EastEnders Christmas 2023 flash-forward murder: Who dies?

Here are the potential victims in the BBC soap's murder mystery teaser storyline.

EastEnders,20-02-2023,6649,Stacey Slater (LACEY TURNER);Suki Kaur Panesar (BALVINDER SOPAL);Linda Carter (KELLIE BRIGHT);Sharon Watts (LETITIA DEAN);Denise Fox (DIANE PARISH);Kathy Beale (GILLIAN TAYLFORTH),***EMBARGOED TILL MONDAY 20TH FEBRUARY  2023 20:05PM****, BBC, Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron
Stacey Slater, Suki Kaur Panesar, Linda Carter, Sharon Watts, Denise Fox and Kathy Beale are 'The Six' suspects in the Christmas 2023 murder mystery. (BBC)

EastEnders began its 2023 Christmas Special 10 months early with a shocking murder mystery storyline.

Stacey Slater, Suki Kaur Panesar, Linda Carter, Sharon Watts, Denise Fox and Kathy Beale have become 'The Six' - suspects in a whodunnit which began to unfold in a flash-forward episode which aired on Monday 20 February.

Fans of the BBC soap saw the six women in The Queen Vic pub at Christmas time looking down at a dead body on the floor.

Sharon, played by Letitia Dean, is wearing a wedding dress stained with blood and all the other characters are dressed up for a party as the strains of East 17's Christmas No 1 Stay Another Day plays in the background.

Read more: EastEnders spoilers: Tragedy for Whitney and Zack, Denise and Ravi’s secret revealed

Sharon kneels down and lifts up the wrist of the man, wearing distinctive amber cufflinks, and feels his pulse, before announcing, "He's dead!"

EastEnders fans must now wait all year to find out who is dead, and who did it.

Kellie Bright, who plays pub landlady Linda Carter told This Morning that even the cast don't yet know who the murderer or the victim is.

She said: "They actually made Tish film it two ways. We had a 'He's dead' and a 'She's dead'. So it was only when I watched it last night that I knew it was a man."

Bright added: "And I only just realised it must be one of us. One of us did it!."

The soap star admitted she thinks there will be "a lot of red herrings" in the soap throughout the year.

EastEnders Linda Carter played by KELLIE BRIGHT
Kellie Bright revealed the EastEnders was filmed so the cast didn't even know if the victim was male or female. (BBC)

In the teaser, Stacey (Lacey Turner) is shown to have blood on her hands and Denise (Diane Parish) is holding a broken champagne bottle as all six women stand around the murder scene.

The flash-forward began in the current time with all six suspects having a lock-in at the pub and talking about the men in their life, before Sharon ominously raises a toast: "To men, may they get what they deserve."

So with the six suspects already identified - we have tried to find out who the victim is.

We know he is male. There were eight men mentioned in the episode before the flash-forward, making them the most likely possible victims.

Here is a rundown of who the dead body could be:

Nish Panesar

EastEnders Nish Panesar played by NAVIN CHOWDHRY
Is Nish Panesar the dead body on the floor in the EastEnders Christmas 2023 whodunnit? (BBC)

Nish, played by Navin Chowdhry, is the estranged husband of Suki (Balvinder Sopal). He recently arrived in Albert Square following a 20-year stretch in prison for murder. Nish is determined to rebuild his relationship with Suki, despite mentally abusing and controlling her during their marriage.

In the flash-forward Kathy turns and looks at Suki when she sees the body - could that be a clue?

Jack Branning

EastEnders Jack Branning  played by SCOTT MASLEN
EastEnders' Jack Branning, played by Scott Maslen, has links to several of the suspects. (BBC)

Jack Branning, played by Scott Maslen, has links to several of the suspects. He has been in a relationship with Denise and Sharon in the past. He has recently clashed with Stacey when he tried to persuade her 12-year-old daughter Lily to have an abortion, after she fell pregnant by his son Ricky Jr.

EastEnders appeared to drop a huge clue when Jack was shown to be the owner of the amber cufflinks the victim is wearing in the flash forward, but was it a red herring?

