Star Ryan Hawley on this week’s shocking Emmerdale accident, and what’s behind Robert’s return to his bad old ways…
Emmerdale is set for a dramatic week as Robert dopes lawrence with sleeping pills on his return from hospital. When lawrence wakes up, he gets in his car – but Belle, lachlan and Victoria are in his blurry line of vision. i'll be on the edge of my seat to see what happens next.
Robert Sugden almost turned into a nice guy when he was with Aaron Livesy. But now that the couple have split up, the businessman has gone back to his bad ways and, this week, he drugs Lawrence White with sleeping pills, as part of his conniving plot to take over Home Farm.
Little does he realise that his actions are set to have devastating consequences, as Lawrence gets behind the wheel of his car and endangers the lives of several young villagers – including that of Robert’s own sister, Victoria.
Here, star Ryan Hawley talks about his character’s return to the dark side, and why he loves being the village villain once again.
what is Robert’s motivation for being a bad guy again?
I guess, he was a more morally rounded person with Aaron, and without him, he is turning back into the manipulative, meddling Robert of old. He sees an opportunity at Home Farm that will help make his life better and get him material things. Robert wants to be powerful; he’s not interested in living a mediocre life. Aaron left a void, which he is filling with wanting to be the guy who lives in the big house on the hill.
lawrence has just had a brain aneurysm – is Robert not worried that drugging him could actually finish him off?
He is, but there’s a long-standing rivalry between Robert and Lawrence – he resents him. Given that Robert didn’t have a great relationship with his father, maybe he sees Lawrence as someone he’d like to have power over.
Does he consider the wider consequences of drugging him? I don’t think he’s really thought it through. He just wants Lawrence out of the way, so he can get the power he wants from the Whites. Sometimes, he acts first and thinks later – like he did when he slept with Rebecca. That kind of impulsiveness is certainly consistent with Robert’s character. But although Robert is morally questionable, he does care for people like Victoria, so he’ll feel terrible if she gets hurt. is it fun playing the devious Robert again? It is, and it’s important for a show like this to have people that create conflict – and that’s certainly one of the things that Robert does when he is immoral. He rubs people up the wrong way, and conspires behind their backs. He is quite a slithery kind of guy, and him being with Aaron was good news for everyone in the village, because it meant they didn’t have to look over their shoulder any more.
How does Robert feel about the split with aaron?
This is probably the most hurt Robert has been by the ending of a relationship. He loves Aaron and regrets the fact that his actions ruined things, but Aaron seems very sure that it’s definitely over.
How do you feel about the fans’ obsession with Robron?
For me, it’s quite something that people care so much about this fictional relationship. The writers, myself and Danny [Miller, who plays Aaron] have committed to it and tried to make the relationship as believable as possible. It seems that people are really enjoying it, and they feel strongly and passionate about them as a couple. I think the only real way to look at it is to see it as a compliment.
will they reunite? At the moment, Aaron is off doing his own thing, and is not really paying much attention to Robert. Aaron says he wants space, so Robert has to let him have it, but he hopes that Aaron will change his mind at some point. We’ll have to wait and see… FOR all this week’s big soap stories, see pages 26-31
Aftermath: Robert’s actions have dire consequences