Ian Beale will reportedly be left for dead after a savage beating in the Vic as part of an upcoming storyline on EastEnders.
The character - played by Adam Woodyatt since episode one in 1985 - has steadily been gathering enemies throughout 2020 and according to The Sun, one of them will attempt to murder him in the run-up to Christmas.
Chief suspects include Max (Jake Wood), who is angry that Ian stole money from him to buy the Vic; best friend Sharon (Letitia Dean), who is currently unaware that he was in part responsible for her son Dennis's death; son Peter (Dayle Hudson), who learns next week that he has been cut out of Ian's will; and other son Bobby (Clay Milner Russell), who has form when it comes to killing off his own family.
"People are queuing up to cave Ian's head in," a source told the newspaper. "He borrowed money from Max and hasn't paid him back. Kathy knows Ian remortgaged the cafe without telling her, plus he's upset his sons in money rows.
"Dotty knows what happened to Denny on the boat so may have an axe to grind. Even Phil Mitchell could be involved. He's never far from trouble.
"As far as legendary EastEnders characters go, Ian is up there with the best so this storyline will leave viewers shocked.
"He has no shortage of enemies so exactly who attacked him and left him for dead will be the focus of the weeks that follow."
The storyline will not be the first time that someone has attempted to finish off Ian - his wife Cindy (Michelle Collins) memorably hired a hitman to shoot him in 1996, while at Christmas three years ago, Max attempted to strangle him with some fairy lights. body check tags ::