10 huge storylines still to come on Emmerdale
Note: The following article contains discussion of themes including suicide.
Emmerdale spoilers follow.
Emmerdale has kicked off the year with some huge storylines – from the fallout of Al Chapman's death, to Paddy Dingle's emotional mental health scenes.
As we look to the future, there's plenty more drama to expect as new faces in the village start to make their mark and the show's biggest secret finally explodes out into the open.
Here's our full guide to the biggest spoilers for the rest of the year, all in one place.
1. Charles' new story
Speaking in January, Emmerdale's executive producer Jane Hudson confirmed that 2023 will be a big year for local vicar Charles.
We've already seen some major changes for Charles over the past year, as he has welcomed his long-lost daughter Naomi into his life and has reunited with old flame Manpreet. But with a full family unit now around Charles, what's next for him?
In a recent YouTube interview, Hudson said: "We've got our Anderson family – Charles, Ethan, Naomi and of course Manpreet, who's with Charles. They've finally got their own home – Charles and Manpreet – which is fantastic.
"There is a lot in store for the Andersons this year. There is a lot going to be happening for Charles in particular, but I'm not going to tell you what that is at the moment. You're going to have to keep watching, because it's happening a bit further in the year."
2. Ethan's new story
Ethan's relationship with Marcus ended abruptly last month after actor Darcy Grey left the show following a one-year stint in the Dales.
When this break-up was first announced in January, Hudson hinted that making Ethan single would lead into another storyline, so it seems that he's one to watch.
Hudson teased: "We are going to see Ethan go through quite a journey with Marcus on screen, which will result in Ethan being young, free and single – and where will that lead us to?"
3. Nicky's secret revealed?
Home Farm's new nanny Nicky is a character who's currently being watched closely by Emmerdale fans.
The new arrival was brought in as a love interest for Gabby, but viewers suspect there's more to him than meets the eye after some intriguing comments that actor Lewis Cope made when he first landed the role.
Speaking in December, Lewis teased: "At the moment, Nicky is a lovely person and there's nothing to say that he's not. But he's almost too good to be true – you'll have to wait and see."
Emmerdale has fuelled the speculation by not giving Nicky a surname in the show's closing titles, while other new characters like Marshall do have full names listed. Is this a red herring, or could Nicky have a connection to someone familiar that the show is currently keeping under wraps?
Plus, with a bigger agenda casting a shadow over Home Farm in the coming months, could Nicky play a surprising role in the drama?
4. Gabby's decision over Nicky
Gabby was smitten with Nicky as soon as he turned up at Home Farm for his job interview last year. When Nicky started work, Gabby made it her mission to win him over – and ultimately succeeded.
However, in a recent appearance on ITV1's Loose Women, Emmerdale boss Hudson hinted that Gabby's priorities could change in the long-run.
She said: "I think we all know it's not just the children that Gabby wants the manny to take care of. Gabby likes to get what she wants, so she is going to get what she wants.
"But does she want it for a long time? [That's] what we want to wait and see."
5. Caleb's secret revealed
Another Emmerdale enigma is Caleb, who was introduced as Cain and Chas' long-lost brother at Christmas.
Caleb has successfully wormed his way in at Home Farm by teaming up with Kim for her new stud farm. This sparked scorn from Cain, but Caleb was quick to confide in him about a hidden agenda to bring down Home Farm and take it all for himself.
Even after that revelation, though, there were tell-tale signs that Caleb still hadn't shared the full story with Cain – including some mysterious phone calls to a secret contact.
Appearing on This Morning recently, Emmerdale's former scriptwriter Sharon Marshall promised that fans would be pleased when the truth comes out.
She said: "[Caleb] does have a secret. There's something there. Lots of people are guessing. It's a good one."
Meanwhile, Jane Hudson had previously teased: "What's Caleb's involvement with Cain? Does he really want to be Cain's brother or has he got other ulterior motives?
"I think that's a fascinating dynamic to watch – and whenever we have the big house (Home Farm) and the villagers coming together in a story, it's just not going to end well at all."
6. Mack is finally caught out
Emmerdale's biggest ticking timebomb is the scandalous secret that Mackenzie is the father of Chloe's unborn baby.
Mack recently came close to confessing everything to his fiancée Charity, and he may well live to regret not biting the bullet and facing the music sooner.
Emmerdale bosses have confirmed that this storyline will come to a head around the time of Mack and Charity's wedding, which has been booked for April 20.
