Liberty Savage is a fictional character from the British Channel 4 soap opera Hollyoaks, played by actress and singer-songwriter Abi Phillips. She made her first on-screen appearance on 10 December 2010. Phillips was approached by Hollyoaks producers after she submitted one of her songs to be played on the show. Following a strong response to the song, producers invited her to audition for the role of Liberty, in which she was successful. Liberty was introduced to Hollyoaks along with her fiancé, Ethan Scott (Craig Vye).
Her storylines have included a love triangle between Ethan, her and her best friend Theresa McQueen (Jorgie Porter). Phillips said that Ethan is in love with Liberty, but does not love her enough to marry her. On her arrival her on-screen family was introduced, her two brothers, Dodger (Danny Mac) andWill (James Atherton) and her father Dirk (David Kennedy). Phillips performed at T4 on the Beach, performing as two people, as while Liberty got her big break, Phillips also performed her own solo material. In October 2011, Liberty's family was expanded with her cousin Dennis (Joe Tracini) being introduced.
Liberty first appears in Hollyoaks when she is sent to the school headmaster's office for singing in class. She meets Theresa McQueen (Jorgie Porter) and they bond. Liberty reveals that Ethan Scott, who Theresa has become attracted to, is her fiancé. Ethan begins ignoring Liberty's phone calls and she assumes that he is going to end their relationship. Theresa then decides to help Liberty and Ethan reconcile and prepares a meal for them with Ethan. Liberty sees them and slaps Theresa, assuming that they are having an affair. Theresa's cousin Carmel Valentine (Gemma Merna) finds Liberty and explains that Theresa was preparing a meal for her and Ethan. Liberty then apologies to Theresa.
Liberty begins planning her and Ethan's engagement party. Ethan and his friend Noah Baxter (Law Thompson) start playing pranks on one another. Noah covers the toilet seat with cling film and Liberty uses the toilet, subsequently urinating on her clothes. Noah apologises to Liberty and arranges for Chez Chez nightclub to hold the engagement party. Liberty returns home to find her house boarded up and her brother, Dodger tells her that it has been repossessed. Dodger explains that he has found the family somewhere to live. He then takes Liberty blindfolded to 26 Leigh Road, the McQueen family's house, as they are in Tenerife. Liberty refuses to stay as she cannot squat in Theresa's house. Ethan allows Liberty to stay with him. She then decorates the flat with her belongings, which annoys Ethan's flatmates Noah and Doug Carter (PJ Brennan). Noah and Doug tell Ethan that Liberty cannot stay with them. Ethan then tells Liberty that she cannot stay and promises to find her somewhere to live. The McQueen's return from Tenerife early to find that the locks have been changed on the house. Myra McQueen (Nicole Barber-Lane) demands that Liberty and her family leave and Liberty apologises to her. However, Myra meets Liberty's father, Dirk and decides to let the family stay temporarily. The family set up camp in their back yard after Myra discovers Dodger killed her pet lamb for food though Theresa allows Liberty to stay in her room.
Liberty trys to set up Theresa with her brother Will. They go on a date, and later study together but they do not get together. Liberty sends them off on a bus to a concert, fooling them both into thinking they were going with her. Theresa and Will end up in a hotel room however nothing happens. Ethan then turns up looking for Liberty, however Will gets the wrong idea thinking he's coming for Theresa and the boys fight. Will leaves, and Ethan tells Theresa while alone that he cannot leave Liberty as he slept with her when she was 15, and if she reported him, he could lose his job. Liberty and Ethan break up, but later get back together. Ethan in secret dates Theresa, though he keeps the relationships secret, but Theresa suspects he is cheating and follows him and spots him with Rae Wilson (Alice Barlow). Theresa goes back home and confesses to Liberty that it was Ethan who was with Rae, Liberty is shocked by Ethan's deceit. Theresa and Liberty decided to remain friends. They go to tell Rae about Ethan and she suggests they get revenge on him. Liberty is shocked when Dodgers real father and twin sister Patrick Blake (Jeremy Sheffield) andSienna Blake (Anna Passey) arrive on the boat, but is determined to unite the Savages and Blakes and invites them round for dinner to build bridges and become a close family unit.
