Hollyoaks Spoilers: Jessica Fox explains why Nancy Osborne turns to Dr Browning for help with her painkiller addiction!

by Anna Howell


As we reported earlier this month, Nancy Osborne is about to be revealed as having a painkiller addiction which will lead to even more heartache for her tormented family in an upcoming Hollyoaks storyline, and now Jessica Foz, the actress who plays her, has teased about what the future holds for her character!

Fans of the hit Channel 4 soap will know how Nancy (Jessica Fox) has had more than most to deal with in the last year – not only did she miscarry her first child with husband Darren (Ashley Taylor – Dawson) she then went on to have a premature birth resulting in her son Oscar being diagnosed as death.

Throughout this time the Osborne family had to deal with the heart-breaking realisation that Esther Bloom (Jazmine Franks) had been being bullied by her common-law sister Ruby (Anna Shaffer) to the point that she tried to commit suicide.

And then, just when it seemed that things couldn’t possibly get any worse, they learned that the pub they worked and lived in was to be sold out from underneath them, leaving them with nothing.

Nancy has always been the sensible one, many would say, but when the strain starts to get to her she becomes increasingly reliant on painkillers in order to cope with the family sized drama going on around her.  Discussing the new storyline with Digital Spy, Jessica Fox who plays the young mum, explained:

“Nancy started taking the painkillers after having the caesarean last year, which is quite normal as it helps you to deal with the pain of quite a large operation.

“Since then, it’s been one stress after another for Nancy. Oscar was premature and that led to problems between her and Darren, and they later discovered that Oscar was deaf. Esther has also tried to take her own life recently, and now the Osborne’s are facing the possibility of losing the pub and their livelihood.

“So many things have happened to Nancy in quick succession, so she’s been using the painkillers as a way to cope, without really realising that she’s becoming reliant on them. Now she’s got to the point where she can’t really get through the day without taking them, but it’s all still very much in secret.”

“Nancy’s incredibly self-righteous and always thinks that she’s able to cope with any situation that life throws at her! Admitting that she has a problem – if and when that happens – will be incredibly difficult for her.

“I think Nancy is incredibly embarrassed and full of shame that she’s got this wonderful husband, a beautiful child and her family all around her, yet she still needs these pills to get her through the day.”

“I think it’s a really good storyline. Painkiller addiction is such a massive problem, but people don’t often talk about it. Sometimes it’s even glamorised in Hollywood when we hear about celebrities who are addicted to prescription medication.

“It’s an interesting storyline for Hollyoaks to do and it’s also quite a subtle one, because unlike other drugs or alcoholism, the signs of somebody becoming addicted are quite difficult to spot. That makes it much more interesting to play.”

However, whilst no one so far has noticed her constant pill popping, things get intense for Nancy when Frankie decides to dispose of any medication in the house when Esther returns home from hospital. This results in Nancy becoming increasingly desperate in her new-found addiction causing her to steal Esther’s medication when she returns, on which the actress continued:

“She panics! So far it’s been her dirty little secret, but then when Frankie goes on this mad clear-out of the flat, Nancy starts to wonder where she’s going to get her fix from. She’s shocked when she finds out that Frankie’s been through her bedroom and handbag to throw pills away. That’s when the story steps up a gear, because the withdrawal symptoms are quite hard to deal with.

“Nancy ends up stealing some of Esther’s medication, but then of course Frankie realises that there are some missing and assumes that Esther has taken them. Nancy doesn’t want to own up, but in the end she has to. However, she insists that it wasn’t a big deal and she just had a headache.


However, things take a sinister turn when Nancy takes too many of the pills, and ends up passing out, only to be discovered by Darren:

“Not long after that, Nancy takes some pills and passes out. But she’s still in a massive state of denial about what she’s doing and the effect that it’s having on her family. With Oscar crying all the time because he’s teething, Nancy tells Darren that she was just really tired.”

With her web of lies spiralling out of control, Nancy makes the drastic decision to turn to Dr Browning for help:

“She goes to see her own doctor first, who says that they’ve already written her numerous prescriptions and that’s it. They refuse to give her any more, which leaves Nancy feeling extremely frustrated. She becomes very, very desperate and the only person she can think of who might be able to help her is Doctor Browning.

“Nancy goes to see him and lays on a massive sob story of how difficult her life is, not realising that Browning is delighted that he’s now got someone else he can play with!”

Watch all the drama unfold in Hollyoaks in the week commencing Monday, March 25 at 6:30 PM on Channel 4/channel 4 HD.