Zoe Baker (Sam Loggin) 1997-1998

First Regular Appearance: 1.1 (#1)  Tuesday 14th October 1997

Last Regular Appearance: 1.64 (#64)  Wednesday 20th May 1998

Duration: EP: 1 - 64 ½ SE: 1.1 – 1.64

Position: Student (1997-1998)

Last Seen: Takes a gap-year before university to travel in India. Later in Florida when Des reunites with the family.

 

 

Zoe is the eldest and only daughter of Des and Lynette Baker. Born in March 1980, with a brother Steven who is five years younger, Harchester United has, frustratingly for her, been a part of Zoe's life for as long as she can remember. Her father is a die-hard Dragon attending every game home and away, while from the age of eight, Zoe has shared the family home around various members of the club's youth team, for Des and Lynette run a digs for up-and-coming teenage apprentices. As a child she saw these boys as just the lodgers, but going into her teens Zoe now feels she is living with the wild, cheeky, annoying not to mention unhygienic lads from her school. The thought that any of them could fancy her seriously repulses her!

Zoe takes her mind off it by throwing herself into her studies; she is a smart girl with a bright future awaiting her at university. She just has to get through her A-Levels which she is preparing for in October 1997 when the Baker's take in their latest addition, Conor McCarthy arriving to join the youth team. Zoe gives Conor the warmest of welcomes, not realising he is actually moving in, and sends him to the club to deal with, which results in Conor sleeping rough that night. After this, Zoe is forced to tolerate Conor, who she doesn't take the time to realise is shy and a genuinely nice guy. Things aren't helped when Conor is pressured by Sean and Vincent into taking an initiation challenge to steal Zoe's underwear, and she furiously gives him a slap before saying she wishes he'd leave. Zoe is worried when Conor does slip away back to Northern Ireland, and knowing the truth of Sean and Vincent's involvement, helps Des and Frank in persuading Conor to return.

While Conor does have a crush on her, Zoe just sees him as a sweet friend, while Sean is looking out for her more than she knows. When Zoe meets Noah, an Australian uni student with all the same interests as her, she is smitten. Sean knows he is too good to be true and can smell a rat, but Zoe just accuses him of being jealous. Sean even sees Noah romancing other women, and enlists Vincent's help to get Zoe to see Noah cheating. It turns out to be one big embarrassment when Zoe is introduced to the woman Noah is hiding away in his room - his mother visiting!

In early 1998, Zoe has her suspicions about her mother's close relationship with long-time friend Michael Jacobs. The chairman dies a short time before Zoe's eighteenth birthday, and she is surprised to be left shares in the club which she was always meant to receive at this age. Zoe is stunned to hear Des' theory on how Michael could possibly be her father and knew this himself, as a reason for giving the shares. Zoe goes off the rails at this point, bitter at both Lynette and Des and decides to go through with a DNA test to find out the truth. At the last minute as they are about to learn the results, Zoe tells Des he is the one who raised her and has always been there for her, so she doesn't need a piece of paper to tell her who her dad is. Zoe even begins accompanying Des to Harchester matches, and develops her own passion for the game never there before. She also finds friendship with Sean after all their bickering and insults, but stops just short of developing deeper feelings for him when Dean's fiancée Natalie turns his head.

That summer, Zoe sits her A-Levels and decides to take a whole new life experience before choosing a university. She opts for a gap year in India and sets off on her travels. In March 1999 the Baker's are reunited in Florida for Zoe's nineteenth birthday, which sees the reconciliation of her parents who had separated while she was away. When Zoe returns to England, it's not Harchester, but Southampton where the Baker's have settled where she begins university.