Eve Jenson (née Birch) is a fictional character from the ITV1 soap opera Emmerdale, played by Suzanne Shaw. She made her first on-screen appearance on 31 August 2001. The character was originally played by Raine Davison from 2001 to 2006. In early 2010 series producer Gavin Blyth recast the role and Shaw took over. Eve was introduced as the granddaughter of Edna Birch.
Character creation and castingEdit
Eve Birch was first introduced by series producer Steve Frost who cast Raine Davison in the role in 2001. Eve first appeared on the show on August 31, 2001 as the granddaughter of Edna Birch (Shirley Stelfox). She remained a series regular until her departure in 2002. Davison was seen again on the show in October 2006, when Edna was attended Eve's wedding to James Jenson.
In January 2010, it was announced that Eve would be returning to the show after a nearly 4-year absence with a new actress in the role. Series producer Gavin Blyth stated in an interview with Digital Spy that he auditioned 50 to 60 actresses for the role, one of them being former Hear'Say singer and West End theatre star Suzanne Shaw who made the trip to Yorkshire from Manchester where she was playing Judy Haynes in the musical White Christmas. The decision to cast Shaw was announced on the 29th of January. Shaw signed a year-long contract and debuted on the 2nd of April 2010.
Suzanne Shaw has described Eve as "feisty and very flirtatious. She's been left with a lot of debt in France and she turns up in the Dales because she has nowhere else to go - she knows that Edna's a real soft touch and wouldn't leave her own family at the front door. Eve does lie to start with because she doesn't want anyone to know why she's actually there - she doesn't want to let everyone know that she's failed again. Edna finds out the truth, though, and demands to know why she lied. Because she's going through a break-up, she deals with it by flirting with the men of the village. She finds it easier to get on with guys than girls - she's quite sarcastic and to-the-point."
Discussing the audition proses Shaw said "I got asked before Christmas to audition for the part of Eve. I was asked to do a screen test, but it got snowed off because of all the bad weather over Christmas. I didn't hear anything for ages and I thought it wasn't going to happen, and then just a few weeks before I started filming they offered me the part. It was a lovely surprise.
They auditioned quite a lot of actresses for the role. I was up against some strong contenders so it was quite nerve-wracking when I went in, but Gavin Blyth, the producer, was so lovely and made me feel really at ease."
Discussing Eve Shaw also said "She's fun and feisty, and very, very flirtatious. Her husband has left her with a load of debt, so she's turned up in Emmerdale unannounced because she's really got nowhere to go.
I think people see Eve as a b***hy person, but I don't think she really is. She just loves to have fun, and because she's going through a big messy break-up with her husband I think she flirts with the boys. I think that's her way of getting through her marriage breakdown. We've got quite a list of men she goes through. I did my first kissing scene yesterday. It was very nerve-wracking!"
Relationship with Carl KingEdit
In 2010 it was revealed that Eve would have an affair with Carl King played by Tom Lister commeting on the storyline Shaw said "I was really excited when I found out Eve would be having an affair with Carl. But I quickly realised it would make me very unpopular with the majority of Emmerdale fans because everyone loves Carl and Chas together. So I’m preparing myself for all the trouble it’s going to cause. It’s a great storyline and I have no idea how it will all turn out. There’s also the small matter of Chas. It’s going to take some doing for Carl to keep it from her. It would be a brave or a stupid man who tests Chas but Carl seems determined to give it a go and Eve certainly isn’t one to hold back. One thing’s for sure, if Chas does uncover Carl’s dirty secret he’ll be wise to sleep with one eye open!"
She also said "It’s a really juicy storyline to have been given and there’s lots of naughtiness coming up. Eve never ceases to amaze me. She’s a great character to play as she can be so shocking. It’s been nearly six months since I joined Emmerdale and it’s just flown by. It’s hard work but I’m enjoying every minute of it and the soap is buzzing at the moment. There are so many huge storylines coming up and I can’t wait to see how it all turns out with Eve and Carl. But whatever happens you know that with Eve and Chas being at the centre of it all it’s going to be very dramatic. It’s not going to be an easy time for Carl at all. I know the affair goes on well into the autumn and there are going to be a few twists and turns before it all reaches a climax this Christmas."
In September 2010 Shaw and Lister teased of the storyline Shaw said "Quite a bit. We don't quite know what's going to happen around Christmas time but there's something juicy coming up." also Lister said "It's all going well so far. I'm having a great time and I think it's going to play out a bit longer. We'll see whether he gets found out or not." Lucy Pargeter, who plays Chas hinted that her firebrand alter ego may react in a surprising way if she eventually rumbles the affair. she said "It's either going to be the usual Chas thing or we'll go against the grain and do something not necessarily expected, but who knows, we've got a long time to run it yet."
In April 2011, it was announced that Shaw is to leave Emmerdale. Of her departure, Shaw said "Playing Eve has been a wonderful experience for me. I have had the opportunity to work with some incredibly talented people and to learn from them. After much soul-searching we decided that as a family we wanted to be based in one place at this point in our lives. My family must come first and I have therefore decided to leave the show in the summer."
Eve is the daughter of Peter Birch, biological son of Lily Butterfield, and adopted son of Harold and Edna Birch. Peter, widowed, moved to France due to work commitments. He fell for Jacqueline and they later married. When Peter and Jacqueline were going through a rough patch he became concerned about the effect that their difficulties were having on Eve, so he sent her to stay with Edna to do her A Levels in England. Eve was 16 and had been living in France for six years.
Upon arriving in Emmerdale, Eve became friends with the rest of the teenagers in the village. She set her eyes on Marc Reynolds, even though he was involved with Donna Windsor. Against Donna's wishes Eve pursued Marc and they became an item, later sleeping together.
In September 2001 while on a night out in Hotten, Eve, Marc, Donna, Andy Sugden, Robert Sugden, Ollie Reynolds, and Katie Addyman stole a car after missing the last bus home. They became involved in a hit and run accident, which resulted in the death their teacher, Miss Strickland. Marc was the one driving the car, but Eve kept a cool head encouraged the gang to lie about the accident.
In 2002 Eve continued to keep the web of lies going, until Marc confessed. Eve's true colours came to her grandmothers attention, when Eve kicked Edna's yorkshire terrier Batley. Edna was shocked and sent Eve to live with her aunt, Lily Butterfield.
In October 2006 Edna, with escort Tom King, attended Eve's wedding to James Jenson. Edna confided in Tom that Eve was actually Lily's granddaughter, as Lily was Peter Birch's birthmother.
In April 2010 Eve returned to Emmerdale to stay with Edna at Woodbine Cottage after separating from her indebted husband. Edna discovered that Eve had slept with James's best friend and warned her not to take advantage of her grandmother's kindness. Andy and Katie made it clear that Eve was not welcome by the locals, however, Eve showed up to Ryan Lamb and Andy's house warming party, where she kissed Ryan just as a disgusted Katie arrived to witness it.
By May, Edna was frustrated with Eve's excuses for not being able to find work. Edna asked Moira Barton if John had any work for Eve, leading to her employment at Butler's Farm as John Barton farmhand. Eve admitted to Moira that she was interested in John, much to Moira's annoyance. Moira confronted John about their new farmhand's outrageous flirting but John reassured his wife that he would never play. Eve and John were caught kissing by Cain Dingle, who told Moira what he had seen. Moira confronted John and threw him out after he confessed to kissing Eve. In the summer of 2010 Eve begins an affair with Carl King while he was with Chas Dingle. They both book a hotel and spend the night together.