The ninth series of Benidorm sees the return of pals Tiger and Joey and Sam, a familiar face from the series’ past returns and the three form quite the trio!
Sitting by the pool at the Solana, Danny Walters who plays Tiger, Nathan Bryon who returns to play Joey and Shelley Longworth who is back playing Sam spoke to me about what’s in store for the ninth series.
And from the sound of things, they’re going to be quite the force to be reckoned with. Here’s what they had to say...
First of all, what's it like to be back?
Shelley: It's so good to be back. I’m loving Sam. She's now a working girl so no longer a holidaymaker but a holiday rep. She’s got her set up in reception working for Beni-Go Travel and I’m always looking for the scams and kickbacks, using these guys (Tiger and Joey) quite a bit to make money.
Danny: It’s because we’re so gullible. We fall for anything and she’s a girl so we’re under her charms entirely. We’re used and abused.
Shelley: I manage to rent out your hotel rooms don’t I? I get you guys to be prop boys and work the bars for me. She’s always after a little extra cash and loves winding up Miss Temple-Savage.
I've still got my spat with Mateo, because secretly I've always wanted him.
What are some of the scams they use to get money?
Shelley: The prop boy thing is to earn cash and that all goes wrong because they end up working the wrong bar.
We go to the Dino Park and I’m on a scam there. It was really fun to film there, but it’s a great backdrop in the mountains with all these cactuses and I’m onto a winner there having got a live dinosaur fight organized and they get a flat tyre.
So I rope these two guys into wearing dinosaur costumes that the park uses and I still carry on with the dino fight.
But it ends up going quite wrong because Liam is terrified of dinosaurs and he’s there to fight his phobias, so the whole way round the park he’s been going ‘aaah’ and eventually he gets stuck in and jumps on the dino fight.
Danny: And we’re in our dinosaur outfits and we end up having a fight with Liam so we all end up having a fight, bruises and everything. It goes a bit serious.
Shelley: Having broken my leg, broken my arm, got to episode five, still hadn’t broken anything and then I end up with this slight neck brace after the dinosaur fight.
Any more trysts with Mateo?
Shelley: We’re just like... (pulls faces) the whole time which is really good. Like "apart from being an old leathery faced loser" that kind of thing.
We always wind each other up and he’s like "the only good thing you’re good at spreading is your thunder thighs". You know, he’s always winding me up. It’s all banter.
Is there a bit of turf war with Joyce?
Shelley: Yeah in the first episode she’s like - "Who the hell is she? What’s she doing here? I want her out!"
I think I say something like "Don’t get your tits in a twist with me grandma!" I’m actually not too bad because I’ve told the lads there’s this vouchers and if any of the punters use them to get into any of the amusement parks they get a euro every time one is used.
So I end up giving them loads of cash and saying that’s for the vouchers and they suddenly go she’s not too bad, she’s getting us extra cash, so I win them over luckily.
Danny, am I right in thinking that Tiger gets involved with Loretta in this series?
You had to bring it up didn’t you? Yeah, well that’s how we first get introduced. There’s me in a club tying her down literally and I’m so drunk that I’ve got Shallow Hal glasses and I think she’s so pretty and young and obviously it turns out it’s not really it’s not really Tiger’s boat, but he’s so drunk.
In episode two you see Tiger coming out of someone’s room and you find out whose room it is, it’s - Did he? Didn’t he?
Even I don’t know whether I have or not. I was so drunk. I keep telling myself I didn’t.
How does Rob deal with that?
Danny: Very awkward. He sees it. He sees it in the club. It’s me Joey and Rob on a night out and Rob says to Joey where’s Tiger and they walk round a corner and see Tiger full on going for it, tongues.
Was that fun to film?
Danny: It was because that was the first time I met Kate (Fitzgerald) and the first scene that she’d done in the show, so it was a massive ice breaker.
She's a really nice lady, great actress and it was such a fun day we had filming and we definitely broke the ice!
Speaking of Rob, you guys hang out with him a lot more this series don't you?
Nathan: Yeah. We have some adventures in the casino. We have stuff in the club.
Danny: And a lot more scenes around the pool with him.
Nathan: He wants to be part of our gang. Joey’s a maths genius now! It’s a hidden skill he’s kept under lock, sadly it causes more trouble now it’s revealed itself, so it’s a bit like Rainman-esque skills but with numbers.
