Does Mercedes have maternal feelings for Bobby now?
"It's a bit weird, because I think Mercedes feels that when she's getting closer to Riley, she can bond a bit more with Bobby as well. But when Riley forgets her, she finds it a lot more difficult to cope with Bobby."

Mercedes often tells people that she can change. Is she being genuine or just pretending?
"I think she's convinced that she can, but then she realises the hard way that she can't! That means she gets even more disappointed with herself. When she says that she's going to change, she actually means it - she just can't sustain it!"

What was your take on Mercedes's recent stalking storyline?
"I think it worked for her, and the audience always seem to forgive her for some silly reason, which is brilliant for me. No matter how much she pushes the boundaries, the audience seems to like what she does. I very rarely get bad feeling from the people who watch it, and I think it's good that me and the writers have created that."

Bart walks in on Mercedes planning her surprise.

© Lime Pictures



Will she carry on terrorising Mitzeee?
"I don't know - I don't know what to expect from that girl anymore! But I quite liked the storyline and I'd like to see it explored some more."

We've heard you've had a hectic filming schedule recently so there must be more drama to come…
"Yeah, I have - and that's brilliant. It's hard sometimes to fit life round it, but work is the priority. When they're producing really good stuff for me to do and I'm going into work feeling excited, it's not a chore at all and I look forward to it every day."

Are you sticking around on Hollyoaks for the foreseeable future?
"For the foreseeable future, I'm very happy. The writers and producers keep coming up with more and more amazing stuff for me, so there's no reason why I'd want to leave!"

> Read more 'Hollyoaks' spoilers and news

Hollyoaks airs weekdays at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with a first look screening at 7pm on E4. Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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