Soap stars appear in First Dates restaurant for BBC’s Children in Need

Soap stars appear in First Dates restaurant for BBC’s Children in Need

Two of the UK’s biggest soap stars took part in a First Dates sketch as part of Children in Need 2021, with a surprise appearance from an Emmerdale character at the end.

The skit shows Corrie’s Steve McDonald and Eastenders character Janine Butcher meet in the iconic restaurant — with hilarious results.

The First Dates sketch was part of the BBC’s star-studded Children in Need programme which raised more than £39 million for thousands of UK charities.

A nervous Steve, played by Simon Gregson, is greeted at the restaurant by host Fred Sirieix before promptly ordering a double whisky.

Janine, played by Charlie Brooks, got straight to the point when she turned up and told Sirieix that she’s broadening her dating pool beyond London and wanted to check out the talent in Manchester.

After asking if he has ever been married, Janine chokes on her vodka tonic when he told her he has been married seven times. Janine revealed she has been married four times, and joked that she “only killed two of them”.

The awkwardness only continues to get worse as the pair sit down to eat dinner, with Janine losing her temper after Steve unintentionally insults her.

“I asked for a millionaire businessman, preferably in his 80s, not a wife-collecting cabbie,” she barked at Sirieix.

Steve protested: “Excuse me, what is going on here? I only come in for a pie.”

After Steve revealed he has a wife at home “who actually looks stable compared to that thing here”, Janine asked if Steve isn’t her date, then who is?

Enter Emmerdale’s Eric Pollard.

The James Bond theme sounded as Eric, played by Chris Chittell, swooped in and said: “The name is Pollard, Eric Pollard. Eric Pollard, licensed to thrill.”

Janine dismissed Steve, before Eric took his seat.

The scene ends and we’re left to imagine how the rest of the date panned out. Would you have put this pair together?

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