Keanu Taylor (Danny Walters) was driven out of EastEnders by Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) after his scandalous affair with Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean) incurred the wrath of Walford’s most fearsome family, which means if the muscly mechanic were to return there would have to be one almighty plot twist.
“We need to kill Phil!” says Lorraine Stanley, who plays Keanu’s mum Karen Taylor. “Keanu had to go but left her beautiful grandson Kayden behind. But her boy is out there – maybe he’ll come back one day? Never say never…”
Speaking to host Stacey Dooley in the latest edition of spin-off show EastEnders: Secrets From the Square, Stanley discussed her boisterous on-screen clan and departure of eldest son Keanu earlier this year.
Keanu’s fling with Phil’s missus rocked the show and led to fuming Phil ordering a hit on her toy boy, resulting in a dramatic Christmas Day showdown in which Ben Mitchell (Max Bowden) called in a debt from Martin Fowler (James Bye) and told him to bump him off.
The explosive storyline took several turns, as Martin and Queen Vic landlady Linda Carter (Kellie Bright) faked Keanu’s murder and let him go, only for the Taylor totty to make a shock comeback for the soap’s 35th anniversary in February for a final confrontation with the Mitchell men.
Sharon’s teenage son Dennis Rickman tragically died in a boat crash inadvertently caused by Keanu’s fight with Phil and Ben, and after giving birth to their son in hospital she told her ex-lover he was responsible for Denny’s demise and ordered him to leave town for good.
Technically the door is still open for Keanu, though while Phil is still breathing it would be tricky to bring him back. But surely Keanu can’t stay away from his son forever? Then again, we can’t see Phil being killed off any time soon…
As co-star Zack Morris, who plays his younger brother Keegan Baker, pointed out to Dooley: “Keanu is a very hard man to get rid of! He’s already been shot and had pretty much everything done to him, he’s been through a lot.”
Morris also teased exciting times were in store for the rowdy Taylors when EastEnders returns in September, following the pandemic-induced transmission break that forced the show off air in June.
Hinting at a ‘challenging’ new storyline for the bolshy brood, the actor revealed: “What happens when we come back is going to really expose the Taylors, and expose some dark secrets that have been going on.”
EastEnders is expected to return on 7th September, although the BBC have yet to confirm the date. Secrets From the Square continues on Mondays at 8pm during the break, and next week’s edition is a Queen Vic landladies special in which Letitia Dean and Kellie Bright look back on the women of Walford who have ran the famous boozer.