EastEnders’ executive producer Lorraine Newman has announced that the identity of Kat’s mystery man will be revealed before Christmas.
"I don't want to give too much away, but before Christmas the viewers will find out the identity of Kat's lover," said Newman. "That will obviously have huge repercussions, particularly for Kat and Alfie but also for the Branning family. As we know, the three Branning boys are left in the mix at the moment, and we'll discover which one of them is Kat's mystery man.
"We will also finally reveal Max's secret - the viewers have already seen that the pressure is rising for Max, and this will all come to a head over the festive period."
For the last few months, viewers have been speculating as to which Walford resident is having an affair with Kat. Initially, Michael Moon and Ray Dixon were also in the frame, but the field has recently narrowed to the three Branning brothers – Derek, Jack and Max.
Newman - who was put in permanent charge at the BBC1 soap back in June after working on an acting basis since Bryan Kirkwood's departure in March - also spoke about perceptions that the show was too depressing:
“I've been reinjecting the show with love and warmth, we can occasionally have a happy ending! Families are obviously at our core but I also think that friendships are absolutely key - they've been somewhat lacking of late, particularly for our ladies,” she told Digitalspy.
She went on to add: "I think there's always a danger with EastEnders that the perception is one of doom and gloom, but I don't think that does have to be the case. The Olympic torch episode, the Fatboy and Denise story, and even 'Chryed' [the name fans give to plotlines involving Christian and Syed] show that we can actually have a happy ending. I think we can have a balance of stories and the audience will enjoy that just as much."