Back in June, I went up to Manchester to visit the set of Mount Pleasant to see how the series is put together and got the chance to speak to Sally Lindsay who plays Lisa.
This week sees the return of Mount Pleasant, Sky Living's comedy series set in a Manchester cul-de-sac of the same name and if the first episode is anything to go by, it's bigger, brighter and funnier than ever before.
Series three of Mount Pleasant, can you believe it?
Yeah, how lucky are we eh? Series three! I love it, I love it - it sounds silly but it feels like a marriage where you end up loving them more. I know that sounds a bit profound, but every time we come back we still have that excited feeling of - "Hiya. How you doing? Blah blah blah blah..." - and I just love it more.
What's Lisa up to this series then?
Well... (Laughs) it's terribly funny - basically at the start of the series Reconnect closes down because of a dodgy deal, so her and Fergus set a business up together. And Lisa get a tiny weeny bit excited about it, so she puts her hair up, she puts her red lipstick on and she thinks she looks like Melanie Griffith out of Working Girl - she doesn't! So she does this power dressing shit and it really funny.
So that's what she does, and it puts Dan's nose out of joint big style because he likes Lisa being Lisa. Not that he's patronising to her, but he likes her being at home - and she's just not home. For the first time in her life she gets quite good at something and then it causes all sorts of shenanigans and then that's when that Womack turns up! (Laughs).
How's Lisa coping now that she hasn't got that many people around her? Shelly's gone, her mum's in Spain and her dad's hardly ever there!
Well that's probably why actually, she puts everything into the business. There's a scene where she's opening the wardrobe and she's like - "I haven't got anything." - and Dan's lying there and she goes - "Oh you're just Dan. You're always going to be there." ...or is he? So I think that's what makes her absolutely on fire for this business.
She works until 11 o'clock at night and there's one scene where she's up at the crack of dawn on a Saturday cooking bacon and Lisa says - "Look! No hangover... and it's half 8!" - this hasn't happened since she was 16 you know, so she's beside herself on a Saturday morning. And she kinda takes her eye off the ball marriage wise.
There's a new addition to the cast - Tanya, played by Samantha Womack. What's that been like?
Old slag Womack?! (Laughs). Nah, I love her, she's ace and I get on with her like a house on fire, she's fantastic. It's great working with her, I've never worked with her before. I've known people who have, like you always do, but no she's a massive laugh. Perfect for the show. Got it straight away. So yeah, we've had a really good laugh about it - lots of fun.
What about her partner Bradley, played by Nigel Harman?
I think she thinks he's quite fit, you know and in another life and all that. But I don't think she thinks anything along those lines but at the end of episode 8 they become quite close in a way. Weirdly - and there are a lot of nice conversations that they have.
So I don't quite know, but I don't think anything's going to happen between them... that's a shame! (Laughs).
You've hinted that things aren't all rosy in your marriage. I know something happens between Tanya and Dan. How does Lisa feel about what happens?
Well it's really interesting how Sarah's written it, because Lisa's thought Dan's been acting really weirdly and because she doesn't in a hundred thousand years believe that would happen she thinks he's poorly. This is how I'm playing it. She thinks something's wrong with him, and he's been to the Doctor's. She never in a million years thought it was that! So she's in shock actually.
I didn't do a big comedy breakdown because I didn't think that would happen. I think she just didn't get it at all. For the end of that episode she's just in shock. Absolute shock. She didn't think they were at that place at all. Also, what happens when things like that happen is that you've got to get on with your life.
So Charlie and Pauline turns into the biggest wedding of the century, and everyone's excited about it and they've got to go on with that journey because their lives are so entwined, they can't just sort of not be together. So they have to pretend everything's alright and her heart's breaking - and I think it's only towards episode 7 that she breaks down really and just can't believe it.
It's really good how it's written actually. It's very different to how you'd think.
As well as the arrival of Tanya there's also Dan wanting you to have a baby. What's that all about?
It's clever, because you always assume it's the woman who's saying - "My clock's ticking. Me eggs are cookin' da da da da da." - or whatever we say! But here, it really isn't. It's all about Dan - and Dan really really wants a baby. And he just thought that's what the marriage would be about. They've never discussed it because they've been together forever, so they've never discussed it and just assumed that would happen. And they're getting to their late thirties now and it's really becoming apparent for Dan that his clock's ticking.
So it's a really different take on it. And Lisa's sort of going - "Well, you know, it's fine. We're alright. I wanna do this. This is what I want - this empire, this career. I'm buzzing, I'm buzzing off it and I haven't got time for that now."
And it's really sad because women only have a certain amount of time, however science cracks on we still only have a certain amount of time. Whereas men don't, so it's quite clever how it's written in a way that's about him really more than anything. I mean she sort of gets it, but she doesn't really realise that you can actually have both - she hasn't worked that bit out really.
There are quite a few soap veterans now in Mount Pleasant. There's you, Samantha Womack, Nigel Harman. Have you swapped any soap stories at all?
Yeah, we have, and it's funny because I was in Coronation Street when it was massive - well it still is, but you know pre-digital when it was getting stupid 16 million, 17 million viewers at the same time Nigel was in EastEnders. So we used to bump into each other quite a lot and I remember I used to think he was a laugh - he's one of those faces you'd see in the crowd and - "Hi you alright?" - and we'd have a drink. So we got on quite well in those days so I knew he'd be smart for the show kind of thing.
And Sam I'd never met before! Obviously she's still in and out really so she's still part of the nonsense really - imagine that?
With Samantha going back to EastEnders have you been tempted to co back to the cobbles?
There's about 40,000 people behind the bar at the moment in Corrie, I don't think there'd be any room for Shelley. Jesus Christ! They'd have to build an extension. (Laughs). I think they're alright for blonde barmaids at the moment. We'll leave them to it for a few years. Like I've always said, never say never but at the moment you know, I'm well in to this.