Emmerdale: “Teenage lesbians are going crazy for Charity and Vanessa!” – Emma Atkins and Michelle Hardwick interview

The unlikely couple made it official tonight

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Robron weren’t the only Emmerdale power couple to declare their commitment to each other tonight, as ‘Vanity’ ditched the game-playing to become a more serious romantic prospect.

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Vanessa Woodfield and Charity Dingle first hooked up with a scandalous drunken kiss last year while trapped in the Woolpack basement together, and while they put it down to a moment of madness at the time their sizzling chemistry has kept the unlikely union simmering until the pair admitted their feelings in this evening’s hour-long episode where the Dingle diva and vivacious vet stopped messing around and sealed it with a kiss while on the lash in Hotten’s hottest new gay bar.

The pairing has been a surprise hit with fans and looks set to run and run – we caught up with Emma Atkins and Michelle Hardwick to discuss what’s in store.

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Did Charity go to the bar because she was jealous of Vanessa being on the pull?
Emma:
Charity was wild with jealousy, yes. She’s shocked by how far her feelings run for Vanessa. She thought it was a bit of fun, but realises she’s loving her company and they spar off each other brilliantly. It’s a nice dynamic and I think it’s quite a surprise. Her feelings become clear when she finds herself going to the bar to stake her claim.

Did Vanessa deliberately wind her up?
Michelle:
Before she goes to the bar she made a remark about them being ‘no strings’ and casual. She’s testing Charity by posting selfies of her with this attractive girl.

Is Charity still attracted to men?
E:
She appears to have put men on hold and probably feels it’s not working out. She’s been hard done by and feels she’s gone the other way I guess. It’s sprung up from absolutely nowhere, but I guess in life, that is sometimes how it is. You turn a corner and you find yourself questioning something, but you’re still doing it.

What is it about Vanessa that’s captivated her?
E:
She’s very beautiful but isn’t a pushover, but isn’t afraid to show her delicate side as well. Charity is used to playing power games and Vanessa’s not entering into it, she thinks it’s pathetic and Charity finds it appealing. No one has ever called her on it before, they usuall fall at her feet. Maybe it’s a softer side to Charity at this moment in time? I’m sure it won’t last forever.

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What kind of reaction have you had from the audience?
E:
Teenage lesbians are going crazy for it. I can’t believe it.
M: It’s gone nuts on Twitter. I get so many messages saying ‘Thank you for this storyline, you’ve helped us come out’. It’s quite overwhelming.

Do you feel a sense of responsibility in portraying the relationship?
M:
Absolutely. Like every story, you’ve got to tell it right and do your research. I have been there myself, I came out to my family when I was in my late 20s and didn’t have the courage to do it before. But then again, I had no role model then to look up to when I was 18, which is why I have been very honest and shared my story.
E: There’s too many social constraints in society, it’s lovely how people have reacted to them being toegther.

Will we see a softer, less manipulative Charity in this relationship?
E:
There’s no manipulation with Vanessa, it’s genuine and kind and loving. Perhaps Charity has not been used to that. She’s often been the unkind one, and finds herself being a bit nicer. She can’t believe it.

Do you like playing that side of her?
E:
I love it. I’m blessed with really good dialogue as well. Her humour runs throughout and it’s so important when you’re playing such a bitch, it stops you getting fed up with her!

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Do you relish the thought of Charity becoming nicer?
E:
I do love playing someone so far removed from my own personality. I wouldn’t dream of talking to people the way she does so it’s quite cathartic doing that. However, personalities are layered and someone who’s a bitch always has another side. It’s interesting to explore the rich dynamics of her personality, because no one’s just one thing. I always question people who are too nice!

Has this all come as a surprise to Vanessa?
M:
Yes, and let’s not forget that Charity had an affair with her dad of all people. And she also tried to set him up and go to prison… But neither of them can deny their chemistry.

Would you like the relationship to be a long-term thing?
E:
I think it would be a shame for it to not have some purpose or meaning. And I think it is meaningful, rather than just salacious.

You can watch a 60-second rundown of next week’s episodes of Emmerdale below.

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