Kellie Bright on the EastEnders Christmas episodes: “They are everything you could want – and more”

The actress reveals how Linda's decision to confide in Stacey about her recent rape results in an explosive festive season

EastEnders star Kellie Bright has said that fans will not be left disappointed by this year’s festive episodes. “I hope that they’re everything you could want from EastEnders at Christmas and more,” says the actress. “I feel very excited to be a part of the Christmas story and there is something special about filming on the sets around this time of year. It’s probably a nostalgia thing – it takes you back to those iconic Christmas episodes that you’ve watched over the years.”

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This year’s Christmas visits to Walford will see the Carter family implode after secrets are spilled regarding Linda’s recent rape at the hands of Dean Wicks. In the run-up to the big day, the Queen Vic landlady will be seen fearing for the safety of Dean’s current girlfriend Stacey and wishing that the Square could be rid of his malevolent presence.

“Linda sees Dean as a monster. She feels that if you tore off Dean’s skin, there would be this ugly, dangerous person underneath. A real black hole that just happens to be in a nice package,” continues Bright. “Linda wants him to disappear. The hardest thing for her is that Dean is so present in her life. If he wasn’t around, she could try and carry on. But he is a constant reminder.”

Upcoming scenes will see Linda tell Stacey about her ordeal, thus setting the stage for what looks set to be an explosive week of drama. Of the moment when Linda lets slip the vital information, the actress says: “Linda is behaving so oddly and Stacey picks up on it. Stacey recognises something in Linda because she has also been raped in the past. So Stacey essentially identifies those emotions and almost prompts Linda to tell her.”

As well as seeing current plotlines reach a climax, Christmas also marks the first anniversary of the Carters’ taking over at the Queen Vic. So how have the past 12 months been for Bright?

“It’s been the most challenging time for me, as an actress. Just the pace at which the show moves and the amount of work you have to produce on any given day. The strangest thing for me is having this parallel life – because I spend so much time on set, I end up living my life alongside Linda Carter’s. It’s a really strange and consuming job, but I do love it.”

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You can watch a 60-second rundown of Christmas and New Year on EastEnders below: