EastEnders rocks viewers again as Max Branning and Rainie Cross's marriage is revealed to be a sham

The truth about Max Branning and Rainie Cross’s shock marriage in EastEnders has been exposed.

Max (Jake Wood) returned to Walford earlier this week to run Albert Square’s car lot, but it’s the bombshell revelation that he got married to his former sister-in-law Rainie (Tanya Franks) that has the other residents reeling.

Many viewers suspected that there was more to the story about the newlyweds’ rash decision to the tie the knot, and Friday’s episode (April 27) confirmed that they were right to be suspicious.

After the re-introduction of Max’s newborn granddaughter Abi (named after his late daughter) earlier this week, it became clear in tonight’s instalment that baby Abi is on the only thing bonding Max and Rainie.

This isn’t a love story for the ages — Max and Rainie tied the knot as as a ruse so Max can win custody of baby Abi from Tanya. And let’s just say that they’re barely holding it together already!

During their meeting the child services advocate Calvin, Max had to reign Rainie in when she claimed that she’d saved a child from a hostage situation the day before.

Unfortunately, their cover was nearly blown when Jack Branning (Scott Maslen) turned up in the middle of the meeting to discover that Max and Rainie were pretending his own was their own.

Although a conflicted Jack ultimately went along with their ruse in front of Calvin, the trio were at loggerheads when Jack later balked at letting Rainie having any contact with baby Abi.

“I just want to build a proper family, a good stable home for her,” Max explained to his brother.

Yet when the couple returned to the car lot, Max’s true colours showed as he exploded with rage at Rainie over her behaviour during the child services interview.

“You’re just a crackhead loser… who’s going to mess everything up for me and Abi unless you sort yourself out,” Max seethed. “It’s a business deal. You ain’t gonna get a penny, unless I get Abi. So you better start working a damn-sight harder!”

Fans definitely have some conflicted feelings about Max and Rainie’s sham marriage and the slap heard round the Square (warning: NSFW tweets below):

Digital Spy recently chatted to actor Jake Wood about Friday’s big revelation, and he teased that there will be a very rough road ahead for Max and Rainie as they try to keep up their sham.

“Those are two very complicated characters,” Jake acknowledged. “I think the beauty of what the writers have done, putting those characters together, is that we’ll see how it plays out over the next couple of months, and how they’re going to come to an arrangement with this.

“Rainie is very vulnerable. She has a very complicated history, especially with her history of drugs. She’s currently clean and is hoping to stay that way.

“But as we’ll see, they’ve both got their own needs for pursuing this goal and Rainie’s are financial, but it’s going to get complicated. They’re great characters and it’s a bit of a heady mix – it’s very exciting.”

EastEnders continues on Monday (April 30) at 8pm on BBC One, when Max once again clashes with Phil Mitchell over his return to Walford.

Digital Spy Soap Scoop video – hit play below for all the latest EastEnders spoilers, as Halfway returns with a secret and Phil lets his guilt show.

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