Phil Mitchell's crack cocaine binge on EastEnders has attracted more than 200 complaints. Phil (Steve McFadden), who was kicked out of the Queen Vic for attacking mum Peggy, was seen in the seedy scene on Monday with addict Rainie Cross. Rainie, played by Pulling actress Tanya Franks, unwrapped the crack to smoke in a pipe. Later, Phil was seen vomiting, pinning Rainie down and throwing whisky over her face after she taunted him over his kids. Around 230 people criticised the BBC over the episode, while others rang to praise what they said was a realistic storyline. A spokeswoman for the soap said: "EastEnders has a strong history of tackling difficult social issues and we worked closely with drug and alcohol charities, including Addaction and Drugscope, on the development of this storyline. "The episodes do not in any way glamorise or encourage the use of drugs and details of a BBC helpline were provided at the end of the episode for any viewers affected by the issue." DrugScope chief executive Martin Barnes said: "A portrayal of substance misuse in EastEnders which sensitively reflects the impact that drug use has on Phil, his family and friends could really help people understand some of the issues many families go through in real life. "We hope that the storyline may lead people who are struggling with drug problems to seek help." Click here to watch whatsontv.co.uk's weekly soaps video preview, the Soap Scoop (opens in new tab) Get EastEnders storylines first! Sign up to receive our EastEnders Extra newsletter (opens in new tab)
Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix.
An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.
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