Speaking to Digital Spy and other press in December, executive producer Jane Hudson teased: "We know that Mackenzie is the father of Chloe's baby and again, that's another secret in the village that's probably not going to be kept secret for long.
"We have got Charity and Mackenzie's wedding on the cards. I think we all know weddings don't always go very smoothly and Chloe's baby will be due around the time of the wedding, so you can put the pieces together yourselves and figure out what might happen somewhere around the wedding date and the birth date.
"It will be explosive for Charity and Mackenzie."
The show has promised a year-long fallout once the truth has been exposed.
In a YouTube video at the end of January, Hudson added: "We are a soap – it's not a question of 'will Charity find out that Mack's the baby daddy?' It's 'when will she find out?'
"And she is going to find out and it's going to be explosive. There will be massive repercussions for all those characters, which will carry us right into 2024."
7. Paddy's journey
Paddy has taken centre stage in emotional scenes recently, as he planned to take his own life.
The vet's friends reached a breakthrough last week when they managed to get him to open up about his inner turmoil, which left them all hopeful for Paddy's future.
Emmerdale will continue to explore Paddy's storyline in the coming weeks and months, aware of the importance of covering the topic over a long period.
In a recent interview, Dominic Brunt – who plays Paddy – told us: "[Paddy has] opened the door to it now – he's capable of having those thoughts. He's capable of attempting to take his own life and he's going to have to watch that now for the rest of his life.
"Thankfully, the story isn't dropped. There'll be hints, hopefully forever, that he's capable of that.
"But there's also quite a lot of light – it's not a misery-fest. It's not this dark story that's awful to watch. It's really well-coloured-in with the pace. Even a couple of weeks later, there's little pinches of light where Paddy has found his humour again, but he has to watch himself.
"The story also normalises talking. If Paddy has another slump, he turns to someone and says: 'Are we alright to just go and have a cup of tea? I just want to talk about something that's bothering me'. I'm really glad that it's doing that."
Mark Charnock, who plays Paddy's best friend Marlon, added: "As I've said many times before, soaps have that unique position in drama where they can explore a story over a longer period. For me, it's the perfect format to take on a story like this.
"Marlon will go on supporting Paddy for quite a while. They've always supported each other and they've always been like brothers. Paddy's been there for Marlon with his problems over the past few years, so it's nice that Marlon can now take the reins for him. I think it's a terrific story and it's very moving."
8. Paddy and Mandy's long-term future
In a recent interview, Emmerdale star Lisa Riley hinted that it may be a long wait before we see her character Mandy reunite with Paddy.
The former couple slept together last month, but the focus of the story understandably changed when Paddy's mental health crisis became clear.
Despite this, Lisa has refused to rule out a reconciliation for the pair in the long-term.
Hinting at a bigger plan in play, Lisa told ITV1's Lorraine last month: "You know when you look in the window and there's a massive cheesecake? We're just going to give you a slither of cheesecake. You don't want the cheesecake all at once, do you? Maybe on Christmas Day you might need it but we're only in February!
"Me and Dom love working together and it comes across. You can tell that the camaraderie comes across on screen as the characters as well. The writers then see that and they write more of it, so who knows?"
9. A big summer storyline
While catching up with Digital Spy and other press at the end of last year, executive producer Jane Hudson shared her ambition to tell a huge summer storyline.
Hinting at a possible stunt, Hudson teased: "I'm storylining June at the minute so my head is there.
"I couldn't tell you anything anyway, but we are busy working on summer storylines at the moment as I always like to have a little bit of a summer spectacular. So if I say that I have to come up with something now!"
10. A mystery return
In the same interview, Hudson also dropped a hint that Emmerdale could bring back a face from the past this summer.
Asked about any returns, she replied: "Ooh! I can't tell you! I can't say! We're working on June storylines at the minute and I thought [about a return] and thought: 'Viewers would love that!'"
This mysterious character's return has not yet been confirmed, but is something the show was clearly considering at the time, so watch this space.
Emmerdale airs on weeknights at 7.30pm on ITV1, and streams on ITVX.
Read more Emmerdale spoilers on our dedicated homepage
We encourage anyone who identifies with the topics raised in this article to reach out. Information about how to access support is available via the NHS, and organisations who can offer help include Samaritans on 116 123 or Mind on 0300 123 3393.
Readers in the US are encouraged to visitmentalhealth.gov or the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
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