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Exclusive: EastEnders boss teases Christmas episodes: ‘Nothing is as you expect’

Christmas on Albert Square is set to be as dramatic as ever, ‘Enders boss reveals

© BBC / Kieron McCarron
© BBC / Kieron McCarron

Speaking at a recent press event, Dominic Treadwell-Collins, EastEnders’ current executive producer, said: “This is a Christmas of secrets and a Christmas of surprises. It’s a Christmas that the audience is going to want to watch live, because nothing is as you expect.

“This year we’ve looked at Christmas in four different stages. We decided to treat this a bit like we treated Live Week. It’s epic! There are secrets. There are twists. There are a hell of a lot of stories going on and a lot of surprises. The first act is the lead-up to Christmas Day, and that’s a big storyline for Ronnie and Vincent because you’ve got the Mitchells vs. the Hubbards. Sharon’s concerns about Bobby are building and Bobby’s bad behaviour is building too, but Jane is oblivious to it.

“Act 2 is Christmas Day itself – which is a massive Beales and Mitchells Christmas, with Ronnie and Vincent running underneath. Some strange, quiet behaviour from Stacey is going through it too, and some mad Carter Christmas fun as well. In Act 3, Dean and Roxy’s relationship will take a dark turn, as Dean shows his true colours to her. This will then build to Mick and Linda’s wedding, which takes place on New Year’s Day.

“This then carries us through into Act 4 at the beginning of January, which is the start of Stacey’s postpartum psychosis storyline and Kat discovering that she has a son. There’s also another big story for Denise starting. We’re going to find out a lot about Claudette’s true colours and there’s some big returns.”

He added: “We plan as much as possible. We had the tent pegs for this year about a year ago. I think when the show is firing on all cylinders, it’s good to know exactly where you’re going. After Live Week, we sat down and said: ‘Let’s take the scale of Live Week and spread that over the season. Let’s go from Christmas Eve to the middle of January’.

“It keeps going and so many new stories start. It’s a competitive time, so you want to put your best wares in the window – get everyone watching and going: ‘Oh God, I’ve got to keep watching – damn you EastEnders!’

“People expect EastEnders to be a bit gruesome. You’re arguing with your family and you’re often having a dreadful day. But you can think ‘At least I’m not a Beale’ and feel a bit better.”

EastEnders airs on Christmas Day at 8.45pm on BBC One and BBC One HD.

About the author

Tommy Giffen