Fans of Emmerdale will of course know that in last’s night’s episode, Rachel Breckle (Gemma Oaten) finally brought baby Archie home from hospital…
And in some of the closing scenes last night, we saw Jai Sharma looking enviously on as Rachel and her best friend – who’s reportedly set to become more than a mate – Sam Dingle (James Hooton) cooed over the baby, who of course is Jai’s, but he can’t publicly acknowledge that.
However, in forthcoming episodes, Jai’s jealousy over the part Sam is playing in his son’s life is set to overwhelm the factory boss, and he’ll have an angry showdown with Rachel in the pub, during which, she’ll tell him that it’s none of his business who she sees, and will slap him when he’s particularly nasty about Sam…
This week, Chris Bisson – who is in real life a new dad – has been speaking to Soaplife about the storyline, and why it is that after the dramatic Woolpack scenes, Jai leaves the village and goes to France.
He began by explaining, “I’m going on paternity leave, but I’ll bring Jai back on screen at the end of March.”
And moving on to his character’s heartache over being cut out of Archie’s life, Chris said, “Rachel isn’t communicating with Jai at all…
“Any info that Jai gets about Archie is second-hand. He only finds out Archie’s coming home from hospital through Ali and Ruby.
“He’s got a baby he’s not allowed to see and that’s torture. Plus he’s surrounded himself with layer upon layer of lies.
“He’s constantly dodging bullets – from Rachel, Charity, his parents… He’s in a terrible, terrible place.”
Of how Jai feels when he sees Sam with Archie, Chris remarked, “When the baby’s home and Jai sees Sam stepping in and looking like the father it drives Jai crazy.
“There’s Sam holding Jai’s son, but Rachel won’t let Jai hold him!”
Chris added, “Jai sees Rachel and Sam and Archie through their window and the happy family image is killing him.
“Then Sam mentions he stayed the night. It’s innocent but Jai wants to be the one who’s there with his baby.
“Later, Sam and Rachel bring the baby into the pub and Jai’s fuming. Surely a well-advised parent wouldn’t bring a premature baby into a place that’s full of germs and drunks?”
Chris revealed that it’s at that point that Jai “loses it.”
He said, “Sam spills a couple of pints on him and Jai just snaps. He insults Sam by calling him a halfwit.
“Rachel ends up stepping in and slapping Jai. Charity sees this and the entire pub comes to a standstill.”
When asked what Charity (Emma Atkins) makes of the scene, Chris said, “Charity thinks Jai’s causing a scene because she won’t have his baby.
“Jai realises he can’t stay in the village because he simply can’t handle having the child he so desperately wanted and not being part of his life.
“It’s driving Jai insane.”
But of course, with Jai and Charity’s relationship already on thin ice, his trip away is unlikely to help matters.
Chris said, “Their relationship is hanging by a thread…
“It would be much easier if he just came clean and accepted the marriage is over and confessed.
“But then I think the audience is enjoying this ticking time bomb…”
Indeed we are! How do you think Charity will react when she finds out the truth?
For now, here’s a sneak peek look at one of this week’s episodes…