Emmerdale rocked as April Dingle’s online troll unveiled as Cathy with previous clue?
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Emmerdale has confirmed April Dingle (played by Amelia Flanagan) will be targeted online by a bully this summer. The child has mentioned she has been sent a few nasty messages about her deceased mother, Donna Windsor (Verity Rushworth) and every time this has been brought up, Cathy Hope (Gabrielle Dowling) has been around, questioning the next move the troll has made. Express.co.uk spoke to the actor who plays April’s father, Marlon Dingle (Mark Charnock) about this new storyline arc and there are clues to suggest Cathy is behind the trolling.
In a previous scene of Emmerdale, viewers saw an unexpected outburst from Cathy when she realised April was getting the adults attention.
Marlon was explaining how Leanna Cavanagh’s (Mimi Slinger) memorial had been cancelled after Liam Cavanagh (Jonny McPherson) had arrived and got upset.
This affected April who felt it necessary to remember the teenager.
“Are you sure this is about Leanna?” Marlon asked his daughter. “Has it made you think about your mum? I think about her all the time – all the time. And it’s hard, when things like this bring back them old feelings.”
“I miss her so much,” the child replied and Marlon continued: “That’s understandable.”
Cathy jumped in: “She was our sister too! Why doesn’t anybody care how we feel?”
Bob Hope (Tony Audenshaw) replied: “I didn’t know it was affecting you like that?” But those watching at home saw Cathy backtrack: “It’s not, I was just saying that’s all.”
April wondered: “Are you okay Cathy?” And she snapped: “I said so, didn’t I?”
Next week, April will be left distraught when she receives a cruel meme of Donna on her phone and she heads to her mother’s grave to seek solace, questioning why there is someone out there who hates her so much to send that to her.
Cathy spots her and assures April she will protect her and urges her to keep the bullying a secret from Marlon – which April agrees to but is worried when she finds out a troll account called ‘Dead Donna’ has been created.
This, in turn, affects April. “There are subtle changes in her behaviour; seeing her more downcast, more reluctant to go to school – classic traits,” Mark said.
Rhona Goskirk (Zoe Henry) is quick to suggest April is lying to her and Marlon after she overheard Cathy and Heath discussing April’s online ordeal.
Marlon immediately demands the truth and they reveal the extent of April’s torment.
The Woolpack chef is determined to find the person responsible for April’s pain and when he finds her at Donna’s grave once more, he tells her he knows what’s going on online.
Marlon is adamant they must speak to the authorities and school about the trolling, suggesting it is someone close to April who is behind it.
But, Mark said Marlon is put in a “really difficult” situation.
The actor said: “There’s a lot of scenes where she’s [April is begging] ‘please don’t tell the schools.’”
Why is April so scared of the school finding out what is happening to her? Is it because the person behind the trolling is a fellow school pupil?
As a result of this, in upcoming scenes, Marlon and April get tearful as he apologises for letting her down by not protecting her.
In turn, he takes her phone and deletes all her social media accounts, as well as keeping her phone for a few weeks until it all settles down.
April’s unsure, but forces a smile and Marlon pulls her close for a hug, clearly guilt-stricken to have let her down.
But this isn’t the end of the storyline, Mark said it will “run and run because these things don’t go away overnight”.
“They [trolls] are insidious, poisonous and the psychological after-effects obviously, can be dreadful for kids and for parents too.
“The stuff [scenes] we’ve had so far has been really beautifully weighted and Emmerdale has been really careful with it, obviously you have to be cautious with this kind of story and do it right and tell it’s truth.
“It does run and run, I think it’s very truthful, I think it’s obviously it’s very sad, and it will tell a lot of people’s stories,” the actor added.
Emmerdale airs tonight at 7pm on ITV.
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