One thing about being in a soap is that you are suddenly recognised by millions of people who you have never met. And when you play a character as complex and often divisive as Daniel Osborne, you are likely to get some odd responses.
Rob Mallard admitted that he had one such weird encounter not long ago, when a seemingly innocent fan suddenly came out with a bizarre phrase which put him off.
He explained to Metro.co.uk: ‘“You’re not as weird in real life” is one I always get but the weirdest one was when this guy came up to me at the dockyard in the summer. I was on the deckchairs, and this guy came over with a piece of paper, and you never get that, normally – it’s always selfies, it’s never signing.
‘So this guy comes over, he was quite retro with it which I thought was interesting. He wanted me to write a birthday thing for his daughter who was a big fan of the show and while he’s leaning over my shoulder, he looked at me closely and suddenly went, “You must have a lot of darkness in you.” To which I thought, “fuck off!” So yeah, it can get a bit weird sometimes!’
Another thing Rob gets a lot is comments about his hair, with many viewers taking the time to tweet him and ask when he is going to get it washed!
Asked what he would get his alter ego for Christmas, Rob laughed: ‘I know what certain viewers would buy me – shampoo! I get people tweeting at me saying, “wash your hair.” It’s this fringe, it’s so heavy and it falls down, so you’re always putting it back, and when you spray it with lacquer all day, by the end of the day it gets all wiry and bitty.
‘So when it’s on TV, it doesn’t look like it’s been washed for about 14 years. So maybe Daniel needs a bottle of Head and Shoulders.’
As for his own ideal gift? Rob thought and responded: ‘I need a dressing gown and a hoover. I was watching TV the other day and – this is a hump of your twenties moment – there was an advert for a hoover and my ears pricked up. I thought, “you would never have noticed that a year ago.”
‘The price of it was 200 quid or something. That feels like an extortionate amount of money, and I’m still sort of getting used to having a bit of money, so I still view the world in that way, like “oooh that’s pricey.”
‘I go to Boots at the end of play when they’re getting rid of all their reduced priced stuff. I got a whole chicken for a pound the other day. I love a bargain.’
It sounds like it’ll be easy to please Rob at Christmas then – we’ll bring the dressing gown and he can pop the reduced chicken under the oven. Sorted!
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