Catherine Russell explains how her character gets a nasty shock when her ex-husband turns up as the new Holby City (BBC1, Tuesday) locum...
When Serena sees her ex-husband Edward (Aden Gillett) on the ward, we take it she's not best pleased?
"I think they had a pretty acrimonious divorce about 15 years ago because he'd been playing away. When she sees Edward standing at the vending machine she grabs hold of Marie Claire and asks, 'Who's that?' When Marie Claire tells her it's the new locum anaesthetist, Serena takes a deep breath and goes back to her office. She's on the phone when he suddenly pops his head around the door and she delivers a great line: 'Hello Satan. Where's your little helper?'"
Does Serena manage to stay professional or does she let this personal crisis affect her work?
"While she's treating a patient who needs his leg amputated, she disagrees with Edward on how he should be anaesthetised. Edward makes a comment to Malick about Serena wanting things her own way and she totally loses it! You never really see that from Serena because she's usually so in control. But she's furious she's been made to look like a silly, weak girl in front of her team."
How does Edward react to her outburst?
"He quickly apologises and, later in theatre, he looks on lovingly at Serena's brilliance at calming down the patient. I think he still carries a torch for her."
Do you think Serena and Edward can ever be friends?
"It seems Edward feels he really messed up and still rather likes her, but at the moment she's put that brick wall up and has no intention of tearing it down any time soon. For the people I know who've had unfaithful partners and have got divorced, it's pretty difficult to get back to any kind of happy, healthy relationship after that because it's so poisonous."
What does everyone else at Holby make of Edward?
"Everyone else finds it hilarious that Serena's ex-husband has turned up. It's fun for them to see this playing out in front of them - it's a bit like a show. Harry Tressler actually says: 'I always thought she was a lesbian!' There's all that gleeful gossip that goes on in a workplace when someone turns up out of the blue and it's obvious that the boss isn't happy."
What's it been like working with Aden Gillett?
"Oh, Aden is wonderful! He's very funny and great fun to be around. Although his character still holds a torch for Serena, he flirts outrageously with nurses in front of her. As far as Serena's concerned, this leopard hasn't changed his spots!"
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