Jealousy, resentment, betrayal, dark secrets and compelling story twists are at the heart of Emmerdale as 2021 kicks off.
And it’s the younger characters who will be fronting the drama.
“It’s exciting to watch characters grow up and see ow they develop and how their actions shape their futures,” notes Executive Producer Jane Hudson. “There is plenty of action coming up which will take the young Emmerdale characters on journeys the audience won’t be expecting.”
Storylines include Vinny’s continued dilemma over what to do about Paul. His father is a brutal bully but Vinny will do anything to protect his mum Mandy from knowing the truth. How long before Mandy sees Paul’s true colours? Could Mandy have marriage in mind?
“Vinny clearly wants to believe his dad will change, but he will find himself on a long, dark and isolating journey. Getting to grips with the character and exploring the abuse Vinny suffers at the hands of his father has been a great learning experience and one I want to do justice.” – Bradley Johnson (Vinny)
Liv is coming to terms with her epilepsy diagnosis and trying to support Vinny, but with Paul making his influence and presence felt how much can Liv intervene?
“I’m really looking forward to seeing how Vinny and Liv’s relationship develops. I’m also excited to see how Liv deals with her newly diagnosed epilepsy and how this affects her confidence as a young woman.” – Isobel Steele (Liv)
Meanwhile, Sarah’s running wild and loose. Will Debbie be able to do anything about it? Will Sarah be able to resist the lure of bad boy Danny when he returns? When Sarah lies to protect herself the result is fallouts and rifts that splinter right through the village.
Katie Hill who plays Sarah teases: “The start of the year is going to be quite eventful for Sarah [and] she’s left feeling lonely and unwanted. When Danny returns, she sees an opportunity to feel wanted and cared for by someone again.”
Ethan’s world will be turned upside down when he comes into contact with Sarah. Through no fault of his own he finds himself on the wrong side of the law and with some explaining to do to his father, new vicar Charles.
Emile John (Ethan) explains: “Ethan finds himself at the mercy of the Dingles. We’ll soon find out more about Ethan and his past which could have huge consequences for others.”
Elsewhere, Leanna is missing Jacob now that he is in Portugal, while her friendship with Gabby remains strained. Is Leanne and Gabby’s friendship mendable? And will her romance withstand the distance of being parted from Jacob?
“Leanna has found herself quite isolated with Jacob’s absence and she’ll be sure to question whether their relationship is strong enough to last the distance,” notes Mimi Slinger (Leanna).
Will 2021 prove less worrisome for Amelia who spent this year stepping up to the plate as a full time carer for her injured, destitute dad Dan.
Daisy Campbell (Amelia) reveals: “It would be nice to see her have some happiness this year and for it not be quite as tough going for her.”
Also, viewers can expect to see Samson influenced by Noah in the coming weeks with possible ‘serious repercussions’. Sam Hall who plays him reveals: “Sam will take a big risk this coming year by helping his cousin Noah. He might be bringing himself a lot of trouble, only time will tell!”
And, after a difficult year, Gabby is set to take an interest in Home Farm and handsome Jamie Tate. Could Kim Tate recognise something of herself in this cunning and clever girl?
Rosie Bentham (Gabby) explains: “Gabby has had her fair share of trouble over the past year, but if she’s hoping 2021 is going to be a more settled year, she can think again.”