It’s official, EastEnders’ Mel Owen (Tamzin Outhwaite) is dead, although it wasn’t the car crash that killed her – and that was just one of the shocks delivered in Thursday 14thNovember’s action-packed episode.
Proceedings picked up from the previous pile-up cliffhanger with Sharon Mitchell (Letitia Dean) pulling her enemy from the burning car, then pleading with her to end their feud and refrain from telling Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) that Keanu Taylor (Danny Walters) is the father of her baby.
Unstable Mel was convinced dead son Hunter was in the wreckage and headed back towards it – leaving Sharon powerless to stop her as she stepped out in front of a speeding lorry, killing her instantly in a brutal scene that makes Mel’s exit almost as immediately iconic as husband Steve’s similar demise 17 years ago.
Back on the Square the E20 punters feared the worst when Mel’s loudspeaker call from her car was cut short just as she was about to make a ‘special announcement’.
As police confirmed the crash, Lisa Fowler (Lucy Benjamin), Louise Mitchell (Tilly Keeper) and Keanu all reeled in horror – particularly Keanu, who knew Mel was about to blow his and Sharon’s baby secret before fate tragically intervened.
Meanwhile, Phil landed at the airport, intrigued by Mel’s cryptic phone call earlier that day and confused about why she and Sharon were racing to catch him.
Later at home, shaken Sharon desperately tried to shut down his suspicions by explaining Mel had lost the plot and was en route to tell Phil about the sale of the E20 club, hoping it would stir trouble between Mr and Mrs Mitchell who she still blames for Hunter’s death.
Just when it seemed Mr Mitchell had bought his wife’s version of events, distraught Lisa burst in with Keanu and Lou and blurted out Sharon had killed Mel because she knew the baby wasn’t Phil’s!
Who else knows Keanu is the father of Sharon’s baby?
Sharon was forced into more damage control by branding Lisa an unhinged liar, leaving Phil unsure what to believe… Has Sharon done enough to discredit Lisa’s claims? Is her and Keanu’s secret safe?
Thankfully for Sharanu, Mel never told Lisa who the actual daddy was so knowledge of that detail seems to have died with her, but eyebrows have been raised as to Mel and Lisa’s erratic behaviour at the club and Phil is starting to wonder what’s really going on.
Keanu is also set to bow out in the next few months following the announcement Walters is leaving the cast, and producers teased the baby bombshell will explode at Christmas, so there’s a way to go yet…
Speaking about saying goodbye to the character she first played 21 years ago, Outhwaite said: “Working with Lucy again was incredible, and our last scenes where we clashed felt electric to shoot. We know each other well and it was a perfect end to my time at EastEnders, as was being on location with Tish for the car chase.
“It’s been a joy playing Mel, I love how multi-faceted she is. After the vulnerability of losing Hunter, it was exciting to play her unhinged, wicked side.”
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