Several rounds of applause are necessary regarding the past week on Hollyoaks. Across the pond, the show may get flack for being a bit sensational or even looked down upon as a teen soap (though its original teens now have teens of their own), but for US soap fans, everything happening in this quaint village is what we’ve been missing in our neck of the woods.
This last week took an incredible creative direction, deciding to focus on one story that has been building for around half a year now and all of the viewpoints of each character focal to the story. Like watching a vintage crime film, viewers were fed new bits of story each episode though it all took place during the same space of time in one day. Nothing felt repetitive, everything made sense to the story and it all concluded with a climax so chilling that I froze up. Let’s get onto the highlights of this last week of Hollyoaks, and be wary, this one’s a doozy!
Week in Review for Hollyoaks episodes airing September 5th – 9th.
Poor Maxine Blake can never seem to shake Patrick Blake. It’s difficult to say, but she may have suffered the worst beneath the former school principal. Not only did her ex-husband torture her mentally like everyone else but she also had to deal with physical abuse, even while she was pregnant with their daughter Minnie. It’s been months since she found Patrick’s body and buried it in the wall surrounding Hollyoaks to avoid suspicion and once again he’s risen, tormenting her even in death. Maxine’s story began the frantic POV week on a very emotional note; the viewer couldn’t help but feel bad for the situation Maxine had fallen into. But did she deserve this?
Already in the pits, Maxine’s day began on a bad note after being checked into the Dee Valley Police Department for questioning. She was the first of the group, initially trying to keep strong but DS Armstrong quickly got the single mother shaking in her boots by revealing to have recordings of Patrick saying Maxine was out to kill him. Though the detective has bought Patrick’s story, viewers know full well that Maxine’s ex-husband was trying to frame her while he was planning for his assisted suicide. Even from the grave Patrick had to dole out more abuse on Maxine, never wanting to relinquish his hold on her. Maxine grew more and more distraught as the evidence was neatly stacked against her: she hit him with her car once, became the sole beneficiary of his will and now hairs were found on the body that police suspected were hers. The pressure proved too much and Maxine collapsed. At the hospital, the idea was suggested that Maxine might be pregnant so after skipping out, she tested herself. Adam Donovan had run into her along the way with her daughter Minnie and kept her company, seeing how distraught she was. Being the absolute perfect sweetheart he was, Adam even sat with Maxine, reassuring her while waiting for the results that ended up positive. It’s really so tragic to see Maxine be so closed off to Adam who is honestly the perfect man for her. He’s even got the looks of Dodger Savage (Patrick’s biological son that she once fell for) but with much more maturity, but she’s so used to being mistreated by men now that it doesn’t even register. He was even excited at the thought that maybe, just maybe this baby could be his instead of Warren Fox’s! That’s a keeper!
But everything is quickly shot to hell when an irate Warren showed up to the Osborne house, demanding to know if Maxine really was pregnant with his child. After a scuffle with Adam, Warren let Maxine know she wasn’t fit to be a mother because of what she did to Patrick which piques Adam’s interest as he had yet to be filled in. Maxine had gone to him before; begging for him to take Minnie to see her sister Mitzeee in America should anything happen to her. Now he knew it was because of her involvement in the crime. Adam was visibly upset learning this; unsure of how to reconcile the sweet image he had of Maxine to the one who’d move a dead body to hide evidence. Maxine did her best to explain the circumstances but Adam found all of her reasons to be selfish, not at all for the protection of her daughter. This seemed to be a turning point for Maxine and she agreed, vowing to order the tickets to America, sharing a tearful goodbye with Minnie and turning herself into the police.
She later confessed to moving the body, arguing with DS Armstrong who rightfully did not believe this new statement that was so contradictory to the last. Forensics had ascertained that Patrick was murdered, he hadn’t killed himself at all which shocked Maxine. He begged her to reveal who she was covering for, because if she really only moved the body, then she must have had help carrying that of a grown man but Maxine won’t budge. She, Nancy and Darren Osborne are supposed to be a team – until DS Armstrong presents her with Nancy’s brooch found at the crime scene, asking her if those accomplices would cover for her in the same way. The look of confliction in Maxine’s eyes was priceless! Should she look out for herself and ultimately her daughter, or go down alone so no one else could get hurt? I personally think it’s high time she stop being the sacrificial lamb for everyone around her and live for herself!
Darren & Nancy’s Story
Darren and Nancy Osborne are the least believable suspects. They’re pretty much upstanding citizens in Hollyoaks, the parents of two young boys with roots set deep in the village. They couldn’t possibly be murderers, right? Maybe not but they did help to move a dead body and to set up an innocent woman for the murder. Initially, they thought that woman was Sienna Blake when in reality it was best friend and accomplice Maxine that they implicated. The day started for them just as tensely as it had for everyone else but working as a duo, they managed to cool each other down. In fact, I’d say they each dealt with the pressure of the case looming overhead very well, much better than the other characters.
Their first worry was Nancy’s lost brooch which they were sure was lost anywhere other than the crime scene. They obviously had no idea that the police had already collected the jewelry and were running tests on it. Darren and Nancy do their best to go on regularly with their day but conflict quickly arose after learning they’d set up Maxine accidentally. Darren who is a bit of a man-child needs Nancy to make the decision, he has to know what to do next or else their friend would be going down. The more level-headed Nancy is hearing none of it, choosing to not step in should the hammer fall on their friend. It was an accident but she refused to go to prison and leave their children, especially since her older sister died in prison years back. It’s a cold decision but it’s the best decision for the two of them, there’s really nothing the two of them could do to come out well in the end. Darren was in disbelief hearing this, considering it bad enough that they’d fallen to setting up even Sienna but to not help a friend in need is terrible to him, he just couldn’t justify the decision.
Later in the day, Nancy goes to work at Hollyoaks High and spotted Nico Blake who’d been expelled for bullying weeks ago. Her nerves began to get the best of her and she had to leave, but viewers are unsure if it’s just from seeing Nico. We later see there’s something more going on. Nico and Peri Lomax were in Nancy’s class when she reached there and after asking why Nico had shown up, Peri laid into Nancy about the school not respecting Nico’s right to learn even under these awful circumstances. Nancy has a moment then, retreating into her own head as he body violently shook, unable to stop it until she ultimately broke into tears and had to leave the classroom. Head teacher Louis Loveday took his friend to the hospital where she worried something might be seriously wrong with her, citing the time she accidentally hit friend John Paul McQueen with her car because she couldn’t move her leg. Meanwhile Darren sat in the police station learning of the new evidence that had come to light. Not only had they found Nancy’s brooch but the hairs found with Patrick were discovered to be planted as well. Though incredibly disturbed, Darren stuck to the story.
Not until later when he found Maxine’s pregnancy test in the trash thinking it Nancy’s did he confess. Sitting his father down, Darren tearfully opened up to Jack about his involvement who shockingly tells him to keep quiet about it all. I was honestly surprised that Jack would go this route, especially since he’s sort of the village’s grandpa after running the local restaurants for years but he too has had his run ins with the law. It makes sense that he’d want to protect his family but Darren still could not understand it, finding his father to be sounding far too much like his wife.
The couple’s story ended in a very contrasting way to how it began, notably with them being separated. They were initially a team, set to make it through together but in the end Darren phoned the police and Nancy confronted Nico about the crime…