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"Are you saying that I'm mad?".
~ Graham confronting Kathy when she learns that he killed Rachel, thus discovering his homicidal nature moments before he gets killed-off in the end.

Graham Clark is a fictional character of the British soap opera Emmerdale. He started out as a regular in 1998 before becoming the show's main antagonist in 1999-2000 up until he was killed-off in February 18th 2000.

First appearing as a new schoolteacher in the village's education, Graham's main storyline saw him build a relationship with established character Rachel Hughes before controlling her aspects. This ended with Graham killing Rachel after she discovered he previously murdered his former wife. Afterwards, Graham romantically bonded with Rachel's best friend Kathy Glover. However, she eventually discovered his true colors on the day they were due to leave the village and he got killed-off in the end.

He was portrayed by Kevin Pallister.

History

Graham Clark first appeared as a local schoolteacher who initially wanted to buying Keeper's Cottage. Upon learning that businesswoman Lady Tara Oakwell had evicted former owners Seth Armstrong and Betty Eagleton from their home, however, he refused to buy it. After slowly settling into the village, Graham began dating local resident Rachel Hughes and the pair slowly bonded into a relationship. It was then that the duo were engaged after buying a house of their own. As time went on, Graham's true motives were steadily coming out into fruition when he not only organizes a day-out to the countryside with Rachel. However, he also has her dress reassembly to that of his late wife Rebecca. Despite her reservations at first, Rachel complied and the plan went on ahead. While discussing the future of their upcoming wedding, however, she noticed a photo of Graham and his late wife - whose clothes Rachel found herself wearing in resemblance. This caused Rachel to discover Graham's secret obsession in cementing his life within that of countless woman, before marrying and then murdering them. When being confronted over the matter, Graham lashed out and pursued Rachel to the edge of a clifftop - whereupon she pointed out that he murdered his wife and staged her demise as if she had committed suicide. This effectively caused Graham to snap and push Rachel off the cliff, killing her and she fell to her death.

As he had previously done with his former wife, Graham reported Rachel missing to the police station - which instigated an all-out search for Rachel until her corpse was found in the quarry. Graham feigned shock and sadness to avoid incriminating himself in the role of her death. He soon went on to target Rachel's best friend Kathy Glover, and also sparked a conflict with local landlord Eric Pollard when he became suspicious over the circumstances of Rachel's "disappearance". However, due to Eric's bad reputation as a con artist and Graham's good reputation as a schoolteacher, many people believed Graham over Eric.

Soon enough, Graham devised a plan to break-up Kathy's relationship with her fiancé Bill Fowler. The pair had already been engaged, and eventually Bill began clashing with Graham upon realizing his ulterior intentions. Eventually, Graham succeeded in breaking them apart on the day Kathy and Bill were due to get married; he kissed Kathy behind Bill's back on the night before, and when Bill found out he jilted Kathy at the alter before leaving the village on his motorbike. Later on, Bill's best friend and Kathy's colleague Marlon Dingle learned about this and grew equally skeptical towards Graham as well.

After Graham's plan to ruin Kathy's relationship with Bill had worked, he later resolved to keep Kathy to himself by sabotaging her custody battle for her niece Alice Bates - as her mother Elsa Chappell had recently came back to the village after a few years absence to regain custody of her daughter. This again worked in Graham's favor when he systematically drove Kathy to decide in letting Alice stay with her mother. In doing so, Graham proceeded to build his relationship with Kathy and - after controlling her - managed to get them engaged before the end of Christmas 1999.

In 2000, Graham organizes a weekend holiday trip for him and Kathy as a way of finalizing their potential marriage prospects. It was at this point, however, that Kathy grew suspicious of Graham when Eric tells her in his belief that Graham killed Rachel. Though Kathy seemingly ignored this, she questions Graham over the issue and comes to realize that Graham did kill Rachel when the pair get into an argument. Graham instantly spiraled out of control and tried to attack Kathy, though her reaction caused the vehicle that they are driving to be teetered onto the edge of cliff. In that moment, both Eric and Marlon arrive on the scene to rescue her. However, just moments after Graham confessed to killing Rachel, the car topples over and explodes as it falls down to the beach. The explosion killed Graham, though Kathy had managed to escape on time.

In the aftermath of Graham's death and Rachel's murder becoming public knowledge, Eric was hailed a hero whilst Kathy received support from her ex-husband Chris Tate over the ordeal. At the same time, local policewoman Angie Reynolds was heavily questioned by the press about how she didn't fully investigate Graham in light of Eric's recurrent accusations. Nearly two decades later in 2018, Chris and Rachel's son Joe Tate recalls the events behind his mother's death to his right-hand man Graham Foster. Thereafter Joe's conflict with the Dingles and their acquaintance, Robert Sugden, develops when the circumstances behind Rachel's past relationships prior to meeting Graham are brought up.

Trivia

  • Kevin Pallister (the actor who played Graham Clark) was nominated for "Villain of the Year" at the 2000 British Soap Awards; but lost out to Martin Kemp who played Steve Owen in EastEnders.
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