Serial killer Silas Blissett (Jeff Rawle) made a surprise return to Hollyoaks for the soap’s 25th anniversary episode, with the iconic villain being unmasked as the anonymous blackmailer targeting the McQueen family.
In a jaw-dropping twist kept under wraps from fans until E4’s airing on Wednesday 21st October, the notorious mass murderer, last on-screen in 2016, was seen stalking through the village watching old enemy Mercedes McQueen (Jennifer Metcalfe) from afar. She was desperately trying to figure out who was behind the intimidation campaign that demanded the clan cough up a load of cash, or else their darkest secrets would be revealed and they’d all end up behind bars.
A creepy mechanical talking doll had appeared on the pub bar, telling Mercy and the gang each McQueen had committed one of the seven deadly sins, and unless they could work out who was behind it by noon that day, all would be revealed to the authorities.
Tensions grew among the chaotic clan, and it seems everyone has something to hide – particularly newest McQueen Cher Winters (Bethannie Hare), the long-lost daughter of Sylver McQueen (David Tag) – but tough-talking Mercedes defied their tormentor and embarked on a risky bluffing game, letting the noon deadline pass and insisting on meeting the blackmailer in the village.
Viewers got their first glimpse of sinister Silas lurking by the Love Boat, watching Mercedes from afar, and the penny dropped.
At the end of the episode, the McQueens reckoned they were in the clear as there had been no reprisals for disobeying the blackmailer, so they threw a party in the Dog believing their nightmare was over.
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But as Mercedes slipped off to privately call mum Myra in Spain, Silas lurked behind, ready to bump her off – only to be stopped in his tracks as Mercy revealed down the phone she was pregnant.
Stopped by his twisted moral code that dictates he only kills women of ‘ill repute’, he realised Mercedes had settled down and was expecting another child, which meant she was spared – for now.
It was a neat callback to the pair’s most famous storyline, where Silas kept heavily pregnant Mercy hostage in the pub cellar as a punishment for cheating on his grandson Riley Costello back in 2011 on her wedding day – and wearing the full bridal gown, no less.
What will Mr Blissett’s next move be now he’s back in Hollyoaks? And will we find out what the McQueens are hiding?
Speaking about his comeback, Rawle said: "I am thrilled to be part of Hollyoaks' 25th anniversary. Silas has had a big following over the years, even when he's not been on screen we always know he's out there somewhere.
"Mercedes is the most elusive piece on his chessboard. Her son, Bobby, is Silas's great-grandson. It has long been a cause of dark disquiet with Silas and the time has come to put things right…"
Elsewhere in the eventful episode, original character Kurt Benson (Jeremy Edwards) came back from the dead 21 years after he was supposedly killed in a jet ski accident, admitting to best mate Tony Hutchinson (Nick Pickard) he faked his death after being scared by his own violent behaviour before he left the village.
And we got all the feels as ‘little’ Tom Cunningham (Ellis Hollins), born into the show in 1999 and played by the same actor since he was just three years old, was treated to a video of each character telling him how much he meant to them, put together by girlfriend Yazz Maalik (Haiesha Mistry). The video doubled up as a beautifully heartfelt love letter from the entire cast to the audience on the occasion of the soap’s big birthday.
Tom and Yazz then got engaged, which must make long-term fans feel really old…