In December 2010, it was announced that Phillips had joined the cast of Hollyoaks as Liberty Savage. Phillips came to the attention of Hollyoaks producers after submitting her song "Missing You" to be used on the show. The song was used in established character Steph Cunningham's (Carley Stenson) final episode, in which she died in a fire. Phillips penned the song after being inspired by Steph's cervical cancer storyline. Following a strong response to the song, producers invited Phillips to audition for the role of Liberty, a character they had been developing for "some time" and she was successful. In 2011, Phillips told the Daily Mail that she is "having such a brilliant time with Hollyoaks" and could not choose between her acting or singing career. Liberty made her first appearance on 10 December 2010. Channel Four described Liberty as being "beautiful, bubbly but very spoilt". Daily Mail and Dan Menhinnit from The Sun also called her 'bubbly', as well Menhinnit called Liberty 'pretty'. Matalan described her as 'much wronged' and the Daily Star described her as 'feisty'. When the Hollyoaks titles were updated, Liberty was included along with Ethan, Will and Dodger. The producers took advantage of Phillips singing skills, and got her to sing of Adele's 'Make You Feel My Love' (originally written and recorded by Bob Dylan). Daniel Kilkelly from Digital Spy called it a 'show stopping performance'. On 18 June 2011 it was revealed that Liberty was to perform on stage at T4 On The Beach taking Theresa and Ethan with her. It was then said that Philips will become the first person to perform as two people, as while Liberty gets her big break, Phillips will also perform her own solo material. Speaking of this Philips said, I'm so excited to perform at T4 On The Beach. It will be my biggest audience to date so it's a little scary but I just can't wait to get out there and perform. I hope the fans like the episode of Hollyoaks too. I love the idea of dropping in my scenes from T4OTB in episodes just two days later. It's going to be tight but it's all very exciting!" The episode aired on 14 July 2011.
Before she entered Hollyoaks, it was revealed that Liberty was engaged to fellow newcomer Ethan Scott (Craig Vye). Vye said "It's quite a casual relationship to begin with - she thinks about it more seriously than [he does]. She thinks that [they're] engaged." Phillips said that Liberty is "very reliant" on Ethan. A love triangle between Liberty, Ethan and Theresa McQueen (Jorgie Porter) is formed. Liberty becomes friends with Theresa, but Theresa meets Ethan and a mutual attraction between them grows. In April 2011, Liberty and Ethan have their engagement party. Vye told soap opera reporting magazine Soaplife that Ethan is in love with Liberty, but does not love her enough to marry her. "There is a point where [Theresa and Ethan] share a moment and realise something could happen between them." Vye teased the love traingle saying, "Liberty has been quite needy with the whole wedding thing, but Ethan sees her in a different light when she gets all standoffish with him," Vye told Soaplife of the storyline. "He sees her sing at Chez Chez and it's clear he's still smitten." he confirmed that him and Liberty were going to get back together saying, "He's fallen for Theresa yet part of him still loves Liberty," he said. "They share a kiss and it looks like they're secretly back on." Vye finished saying that Ethan's actions could end badly. Ethan got his comeuppance on 22 July 2011. An insider said, “Playing around with three bolshie blondes isn’t the smartest thing he could have done.“It’s going to be interesting to see what happens next.”
In March 2011, media entertainment website Digital Spy reported that Liberty's brothers, Will (James Atherton) and Dodger (Danny Mac) and father Dirk (David Kennedy), would be introduced.The website said the family would cause chaos following their arrival. Of the family, a Hollyoaks statement said: "The new family will take the village by storm and are set to rub all theMcQueens up the wrong way. The Savage family get evicted from their home when Dirk can't keep up with the payments. Liberty is furious to come home and find her house all boarded up but big brother Dodger has a new house for them to live in! While the McQueens are away on holiday, Dodger moves his family into the empty house and declares squatters' rights! How will the McQueens react to their new housemates?" It was later revealed Joe Tracini had been cast as Liberty's cousin Dennis. Talking about Dennis's relationship with Liberty, Tracini talked toDigital Spy in an interview saying, "Liberty loves him. Liberty tends to just go through life and accept things, so she's a big fan of Dennis's, which is nice.
Porter (Theresa) praised both the characters of Ethan and Liberty for being introduced saying,"Yeah, it's been really good. When new people start, you remember what it was like for you when you first joined the show and all of the new things you experienced. You feel for them as well, because they've come into a big crowd of people and they don't know anyone's name. Craig and Abi have been fun to work with." The character has been negatively received from the public and Abi Phillips acting has been received badly.