Mercedes McQueen makes a spectacular return to Hollyoaks next week as she reveals she’s remarrying ex-husband Russ Owen, but once she’s reunited with cousin Sylver for the first time since they were teenagers at her Magaluf hen party, it’s revealed the kissing cousins are old flames – and after more shock revelations the bride calls her wedding off!
“She’s shocked to see Sylver after so many years,” reveals Jennifer Metcalfe, making a full-time return to the cast as the queen of the McQueens (she appeared in one episode last month) after a year of maternity leave following the birth of her son Daye with Geordie Shore star Greg Lake. “I think she still holds a little flame for the guy and for him to be in Magaluf takes her by surprise. She’s also a bit annoyed!”
And what about her relationship with returning Russ, who has the distinction of sharing the first of her three failed marriages having tied the knot back in 2007? It didn’t end well before… “I actually don’t think it is much different,” sighs Metcalfe. “They are older but it’s like nothing ahas changed. Mercedes is just trying to convince herself it has!”
Stuart Manning, appearing as Russ for the first time since 2009, reminds us of the cloud under which his alter ego left – and why Mercy’s mum Myra is not pleased to see him again. “Russ had a baby with Mercy’s sister Tina, who then died. He ran away with the kid, Max, because the McQueens were trying to take him. Him and his son have been in Magaluf ever since.
“Russ is dreading seeing Myra again,” laughs Manning, who appeared in I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! in 2009. “They definitely did not leave things on good terms. There was a big fight with the McQueens after they refused to give him custody of Max, so he kidnapped him and drove off into the sunset.
“You’ll see a more mature and wiser Russ now he’s a dad. He’s more caring – oh, and he’s a millionaire!”
So that’s why Mercedes has hooked up with him again… “Russ wants to spend his wealth on Mercedes and his family, son Max and stepson Bobby, who Mercy is now reunited with. Because he’s older Russ is more in charge now and doesn’t get pushed around like he used to.
“And while he’d like Myra’s approval of him marrying Mercedes again it’s not the be-all and end-all. As long as he has Mercy’s approval he is happy because he wants a life with her – not the McQueens.”
Myra colludes with Goldie to wreck the reignited romance during the hectic Magaluf hen, and tries to get Mercedes drunk and for Russ to catch her at her trashy best (or worst?) thinking he’ll dump her. But it’s a revelation about what Russ has been up to in the intervening decade that pushes Mercedes herself into dumping him and flying home a single woman… So far, so Mercy – and Metcalfe is pleased her character is still as typically unpredictable and feisty as ever.
“Ultimately Mercedes will do whatever she wants,” grins the star. “At first she’s pleased to see the family again but once the drama starts she soon wants to be as far away from them as possible! Mercy claims she’s changed over the last year, and she would like to think that’s true, but I’m not sure she ever will!”
Catch Hollyoaks’ special on-location episodes in Magaluf from Friday 10 August on E4, and Monday 13 August on Channel 4.
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