Entertainment: BBC EastEnders viewers all have the same complaint as another of Dot Cotton's relatives joins the cast

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EastEnders fans are up in arms at the latest cast announcement. The show's official Instagram account shared the news with fans of the show.

They welcomed Jonny Freeman as Reiss Colwell to the show and wrote: "Jonny Freeman is set to join the cast of EastEnders in the role of Dot Branning’s great-nephew, Reiss.

"Reiss is a distant relative of Dot’s - his grandfather’s brother was Bob Colwell, Dot’s father. Though the Colwell clan only saw each other occasionally, Reiss has always wished he was closer to his extended family.

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"Upon hearing the news of Dot’s passing, Reiss is compelled to attend her funeral and a through a shared moment of sadness there is signs of a spark between him and Sonia… Jonny Freeman is best known for his roles on BBC's Silent Witness, Channel 4's Top Boy and Frank London in CBBC's MI High."

On joining the show, Jonny said: "I am delighted to be joining the cast of EastEnders, especially as part of the iconic Dot Branning’s extended family. Everybody has been so welcoming and I'm very lucky to have been working so closely with the lovely Natalie Cassidy who is not only a fantastic actress but a delightful person; she has very kindly helped me navigate my first few weeks.

Dot Cotton actress June Brown passed away in 2022 © BBC Dot Cotton actress June Brown passed away in 2022

"I hope I can do Reiss justice. He is kind but socially awkward and seeing how he manages, or doesn't manage, his early exchanges with Sonia and her nearest and dearest has been quite interesting! I’m looking forward to seeing how both audiences and the residents of Walford respond to him."

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Chris Clenshaw, Executive Producer, added: "Reiss Colwell is a somewhat studious, humble and dependable kind of guy and, like his great-aunt Dot, is incredibly kind hearted. Jonny is a wonderful addition to the EastEnders cast; it’s a joy to see him transform into Reiss when he puts on Reiss’ reading glasses and cardigan. And we’re all excited for Sonia to have a new squeeze in the Square – it’s been a while!"

But fans weren't happy with the addition and took to the comments to voice their frustration. Many thought we'd seen enough of the Cotton family and said as much.

Reiss and Sonia are set to be love interests © BBC / Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron Reiss and Sonia are set to be love interests

"Great. Another boring character with storylines that will go no where," one said. Another fan wrote "There's hardly any original characters left in it. Watched catch up last night and was quite bored."

"How many family members has she got," another wondered as one wrote: "Would much rather they kept Dotty. He looks old enough to be Sonia's grandad. Without Dot or Nick or close relatives of Dot, there's no point adding more Cottons."

BBC EastEnders casts Silent Witness star as Dot Cotton's great-nephew

  BBC EastEnders casts Silent Witness star as Dot Cotton's great-nephew Reiss Colwell is about to arrive in Albert Square and grabs the attention of Sonia JacksonReiss’ grandfather’s brother was Bob Colwell, Dot’s father. Over the years, little has been known about Dot's Colwell family members but her sad passing prompts Reiss to get in touch with his other relatives as he's compelled to attend Dot's funeral.

More fans wrote "Why are all the Cotton family coming in???" and "Too many relatives to follow." But others took issue not with Reiss' lineage, but with his apparent age.

Dot was part of EastEnders since 1985 © Mike Maloney/Mirrorpix/Getty Images Dot was part of EastEnders since 1985

"If his grandfather’s brother was Dot’s father," one wondered, "then he’s not her great nephew, but her first cousin once removed." Another joked "Great nephew, he looks about 60."

Several people wondered "He’s a bit old for Sonia no?" as one person wrote: "He's old enough to be Sonia's grandfather."

One fan said: "Sonia went from Martin to… him?! No offence to the actor, he is just playing a role and they dressed him like an old librarian, I’m sure in real life he is nothing like that. But he looks too old for Sonia."

Dot Cotton hasn't been seen in Walford since 2020, when she moved to Ireland. June Brown OBE, who portrayed her from 1985 onwards, sadly passed away in April 2022.

Walford's residents are due to find out about Dot's death soon. Chris Clenshaw promised the storyline would be "a fitting tribute to both June and Dot," according to Metro.

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