'Tis the season of romance and revelations...
Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without terrific telly, and Emmerdale bosses have delivered a stocking full of storyline treats for us to feast on.
Here's our rundown of the big festive plots headed our way...
1. Will Charity ruin Chas and Paddy’s big day?
Paddy ploughs ahead with his mission to spring a surprise Christmas Day wedding on Chas. But the vet is to event planning what Kim Tate is to community spirit, and he soon realises he’s fallen at the first hurdle - he’s not sent any invitations out!
Marlon comes to the rescue, but the invites have a glaring typo - instead of saying “exchanging vows,” they say “exchanging cows.” A plethora of other problems follow, including the marquee company cancelling Paddy’s booking.
But the biggest problem of all is Charity. She has a blazing row at The Woolpack with Chas, and as she storms out, she passes the church and overhears Paddy and his helpers discussing the secret ceremony and how glad they are that she won’t be coming.
Charity’s hurt to have been left off the invite list, and as she spirals out of control on Christmas Day, she dresses up in funeral clothes, intent on causing trouble.
Will she ruin Chas and Paddy’s happy ending?
2. Al’s secret lover is revealed!
Al Chapman is a busy beaver on Christmas Day, but not because he’s in charge of the cooking. He’s desperate to keep both women in his life happy - fiancee Priya and his mystery mistress.
After presenting Priya with a gorgeous necklace, he concocts a story to escape from the Sharma house and, ahead of his illicit liaison, sends his secret lover a text.
Three women are then seen picking up their phones - Belle, Dawn and Andrea.
Is one of them Al’s bit on the side, or are they all red herrings? And if it’s the latter, then who is the woman in question? Could Al be enjoying extras with former conquest, Kim, perhaps?
3. Liv and Paul expose each other’s secrets
Paul and Liv came to an unhealthy arrangement when he recently witnessed her having a seizure - he’d keep quiet about her fit if she kept his gambling a secret.
But when Liv starts driving lessons, Paul feels increasingly uneasy - it’s not safe for her to be behind a wheel. And, he feels he has no choice but to put Aaron in the picture.
Liv’s fuming, and retaliates by telling Vinny that his dad’s still in the grips of his addiction, despite all his promises to the contrary. Paul insists he just had a one-off flutter, but Vinny later stands up to him and tells him to stop being weak and admit he has a problem.
It’s too much for Paul to take, and he violently attacks Vinny once again. Will Vinny finally decide enough’s enough, and tell Mandy the truth?
4. Cain and Moira make a fresh start
It’s been a rocky few months for Cain and Moira, whose long-awaited reunion was followed up by Cain’s confession that, when it came to bedroom activities, he couldn’t shake off the mental image of his missus having passionate nookie with his son Nate.
But Cain vowed to do his damndest to put Moira’s affair behind him, and it seems his efforts have paid off, for on Christmas Eve, he organises a romantic night in and suggests they start wearing their wedding rings again.
Moira couldn’t be more made up, and is thrilled to oblige. Is it now onward and upward for the village favourites?
5. Jamie wants a reunion with Andrea
Andrea’s fuming when Kim tells Millie she’s organised a special Christmas for her, but Jamie smooths things over and persuades his estranged wife to let their daughter spend at least some of Christmas Day at Home Farm.
He’s pretty pleased with himself, but Kim’s livid when he later admits he’s asked Andrea for a second chance. Jamie’s in for a shock, too, though, as his ex dishes out an ultimatum.
Is a reunion the last thing on her festive wish list?
6. Harriet’s in turmoil
It’s certainly not a merry Christmas for Harriet, whose involvement in covering up Malone’s death weighs heavily on the vicar’s mind. Not only did she bury the dastardly DI in a villager’s grave when Dawn saw him off in self defence in the summer, but more recently she was faced with the gruesome task of having to move his body, when the daughter of the man Malone was sharing a grave with wanted her father’s body exhumed.
Harriet is in such a bad way that she feels unable to conduct Paddy and Chas’s wedding ceremony, and is forced to bring in a replacement vicar, Charles. The locals are concerned about her well-being - she’s a far cry from the bright and breezy clergywoman they know and love. How long till Hazza crumbles and ‘fesses up to her crime?
And the best of the rest...
Charity’s up to no good with Moira’s brother Mack; the duo not only stashing stolen goods in Moira’s barn but also joining forces in an attempt to rob a driver. But Charity’s son Noah is a victim, too - he’s getting zero attention from his mum, and struggles to deal with her lack of interest in him.
Meanwhile, there’s happiness for Rhona, who couldn’t be more delighted when Marlon agrees to spend New Year’s Eve at her place. Is she starting to see her ex partner and baby father as more than just a friend?
For Christmas week Emmerdale will air on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 7pm.
Christmas Eve will be an hour long special at 6.45 and Christmas Day will also be an hour long episode at 6.30 on ITV.
For New Year week Emmerdale will air on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 7pm.
New Year’s Eve will be an hour long special at 7.30 and New Year’s Day will also be an hour long episode at 7pm on ITV.
Alison Slade has over 20 years of experience as a TV journalist and has spent the vast majority of that time as Soap Editor of TV Times magazine.
She is passionate about the ability of soaps to change the world by presenting important, issue-based stories about real people in a relatable way.
There are few soap actors that she hasn’t interviewed over the years, and her expertise in the genre means she has been called upon as a judge numerous times for The British Soap Awards and the BAFTA TV Awards.
When she is not writing about soaps, watching soaps, or interviewing people who are in soaps, she loves going to the theatre, taking a long walk or pottering about at home, obsessing over Farrow and Ball paint.
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