What happened between Sean Slater and Ruby Allen in EastEnders?

Find out why Sean deserved that slap in the face

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EastEnders‘ Sean Slater (Rob Kazinsky) had a tense reunion with Ruby Allen (Louisa Lytton) on Tuesday 30th April in which the returning character received a slap in the face from his ex-girlfriend.

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The volatile older brother of Stacey Fowler (Lacey Turner) is back in Walford after a decade to see mum Jean Slater (Gillian Wright) who has recently been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and while the family’s fractious past is the main source of drama surrounding his comeback there is other unfinished business he’s been faced with in his old neighbourhood.

He’s already come to blows with one-time love rival Jack Branning (Scott Maslen) over kidnapping his daughter Amy, who Sean believed was his when he was married to her late mum Roxy Mitchell, and now he’s been confronted by former fiancee Ruby almost 13 years after they last saw each other. What did he do to make her so angry? Here’s a handy reminder…

Why did Sean and Ruby’s romance end so badly?

Bad boy Sean rocked up in 2006 and caught the eye of his little sister’s naive best mate, the daughter of feared gangster Johnny Allen (Billy Murray) who had just been banged up. Sean visited Johnny in prison and cruelly goaded him he was only after his little girl for her money, as she was now in charge of the family empire with her dad inside.

Fuming Johnny called sidekick Jake Moon on the outside to have him bump Sean off, but suffered a heart attack before he could dial and was overheard by his cellmate whispering: “Jake… kill him for me!” before he was rushed to hospital where he later died – resulting in Johnny’s cellmate getting the wrong end of the stick and ordering a hit on innocent Jake.

Ruby was suspicious upon learning her dad died shortly after Sean’s secret visit, but when she had a meltdown on the day of his funeral the Slater stud talked her round, convincing her his feelings were genuine, and they got engaged. However, it wasn’t long before Ruby found out from Stace that sexy Sean was womanising his way around Walford and was planning to fleece her for her father’s fortune.

After an emotional showdown, Ruby told Jean (who did not live on the Square at the time) her estranged son was back seven years after walking out on him and Stacey after the death of his father, Brian. Raging Sean was not happy Rubes had meddled in his complicated relationship with his mother and dumped her, admitting he was using her all along and throwing Johnny’s ashes in her face as a parting shot. The messy break up affected Ruby’s friendship with Stacey and heartbroken, embittered Ms Allen left in the inevitable black cab and was never heard of again until she returned to the show in October 2018.

Kazinsky is only back for a short time so it looks like this might be the only time Sean and Ruby cross paths, and Kazinsky would’ve liked the chance to go deeper into their backstory. “I would have loved more with Ruby,” says the actor, “I wanted desperately for Sean to realise what he did to Johnny Allen was wrong and say sorry.”

Having been slapped by Ruby and punched by Jack, will Sean get to make amends with anyone in Albert Square while he’s back?

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