Season 9 Episode 1

Episode 357


Sky One Transmission Date:

Sunday 16th October 2005


Directed By

Emma Bodger


GS: Angie Duxbury (Pippa Nixon)  Annabelle Davis (Alexis Peterman)  Marlon Baldon (David Gyasi) 

D.I. Parker (Ken BradshawIan Holloway (as himself)


Ryan tries desperately to reach the burning coach but is held back by the police, and collapses to the ground in tears. Meanwhile Lynda’s release is being finalised at the prison, where the TV is switched to Sky News and she sees the coverage of the coach explosion. Lynda leaves to a swarm of journalists, and Angie tells her she can take her car to Cardiff to be with the team. Soon Lynda is driving down there, and by nightfall she hears the radio announce that a body found in a related incident has been identified as Karl Fletcher. Lynda is so upset she is forced to stop the car and take in the news.


Casper Rose is on his way to a party at his lover Annabelle's home. As he enters he notices a woman standing by the pool in a blonde wig, and downing a large bottle of vodka to herself. It isn't long before a tipsy Ashleigh has knocked both of them into the swimming pool, and they stumble upstairs where before long they are making love. Later, Cass finds Annabelle and several of the guests glued to the news of the coach explosion. Being distracted briefly, Cass remembers Ashleigh upstairs and realises she has already left. Eugene Rose meanwhile, is helping his brother-in-law Marlon commit a burglary. They tie up the occupant and make with the goods. The police are called and the two are forced to split up as they are (unsuccessfully) chased by the cops. Also in London, Liam Mackay and his agent/fiancée Chloe Tyler are meeting QPR manager Ian Holloway at a restaurant. He arrives and informs them of the "bomb" on the Harchester coach in Cardiff. Shortly afterwards Eugene, also a client of Chloe’s turns up. As the night wears on, the death toll reaches nine, with Frank and Curtis confirmed among the dead.


At the hospital in Cardiff, Danny runs through to find Tyson waiting, and they are joined by Ryan. In another room, Lee lies gravely injured and suddenly flat lines as the three watch the doctors battle to save him. They are unsuccessful and Danny wonders where Viv is, telling Ryan he was just walking ahead of them when the explosion happened. Ryan suddenly remembers Fletch, as Lynda arrives and hugs Danny (the only one present she knows from her days). He tells her of Lee's death and when she asks where all the others are he replies there are no others.Two months pass from the explosion, and Lynda returns to the Lair after receiving a letter from new Dragons' manager Felix Hahn, offering her the position of Chief Executive once again. As she admires the Lair's gates, awash with Dragons' gear, memorials and messages from fans, she is joined by Felix. She tells him how it was down to the club that she was in prison in the first place, and asks whether Felix knows who the new owners are. Felix says they don't want to interfere and he has been given £80M to spend. Inside, Amy Kerrigan introduces herself to Lynda, saying she will be her executive assistant. Lynda replies that she is only visiting to Amy's surprise.


Felix shows Lynda a video of Casper and Eugene playing in a match as school boys, but as there is now a rift between the brothers Felix says they must keep negotiations secret on each side. Lynda is still determined that she won't be a part of the club again, but Felix reminds her that the town needs hope, from Lynda Block. Chloe is furious to see Eugene on the cover of the Mirror posing with Marlon, who is wanted by the police. Wanting to discuss the effect this will have on Harchester's bid for him, Chloe is shocked to find Marlon living with Eugene and his wife Scarlett. Casper arrives at the club for his medical and is surprised to find Ashleigh working as the new fitness coach. She has no memory of meeting him however, or the party. Lynda finds herself settling back into the offices and Amy comes in and hands her a stack of letters, telling her they are her mail. She opens one with a handwritten message from Dragons' Corp personally welcoming her back.That night Eugene is furious to find Marlon having the posse round at his pad and accuses him of endangering his freedom. Marlon tells Eugene he'll go away until this mess blows over, so Eugene won't turn down the Harchester deal.


On the day the contracts are due to be signed, Casper phones Lynda and Felix and says he has decided against coming to Harchester. Desperate for Cass to sign they play right into his plan, and before long Ashleigh is on her way to meet him personally with the contract. Eugene, Chloe and Scarlett are on their way to the club when they are stopped by D.I Parker and told how Marlon has been apprehended at the airport, and a witness has made a new statement saying he saw Eugene at the crime scene. At the club Danny, Tyson and Ryan are with Lynda preparing for the memorial. Ryan is absorbed by the circle of photographs of his dead team mates. Lynda receives a call from Chloe who assures her that they will be there shortly, as she sits in the police station. D.I Parker comes in and Chloe gives Eugene a false alibi for the night of the burglary. Ashleigh arrives at the Davis house and immediately has brief recognitions of the place. As she tries to get Cass to sign the contract, Annabelle dashes in with his clothes, panicking that her husband has arrived home unexpectedly. Paul Davis walks in as Casper is finishing throwing his clothes on. Cass puts the heat on Ashleigh to explain, once again pretending they are a couple.


