It’s been a hell of a week on Emmerdale with the departure of two members of the Barton clan – murderer Emma Barton and her youngest son Finn. But were both murder? Plus, Moira Dingle went into labour not knowing she was pregnant (something hardcore fans suspected for months) and amongst all this Victoria and Adam Barton were reunited. We look back at a rollercoaster week and see how it compares to last week’s Super Soap Week.
Normally Super Soap Week would see six jam-packed episodes, maybe a couple extended to an hour-long slot just to give us even more twists and turns – this week Emmerdale only had five of it’s six 30mins programmes so there was no time to waste. Writer Paul Roundell kicked off the week focusing on Emma Barton and those caught in her web of lies.
Following last year’s #NoReturn week’s theme, we first see Emma lying on the ground looking up at the sky, with a ethereal aura around her. We then shift back to the village where Emma Barton and sons Pete and Ross are going about there business as usual with no signs of her son Finn, who now knows she killed his father James, now a ghostly figures she sees in her subconscious.
Meanwhile, Tracy Medcalfe’s Singles Night is getting underway at the Woolpack and she’s annoyed Finn isn’t there – whereas Adam is fuming that estranged wife Victoria is. When he shares his frustrations, Victoria plants a kiss on him and all is right in #Vadam’s world once more.
Emma goes to the church where we discover she has locked Finn in the cupboard. After an emotional heart-to-heart, Emma leaves looking for someone to blame for everything that has happened – Moira Dingle.
She corners Moira in the barn where she is working and in her frustrated tirade, Emma admits she killed James. Feeling threatened and scared, Moira tried to get away but Emma grabs a pitch fork and inadvertently knocks over the lantern, sparking a fire.
At the fire takes hold and the barn starts to collapse, so does Moira as she realises she’s in a labour with a baby she didn’t know she was expecting.
Tuesday’s episode, written by Chris Gill, picks up with the burning barn where Emma makes her escape as Moira calls for help, telling Emma that the baby is her son Pete’s child, and for a moment it looks like she is leaving the farmer to burn, but instead rescues her just before the building explodes.
Back in the village, Diane Sugden finds Finn in the church and sets him free. Finn runs into the night to find his mum.
Once outside the barn, Emma delivers Moira’s baby boy but runs into the night when Adam arrives and thinks the worst. Leaving Victoria to look after his mum, he picks up the shotgun and gives chase.
When he catches up with Emma, she tries to tell him it wasn’t her fault but they argue. As she tries to escape, Adam falls and Emma grabs the gun before running further into the woods. When she hears something coming towards her, she fires into the darkness, dropping the gun in shock and she runs off.
Adam finds the gun and returns to his mum and Victoria, where the police and an ambulance have arrived. Victoria questions him about the gun shot but Adam tells her it was Emma.
The episode closes with Finn lying on the ground in the woods with a gun shot wound, and losing consciousness.
Martin Fustes penned episode on Wednesday, which starts with Moira in hospital having haemorrhaged and is in critical condition. The baby is in special care and Adam is with her, waiting for the police to arrive.
Pete and Ross are in recovery from a heavy night out when Victoria arrives and fills them in on the night’s events.
Meanwhile Emma is in her car, with James appearing in her rear view mirror. She’s spotted by Cain and Harriet, who are heading on holiday. They decide to ignore her.
Finn has lost a lot of blood and has been in the woods all night. He comes to and with a sudden surge of strength manages to get onto his feet and stagger into the road – bringing Cain and Harriet’s car to a halt as he collapses.
Pete and Ross arrive to see the baby, Pete’s son, but leave after a row with Adam. As they talk in the waiting room, Emma, dressed as a nurse, is lurking in the shadows. They are about to leave when Finn is brought in on a stretcher with Cain and Harriet. Adam is taken for questioning after being seen with the gun.
Faith fills Cain and Harriet in on all that has happened. Meanwhile, Emma grabs Moira’s baby. As the episode ends, Finn flatlines and Emma leaves the hospital.
Thursday’s single episode is the first of two by Maxine Alderton. Within the first few minutes, Finn dies. Ross and Pete are distraught.
Emma is changing the baby in the back of a rental car. She tries to make excuses to James about what she’s done but he dismisses her excuses. The hospital realise that Emma has taken the baby.
Victoria lets Tracy know that Finn has died and news spreads through the Woolpack (and Tracy and Eric steal the scene with their reaction).
Moira awakens to the news that the baby is missing. At the same time, Emma hears the news on the radio that the police are looking for Emma Barton in relation to the fire and the death of Finn Barton. Emma is devastated and realises there is no way out.
At the hospital, Adam has been released but his mum has disappeared. Emma however, is now back in the village church (how did she get past all the police?) and is writing a letter which she leaves with the baby, who is later discovered by Harriet.
Moira turns up at the farm but gets a call to let her know the baby has been found. She waits for Adam at the farm to pick her up.
Thursday’s episode ends and Friday’s starts with Emma standing on the top of the Hotten Viaduct, preparing to jump. James has been joined by the ghost of Finn at her side. Ross is in his car searching for his mum.
Cain is surveying the damage at the barn. Adam arrives to pick up Moira but she’s not there. As Tracy and Eric grieve for Finn, Emma falls backwards of the Viaduct and James and Finn hold her hands as she dies.
Gabby arrives back at the pub after running an errand that took longer than expected while Cain carries Moira into the hospital – there is no explanation to where Gabby has been or where Cain found Moira.
Ross and Pete meet at the hospital, neither finding their mum. They agree it would be easier if she wasn’t found. A policeman arrives to tell them Emma’s body has been found. When they go to see Moira, they find out she admitted to killing their dad. Ross and Pete tells a furious Adam and the rest of the room that Emma is dead.
Cain lets Harriet know that Emma is dead and the vicar feels guilty for not helping her parishioner more. As the gossip start to increase in the pub, Harriet shares the news of Emma’s death.
Ross and Pete sit in the car, taking stock of all that has happened – the death of their brother, the birth of Pete’s son, the murder of their father, and the suicide of their mother. As they talk, Ross closes his eyes. Suddenly, he is on the Viaduct looking over the edge to where his mum lies. He runs down the bank but hears someone approaching and runs off.
We hope we’re not heading into another whodunnit for Emma’s death, given Emma’s storyline the past year has been the same (but then Emmerdale seem to like a bit of repetition lately). But why show Ross on the Viaduct? Are we to believe he pushed her? Did he arrived once someone else had done the deed? Or did the troubled woman jump as she planned?
And where did Cain find Moira? Where did Gabby go?
While it was a great week, with fabulous performances, great scripts and brilliant direction from Tony Prescott, we have to say it did all feel a bit rushed with so much going on. There also wasn’t the depth of detail that Emmerdale has become known for.
Emma grabbing the baby with ease, renting a car when the police had already shared the news with the media that she was being hunted; Getting back into the village and the church with a car seat in tow… we were supposed to just accept all that happened when in reality, none of that would have been acheiveable.
Let’s be honest, it was never going to top the Hotten By-Pass Crash. The bar was set far too high. But it was still a good week. If only as a nice break from the Home Farm pantomime, Robert’s neverending rack of schemes and a great way to say goodbye to the amazing Gillian Kearney and the lovely Joey Gill.