Panto season is almost upon us, so it’s quite fitting that we’ve been treated to another one of Neighbours’ hammy villains recently, in the shape of ‘Nanny Alice’, played by Kerry Armstrong.
Alice has wormed her way into the Rebecchi household, posing as the sugary Nanny Alice, who has made herself indispensable as a carer to Nell and Hugo, all while baking cookies and cleaning the house to the point that you can practically see your reflection in the walls.
Toadie and Sonya think Alice is all sweetness and light because she has a cunning ‘goodie’ disguise that involves a lot of headbands and floral jumpers. Evil people don’t wear headbands, and no right-minded villain would ever be caught dead in floral polyester, so she must be angelic. And bad people can’t possibly bake either, you need to be pure of heart to be able to bake a good biscuit, right?
But Alice is not as Mary Poppins as Toadie and Sonya think she is. For a start, she’s clearly too evil to rustle up a good tray of shortbread, instead buying packets of biscuits and pretending that she made them. She’s also covering them with her ‘special icing sugar’ which contains ground-up pills which she is using to try to cause a relapse for ex-addict Sonya. I’m just wondering if all of Sonya’s past excesses caused her to lose her sense of taste, because anyone who’s ever taken a painkiller and experienced that annoying thing where it gets stuck on your tongue and doesn’t go down knows that painkillers taste absolutely horrific. Bitter. Chalky. How can she not taste that?
Alice also sometimes bribes poor Nell to do her evil bidding, and she engineered a scenario which saw Nell go missing on Halloween, when in actual fact she was just hiding out under the house with a big bag of sweets. You can’t blame little Nell for agreeing to this, because it’s is a deal which I would have taken myself, and I am an adult. Poor Nell also got dosed with some suspect casserole from Dipi’s fridge, so she would vomit so much that a grown man couldn’t deal with it by himself and therefore had to extend Nanny Alice’s employment.
We the viewers mostly know Alice is a baddie because she very often tells baby Hugo all her evil plans, usually very loudly and only seconds after Toadie and/or Sonya have left the room. And her plan is to show Sonya up to be an unfit mother, so that Toadie will leave her and play happy families with Alice’s daughter instead, who is none other than professional Dee Bliss impersonator, Andrea.
As if we didn’t know she was evil after all this, the Neighbours writers really hammered it home by having Alice go on a night out recently. She wore tight trousers! Chewed gum! Drank some cocktails! She also had the audacity to flirt with a human man in a pub (why do so many women have the hots for Dr Karl though?), so now we know she’s definitely a wrong ‘un.
But Toadie and Sonya have no idea who Alice really is or what she’s up to. Dipi has a few suspicions, and she seems physically incapable of minding her own business, so my money is on her to be the one who finally dislodges Alice’s headband and exposes her dastardly plans…