Emmerdale’s Graham Foster (Andrew Scarborough) spirals into despair as he continues to be tormented by the disappearance of Joe Tate (Ned Porteous) – unable to cope with his guilt, on Thursday 29 November he decides to tell Debbie Dingle (Charley Webb) what really happened to her fiancé.
Driven to excessive drinking since Kim Tate (Claire King) ordered employee and ex-lover Graham to kill her stepgrandson Joe after he double crossed her, it’s not clear how the former soldier despatched the man he came to look upon as his own son – but he’s not coming back any time soon…
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“Graham is distraught and bereft without Joe, he misses him terribly,” says Andrew Scarborough who plays the Tates’ mysterious manservant. “He’s very lonely and is drinking too much.”
Colleague Priya Sharma (Fiona Wade) has been quietly alarmed by his worrying alcohol intake, but when he runs out of booze he heads out in search of more. Bumping into old flame Megan Macey (Gaynor Faye), the businesswoman is horrified to see a clearly-inebriated Graham with his car keys and steps in to stop him getting behind the wheel.
“She talks him out of driving under the influence,” continues Scarborough. “They’ve got history and there are feelings still there. However, he misinterprets her kindness and lunges in for a kiss. She rejects him as he’s obviously drunk, plus she’s not ready for that having only just left her partner Frank.”
Megan remains worried for self-destructive Graham, and quite rightly as Joe’s younger brother Noah Dingle (Jack Downham) finds him back at Home Farm again contemplating driving while drunk.
“Graham is haunted by his past when his drinking caused a car accident. Noah comes looking for Graham because he’s worried about how he’s been acting, and tells him it’s not a good idea to get into the car.”
What does Graham tell Debbie about Joe’s disappearance?
The pair eventually walk over to Butler’s Farm with Graham cryptically telling the teenager that’s where he’ll find answers about Joe’s vanishing act.
Debbie answers the door and it appears Graham is about to finally unburden himself… “Graham is on the brink of exploding and wants to tell Debbie everything, but he doesn’t. He’s drinking and finding it increasingly difficult to keep a lid on it, but knows he must.
“What he does say is that Debbie’s dad Cian knows more than she realises. It’s Graham’s way of deflecting and transferring – he wants someone else to feel what he’s feeling.”
Will we find out if Graham really killed Joe?
Cain, of course, believes he is responsible for killing Joe, thanks to Graham. Viewers saw Cain punch Joe to the ground for jilting Debbie at the altar and the Tate tycoon hit his head on a rock seemingly killing him.
Graham told Cain to scarper while he disposed of the body, but unbeknown to the distressed Mr Dingle Joe was still alive when he was loaded into Graham’s car boot. Whether Graham actually finished the job and let him go is still a mystery, but he could easily throw Cain under the bus by making Debbie think her dad killed her fiancé – potentially destroying their relationship in the process.
But Joe might still walk through the doors of Home Farm one day, alive and well – how would Scarborough feel about that?
“That would be wonderful! Graham treated Joe like his own son, and I don’t think Graham would be able to kill him…”
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