Lisa Fowler was led away to hospital in tonight’s EastEnders double bill after suffering a breakdown which saw her abduct sick daughter Louise Mitchell and go on the run, bringing actress Lucy Benjamin’s brief return to a dramatic close.
As Louise’s health deteriorated without the medication essential to her recovery from her horrific burning accident, the terrified teen realised her troubled mother had stopped taking her medication and her mental health was rapidly declining.
Paranoid and desperate to keep her daughter away from Phil, Lisa attacked her ex when he finally tracked them down to a remote hotel in Essex – just as Louise collapsed in pain. Going into complete meltdown, Lisa was genuinely scared at being face to face with Phil again, and the aggressive Mr Mitchell’s tirade of abuse to his fragile ex shocked wife Sharon.
As paramedics arrived an emotional Lisa begged Louise to accompany her to hospital, and despite Phil’s initial insistence that Lou keep away from her unstable mum the teen seemed to turn against her dad and stood by Lisa, having finally realised the full effect Phil’s behaviour on her poorly parent.
It’s clear the psychological abuse Phil inflicted on his old flame all those years ago when he emotionally bullied her and took Louise away when she was just a baby has led Lisa to a very dark place indeed – with even Sharon commenting Phil needs to accept some responsibility for Lisa’s problems.
Benjamin’s return to the role after seven years was kept under wraps until she appeared on screen two weeks ago, but tonight’s episode is the last viewers will see of her – for now.
An EastEnders insider told RadioTimes.com: “Although this marks the end of Lisa’s short stint back in Walford, the character is still out there and could return again one day. She’s Louise’s mum and Phil’s ex so will always be a part of the Mitchells’ lives…”
The impact of Lisa’s comeback will be huge for Louise – will she reject her father having seen up close how much he’s messed with her mum’s mind? Can Lisa get the help she needs after this incident? And with Sharon showing sympathy for Lisa, could her reappearance have a negative effect on her and Phil’s marriage?
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