Hollyoaks takes a leaf out of Emmerdale’s book this week with a special flashback episode shedding light on the traumatic past of troubled lawyer James Nightingale, as he vows to find out who’s trying to frame him for the murder of Kyle Kelly.
Hiding away in his flat, James constructs a noticeboard with names, clippings and paranoid musings on his enemies, hoping to work out the identity of the person out for revenge and wanting to send him to prison.
Unbeknown to him, Sami Maalik has paid Kyle to fake his death and make it appear as if James has bumped him off, as payback for James framing Sami’s dad for fraud when they worked together years ago and driving him to suicide in prison.
Only venturing into the outside world to fetch more wine, drunk James returns to find his front door daubed with the words ‘Killer freak’ in red – so who is watching him from afar and behind all this torment?
A flashback in the E4 episode showing on Friday 30 June shows a young James starting work at his first legal job, and reveals abusive dad Mac forces him to steal £100,000 to help save the Nightingale family business. Keen to gain his ferocious father’s approval, James compromises his career and ‘appropriates’ the money from the law firm – setting off a chain of life-changing events.
The peek into the past also reveals the sordid details of how Mac refused to accept James being gay, and paid a prostitute to sleep with him on his 16th birthday in a sick attempt to make him straight.
Mac kept this from wife Marnie, but viewers have already heard Mrs Nightingale’s confession to boyfriend Buster Smith that months later, the prostitute turned up pregnant and revealed all – and was paid off by Marnie to disappear and never contact the family again… Did the prostitute have James’s baby? Where are they now?
Following the flashback, James has an epiphany and seeks out Sami – has he worked out he’s behind it? Sami has more things on his mind when his girlfriend, and James’s sister, then Ellie discovers she’s pregnant. With his vengeful vendetta on the verge of exposure, Sami plans to flee the village for a fresh start in London. But will he abandon pregnant Ellie? And what will James do if he figures out Sami’s scheme?
Visit our dedicated Hollyoakspage for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers.
Sign up to the Radio Times newsletter for the latest TV and entertainment news