EastEnders fans notice subtle hints Linda’s alcoholism storyline is here

In tonight's EastEnders , there was plenty of focus on the Carter clan as they headed off to the hospital to get Ollie – who they think has autism – assessed properly.

But, while they were still at home, Linda's (Kellie Bright) own secret battle had a nod of attention thanks to Shirley (Linda Henry), who seems to be on a mission to save the planet through recycling.

In the kitchen, Shirls picked up an empty bottle of red wine and noted: "What's this? Not one of ours."

In the background, Linda looked rattled but played it off by saying it was a present from someone.

Rather than push her any further, Shirley told her: "It's empty, so it goes in the recycling bin."

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Again, clearly not thinking anything was out of the ordinary, Tina (Luisa Bradshaw-White) said: "You celebrating finally putting the snob Shelley in her place?"

Soon the conversation was forgotten about, as Linda and Mick (Danny Dyer) prepared to head off to the hospital.

But fans at home are happy to have noticed the subtle hint that they are on the cusp of Linda's impending alcoholism storyline.

One said: "An empty wine bottle. Linda's alcoholism story is approaching."

Another tweeted: "I love the small hints towards Linda's upcoming alcoholism."

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A third wrote: "Linda's booze bottle are getting a teeny less bit subtle."

While someone else added: "Yup, they're slowly starting to notice more alcohol around. It's really kicking off for Linda now."

Back in September, EastEnders bosses confirmed that Linda was set to battle alcoholism in an upcoming storyline.

Executive producer Jon Sen said: "This autumn the Carters will face one of their biggest crises to date when Linda turns to alcohol to escape the increasing pressures of her family life.

"Linda's descent into alcoholism will be instantly recognisable to many – a journey that begins with a single drink to cope with the everyday ups and downs but quickly escalates to a point which wreaks devastation on their life and the lives of those around them.

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"In telling Linda's story we hope that anyone in Linda's situation or those around them notice the signs of alcoholism and seek the help needed."

The BBC soap is working with Drinkaware on the storyline, with the organisation's Elaine Hindal saying: "Credit to the scriptwriters who are sensitively showing the journey of how easy it can be for someone to develop risky drinking habits. Linda's experiences with alcohol demonstrate why it's important to be able to recognise signs that you, or someone you care about, could be developing drinking habits that could cause harm to themselves or others."

EastEnders continues tomorrow at 7.30pm on BBC One

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