Hollyoaks spoilers follow.
It's official – Hollyoaks has aired the moment fans had been waiting for, as Sid Sumner is officially back from the dead.
Sid made his big return in Wednesday's E4 first look episode (March 17) after drug dealer Victor Brothers was finally brought to justice following his reign of terror.
Billy Price, who plays Sid, remains part of the regular Hollyoaks cast and fans can expect plenty more drama for him in the months ahead.
Now that we've all breathed a huge sigh of relief, we're taking a look at the reasons why Sid's comeback was the right move.
1. It makes sense
Soaps have become ever more outrageous with their fake death storylines – with logic occasionally taking a back seat – and Hollyoaks is no exception. When Nico Blake returned in 2018 after seemingly dying in a burning fairground attraction two years earlier, it was all so unlikely that the writers didn't bother offering up much of an explanation.
Kurt Benson's recent comeback also caused us to suspend our disbelief just a tad, as he was quickly forgiven for pretending to be dead for 21 years.
In comparison, Sid's return fits well with the show's long-running County Lines story, as he was put in police protection after Victor stabbed him at the start of the month.
The authorities decided it was best to trick Victor into thinking that Sid was dead, to prevent a second attempt on the teenager's life.
Nearly all of the tears and turmoil we saw over Sid's demise were genuine, as Ste Hay was the only character who knew he wasn't really gone. Ste had to fake his own grief for Sid to prevent his family from smelling a rat.
2. The show let us in on the secret
Some fans point out that Hollyoaks has pulled out the "fake death" card quite a lot over the past few years. Popular characters like Mercedes McQueen, Sienna Blake and Tony Hutchinson have all appeared to meet sticky ends, only to reappear alive and well after a few episodes.
This time, Hollyoaks took a more refreshing approach by letting viewers in on the secret. Sid was never removed from the Hollyoaks opening titles, while Billy Price also recorded a spoilerific video message for fans, confirming that they hadn't seen the last of him.
While there was no outright confirmation that Sid was alive and in hiding, there was just enough information provided to keep us excitedly speculating over the character's fate.
3. Sid's popularity
Killing off Sid for real would definitely have been a waste. Fans have criticised Hollyoaks in the past for killing off characters who still had potential for the future, such as supervillain Clare Devine.
It's no secret that Sid has become a real viewer favourite since his introduction in 2019, thanks to a well-planned character arc and impressive performances from Billy Price. Putting Sid on the soap scrapheap just wouldn't have made sense.
4. There's lots of potential for new stories
Sid's survival gives Hollyoaks a chance to explore other aspects of his character, including how he comes to terms with his disability. Billy Price, who plays Sid, has now told Digital Spy that this will be covered in more depth in upcoming episodes.
Billy explained: "From the stuff I've been filming now, we go back to him living with a disability, which I feel will be quite nice.
"With COVID, we rushed the recovery time and what it's actually like to live with a disability and the challenge of it. We go back and start again – what dreams he wants to do next, where his life will go. It'll be quite nice to explore all of that."
Hollyoaks fans will also be looking forward to seeing more of Sid's friendship with Juliet Nightingale, especially as they didn't get a final scene together when he "died". At some point, there's sure to be a full Lomax family reunion too once Leela returns to the show.
5. An uplifting ending to the County Lines story
County Lines has been one of Hollyoaks' longest-running stories, beginning in December 2019 and only reaching its dramatic conclusion this week. Over time, we've seen various characters in the village in terrifying and bleak situations due to Victor's evil influence.
While Sid's fake death was impactful, we're pleased to see a happier and more uplifting ending now on the horizon as all of the main players in the storyline – aside from troubled Jordan – have survived to tell the tale.
Hollyoaks airs weeknights at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first look screenings at 7pm on E4.
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