The return of serial killer Silas Blissett, Kurt Benson coming back from the dead, a surprise pregnancy and more shock revelations all made Hollyoaks’ explosive 25th anniversary an unforgettable week.
But the drama is just beginning, as the aftermath of the milestone celebrations sees the villagers hurtling into a dramatic winter, including the culmination of the flash-forward and huge twists that will leave viewers gasping.
Here is our epic preview of 12 huge Hollyoaks spoilers coming your way as the nights draw in…
What will Silas do next – and who’s helping him?
The return of legendary serial killer Silas was anniversary week’s big surprise, so where do we go from here? How long is the village’s most notorious villain sticking around for? Will he carry out his threats to the McQueens to expose their seven deadliest sins, or has Mercedes’ pregnancy thrown a curveball in his plans? And, perhaps most importantly, who was the mysterious accomplice Silas was calling – does he have a secret accomplice helping him? "Silas has unfinished business with Mercedes," warns Jeff Rawle, reprising his iconic role. "The time he has come to put things right…"
Baby drama for Mercedes
It was the joyous news of her pregnancy that spared her life and stopped Silas from slaying her, so already Mercy and husband Sylver’s bun in the oven is making their presence felt. This time last year, the couple were at breaking point, thanks to Mercedes and Liam Donovan’s affair and her cocaine habit, but a new bubba is just what they need to seal the deal of their reunion. What could possibly go wrong? Don’t forget, last time Mrs McQueen was preggers with Silas around, he kidnapped her and held her hostage in a cellar…
Denise Welch joins the cast
TV legend Denise joins the cast in January 2021 as Trish Minniver, mother to Maxine. The character has been seen in a guest capacity a few times already, played by Paula Wolfenden, but not since 2012, and Welch’s recast will see Trish as a more permanent fixture. The dance teacher arrives on the arm of new boyfriend Brad, who also takes a shine to Max. Sounds like a mother/daughter love triangle in the making… Welch and Nikki Sanderson, who plays Maxine, were once Coronation Street co-stars, playing Natalie Barnes and Candice Stowe respectively, and the actress has also worked with Hollyoakers Chelsee Healey (Goldie McQueen) in Waterloo Road, and Kelle Bryan (Martine Deveraux) on the Loose Women panel.
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Find out who’s in the body bag…
We haven’t got long to wait to learn the identity of the poor soul in the body bag that was zipped up in the look ahead to New Year’s Eve in last year’s ambitious flash forward. The shock death is the culmination of the county lines drug dealing storyline that hit new heights of horror in anniversary week, when Juliet Nightingale recruited innocent Ella Richardson has her latest seller. The smart money is on either Ella or fellow teen dealer Charlie Dean to meet a tragic end, but could Juliet or Sid Sumner pay the ultimate price for getting embroiled with Victor Brothers and the big boys?
Sid’s life-changing injury
Whether he’s in the body bag or not, the controversial county lines plot will see Sid’s world turned upside down when he injures himself after a ketamine binge. The incident, airing in November, will have devastating consequences for the character and will seriously affect his life, showing the stark reality of teens being groomed and exploited by drug dealing networks.
Cormac’s daughter causes trouble
Warren Fox put Felix Westwood’s childhood bully, Cormac Ranger, in a coma as revenge for the abuse he dished out in the kids’ home the bad boys grew up in. When Cormac’s daughter Summer shows up later in the autumn looking for her dad, will she discover who is responsible for his brush with death? Rhiannon Clements, who appeared opposite Jodie Whittaker in 2020’s Doctor Who story Ascension of the Cybermen, plays the newcomer who is described as ‘angelic on the outside, but a minx on the inside.’ Sly Summer will also be a thorn in Sienna Blake’s side…
Tom and Yazz’s wedding heartbreak
There wasn’t a dry eye in the house as little Tom Cunningham came of age and got engaged to girlfriend Yazz Maalik, so we presume the mystery of who was getting hitched in the flash-forward this coming New Year’s Eve has now been solved. Let’s not forget, though, that Tom’s best mate Romeo Quinn was in a right state in the future scenes, inconsolable as he lamented a lost love. Is his tentative romance with Cher Winters set to go belly-up by December, ruining Tom and Yazz’s nuptials?
We’ll soon be saying goodbye to Mitchell Drinkwell-Deveraux as Imran Adams leaves the cast, and there’s a question mark over whether his exit will be as permanent as cursed cousin Lisa Loveday, who was brutally murdered by Toby Faroe. Mitch was the intended target of his volatile brother’s rage, and with whispers hinting he’ll discover Lisa’s grisly fate, will jealous Toby finally get revenge on his sibling for living the life he should’ve had before being given away at birth?
Another potential exit was teased in the autumn trailer, as Brody Hudson was glimpsed getting hit by a car. In the coming weeks, him and girlfriend Sienna Blake plot to leave town with surrogate baby Faith, as biological mum Liberty Savage announces she wants to keep her daughter. Warren Fox can’t let baby mama Sienna go, and the stage is set for a heartbreaking, life-changing emotional twist involving a speeding car…
Ste comes home
Ste Hay left almost a year ago after he was groomed and radicalised by sinister far-right extremists. Managing to extricate himself from the group’s grip, Ste took off to get his head together but returns later this autumn looking pretty dishevelled. What long-term impact has his ordeal had? And will the community, particularly the Maaliks who were targets of the far-right’s hateful agenda, welcome him home?
Edward destroys Tony and Diane
The anniversary ended on an optimistic note for original character Tony Hutchinson, who vowed after being reunited with back-from-the-dead BFF Kurt Benson he was going to fight for his marriage. Easier said than done with Tone’s dastardly dad Edward Hutchinson manipulating daughter-in-law Diane Hutchinson to choose him over his son. Word is the sinister surgeon’s obsession with Di reaches Hitchcockian depths of weirdness, with Fletcher recently interviewed sporting a new, bright red hairstyle she said was for a future storyline. Diane’s hair starts falling out and Ed looks pretty suspicious – is he trying to change her appearance, meaning she’s in more danger than we first thought?
Kurt falls for Tony's sister
So we know he didn't die in the jet ski accident 21 years ago, but what really brings Kurt back to Hollyoaks? There's an ulterior motive involving a shady-sounding business venture the returnee tries to persuade his old mates to invest in. It may not be totally legit… And when he lays eyes on best friend Tony's little sister Verity Hutchinson, Kurt finds another reason to stick around - how will Tone feel about his BFF wooing his sibling? And how will Sami Maalik handle having a rival for Verity's affections?