EastEnders spoilers: Whitney Dean to murder Gray Atkins as Chantelle’s secret exposed?
Whitney (played by Shona McGarthy) has been focussing on her upcoming nuptials to Callum Halfway (Tony Clay) of late on EastEnders, hoping to finally settle down after her harrowing past in Walford.
The wannabe fashionista has also split her time to launch her business venture and tonight’s instalment of the BBC soap saw Whitney rope newcomer Chantelle (Jessica Plummer) into her plans.
Chantelle had only dropped off some headshots for Whitney to look through for the big day, as the hairdresser has taken a step back from her duties at the salon due to her manipulating husband Gray (Toby-Alexander Smith).
For some time, Gray has been abusing Chantelle unbeknownst to her friends and family, but she almost gave the game away when she scolded Whitney for posting pictures of her online.
Whitney convinced Chantelle to be her model to alter her latest designs as Gray had taken the kids out for the day, taking photos of the mother-of-two to use on her social media pages.
After telling Gray about her day and bringing home some of Whitney’s pieces, her controlling husband wasn’t best pleased, with Chantelle storming around to the fashionista’s flat as she’d seen the images online.
Chantelle demanded Whitney take the photos down as she didn’t want her abusive husband to get angry for showcasing the clothes online.
When asked why, Chantelle managed to convince Whitney she’d been a victim of identity fraud and din’t want her photos online for someone else to use.
The fashionista was sympathetic with Chantelle, who turned to Whitney and said she wanted them to be friends, to which the Walford favourite reciprocated.
However, could their blossoming friendship in the weeks to come lead Chantelle to confide in Whitney that Gray is abusing her, making the hairdresser feel worthless?
You don’t know what goes on behind closed doors
Viewers will remember Whitney has her own past with abusive men, having been a victim to peadophile Tony King (Chris Coghill) when she was just a child.
With Chantelle’s experience mirroring similarities to her own volatile relationship with men, will Whitney decide enough is enough and murder Gray for his harrowing abuse of her new found friend?
The Atkins’ storyline was first confirmed last month, with Gray’s abuse of Chantelle first shown after an altercation with her father, Mitch Baker (Rodger Griffiths).
It was a later confrontation between the two men which saw Chantelle relinquish her time at the salon to appease her husband as Mitch worked at the premises as a barber.
As Chantelle sticks by her commitment to give Whitney the look she wants for her wedding day, will the blushing bride start to pick up on signs of Gray’s torment?
EastEnders boss Kate Oates said of the harrowing plot in a statement released by the BBC: “When Chantelle and Gray arrived on the Square, they gave many of their neighbours a big dose of life-envy with their perfect relationship and no-filter-needed looks and lifestyle.
“But there is truth in the old adage that you don’t know what goes on behind closed doors.
“And the very first time we crossed the threshold of No 1, we saw the truth of their relationship, and the violence Gray subjects Chantelle to.”
Chantelle star Jessica Plummer, 26, added: “This is an issue that I, and everyone at EastEnders, hope we can raise awareness of.
“Many women and men that are in Chantelle’s situation suffer in silence and we really hope that by showing this story we can highlight an issue and encourage those in similar situations to seek the help they need.”
EastEnders continues Monday at 8pm on BBC One.
For support, please contact the National Domestic Violence Helpline run in partnership between Women’s Aid and Refuge on 0808 2000 247.
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