Hollyoaks' Maxine Minniver faces new manipulations from Liam Donovan

Justin Harp

From Digital Spy

Maxine Minniver is under more pressure from schemer Liam Donovan in Hollyoaks.

Liam (Jude Monk McGowan) has been manipulating a vulnerable Maxine (Nikki Sanderson) into becoming a high-priced escort as revenge because he wrongly believes she over-served his brother Jesse on the night of his death.

In Friday's (February 21) first-look episode, his plan continued with the re-opening of Donovan's Salon — where Maxine was thrilled to be employed so she could eventually pay back Liam for her furnished flat.

However, Liam once again turned the screws when he mentioned his brother's funeral as well his lingering feelings that Max is responsible for killing Jesse.

Photo credit: Lime Pictures

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"I take it you're coming to Jesse's funeral?" Liam asked. "I think it'll help to make peace with how he died. It must be a heavy burden."

Liam also piled on the pressure over how much money the salon would be spending on overhead — and suggested Maxine could bring in some much-needed cash from her escort client Clayton.

"What you need is a cash injection," he suggested, adding forcefully: "It's that, or start eating from food banks!"

When Maxine insisted that there "must be another way", Liam tried swaying her by arguing: "It's a short-term sacrifice. Surely you want to be free of debt."

Photo credit: Lime Pictures

Earlier this week, Nikki Sanderson expressed hopes that viewers would "see a different side" to Max in this storyline, after the backlash to her Munchausen's syndrome.

"The audience have hated Maxine, but I think people will see a different side to her and be more sympathetic," she explained to Daily Star.

"When I get messages saying everyone hates her, I think I'm doing my job right. But you get some who are just being nasty for no reason."

Hollyoaks airs Mondays through Fridays at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first-look episodes airing on E4 at 7pm.

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