Emmerdale bosses are facing some serious backlash from fans of the ITV soap that will show Ross Barton becoming the victim of a horrific acid attack.
The scenes are due to air next week, and are said to be “life-changing” for Ross, when he gets caught up in a case of mistaken identity as drug dealing Simon mistakes him for Joe Tate and throws corrosive liquid at him.
The attack is planned out by Debbie Dingle, who is seeking retribution against Joe for humiliating her and leaving her family homeless.
News of vicious acid attacks have followed news coverage around in recent times like the proverbial ghost at the feast (but then again, when is the news anything but glum?), as incidents are reported up and down the country. Fans are concerned about the prospect of copycat attacks, but Emmerdale bosses have insisted that they have researched the issue thoroughly.
The scriptwriters have been talking to real life victims of acid attacks to make the story as realistic as possible.
But fans remain unconvinced and have taken to social media to complain and air their concerns.
“Just read about upcoming acid attack in future episodes! No, please don’t do this!already stopped watching #Corrie because it was turning into #EastEnders. Now you’re turning #Emmerdale into sam rubbish. Another big turnoff. Bye #Emmerdale,” raged one disgruntled fan.
Another fumed: “Heard vile Debbie Dingle is planning an acid attack on Joe Tate next week. How can this even be condoned in the light of real acid crimes? Hope she gets thrown in jail and out of #emmerdale for good.”
A third seethed: “Going to hate watching the acid sl with Ross, not sure how to feel about this sl as wouldn’t really want Joe to suffer an acid attack either.”
And a fourth wrote: “I think it’s totally wrong that Emmerdale is planning to film an acid attack! We don’t want to see that! It’s bad enough on the news.”
Some fans, however, have commended Emmerdale for raising awareness around the growing problem.
The controversial storyline is just one of a growing collection of melancholic arcs that have abounded in all the soaps recently. Now obviously, soaps are real life turned up to 11, to paraphrase Spinal Tap, and while it’s true that more misery befalls a soap character in one year than would transpire for a real person in a lifetime, fans are growing increasingly tiresome of the dark angles.
And I can see what they mean. After all, there is enough misery in the real world, let alone manufacturing more in the safety of the prewatershed slots, where everything is supposed to be okay!
The list is endless (well, not actually endless, but you know what I mean) – from Bethany Platt in Coronation Street falling into a web of abuse and grooming, and dealing with the crippling aftermath of same, to Pat Phelan’s reign of murderous terror that has seen Weatherfield begin to drown in a sea of terror, to Mick Carter in EastEnders getting kidnapped and threatened with torture in last night’s show, to an upcoming storyline in which David Platt will become the victim of a rape.
And those are just the “highlights”.
When the prospect of yet another grim storyline for Weatherfield loomed large, fans took to social media to express their indignation, frustration and exhaustion as they are put through the emotional ringer by the show when faced with the upcoming storyline around David Platt’s rape.
Viewers on the Entertainment Daily Facebook page in particular even said that the controversial storyline should be scrapped before it even hits our screens later on this year.
“Wonder if the Corrie writers will read all these negative comments. Yes we know sadly it goes on in life, but really not on a ‘soap’ early evening viewing…I DO NOT WANT TO SEE THIS…viewer lost here,” commented one angry fan.
Another agreed saying: “I won’t watch this again.”
A third promised to boycott, adding: “I’m not gonna watch this, I love David.”
While a fourth said: “Nooooooooo scrap this storyline before you finish corrie off altogether.”
And another wrote: “I won’t be watching if this story goes ahead…R.I.P CORRIE you were once a great soap.”
However, while the feedback has been generally negative, there has been a few lone voices praising the soap for tackling such a controversial subject and raising awareness in the process, and believe that Jack P. Shepherd, the actor behind David Platt, will do a great job portraying the character and the storyline.
“Fantastic actor – love Jack and his one liners!! This storyline will be disturbing yet amazing acted,” lauded one FB user.
“If it raises awareness then good on them,” added another.
Emmerdale also came under fire in December when it aired scenes of Moira Barton physically attacking Cain Dingle.
Michael Parr who plays Ross, said: “It’s a big responsibility and one that I was very nervous about taking on.
“The Emmerdale team have done extensive research and we really want to raise awareness of the devastating consequences an attack like this has on a person’s life.
“It’s so important to get it right and just do the story line justice. I know this is a reality for some people.”
In slightly more light hearted news, Emmerdale viewers were left in a state of bemusement after the soap was plunged into darkness in just a matter of minutes, and some fans were quick to spot that a small error had just taken place!
Mind you, it wasn’t hard to miss, as last night’s (Feb 1) episode appeared to have travelled forward in time on the sly with day turning to night in almost the blink of an eye.
The eagle eyed among us noticed the supposed error almost immediately, quashing the dreams I can imagine producers had as they hoped that no one would notice, as Laurel went into the Woolpack to gather her mates to say goodbye to Harriet and the vicar.
She could be heard telling them that they would be meeting at around 1pm in the cafe to have a farewell lunch.
Just three minutes later, however, the soap engaged its flux capacitor and got that sucker up to 88 miles per hour, as the next scene quickly jumped forward in time where Cain was busy bashing down one of the broken walls of the Dingle’s family home.
But rather than being bathed in Winter sunshine, the sun was hanging low in the sky and it appeared to be just hanging in there as dusk turned into darkness, about three minutes after it being the middle of the day.
Miraculously, the soap then time warped back to lunchtime sunshine in the cafe, with Laurel bidding a sad goodbye to Harriet.
Maybe there is a micro climate around the Dingle residence? I’d say doubtful.
One confused viewer tweeted: “Cain was smashing the house down it was nearly dark!
“Scene later it was mid-morning so anything can happen…”
Many fans believed that Moira was leaving the soap with their young baby Isaac once and for all. However, it was later on that she revealed that she couldn’t leave her man behind and told the con that she loved him more than anything.
Viewers at home just couldn’t hide their happiness at the bosses’ decision to keep the love birds together in one tree.