Keanu Taylor’s true fate is fast becoming the worst kept secret in soap, as the news he’s alive and on the run is spreading around Albert Square like wildfire.
Martin Fowler let Karen Taylor in on what really happened to her son, and Linda Carter is set to spill to Sharon Mitchell in upcoming EastEnders scenes – but how would Ben Mitchell, the man who ordered the hit, react if he knew the truth?
“There would be a mixture of emotions for Ben,” Max Bowden told RadioTimes.com. “We’re now seeing he has elements of regret about wanting Keanu dead, he only did it to impress his dad and prove he’s a ‘proper’ Mitchell.
“If he found out Martin let him go there would be immediate anger at having failed Phil, but more than anything an overriding relief that the death is not on his conscience. The fact he hasn’t committed the crime he thought he had is something he needs to know to allow himself to feel again – at the moment he is so numb and passionless.”
Bowden acknowledges though that it wouldn’t help Ben’s eternal quest to please the powerful patriarch: “Phil won’t be happy unless Keanu is dead, and Ben won’t be happy if it’s done. The emotions between them are conflicting all the time.
“Ben always wants the praise and reassurance from Phil and will fight to get it because he was so neglected as a child. Sadly that jeopardises any chance at happiness he might have. Also, Ben is trying to be the kind of dad to his daughter Lexi that Phil wasn’t to him – he is determined to put her first.”
The Mitchell clan are set to be at the centre of EastEnders’ upcoming 35th anniversary storyline in February, in which drama unfolds aboard a boat party on the Thames that results in at least one major character being killed off.
Speculation is rife Keanu could make a surprise return for a last hurrah, as his and Sharon’s baby is due around then, but Bowden is staying tight-lipped. “Will we see Keanu again? I think it would make great telly for him to come back one day. Danny Walters is a great actor and a lovely guy. It would open up a lot of story if he was to return later down the line, but he’s off doing his thing and I wish him all the best.”
Bowden is shortlisted as Best Newcomer in this year’s National Television Awards which take place on Tuesday 28th January.
Visit our dedicated EastEnders page for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers