Well, it’s been a week since EastEnders Shakil Kazemi (Shaheen Jafargholi) and Keegan Baker (Zack Morris) were stabbed and left for dead in the Queen Vic alley. The “knife storyline” was an important story to tell. There had been an increase in knife-related injuries and deaths in the United Kingdom (U.K.) during the past few years. I was hoping that John Yorke would produce powerful episodes to help spread the message. Although the storyline started well, there were few issues that got in the way: The Carter Family and Alfie Moon.
Excuse m…What the hel… Why they interrupt the #KnifeStoryline with this scene between Alfie & Hayley? And WTH is Alfie talking about? ? Is this the residual effect from his brain surgery in #Redwater ? #EastEnders pic.twitter.com/FwxGeIfSh6
— BovaryCee ♋??? (@BovarysComplnt) May 25, 2018
The Heart of the Knife Storyline
The heart of every good storyline is its characters. Yorke had plenty to choose from in the Taylor and Kazemi families. However, he inserted the Carter Family into the storyline like a constant photobomb. Mick Carter (Danny Dyer) found Keegan in the alley and tried to save his life. That I could understand because they had a history based on the Walford Heist. That’s where Carter’s involvement should’ve ended. (I think Dyer and Kellie Bright are wonderful actors. I just think their characters weren’t needed for this storyline.)
Once Yorke decided that Mick would see an injured Shakil, think he was drunk, and turn him away, that changed the tone of the storyline. Shakil rarely interacted with the Carters. Yet, Mick turned a good kid away thinking he would cause trouble for his license. Now that Shakil has died, we have the perfect setup for… “Mick’s Feeling Guilty” storyline twist. (And why were the Carters allowed to be in the hospital room when they aren’t even family?) There were other options:
Better Option: Have Martin Fowler (James Bye) be the one to see Shakil and turn him away. This would’ve been a better storyline between Martin/Kush/Bex/Carmel/Stacey. The fallout would have been even more emotional based on their history.
Imagine the guilt Martin would feel as he explained to his daughter Bex why he didn’t help Shakil. Kush and Carmel would take out their anger on Martin because he turned Shakil away, letting him bleed on the Square. Martin could have been walking out of the Vic when Shakil tried to get his attention. Just imagine the impact this storyline would have on the families. They have a history, and the show could really explore the effect of knife-crime homicide on Shakil’s family and friends. Mick’s involvement is now a distraction.
From Knives to Pregnancy
…Then we had the “duff-duff” reveal of all reveals: The Return of Alfie Moon!
It’s great to see Shane Richie back on the show. However, that reveal could have happened this week instead of during last week’s knife-storyline. Why? Well, Kat Moon (Jessie Wallace) and Alfie have cheated on each other before in their marriage. It’s not surprising or unexpected. Even Alfie sleeping with Kat’s cousin Hayley Slater (Katie Jarvis) is a typical soap move. (Of course, Hayley needs to be pregnant so there’s proof.) So, I would’ve appreciated his return more if it didn’t interrupt my tears about Shakil slowly dying from his stab wound. Alfie’s return was another distraction in the middle of a compelling storyline.
Now we wait to see how the Kazemis and the Taylors deal with Shakil’s death and Keegan’s injury. I only hope their grief isn’t overshadowed by Mick Carter’s guilt.