To get her own back on Cass, Ashleigh says they were driving past and were interested in buying the house. She even adds how Cass is prepared to put down a deposit of £10,000! Cass plays along and even ups the price to £50,000, writing the cheque in front of a horrified Annabelle. Outside Cass tells Ashleigh he will sign the contract if he gets a kiss from her, and plants one on her lips in front of Annabelle and Paul who are watching. Ashleigh tells Casper never to do that again and he takes the contract and signs it. When Lynda is introduced to Chloe, she notices her engagement ring and Chloe realises the police will be talking to Liam. As she phones him to warn him of the impending police visit, she overhears Casper and Ashleigh below and how Cass is now a Harchester player. Realising what is going on, she tells Liam to get to Harchester before registration closes. As Liam hangs up the two detectives pull up, asking him about Eugene's whereabouts on the night. Not knowing what Chloe has told them, Liam says Eugene arrived at the restaurant much later than he and Chloe.


At the club Chloe demands Eugene not sign the contract, before informing Lynda she knows Casper is downstairs. Lynda sheepishly tries to explain but Chloe lets her know she is prepared to keep the secret, as long as she does something for her: Chloe then phones the Crewe Chief Executive, and says Lynda wants to buy Liam! Having witnessed Chloe's dealings first hand, Lynda is forced to comply and speaks to Dario. Outside in the stands, friends and family of the dead players are taking their seats for the memorial (although we don't see anyone we ever met before). Danny gets up to make his speech, and he says what happened on the day of the Play-Off final will stay with him and all of who is present for the rest of their lives. At reception, Liam walks in and is spotted by Amy. Chloe comes down and drags Liam upstairs as Amy watches on menacingly. In the Players' Lounge Liam hopes to read through the contract but Chloe and Lynda are in a rush to get it faxed so the Eugene deal can take place, and pressurise him into signing. Chloe then rings through to Eugene and tells him to sign, to Felix's relief.


Outside Ryan is making his speech as Lynda and Felix take their seats behind him. Ryan breaks down for a moment as he recalls how scared he was that day of Viv, and how they couldn't identity his body (which is the only confirmation we ever get that Viv is not dead). As Ryan continues, Chloe and Liam walk through, with Eugene and Scarlett behind them. Chloe sees that Casper is sitting with the others and tries to avoid Eugene seeing him, knowing it will all kick-off non football related! She tries to stall him but Eugene wants to pay his respects to Curtis and brushes through, only to lock eyes with Casper! Eugene yells what is Cass doing here and darts off to confront him as Scarlett yells for him not to.




·          First appearances of new regular characters Casper “Cass” Rose (Robert Kazinsky), Eugene Rose (Junior Nunoo), Liam Mackay (Duncan Pow), Ashleigh King (Naomi Ryan), Chloe Tyler (Julie Healy), Felix Hahn (Joachim Raaf), Amy Kerrigan (Lucinda Kennard) and Scarlett Rose (Lauren Gold). Lynda Block (Alison King) returns after a two year absence. New first team goalkeeper, the recurring Alex O'Mare (Alex O'Reilly) sits by Casper at the memorial.


Best Known For: Naomi Ryan appeared as regulars Bobbi Lewis in "Coronation Street" from 2000-2002, followed by LeAnn Evans on “Mile High” for its 2003-2005 duration. Like Julie Healy, Lauren Gold is a successful model and had a memorable appearance in Robbie Williams’ “Rock DJ” music video in 2000. Alexis Peterman was involved in a big plotline on "Doctors" in 2011, as the schemingly ill-fated Lauren Porter.


·          Quotes: The word "Shit!" is muffled as Eugene and Marlon flee the cops.


Foreshadowing: Felix says he met with “the lawyer” in regards to accepting the position as manager. We later find out this is Duval (381: Aprils Fool).


·          Continuity: Ian Holloway says Sky News want to interview him about the crash, probably in regards to Fletch and their meeting earlier that month (353: Ten Green Bottles).


Additional Info: Aired in a double 19:00-21:00 timeslot following “Stranger Than Fiction”, a documentary based on comparing the show’s “far-fetched” storylines with real-life similar events in the sporting world. As with 293: Groundhog Day and 325: Down, this episode picks up from where the last episode, and season ended, although for the last time. Also like the Season 7 premiere, introductions to the new characters are all shown as separate stories in a “24” style storytelling. Upon her release, Lynda says she has served two years, eleven months and twenty-one days on the inside (the roses grow…), meaning she went to prison on June 10th 2002. Eugene has known Marlon since he was six, and Curtis took him under his wing "back in the day" (with Charlton being a club close to Curtis' heart). In order, the sixteen photographs at the memorial are Munoz/Colton, Wes Caine, Frank, Caskey, Curtis, Ammo, Lee, Viv (who isn't dead - Barker should take his number), Fletch (dead before the explosion), Charlie Taylor, Dean, Alex O'Brien, Alex Lawlor, Shaun Piper and Scott De Mercado. Relatives wise, Mrs Alexander is the only one present we are aware.


·          Behind The Scenes: Asked why Jaws had just faded away as he had, Jane explained to how they’d always been desperate for him to return, but once Season 9 got going it became impossible to resolve the missing position he was in.


The premiere of Season 9 surpassed that of Season 8 on the night of its airing - with 610,000 tuning in, a further 70,000 more than for 325: Down. As always, the 6:30pm new 'Simpsons' took the top rating for Sky One, with 1.72M watching that night.


Screencaps from 9.1’s original broadcast on Sky One on 16/10/05.


 Lynda and Angie reunited

Lynda is devastated to hear about Fletch



 "There are no others"

Felix works his charm on Lynda



 Harbouring a wanted criminal!

Ashleigh is pursued by Casper



 Danny remembers his lost team


Cass comes face to face with Gene again



 <<SE08 EP32

Back to Season 9 episodes

SE09 EP02>>