We get to meet Cook's dad in the final episode. What's their relationship like?
"It's the lack of the relationship that proves to be the problem. Without his dad's presence Cook's got to find male influence from somewhere and I think it's this confusion – or lack of – which is where he goes wrong. He's very enthusiastic about meeting him, which just makes it a lot harder when he does. The main story is that there's hidden truths and the truths are too significant to hide, so problems occur."
Is it fair to say that Cook's been let down by his dad?
"Yeah, but never too directly for Cook to resent him. They have a weird relationship and I guess the lack of any presence has worked in Cook's favour 'cos his dad does turn out to be quite a failure."
What about Effy - does Cook genuinely have feelings for her?
"Yeah man! He doesn't allow himself to feel any kind of affection on that level for anyone other than his friends 'cos they're the only people that haven't let him down. So women-wise I guess it's new grounds to him – it's quite intimidating and whatnot, and it's confusing. He has no idea how to handle it so he goes about it the wrong way. I remember messing up my first relationship really badly because I didn't have a clue, so it's quite easy to empathise with."
So what's the situation with Cook and Freddie at this point?
"What I found, seeing it on a neutral level, was that Cook is unfair towards Freddie and that needs addressing if they're going to remain friends, because obviously Cook's really inconsiderate. I reckon lessons are going to be learnt off each other. I'm hoping that it resolves itself because I don't see anyone in Cook's life closer to him than Freddie. Eventually we see Freddie's true intentions and we see a new side to Cook."
Do you think he feels bad about all the bad stuff he's done?
"I suppose eventually he will. I reckon he needs a lot of growing up to do before he does fully see it for what it is. At the minute he's 17 and it's still all fun and games. I'd say I can empathise with Cook because I had similarities to him before levelling my own head out. It's a common one – everyone knows a Cook. It's the story of when someone tries to be something they're so clearly not but is so convinced by it anyway that it becomes hard for them to break away from it. But it's cool because we do get to see Cook's vulnerability and we can completely understand why he is the way he is."
Is he quite a fun character to play?
"Absolutely – do you not see how many girls I get to make out with and get paid for it? It's quality! He's just Jack the lad. If I compare myself to seventeen, I share a lot in relation to Cook so it's good to be able to play a character and not reap real-life consequences for it. But I had a right laugh playing him – he's a funny character and he keeps me in stitches as well. I'm enjoying reading him."
Is there anyone else that you'd like to play from the series?
"JJ – I reckon he'd challenge me the most. Imagine trying to act nervous bearing in mind you're already nervous especially with it only being your first job. Being able to play nervous on camera and for it to read accurately is challenging. So I'd like to play JJ just for the challenge."
Did you watch the previous series of Skins?
"Yeah. I used to go to the same workshop as Joe Dempsie who plays Chris so I was attracted to it for that reason. Then I got sucked straight into it – I was a big fan of it. It's still kind of weird just being involved in it – it's something that I respected anyway originally as a fan, and now I have the chance to influence it as dramatically as Cook does!"
Do you know what we can expect from Cook in the fourth series?
"I wouldn't know anything too accurate yet – I don't want to mislead. But I want him to find himself properly, and I want him to be comfortable with his character as opposed to forcing some fake character on everyone which he seems to do quite a lot. I want to see it resolved properly – there's a triangle there and there's people concerned around that as well including Pandora and even Thomas. I'd like a happy ending preferably but Skins likes reality, doesn't it?"
Series three of Skins concludes Thursday at 10pm on E4.
Add your comments to this entry below!