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Ruby Allen is a fictional character and major anti-hero of the BBC British soap opera drama EastEnders. She served as a supporting protagonist in 2005 and 2006 before returning for her second stint as one of the main protagonists in 2018-2019, later serving as a major antagonist in 2020-2021 and a mentioned character in 2022.
The character initially started out as a non-villainous high-school student who had a complicated relationship with her father, Johnny Allen, due to his gangland reputation - which is partly responsible for the deaths of both her late sister Scarlet and their mother Stephanie in the past. Thereafter she established a close friendship with local resident Stacey Slater and a failed romance with the latter's brother Sean. Following her return in 2018, Ruby was involved in a high-profiled storyline where she became the victim of rape. It is then afterwards that she became villainess as her friendship with Stacey broke down to the point where she seduce Stacey's ex-husband, Martin Fowler, and later married him whilst perpetuating some illict activities.
She is portrayed by actor Louisa Lytton.
Ruby Allen first came to Albert Square at Walford, a fictional borough in East London, from March 2005. She was looking for her estranged father, Johnny Allen, and came accross local resident Stacey Slaters in the hopes of seeking directions. Ruby was then mugged and was rescued by Johnny's henchman Danny Moon, who later delivered Ruby to her father once her identity was revealed. Ruby gradually reconciled with Johnny after the pair fall out over the fact that she left school in the midst of doing exams and the police were summoned to question her about it.
As the months went on, Ruby bonds with Johnny and his girlfriend Tina Stewart. At the same time she and Stacey became close friends after hanging out at educational and at the square together. But then problems emerged when Ruby learns that her father is a gangland boss who, according to his enemy Peggy Mitchell and fellow acquaintance Pat Evans, has perpetuated numerous criminal activities. She later confronts Johnny over the allegations and comes to realize that he is partly responsible for the deaths of both her sister Scarlett and their mother Stephanie, as the pair were recently killed by Johnny's gangland rivals due to his crimes.
Soon enough, Ruby gets entangled in Johnny's conflict against the Mitchell family along with another situation that Stacey is involved in - Stacey had given pub landlady Chrissie Watts a false alibi to cover-up her involvement in the murder of her late villainous husband, Den Watts, back in February 2005. As such Ruby bonds with Stacey's cousin Kat when she and the Mitchell defend Ruby from her father, as Ruby has grown scared of Johnny ever since she discovered his criminal activities. Ruby further resents Johnny after finding out that he has cheated on Tina with his barmaid Amy. Thereafter she tells Tina about this, and then Tina leaves after confronting and breaking up with Johnny for his actions. However, Ruby is adviced by Stacey to reconcile with Johnny and she does so just as Johnny and the Mitchell Brothers are in a standoff. This subsquently allows the Mitchells to help get Chrissie arrested for Den's murder in order to exonerate Peggy's daughter Sam, who had been framed by Chrissie for killing Den.
Afterwards, Ruby being dating a guy named Juley Smith and dismisses her father's objections about him. But then it turns out that Peggy's eldest son, Phil Mitchell, is paying Juley to have a relationship with Ruby and then dump her - which is part of Phil's plan to get one over Johnny due to their feud. Ruby later finds out the truth and has a drunken stupor by the next day, but Phil rescues her with Stacey's help. Johnny then whisks Ruby away from Walford in order to avoid getting caught for his crimes.
But then on the second anniversary of her sister and mother's death, Ruby wintesses Johnny's final confrontation with both Phil and his brother Grant; the Mitchell Brothers are out to get revenge on Johnny for ordering Danny to murder Den's illegitimate son Dennis Rickman, also the adoptive brother and husband of the Mitchell Brothers' former lover Sharon Watts. The conflict escalates when Johnny captures the Mitchell Brothers and orders Danny to kill them, only for Danny to get accidentally killed by his own brother Jake. It is then Ruby finds a phone and learns of what Johnny did to Dennis. She confronts him before calling the police and giving her father an ultimatum; either surrender to the police and confess all his gangland crimes, or she will disown him for good. Johnny ultimately gives himself up to prove his love for Ruby, and in doing so also admits to killing his successor Andy Hunter as well as ordering Dennis' death.
Thereupon Ruby returns to Walford with Jake and the two work together at Johnny's nightclub, Scarlet. Months later they fall out when Ruby gets seduced by Stacey's brother, Sean, and is manipulated into hiring him and romancing with him. Jake eventually contacts her father about this and Johnny summons Ruby to question her about Sean. She defends her boyfriend from her father and leaves, after which Johnny decides to summon Sean to try and force him to stay away from Ruby. When he does come to visit Johnny in prison, however, Sean instead taunts him about using Ruby and leaves. Johnny then attempts to have Sean killed, but fails when he suffers a heart attack and is rushed to hospital. When Ruby learns what happened, she blames Jake and fires him; Jake in turn disowns Ruby before leaving her to be comforted by Sean. Moments later, Ruby learns that her father has died from the heart attack.
After her father's funeral, Ruby arranges to leave Walford with Sean. But she is left heartbroken when Sean reveals that he has been using her and throws Johnny's ashes in her face before dumping her. Ruby then leaves the square on her own.
In 2018, Ruby returns and reconciles with Stacey along with the latter's ex-husband Martin Fowler. They bond together and Ruby sets up her own nightclub. She then goes for a night out with Martin's friends, but ends up getting drunk and left unconcious throughout the event. By the next day, Ruby is left traumatized and it becomes clear that she was raped after Martin's so-called friends had sex with her body whilst she remained unconcious - which is therefore rape since they did it against her consent. Ruby struggles to cope with the ordeal and Stacey comforts her by recounting on the fact that she too had been raped, by Peggy's malevolent former husband Archie, in the past; Stacey admits to having killed Archie and attempts to encourage Ruby to stand up for herself. She eventually does so in both the square and in court, which ends with her rapists being convicted for what they did.
In 2019, Ruby comes face-to-face with Sean and slaps him as revenge for decieving her back in 2006.
By 2020, Ruby has strolled onto a darker path after a romantic encounter with Stacey's ex-lover Max Branning and humilating his enemy Ian Beale in public. It is then she and Stacey fall out to the point where Ruby seduces Martin, marries him in a private wedding, fakes a pregnancy to keep him to herself, aborts the unborn child against his wishes, and frames Stacey for causing her 'miscarriage' along with GBH after Ruby falls down a flight of stairs during a fight between them over Stacey's discovery of Ruby's fake pregnancy. Ruby then recruits ex-wayward Dotty Cotton as the assistant manager of her nightclub before teaming up with busineswoman Suki Panesar to evict Stacey's family.
In 2021, Stacey's mother Jean discovers the extent of Ruby's deceit and confronts her. Ruby then calls the police on Jean for withholding cannabis at her house, but Jean in turn implicates Ruby as the perpetuator by claiming to the police that Ruby is operating a drug trade in order to rebuild her late father's criminal empire under her own name this time. At the same time, Martin confronts Ruby for her lies after Stacey reveals the truth to him. Ruby attempts to deceive Martin, but he ignores her and the police then arrive to question Ruby over the statement Jean has just made. Ruby is then arrested and taken to prison, whereas Stacey is released after Ruby's charges against her were proven false.
Following her off-screen imprisonment, Ruby arranges for Martin and his kids to be evicted in retaliation; Stacey foils her scheme, though, by inviting Martin and their daughter Hope along with their other family members to live with her.
- Louise Lytton (the actress who played Ruby Allen) has often been nominated for several awards following the praise received from both her character's performance and it's contributing storylines.
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