EastEnders fans divided over paternity twist for Sharon Watts's son Albie
Phil Mitchell is the biological father of Sharon's young son Albie Watts.
In 2019, Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean) did a home DNA test and the results stated that the father of her unborn baby was not her then-husband Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden).
This led Sharon to assume that her adulterous lover Keanu was the father of her child.
However, after medical test results for Albie came back this week, he was revealed to have a genetic condition, Alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) deficiency, which requires both parents to be carriers of a gene predisposing a child to the condition.
After tests on Sharon and Keanu, only Sharon carried the gene, ruling Keanu out as Albie’s father.
While Keanu is ignorant of these facts, Sharon realised that Phil must be Albie’s father. The doctor noted that home DNA test kits are unreliable and can be easily contaminated.
A shocked Sharon struggled on Thursday (16th November 2023) as she thought about what to do and after a chat with half-brother Zack Hudson (James Farrar), Sharon resolved to tell Phil the truth.
However, Phil’s attitude leads to Sharon hiding the truth from him and deciding to return home to Keanu and maintain their current trajectory.
Naturally, the revelation about Albie’s paternity has elicited some strong feelings in the EastEnders fandom on social media.
One fan penned on X, formerly known as Twitter: “As much as I actually prefer Phil/Kat and even Sharon/Keanu… it’s kinda been a bit obvious they’ve had Phil in his relationship with Kat to open him up more to an actual partnership while Sharon built up her own businesses and became more in control of her own life. Aka setting things up for a reunion of the two….I’ve never been a huge fan of Sharon Phil but they are an iconic couple.”
Another follower of the soap was a fan of the twist and posted: “It's been heavily foreshadowed, and it's completely delicious soapy nonsense. I love it!”
A different fan was not surprised by the turn of events, noting: “Not a shock at all, most of us assumed Phil was the daddy all along.”
However, some fans of Sharon and Keanu’s relationship and the latter's blood connection to Albie were less enthused.
One viewer commented: “Awful!! It makes the last 4 years pointless, not least the death of Sharon's son, Denny. Phil doesn't deserve another child. And it just seems to be punishing Sheanu and Albie all to reward Phil. Just beyond cruel!!”
Another ‘Sheanu’ fan penned: “A disgrace and another Mitchell stain that will continue to blight this show until its binned.
“They can't let Sharon have longevity with men she actually has chemistry with. #Eastenders #Sheanu”
Elsewhere, one soap fan posted on X: “Hate how the writers have done this.”
They added: “Retconning 5 years of history for a couple who are still loved and cherished by so much of the fandom. Now Keanu's exit Denny's death, Mel's death the Boat Crash etc all seems remotely pointless.”
Finally, one EastEnders fan concluded in their post: “I think it was as inevitable they'd do this as night following day. It might not be a terribly healthy relationship, but Sharon and Phil are one of those iconic couples and this introduces a child of two legacy characters to the show. Much like Ben with Phil and Kathy as parents.”
Well, it’s safe to say fans of Sharon have strong feelings about her future. We’ll have to wait and see what Christmas brings for the Walford icon...
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EastEnders airs Mondays to Thursdays at 7:30pm on BBC One and from 6am on BBC iPlayer.
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