The now former EastEnders star Pam St Clement has revealed that when she first joined the show as Pat Evans – who has previously been Pat Harris, Beale and Butcher! – she expected to receive “hate mail”.
Speaking to the PA about her iconic Walford character, Pam said, “It’s strange because even in the early years I thought I’d get hate mail…
“But I didn’t, and I think that what people liked was a vivacious go-getting, a person with an interesting history and a person who under it all was really quite vulnerable.”
And of how she feels now Pat has died, Pam said, “She’s been my doppelganger all these years, 25-and-a-half years…
“And maybe I might find myself emerging like a chrysalis from this from the image of Pat, I don’t know.
“I’ve never had that image of myself, but the audience probably has and I think I’d hope they’d remember it.”
However, regardless of how she feels about Pat, Pam said she will most definitely miss her co-stars and the show’s backstage staff.
She said, “I am definitely going to miss the people. The cast, many of whom are friends now and will remain friends, so that’s fine.
“I won’t miss them because I’ll see them, not on a regular basis but I will see them.
“I’ll miss everybody in production and beyond because there’s a very tight core of loyal people here…
“Loyal to the show, loyal to each other and they’ve been in the saddle for a long time and I’ve know them for a long time.”
But of course, the show must – and will – go on, and the show’s executive producer, Bryan Kirkwood, has been speaking to the Daily Star about what we can look forward to from Walford this year.
Beginning with what’s in store for Kat and Alfie – who are of course played by Jessie Wallace and Shane Richie – Kirkwood said, “People always say they want a happy ending, but if you think of any big partnership in soap – Den and Ange or Max and Tanya – not one of those couples had a truly happy marriage.
“It’s the conflict that makes it interesting.
“Now that Walford is over-run with new strong alpha-males like Tyler, Anthony and Michael, will Kat start to seek comfort elsewhere?”
Of the future for the Brannings, Kirkwood said, “Derek, the big bad Branning brother, is going to be the big story for 2012.
“Meanwhile, Max is back and taking care of Tanya as she battles cervical cancer.
“But there’s an unforeseen drama on the horizon, as the pressure of the last few months takes its toll on Lauren in quite a dramatic way.”
When asked about Janine (Charlie Brooks) and Michael’s (Steve John Shepherd) relationship, Kirkwood revealed, “Janine has got everything she has ever dreamed of – money, power and everyone under her thumb.
“Then along comes this tall, dark stranger to sweep her off her feet.
“But is it true love or a case of ‘be careful what you wish for’?”
And finally, of Whitney (Shona McGarty) and Fatboy’s (Ricky Norwood) future, Kirkwood commented, “I change my mind every time I see Whitney in a scene with Fat Boy or Tyler (Tony Discipline).
“Fat Boy is a charming, funny man who makes her feel safe. Then she’s got Tyler, who is strong and sexy and makes her tummy do back-flips, but he’s a bit of a lad.
“Which is the right decision for her? I hope the audience will be shouting their opinions at the telly.”
Well I certainly will be! Fatboy is far too lovely to be ditched…
Who would you like to see Whitney with?