The first thing that strikes you about Nicole Faraday is her piercing blue eyes, familiar to fans everywhere following her memorable turn as the unhinged mega-villain Snowball Merriman in noughties super-hit Bad Girls. Aficionados of the legendary prison drama will know that Snowball – SPOILER ALERT! – ending up hanging herself, so it is with some relief that I can report that Ms Faraday is very much alive.
Bad Girls not only catapulted Faraday into TV fame (at its height, the show was watched by 10 million viewers per week), it also – unsurprisingly – cemented her position as a GENUINE LESBIAN ICON, leading to roles in both Emmerdale and Casualty.
We meet to talk about Faraday’s latest role – a part that was written specifically for her by Darren E.M. Funnell.
“It’s a two-hander called ‘A Streak of Pride’”, she tells me, “and I’m never off the stage! There are so many twists and turns that I can’t tell you too much, but I can reveal that it’s about two women who bond over the dislike of their husbands and realise, perhaps too late, that they have feelings for each other.”
We continue to talk, not least about our mutual love for Karen Carpenter who Faraday, also an accomplished singer, impersonates with eerie accuracy. And while it’s great when Birds Suddenly Appear, we need to return to the interview. What’s next for Ms Faraday?
“I’ve got a feature film coming out in October called ‘Ask the Cheat’, with Nick Moran, Jeremy Edwards and Martin Treneman. It’s sick, unhinged and hilarious.”
Well, if the trailer’s anything to go by, the much-anticipated British comedy is unlikely to disappoint, especially with Faraday in full villain mode.
And talking of villains, Faraday is set to reprise her most celebrated panto role this winter as the Wicked Queen in Sleeping Beauty, leading me to ask if she’s concerned about being typecast as, well, bad girls.
“Not at all,” she replies, those blue eyes glinting. “Being wicked is much more fun.”
A Streak of Pride runs from 18 to 20 October at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford.
Ask the Cheat premieres on 22October, check your local press for details
Sleeping Beauty runs from 14 December to 6 January at The Capitol, Horsham. www.thecapitolhorsham.com