Alcoholic Linda relapses in EastEnders as vile Janine goes too far to win Mick

Linda Carter (Kellie Bright) has sought solace in the bottom of a bottle in EastEnders, after Janine Butcher (Charlie Brooks) tricked her into thinking her marriage to Mick (Danny Dyer) was over.

The landlady of the Queen Vic, as viewers know, is currently on a break from Walford, after Rainie Highway (Tanya Franks) threatened to reveal that her newborn baby was Max Branning’s (Jake Wood) child, not Mick’s.

But she made a rare appearance in Tuesday’s (December 28) edition of the BBC One soap, as Janine – desperate to have Mick all to herself – paid her a visit.

Janine had previously tried to seduce Mick with a stolen kiss under the mistletoe, before undressing and getting into his bed, but her efforts have proven fruitless, as Mick’s heart well and truly belongs to Linda.

With Mick having set in motion a plan to make Linda return home, the schemer played her trump card during Tuesday’s hour-long offering of the serial drama, as she popped by Elaine Peacock’s pub to confront Linda herself.

Linda, despite memorably throwing her out of the Vic seven years ago, failed to recognise Janine, who was once again operating under her Judith Bernstein alter-ego.

Janine claimed to be working in the pub game, and she cleverly gained Linda’s trust, all the while tempting her with bottles of alcohol – knowing full well she’s an alcoholic.

Even for Janine, that was a new low.

Linda resisted temptation at first, forcing Janine to resort to Plan B, as she scheme further, discussed her own estrangement from her daughter Scarlett, cleverly linking her struggles with what she knew about Mick and Linda’s.

Emotional, Linda began to open up, explaining all about how she and Mick are on the rocks, following her ‘affair’ with Max, and thus – in the end – she reached for the bottle.

Janine feigned sympathy, encouraging the landlady to discuss her problems in detail, before manipulating her into thinking that she should ‘move on’ from her hubby once and for all.

After succeeding in making Linda relapse, Janine subsequently made her way to the door, before telling her to ‘take care’.

Linda finished off her drink, while sly Janine took a photo of her on her phone. The question is: what is she planning on doing with the picture?

What’s more, will Linda get the help she needs? And will Mick discover what Janine has done?

Is this truly the end for Mick and Linda?

EastEnders continues Thursday December 30 on BBC One.

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