For UK audiences, Home and Away spoilers follow.
Home and Away star Madeleine Jevic talked to Digital Spy about allegations that Dean Thompson’s character Amber Simmons is too manipulative.
In recent weeks, Amber has offered Dean (Patrick O’Connor) a chance to be part of the life of their son Jai, but his presence has remained squarely on her terms.
The strategy of the novice to the situation has led to some fans accusing her of using Jai to use Dean as a pawn.
Next week’s Channel 5 episodes see tensions get worse when Amber bans Dean from introducing Jai to his mother Karen. She warns that if Dean does not honour her wishes, neither will she see Jai again.
“Madeleine explained, though, speaking exclusively to Digital Spy about Amber’s side of the story, “I think Amber has been trying to decide whether Dean is a parent. We all inadvertently exploit ‘at the moment’ sometimes, however she does not do so deliberately. She’s only trying to find out whether he’s invested and whether Jai’s a reliable figure.
In his life, Dean has a lot going on and she cares about her son. She’s not purposely playing games with him, she’s just trying to cut to the pursuit of finding out if he’s going to be a positive influence on her son.
Madeleine goes on to explain why Amber is trying to block Karen from Jai’s life: “Amber knew what Karen was like when Dean grew up and that she couldn’t be a stable mother for Dean.
” She saw Karen not treating Dean as a child properly and Amber was really angry.
She’s afraid that Karen’s not going to be able to be there in the same way for her grandson, so Amber’s not going to threaten her son, because Jai’s all for her.
“She has no trust in Karen and she’s leaving this old version of Karen, but Amber is uncomfortable with the new Karen and she doesn’t want to take the chance.”
The UK scenes next week also show Amber’s mum Francesca emerging for Jai’s birthday party and clashing with Dean instantly. Dean is annoyed that Francesca can spend time with Jai when his mother is unable to.
Madeleine added: “Francesca carries some baggage. With her son dying in a car crash, she has had a lot of pain and she has a lot of bitterness towards the persons involved, Dean and Colby, and she blamed them for the loss of her son.”
It’s quite triggering for her that Amber has a kid for one of the boys involved in the death of her son, so she brings up the experience for both of them. As she arrives, there’s a lot of stress and old feelings that are rehashed.
Amber loves her mother, and she’s so grateful to her mother that her mother got her through all these years of raising her son as a single mother. But Francesca can be pretty full-on, and for the sake of her son, Amber is attempting to have an amicable friendship with Dean.
“It’s always hard for Amber when Francesca walks in and she’s not the simplest to work with when she’s trying to hold everything at bay to do Jai the right thing. So it’s good to have her mother there, but it’s also tough when she also has to navigate these personalities.”