EastEnders star Max Bowden has branded Lola Pearce’s ongoing storyline his ‘hardest’ one to date, revealing that he lost his ‘best friend in the world’ to an undiagnosed brain tumour.
The actor, who plays Ben Mitchell, shared a clip from Thursday’s (May 25) edition of the BBC One soap on his social media channels, which saw his character speak to Lola’s doctor about potential medical trials that would prolong her life.
Lola, as viewers know, was diagnosed with a terminal brain tumour last year and, after undergoing treatment, the doctors informed her that the condition is terminal and that she’s got just weeks left to live.
Ben, who shares daughter Lexi with Lola, has struggled to accept the prognosis, so much so that he started to look up potential clinical trials in America, before departing for the US, much to the concern of his loved ones.
In the wake of this outing of the serial drama, Max, who absolutely blew us away with his performance during the episode in question, took to social media to explain why he’s found this storyline his ‘hardest’ to date.
’21 months ago I lost my best friend in the world to an undiagnosed brain tumour,; he wrote on Instagram. ‘Friday afternoon we were on the phone for an hour discussing Ronaldo to united return, 24 hours later he went into a coma and never woke up.
‘Coming to terms with this grief has been the most turbulent, overwhelming, impossible thing I have ever had to overcome, and telling this story with Lola has been a tough old ride but an incredibly rewarding one.
‘When we lose someone, we never know how we’re going to feel, how we’re going to change. Ben is no exception.’
The soap star went on to explain that Ben is a ‘complicated’ man who is riddled with ‘trauma, insecurities and complexities’, reiterating that fear can ‘turn us into monsters’.
‘Playing a character doesn’t mean I agree with his choices, however we can all appreciate that grief does different things to different people,’ continued Max. ‘I appreciate all of the lovely messages. Oh, and gentle reminder to be kind.’
Max concluded his message by heaping praise on the EastEnders team, writing that he is ‘really proud’ of everyone involved.
The 28-year-old revealed back in September 2021 that his best friend Maxwell had sadly died.
He took to social media at the time with a touching post about his mate, sharing a series of photographs of them together.
He also wrote a heartfelt message, in which he said it was a ‘privilege’ to have been Maxwell’s friend.
‘Thank you for being my best friend for 15 years, for walking every avenue with me, entering into battle with me every time, lighting up my every minute of every day, and for loving me like you did,’ read the message.
‘I will never have a better friend, and I will never love a man so much in my life. You were my soulmate, my rock, my ride or die, my everything – and I am so grateful that I got to call you my best friend. I am so so lucky.’
EastEnders airs Mondays to Thursdays at 7:30pm on BBC One.
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