Danny: So yeah Rob joins us and there are some funny scenes with him because he’s very intelligent, he goes to university, he’s going to get a degree and he’s stuck with us two morons because he knows we’re fun so there are some really funny scenes with him.
How are things between Sam and Liam?
Shelley: We’re just good mates. It’s because Joey came along.
Does Joey like Sam back?
Nathan: Yeah, he approves. He’s up for it. She tells it how it is and it’s a very appealing advert.
Danny: The whole series there’s innuendo and hints and then episode 9, they’re literally...
Are there a lot more cracking one-liners from Joey?
Nathan: Yeah there’s loads. I also find I have Joeyisms in my life. I just come out with some mad…
Danny: We were on our way back from shopping one day and there was a massive dino park sign and Nathan goes "that’s the dino park, are there dinosaurs there, actual dinosaurs?" (Laughs)
It was so funny! I had to pull over just to laugh and then it got interpreted into the script.
Nathan: It was like 40 degrees and really hot. We all have those moments!
You must get on really well…
Danny: We have to unfortunately!
No it’s cool… I think the thing about Tiger and Joey last year was that they were getting to know each other as well.
Whereas now Tiger knows what Joeys like and he waits for those stupid lines and vice versa. I think they’re very comfortable with each other now. We enjoy each others company.
Nathan: And Joey being a maths genius it’s a nice addition, because it’s nice your character being simple and fun but it’s also nice someone having a really random skill.
It’s quite useful, unless you use it in an un-useful way which I do all the time. Learning maths sums as lines is always quite interesting!
Any more scenes in your pants Nathan?
Nathan: Oh yeah. Sam got us to be props and we needed to get punters in and a punter goes up to Joey and tricks him into taking off all his clothes in order for him to get loads of his friends from the beach to come down and Joey gives the guy all his clothes and is stood in his boxers looking like a mug.
Danny: Tiger turns around and he’s fully clothes and he turns around and goes what? How did this happen? Why are you naked? We’re meant to be handing leaflets out!
Then he’s upset because the guy doesn’t come back with his clothes and cos we’re good mates we end up both getting naked. Whatever he does I do. We even share a pair of flip-flops!
What's the reaction been like since the last series?
Nathan: Here (Benidorm) it’s insane. Everyone’s adorable, they love the show. You know how you hear about Doctor Who fans, they love it, they own it and here it’s the same. There’s a guy who has got our signatures tattooed on his arm!
Shelley: Nathan’s loved. All the hen parties love him!
Danny: Back in England it’s not as much. But it’s very popular up north. Out here especially when people have a few drinks and people book a holiday here specially to see us, so if they meet some of the cast it makes their holiday.
One picture that lasts two seconds makes their holiday. The fact Joey’s in it now has brought Tiger out a bit because Tiger was always with the Dyke family, whereas now Tiger and Joey they have their own scenes now.
Nathan: And when you’re walking around with hair like this it’s hard to be inconspicuous. I’ve thought about getting a hat! But a sombrero isn’t going to help anything!
Danny: talking of hairstyles there’s one scene where Kenneth needs some models to test on and take some pictures of, but before he starts to cut their they take this woo juice drink and it’s powerful stuff and it gets you smashed straight away and then you see Tiger and Joey have the completely wrong hair, so I’ve got cornrows and he’s got a quiff!
I quite liked it. I had to keep them in for two days. It was like stretching my head back and I started to get sunburn because all my scalp was all burnt but you take them out the hair goes all wavy like and afro, I loved it.
Nathan: I was quick to take mine out because I’ve got a little pea head and I ended up looking like a little alien. It just wasn’t my thing.
And finally, Shelley - Did you miss the show?
Yeah but I went off and I had two kids and I was, well if I never get it again...
But it’s such a dream job so to get the call last summer and to be asked back is so amazing and the kids have come out with me so we’re all here. They’re loving it out here in the sun. And to work with these guys is great.
I still followed it at home but to be back it’s a mix of feeling excited and settled at the same time. I love playing Sam, she’s cheeky. She’s such good fun.
I talk to a lot more people this time now I’m working there, characters I wouldn’t have scenes with before. I’ve also been recognized out and about. People will go "Oh Sam, I’m so glad you’re back!"