Max Branning’s sinister revenge plot has kept EastEnders fans guessing as to the true motivation and ultimate goal behind his increasingly elaborate schemes – and tonight’s episode just added to the mystery.
Yesterday, viewers saw Jack crumble as he handed stepson Matthew over to biological dad Charlie Cotton, unaware it was big brother Max that had organised the whole thing to ensure Jack lost custody of the little lad.
As Jack fretted that Charlie hadn’t been in touch since he left, and went back on his promise to have grandma Dot go and live with him and his family in Ireland, he finally got a call from his paternal rival and excitedly told Max.
This mad Max pretty mad, and he arranged to meet Charlie in secret (of course) in the dead of night in a deserted car park.
The tense meeting between the two revealed Max’s hatred of Jack and determination to ruin his life runs even deeper than we realised. Max calmly, but very menacingly, berated Charlie for going back on their original plan which was to never contact Jack again once he got Matthew back. He even confiscated his phone to make sure he didn’t call, like an angry teacher.
It appeared Charlie got an attack of the guilts which is why he called Jack, but Max then started dishing out the bribery and the threats. Handing a wad of cash to the conniving Cotton he demanded he stay away from Jack and the family, otherwise he’d get a visit from “some seriously unpleasant people with some seriously unpleasant consequences for you.” So it wasn’t enough for Jack to lose Charlie, Max clearly wants his brother to never lay eyes on the kid again. Harsh.
Unnerved Charlie then asked the question on everyone’s lips about his behaviour towards Jack: “Why are you doing this?” Max’s response was typically mercurial: “You don’t need to understand… That’s all you need to understand.”
After which Charlie scarpered into the night and Max went a bit weird and smashed Charlie’s phone on the steering wheel when a message from Jack came through.
So what’s next for this increasingly crackers storyline? Is Max having some kind of breakdown? What’s this got to do with Weyland, the chairman, Max’s cellmate, and Fi Browning? The plot thickens…
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