Hollyoaks star Jessica Fox has spoken out on the soap's ongoing County Lines storyline, saying that seeing Charlie Dean become involved in the drugs plot will be her character Nancy's "worst nightmare".
So far the Channel 4 soap has seen teens Juliet Quinn (Niamh Blackshaw) and Sid Sumner (Billy Price) brought into Sid's cousin Jordan's (Connor Calland) dark network, but the special flashforward episode confirmed that by the time New Year's Eve 2020 rolls around, many more of the village's teens will be caught up in the plot.
And one of the characters with a big role to play will be none other than Charlie Dean (Charlie Behan), with a flashforward scene showing the police storming the Osborne house and finding drugs hidden in Charlie's games console controller.
Speaking about Nancy's reaction to Charlie becoming a drugs runner in the storyline, actress Jessica Fox admitted that her character will see it as a "massive failure" on her part.
"Nancy's having a very complicated year; she's under an awful lot of pressure and probably more stressed than ever before," Jessica explained.
"If she discovers that Charlie has become part of this world, I don't think she'll ever forgive herself. This is a massive failure for her – not only as his parental figure but as a teacher. Her sweet, lovely, polite boy, entering this dark world is just her worst nightmare."
Jessica also admitted that Nancy will be left frustrated by the impact the County Lines plot has on the school, particularly after she was stabbed by drug dealer Mason on school grounds.
"Nancy got stabbed at school, so she's very aware that things at Hollyoaks High are not as they should be and wants to clamp down on it," Jessica continued.
"She wants the drugs to stop and she wants her school to be a safe environment for the children. But that's not happening, and she doesn't know why, or how she can stop it."
The County Lines drug plot will be taking centre stage in an hour-long special of the soap on Tuesday (April 14), as Sid and Juliet deliver a backpack full of drugs for Jordan to the seaside while a clueless Ollie (Aedan Duckworth) and Imran (Ijaz Rana) tag along for the day too.
The storyline will continue throughout the year, and Jessica also added that she thinks it's "a brilliant storyline" for Hollyoaks to be focusing on.
"This is our demographic – some of the kids who watch Hollyoaks are an example of those who are vulnerable and susceptible to being groomed in a county lines situation, so even if we have one child who watches it and goes, 'I think this might be happening to me, I need to get help', I think it's a storyline well worth doing," she said.
Hollyoaks airs Mondays and Tuesdays at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first-look episodes airing on E4 at 7pm. Wednesdays through Fridays on E4 will feature classic episodes called Hollyoaks Favourites.
The Children's Society works to support vulnerable children in England and Wales. For more information, visit its website.
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