This heart-stopping moment is the second Vanessa came face to face with her worst nightmare and my Scene of the Week. It was only a matter of time before lurking Pierce bumped into someone he recognised – it’s a small village after all! But with him believing he was close to reuniting to Rhona, the last person he wanted to come across was Rhona’s BFF Vanessa. The moment when these two enemies locked eyes was a brilliantly gripping moment, made even better including Johnny because the stakes suddenly got a lot higher.
Laurel was pensive this week when she revealed to the kids the sad news that their granddad Sandy had passed away. This scene was beautifully done. With Gabby being older, she understood quicker than bewildered Arthur, who then immediately believed he was responsible. As the sad news sunk in, we were reminded just what brilliant actors these three are. It’s been a while since the whole Thomas family have been involved in something so emotional and grounded. Sometimes it’s the quiet scenes that really reflect real life which are the most impactful.
Actors Mark Charnock and Zoe Henry shone this week but it was the scene where Marlon begged Rhona to believe him as she visited him in prison was a real stand out. As Marlon pleaded with Rhona to recognise that he wasn’t capable of murdering Graham, he asked her to remember their history and see through her grief to acknowledge that he was being set up. As Rhona tearfully told him she wanted to believe him, Marlon was adamant that she was his only hope of finding the real killer now that he was being set up. This scene was a gripping showcase of two underrated actors at their very best and a highlight of a great week of episodes.
It was Pierce! So, after a week of cliffhangers and suspicious behaviour, Graham’s murderer was revealed to be none other than the evil Pierce Harris. Pierce’s return came as a surprise twist (unless you’d already been spoiled by the unfortunate leak on social media – oops) although savvy fans had already speculated he might be a potential suspect when his release from prison was revealed in a recent scene. While Pierce being the murderer might have been a divisive choice for the killer, this was an eerie and thrilling scene, made even better by having a true, chilling villain back in the Dales.
There’s nothing quite like an ominous scene full of dramatic irony to end a week! With next week’s heavily promoted whodunnit just around the corner, Friday’s final scene was a montage of the suspects, all voicing their motives to kill Graham. As Marlon, Charity, Jai, Kim and Al, Jamie and Andrea, all glowered, Rhona and Graham happily looked ahead to their future in France, blissfully aware of what’s ahead. This was the perfect teaser for next week’s drama and gave us an exciting taste of what’s to come. A cheesy and knowing nod to the whodunnit but lots of fun!
It might have been the moment we all saw coming after Moira was rescued by a stranger, but it was still very satisfying to see the big reveal at the middle of the hospital corridor – Moira’s saviour was Cara, Nate’s mum. As a furious Moira railed against Nate’s appearance at the hospital, especially having reached rock bottom, glamorous Cara turned Moira’s anger into indignation. It was a great scene and the perfect introduction for Cara and Carryl Thomas.
My Scene of the Week choice was one of 2019’s last moments, as David had a turning point when it came to baby Theo. After the year’s hell with Maya’s abuse of Jacob, it’s no surprise David had mixed feelings about a child that was half hers. But after some soul searching David realised he needed to give his son the best chance in life and step up to the plate. This was a moving scene showing David in an empathetic light (a character who can often be selfish and, well, a bit of a dick) and Matthew Wolfenden gave us a clear reminder of what a good performer he is given some big material.
A bitter Graham set out to ruin Christmas at Home Farm this year as he interrupted their fancy dinner. As Kim and Andrea, aware of the secrets bubbling under the surface, tried desperately to get rid of him, a poor oblivious Jamie was baffled. Graham theatrically made a toast, to Kim as the worst wife and then, as a mic drop, referred to Andrea as “the best lover”. That was the goose ruined and Jamie’s world shattered but it was a satisfying moment as the reveal continued and Jamie struggled with the truth, emotional and then anxious that everything in his life was a lie. This was a great set piece for the Christmas episode and made a welcome change from the expected paternity twist drama.
It’s been a painful few months for Cain and Aaron so it felt only right that Cain was the one to try and reach out and help his struggling nephew in my Scene of the Week. The Aaron and Cain relationship is one that works well when they show their emotions, as often around each other they are guarded and hardened, and after their macho posturing recently, this week’s episodes lead to both characters showing their vulnerabilities again. With Cain finding Aaron alone and distraught in the forest, Aaron confessed his heartbreak of losing the family and future he’d so longed for with his husband. Going through similar struggles himself Cain put on a brave face and tried to reassure him things would get better and suggested Aaron return to counselling. This was a heartfelt scene of tender performances and writing that honoured both characters’ history.
Luke finally gave the speech we’ve waited for this week where he told Wendy enough was enough and that he could not stay and stand by his mum. After a long confrontation with Aaron, Luke reached breaking point, pointing out to Wendy that her refusal to admit what Lee did was ruining lives and staying in the village without recognising her son’s horrific crime was never going to end the conflict. While Wendy’s move to the village is a horrible direction for the story to go given how Victoria feels, Luke at least feels like a decent character. We might not be any closer to a tolerable Wendy, but this Luke seen was satisfying and needed.