Entertainment

He's back! James Willmott-Brown returns to Albert Square

Fans had been speculating about the identity of a mystery man who left a note for Kathy on Thursday's episode.

EastEnders’ posh villain James Willmott-Brown has made a return to Albert Square – 30 years after his first appearance in the BBC One soap.

Actor William Boyde, 64, said that he was “delighted to immerse myself once more in the fascinating world of soap land” as he reprised his role as the ruthless character.

Ex-army officer and public schoolboy Willmott-Brown first set foot in Walford in 1986, staying until 1989 when he was sentenced to three years in prison for the rape of Kathy Beale (Gillian Taylforth).

EastEnders
Gillian Taylforth returned as Kathy Beale (Kieron McCarron/BBC)

The smooth-talking character made a brief return when he was released from prison in 1992, but was forced to flee when Albert Square’s residents made their feelings known.

On Friday night, after speculation by viewers over hints in the storyline that he could be the mystery man who left a note and flowers for Kathy, the villain returned.

Viewers saw Max Branning (Jake Wood) collect his former cell mate, Luke, (Adam Astill) from prison to take him home.

Max Branning played by Jake Wood (Nicky Johnston)
Max Branning played by Jake Wood (Nicky Johnston)

Taking Luke to his sister Fi (Lisa Faulkner), half-brother Josh (Eddie Eyre) and his Uncle Hugo, (Simon Williams) he also discovered their father and his boss (Willmott-Brown) waiting for him.

Max has no idea of his boss’s history or connections to Walford, only that he claims to be a wronged man.

Viewers will now see a story of “power, control, money and revenge” unfold as the villain and his family attempt to destroy everything and anyone in their way.

“And of course, there is one other person on Willmott-Brown’s agenda – the woman he believes ruined his life – Kathy Beale”, EastEnders said. “With the help of his family, Willmott-Brown will continue in his mission to slowly take over Albert Square.”

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