On March 12th, EastEnders fans have a treat in store when, immediately after the regular episode airs on BBC1 at 7.30pm, viewers can press the red button on their remote control to watch extra scenes focusing on Phil Mitchell’s storyline.
As fans will know, Phil (Steve McFadden) is currently in a remand centre pending a trial over the death of his former fiancé, Stella Crawford, who was played by Sophie Thompson.
Stella of course killed herself when she leapt off a roof on what should have been the couple’s wedding day. A vengeful Phil called off the wedding and chased Stella when he learned she’d been abusing his son Ben.
However, the Daily Star Sunday reports that in a twist to the plotline, next week, Phil will agree to see Shirley Carter (Linda Henry) but his about turn on allowing her to visit is only to inform her that his legal team have advised him to plead guilty to manslaughter in order to get his possible sentence reduced…
Not surprisingly, Shirley’s horrified at the news, and begs Phil to reconsider, but he refuses, telling her visiting time is over. But as he tries to walk away, Shirley grabs his arm and notices he has several bruises, which he tells her were caused at the gym.
She doesn’t believe him, but there’s nothing further she can do as he goes back to his cell.
Back on the Square, a desperate Shirley will head to Ian Beale’s (Adam Woodyatt) to plead with him to talk to Ben (Joshua Pascoe) and persuade him to retract his damning statement over Stella’s death and Phil’s involvement in it.
A show insider told the paper, “Shirley has been trying to hold it together for weeks.
“She knows what Ben has done to get his dad locked up and hates him for it.
“Worried that Phil is getting bullied inside she decides to have one last go at her stepson in a bid to get him to change his witness statement.
“She also appeals to Ben’s brother Ian Beale to make him see sense but he refuses.
“He tells Shirley that Ben is a decent kid who wouldn’t lie to the police. It’s all getting too much for her but how far she will go remains to be seen.”
Don’t forget the red button extra scenes on March 12.