Dean Wicks

Matt Di Angelo Attends The National Television Awards At The O2 Arena On January 26, 2011 In London, England.. (Photo by Antony Jones/UK Press via Getty Images)
Matt Di Angelo plays Dean Wicks, who many of the women would like to see dead. (Getty Images)

Dean hasn't been seen in Albert Square since 2016. He raped Linda and fled the country after being acquitted of the crime. During the lock-in, Linda looks horrified when she is confronted by a picture of Dean. He also has a difficult history with Stacey after spiking her drink.

Before the flash-forward Kathy made a point of assuring Linda that if he ever set foot back in Walford there would be an army waiting to protect her from him.

Ryan Malloy

Ryan Molloy played by Neil McDermott in EastEnders. (BBC)
Stacey has said she'd like to kill Ryan Molloy, played by Neil McDermott. (BBC)

Stacey's ex Ryan returned to Walford for the first time in seven years, only to seemingly walk out again. When he asked to have their daughter Lily to stay for Christmas, Stacey admitted she'd quite like to kill him.

It might have seemed like a flippant remark at the time, but she literally has blood on her hands.

Keanu Taylor

EastEndersSharon Watts played by LETITIA DEAN and Keanu Taylor played by DANNY WALTERS.
Keanu Taylor is Sharon's ex. (BBC)

Keanu has already broken Sharon's heart before and the pair have certainly had a turbulent relationship. Could more heartbreak mean he's the dead body on the floor?

If he is the victim, Keanu has also been close to Kathy and Linda in the past, so he might have upset one of the other suspects.

When Lisa made a return to Walford with Keanu's daughter Peggy and he tried to block them from leaving the country, it was Sharon who stepped in to help Lisa - which obviously went down terribly with Keanu and left them with even more unresolved issues.

Ravi Gulati

Aaron Thiara joined EastEbders as Ravi Gulati.
Ravi Gulati has wronged his mother Suki and also turned down Denise. (BBC)

Ravi is Suki's son, an ex-con and a former cellmate of Phil Mitchell. He killed his adoptive father Ranveer but let his mother believe it was her who struck the fatal blow. Her beloved son Kheerat ended up taking the blame for Ranveer's murder.

Suki has now discovered the truth about Ranveer's death, as well as finding out that Ravi arranged for Kheerat to be beaten up in prison.

The Walford bad boy has also had an affair with Denise, who is too afraid to help Suki as she is worried about the repercussions for her family.

Rocky Cotton

EastEnders Rocky Cotton is played by Brian Conley. (BBC)
EastEnders' Rocky Cotton was one of the men talked about on the prophetic night. (BBC)

Rocky has been in a relationship with Kathy and is one of the men discussed during the lock-in.

Brian Conley, who plays him, is definitely leaving the soap imminently and has Christmas panto plans, but his exit storyline is said to be a big secret.

Phil Mitchell

Phil Mitchell, played by Steve McFadden, has been in EastEnders for 32 years. (BBC)
Phil Mitchell, played by Steve McFadden, has been in EastEnders for 32 years. (BBC)

Shady Phil Mitchell has been married to Kathy and had an on-off affair with Sharon. He has already survived being shot - making him the subject of EastEnders' previous infamous whodunnit, Who Shot Phil? He has been in the soap for 32 years. Could he finally be getting killed off?

Martin Fowler

EastEnders,31-07-2023,6741,Martin Fowler (JAMES BYE),***EMBARGOED TILL TUESDAY 25TH JULY 2023***, BBC, Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron
Surely not Martin...? (BBC)

This is a theory for the die-hard EastEnders fans - an apparent link between Martin Fowler and the murder has emerged in a TikTok video.

One TikTok user posted a clip of the flash-forward scene which includes a crackling fire and East 17's hit Stay Another Day playing in the background, then drew comparisons to the 2019 Christmas storyline where Martin killed someone in a hit-and-run.

That scene also made use of the same East 17 song and ended with Martin staring into a crackling fire... and Martin had also fatally run over Jamie Mitchell on the same date 17 years earlier.

Fans have even pointed out that Martin actor James Bye looks to have time free from EastEnders around Christmas, when he's set to star in a panto in Aylesbury.