EastEnders confirmed Albie’s dad last night – and it’s not Keanu Taylor. Sharon Watts was left reeling from the news that there was no way her fiancé could be the little boy’s father.
Viewers have long since wondered if Phil was in fact the real father, but does this confirm it? And what does this mean for their future?
Sharon gets news about Albie in EastEnders
This week Sharon has been worried about her son. He had blood tests after his ‘kidnap’ and the hospital were keen to talk about the results.
Sharon attended the appointment, while Keanu was running late. But she insisted they just go ahead without him as she was nervous about the findings.
The consultant reassured her she shouldn’t worry too much, but then informed her Albie has a genetic disorder known as AADT. The doctor revealed that he could only have this if both parents were carriers. Keanu then arrived and both he and Sharon agreed to be tested.
What is AADT?
AADT stands for alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency. It is a rare condition and a person can only get it if they inherit two faulty copies of the AAT gene – one from each parent. It affects 1 in 3000 people in the UK and is underdiagnosed because people often are never impacted by it.
People with the AADT lack a protective chemical in the body called alpha-1-antitrypsin. According to Asthma and Lung UK It means they are more vulnerable to the effects of inhaling smoke, fumes, dust or chemicals.
The low levels of this chemical means an increased risk of lung disease such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in later life, and it can cause liver problems, skin rashes and immune issues.
So, who is Albie’s dad in EastEnders?
The doctor revealed Sharon was a carrier of the gene, but Keanu was not. As he had missed the earlier part of their conversation, Keanu had no idea this mean he couldn’t be Albie’s dad.
Sharon made an excuse to speak to the doctor alone and insisted the tests must be wrong. He assured her they weren’t and questioned if anyone else was in the mix when Albie was conceived. As Sharon took in the news, the camera panned in on Phil Mitchell, confirming he is the true father.
Long-time fans will remember that back in 2019, Sharon was married to Phil but having an affair with Keanu. When the truth came out at Christmas over her cheating, Phil kicked her out. A paternity test at the time declared Keanu was Albie’s dad. So what happened? Were the results wrong? Did someone fake them? How has this mix-up occurred?
Letitia Dean speaks out on EastEnders twist over Albie’s real dad
Actress Letitia Dean, who plays Sharon, reveals her alter ego is in “total disbelief” over the news.
She said: “She just cannot believe it. Not for one moment since she did the original paternity test has she ever considered that Phil could be his dad.”
Of the twist, she added: “It’s a great surprise and one that makes so much sense. Sharon and Phil have such a history together. In one way it feels like it’s bought their story full-circle, but in another it feels like their story has only just begun. It is going to be interesting to see how it all plays out.”
But will Sharon tell Phil the truth? Or is she set to keep it a secret? “She doesn’t know what to do – she’s absolutely floored!” Letitia said. “Sharon and Keanu have only just rekindled their engagement after months of an off and on relationship, and she knows full well that this news will blow that apart!
“On the other hand, there is such a mutual respect between Sharon and Phil, and deep down I don’t think she could or would want to keep this news from him, but he also doesn’t have the best track record when it comes to parenting so she’s worried about the influence he could have on Albie.
“The stakes are so high as she could stand to lose Keanu if she admits the truth.”
What happens next in EastEnders?
Letitia confirms that she turns to Zack for support. But will he be able to help her through this? And what about when Phil does, inevitably, find out the truth?
“Family is everything to Phil. So, Sharon knows that once this secret is out, there is no turning back,” Letitia teases.
But of a possible reunion for Sharon and Phil, she explains: “This has come as a total shock for Sharon and right now she is planning to marry Keanu and Phil is happy with Kat.”
EastEnders usually airs Monday to Thursday at 7.30pm on BBC One.
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