Claire King has labelled her Emmerdale character Kim Tate as “one of the best” on television.
The actress said Kim is fun to play because of her mischievous side.
She said she “used to get surprised 20 years ago” by storylines involving her scheming character.
“Now I think I’m beyond being surprised,” said King, 58, who joined the ITV soap in 1989.
“Whatever they throw at me, I just go ‘Oh really, OK, that’s strange’, but anyway we will just get on and do it.
“I don’t get surprised much now and that’s half the fun of playing this character, because you get away literally with murder and various other things, and saying things to people you would never dream of saying in real life.
“That’s part of the fun of playing Kim Tate and I think it’s one of the best characters on television.”
King’s character has been involved in some of the soap’s biggest storylines over the years including affairs, a faked death and blackmail.
However the actress said Kim has “mellowed” as she has grown older “over things like her horses, her son, her family, people she cares about”.
“She does have a soft side and she does get hurt but she’s very good at not showing it,” she said.
“She keeps this strong plate of armour up… that’s why you think she’s tough all the time.
“She does feel things inside, she just doesn’t give it away because she sees that as a weakness.”
Last week, filming of Emmerdale resumed following a hiatus triggered by positive coronavirus tests among some of the workers on the soap.