The Slater family welcomes another member tonight, as EastEnders re-introduces Freddie Slater, played by Bobby Brazier, son of Jade Goody and Jeff Brazier. TThe character has been seen on-screen before — but it’s been a while.
Freddie is the son of Little Mo (Kacey Ainsworth), whose traumatic time in Walford formed some of the soap’s most memorable moments.
So before we get to know Freddie, who pitches up tonight on BBC One at 7.30pm, let’s look back at Little Mo’s story and how he came to be.
When she arrived in Albert Square back in 2000, Little Mo was harbouring a harrowing secret: her husband Trevor Morgan (Alex Ferns) was abusing her.
Violent Trevor made Mo's life hell, with actor Ainsworth delivering powerful performances that captivated the nation. When Little Mo fought back and hit Trevor with an iron, viewers were stunned when she was found guilty of attempted murder.
She was eventually released, but just as Little Mo had found happiness with Billy Mitchell (Perry Fenwick), Trevor returned for revenge. After setting the Slater home on fire with both her and himself inside, Trevor died in the explosion, and Little Mo later married Billy on Christmas Day, 2002.
Life finally seemed content for her, until she was befriended by Graham Foster (Alex McSweeney) while she worked at The Queen Vic. Graham raped Little Mo, and she became pregnant.
No one could understand her decision to keep the baby — least of all Billy. The couple separated, and Little Mo left Walford, not returning until Graham’s trial. She had already given birth to her son, who she named Frederick William. Little Mo reunited with Billy, but he was unable to bond with Freddie and they split for good.
When Freddie was injured, Little Mo was under suspicion by social services. It was eventually revealed that Ben Mitchell (Charlie Jones) had hurt Freddie when the child pulled at his hearing aid, and Little Mo was exonerated. But that didn’t stop her neighbours talking about her, leaving her desperate for a fresh start.
Although she had fallen in love with local doctor Oliver Cousins (Tom Ellis), Little Mo decided to move away without him in 2006. In an empowering move, she explained that all her life she had done as she was told, so it was time to break free from her meek-sounding nickname.
This was the last we saw of Mo, with young Freddie growing up off-screen. Now aged 18, he will be portrayed by Brazier as he causes mischief for Billy on the market before trying to jump the barrier at the tube.
Just as Billy is about to report his behaviour, Freddie will introduce himself as his son, unaware that Billy is not actually his dad. Will Freddie learn the upsetting truth about his biological father?
And will Freddie bond with his relatives, including aunt Kat Slater (Jessie Wallace), great-grandmother Mo Harris (Laila Morse) and cousin Stacey Slater (Lacey Turner)?
Watch this space - but viewers are sure to love this cheeky, rebellious character.
Tune in to EastEnders tonight at 7.30pm on BBC One to watch Freddie’s chaotic comeback.
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