EastEnders surprised fans up and down the country at the end of Thursday night’s episode after the much-anticipated introduction of the square’s new family, The Taylors. The family made their appearance known, seeing single mum Karen - played by Lorraine Stanley, turning up with children Keanu (played by Benidorm star Danny Walters), Bernadette (newcomer Clair Norris), and their younger brothers Riley and Chatham (real-life siblings Tom and Alfie Jacobs), while not forgetting their pets: Bronson the dog and Rooney the bearded dragon. However, in true soap style, the family had a dark secret and by the end of the episode, it was revealed that school bully Keegan was in fact Karen’s son.
Fans of EastEnders were shocked when the entire Taylor family were revealed
The news displeased Louise Mitchell and Bex Fowler, who realised that the schoolboy would be living a lot closer to home – and no doubt causing more grief.
Meanwhile, fans of the show flocked to Twitter soon after the shock twist at the end of the episode. One wrote: "Literally is shock that Keegan is part of the Taylor family. But I love the family already," while another said: "Oh my gosh, they’re Keegan’s family? No wonder he is the way he is." A third said: "Didn’t see that coming!"
Keegan is set to have a far more prominant role in the popular BBC soap
Zac Morris, who plays Keegan, spoke to Digital Spy about his character’s past, hinting that there is a reason he is the way he is. "There's a lot that I've been filming and coming up that will show more to him," he said. "The audience will get why he's the way he is, and will get to see what's going on behind closed doors. You may feel sorry for him or at least understand why he is the way he is."
EastEnders executive producer Sean O'Connor said of the family when they were announced back in May: "I am hugely excited at the arrival of Karen and her family in Albert Square. They're noisy, brash and not to be messed with. Karen is a 20-a-day lioness, bringing up her kids with no support, no money and a very loud mouth. But though they may lack cash, the Taylors have love and warmth in spades. This summer is going to be explosive as the Taylors settle in Walford. The Square will never be quite the same again."