EastEnders has pulled a very bold move in tonight’s special episode, which ended with a dramatic flash-forward sequence that took us to Christmas 2023.
Producer Chris Clenshaw described the scene: ‘We end on six of Walford’s much loved matriarchs, Denise (Diane Parish), Kathy (Gillian Taylforth), Linda (Kellie Bright), Sharon (Letitia Dean), Stacey (Lacey Turner) and Suki (Balvinder Sopal) as they are faced with a dead body – but who is it and what has happened?
‘The episode will act as a catalyst for major storylines involving each of the characters that will play out over the year.’
The show boss revealed that the idea for the flash-forward came up when the team decided they wanted something that would involve six of the key women in the current cast.
‘We were looking for an episode to get viewers really excited as we set up an event that they’ll hopefully look forward to all year,’ he said, as he likened the impact he hoped the story would have with the long-running ‘Who killed Lucy Beale?’ storyline.
‘A couple of our writers and story team took that brief on board and came back with the idea of flashing forward and, in doing so, we’re promising a “whodunnit” is coming in the future,’ Chris said.
‘We developed the idea and thought it would be even more exciting if we didn’t reveal who the victim is – becoming so much more than a “whodunnit”… It’s a “who-is-it” as well.’
Lacey Turner, one of the women involved in the story and seen in the flash-forward with her hands covered in blood, was thrilled to be part of this ground-breaking story.
‘It was really exciting when we were told,’ she admitted. ‘The six of us went up for a meeting with Chris and he told us all about this idea he had about using a flash forward scene, and I think it’s really exciting to do something we’ve never done before.
‘For it to be with six women is also really exciting because that is not something that happens very often. This is six amazingly talented, super strong women, so I feel quite chuffed to be a part of it really.’
But who is the dead man on the floor of the Queen Vic on Christmas Day 2023? And which one of the women killed him? Lacey has some theories.
‘When we first had the meeting about the storyline, I immediately thought it was someone who wasn’t in Albert Square yet,’ she mused.
If the dead man is one of the current inhabitants of the Square, Lacey thinks it could be one person in particular.
‘In terms of who meets their fate, I have a certain person in mind at the moment, but I think my guess is too obvious and I’m probably wrong,’ she told us.
‘The more that time goes on, and the more the six of us have chatted away, I feel like it’s an accidental death. I don’t think it has been done on purpose, and I think that it’s more of a group effort rather than one sole person, and if it is one individual, then I think all of the women are covering for them.
I think we all might know something we shouldn’t know and we’re all covering for each other.’
That would be a fascinating development and would lead to more and more stories for the women going right into 2024, which would be a very EastEnders things to do as it did with the Lucy Beale story.
But, as Chris Clenshaw reminded us, ‘Expect the unexpected.’
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