Hollyoaks Later: Andrew Still teases dark plot line (EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW AND PICTURES)

by Anna Howell

We are under a week away from this year’s, much-anticipated  Hollyoaks Later, and whilst we all wonder what we have to look forward to, Unreality TV can confirm the main players, and some of the gossip, in this years, deep, dark series.

Fans of the Hollyoaks would have watched the situation surrounding Joel, Brendan and Walker, bubbling away constantly, and would have already enjoyed some of the best storylines and drama from these amazing characters throughout the year so far.  Of course what we know, that Brendan (Emmet J Scanlan) does not necessarily, is that both of these characters are secretly out to get him!  Walker (Neil Newbon) is actually an undercover policeman out to get revenge on him for selling his brother the drugs that has left him brain dead in hospital, which has been made more intense by Friday’s episode when he was advised his brother would not be revived if his condition should worsen.

Joel (Andrew Still) has felt increasingly pushed out following Walkers arrival, and the once desperate lap dog of Brendan’s has become his worst nightmare, setting up the entire family to make it look like Lynsey’s killer was Sampson, and that he was actually after Cheryl (Bronagh Waugh).  Fans of the show would have seen his mum arrive in the village this week, who is set to be joined by his violent step father any minute now, which will fill in a lot of gaps about Joel’s past.

Joel, Brendan, Walker and Cheryl all feature in this year’s Hollyoaks Later, along with Joel’s girlfriend, Theresa McQueen (Jorgie Porter) and Mitzeee (Rachel Shenton) who is currently just starting a seven year prison sentence for the attempted murder of Mercedes Fisher (Jennifer Metcalfe), so with the amount of darkness already surrounding these main characters, it does leave the question remaining, just how much darker can the lifted restriction of a pre-watershed time slot take these them?

Unreality TV caught up with Andrew Still to ask him, exclusively, about Joel’s part in this year’s Hollyoaks Later!

First of all we asked Andrew what involvement does his character, Joel Dexter, have in the series:

“The series has an explosive start, with action right from the get go.  Joel’s mum has turned up in the village and it isn’t long before her violent husband, Joel’s stepdad, Mick, turns up looking for her.  Joel is still pretty angry with Brendan, and so he uses his stepdad to start playing people off against each other.  Of course it all back fires and it is left to Brendan to pick up the pieces, and to do this he ties up Mick and loads him in the car to teach him a lesson.  Unfortunately, at the same time, Cheryl, jumps in the car too as she has some sad news about a family member, but she doesn’t realise what’s going on at first.  Basically there is a huge chase involving everyone, there’s a lot of beatings, especially for Joel, and just generally all hell breaks loose!”

How different was it to film the Later series, away from the day to day show?

“It wasn’t difficult, but it was different.  On Later we were out on location and staying over, a lot of it was done in night shoots, so it was challenging but really good to be able to kind of spread our artistic wings, with new boundaries and without the stability of our everyday Hollyoaks community.  For me personally, it was fantastic, one of the biggest eye openers ever, I really enjoyed being able to stretch myself like that and I was honoured to be a part of it.  When I found out I was in it this year I was over the moon, chomping at the bit to be honest.  It is some of the best work I have ever done, and the cast and crew have worked so hard to make it their own, and have done a brilliant job!”

Obviously, your character is no stranger to the sort of life that the likes of Brendan lead, with Warren Fox (Jamie Lomas) as Joel’s father, how much of the experience with his character did you draw back for Later?

“When I joined the show it was made clear that Joel was cut from kind of the same cloth as Warren, so to keep that in mind whilst developing his character.  Obviously Joel has shown a lot of Warren in him with his deviousness, but I think if you look to the route of all that behaviour, I think it’s more complicated than that.  I don’t think he is plain bad, but he has two very different sides, which are intertwined with each other.  There is the dark side of him, but that seems to be triggered by his child like vulnerable side. He has replaced Warren with Brendan, but has been faced with the same rejection, which brings out his darker side.  It’s like the way a kid would play up to get their father’s attention.  The story in this year’s Later highlights the strong links between Brendan, Walker and Joel, which was really interesting for me to play, it gets very interesting.  You will have to wait to see what happens, but at one point Joel decides to play detective, and it could be catastrophic!”

Do you think that this series will see Joel finally get the sort of relationship he wants with Brendan?

“I like the relationship between Brendan Brady and Joel, but these sorts of characters don’t have happy endings.  I think the best they can hope for is a blanket of status quo between them, they are like father and son, so they will be forever clashing heads, but overall I think things will be ok.”

And Joel and Theresa?

“Both of these characters have certain flaws, but the reason they get on so well is that they can see the flaws in each other and accept them.  I personally would love to see them have a happy ending, but realistically they are two peas in a pod and so things never stay happy for long, do they?”

Finally if you could sum up Hollyoaks Later in one line, what would it be?

“If you enjoy dark, bloody violence, you are going to be in for a real treat! “

Watch the superb promo for Hollyoaks Later in the clip below:

Hollyoaks Later begins on Monday 17th September at 10pm on E4!