Leanne is to face a tough decision when she returns to the Street in next week’s episodes. As Nick begs his wife to put the past behind them, can Leanne bring herself to forgive him? And how will Leanne react when a volatile Nick has a meltdown at the local kids’ Halloween party that leaves Simon shaken? Actress Jane Danson has the latest on what lies in store in her character’s tumultuous marriage:
So, why did she take off and where has she been?
Leanne took off because she couldn’t face what was going on. She went off to see Toyah to clear her head and to sort out how she was going to deal with it all. When she comes back she returns with a fresh mind.
She takes a bit of the blame because obviously this wouldn’t have happened if she hadn’t have gone to see Peter on Christmas Day. It’s kind of six of one and half a dozen of the other. So she does get over it, for the first time in her life!
So it’s not over for her and Nick?
No, I think for the first time ever she realises she can’t keep running away from her problems. Every time something goes wrong, which it does quite often, she runs away and leaves it to sort itself out. This time she faces it head on – Nick has got brain damage so he’s not the person he once was. She realises that she’s got to stand up, get on with it and grow up, really.
Is part of her returning for Simon?
If you think about her background, Leanne was dragged up by Les and Janice and never knew whether she was coming or going. She wants to provide Simon with the stability and family life that she didn’t have and if that means staying with Nick and making it work then she has to consider it. She’s trying to hold everything together for the family unit and working things through rather than just running away.
So tell us how she feels when she sees Nick again?
When she first arrives back she avoids going to Gail’s house at all costs. Leanne wants to get back onto the Street and find out how she feels being in a familiar environment and establish whether she will walk away from it all again.
Seeing Nick in a vulnerable state makes her realise how she feels about him and she starts to think that she needs to stand by him. Gail is like the piggy in the middle trying to get them back together, but Leanne doesn’t want to rush things.
If she forgives Nick, can she also forget about what he did with Kylie?
In true Leanne style she’s not forgotten and obviously seeing Kylie every day is a constant reminder of what they did. She takes it out on Kylie more than she does Nick. I think she sees a lot of herself in Kylie; she’s quite wild and fiery like Leanne used to be. Initially she cannot help holding a grudge, but as time goes on she might forgive her. I hope she does.
Wouldn’t she be a bit of a hypocrite if she didn’t forgive him? After all, she had been with Peter on Christmas day?
I don’t think she’s being a hypocrite because she is a big enough person now to be able to stand up and admit that what she did was wrong. Leanne used to see everything in black and white but now there are areas of grey.
Leanne is finally growing up a bit, which is quite nice. I’ve just read over the next batch of scripts in which she talks about her past and explains the reasons why she’s changed, so her past is always there as a reference but it’s also nice that she’s maturing.
How much does the fact that a baby is involved affect the situation?
Deep down Leanne really wants her own baby, so the fact that it could have been Nick’s is painful for her to consider.
Why does she suggest that Nick takes Simon to Faye’s Halloween party?
Leanne is keen to get back into the swing of things and rebuild the family unit. Simon’s in the middle of it all and he’s already had a difficult time with his own dad so Leanne’s eager to make him feel secure. Simon gets on well with Nick – Nick is kind to him and I think he’s also keen to rebuild bridges.
But is she worried about Nick’s behaviour?
She doesn’t realise the extremity of how bad it is until the Halloween party. I think that’s Nick’s first major eruption. He’s had his few little gripes along the way but his outburst at the party is very public, so it’s not really very nice for her and Simon. This in turn opens up a new problem with Peter, who grows concerned for Simon being around Nick.
So how does Leanne react when Nick loses it?
Initially, she’s quite upset and says that he was out of order. She’s also embarrassed because it was in front of everyone. However, when it comes down to it and you peel back the layers, Leanne feels really sorry for him. He can’t help it.
But Leanne feels as though she’ll be walking on eggshells, not knowing when he’ll next blow up. Elements of the old Nick remain, but then at times it’s as though he’s a completely different person. It’s been great for Ben [Price] to play because it’s given him a new lease of life and different challenges.
Can Nick and Leanne ever get back to where they were?
It all depends really on how much Nick benefits from rehabilitation and how far they can move on together. Emotionally Leanne isn’t getting what she needs from Nick – she’s not being cuddled and the romance has evaporated ,so she’s craving that element of their relationship. She’s still fairly young and she still wants to do the family thing, but it’s not going to happen with the way he is. I really don’t know which way it’s going to go.