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DI Mark Malone (played by Mark Womack) arrived in Emmerdale earlier this year and has been causing trouble for many of the village residents ever since. While those watching at home are unsure about the newcomer, Express.co.uk spoke to the actor who plays the corrupt cop about why he is sticking around in the Dales.
Mark explained how DI Malone came to the village because of the gun Will Taylor (Dean Andrews) had given Cain Dingle (Jeff Hordley).
Viewers will remember Nate Robinson (Jurell Carter) on the receiving end of Cain’s gunshot when Butler’s farm was under threat from Rustlers.
And this was how DI Malone arrived on the scene, demanding to know why his gun, which Will was in possession of, ended up nearly killing someone.
Mark explained: “He sees [this] opportunity to expand his criminal network and empire, so he decides to stay. The village is quiet and rural and the people are easy to manipulate [and he] very quickly gets everyone doing what he wants.
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“And there’s also another reason [why he’s in the village] which I’m not going to give away.”
While his connection to Will is known, what about Cain?
“As a policeman he knows all about Cain and his past and has done his homework, and that’s one of the reasons why he sees opportunities immediately.”
Billy Fletcher (Jay Kontzle) arrived on the scene fresh out of prison, Will is also an ex-prisoner and Mark said these make them “perfect for being part of Malone’s empire”.
There is also the question of Harriet Finch (Katherine Dow Blyton); she was a former police detective and this is how she met Will – working undercover to take him and the gang he was working for down.
Until now, DI Malone’s scenes have meant he hasn’t bumped into Harriet in the village yet, but surely the vicar and bent cop know one another?
“They might know each other, yes… So far they haven’t bumped into one another. There might be a connection there,” the actor teased.
Perhaps Harriet could find herself being a pawn in DI Malone’s game as he tries to keep Willy, Billy and Cain in line.
However, she may not be the only woman who might find themselves in the crossfire.
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Having met Moira Barton (Natalie J. Robb) once before up at her home when he went to investigate her prize bull being killed – which he in fact had ordered to be done – it seems she could be Cain’s downfall.
When asked whether DI Malone uses Moira to get to Cain, Mark replied: “He might!
“Their relationship thus far is very distant. But I could see something like that [getting romantically involved with one another] happening.
“Maybe? I don’t know. But not in the near future,” he added.
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As for what DI Malone is really like, Mark explained how “he’s a career policeman, but he really lives on that thin line of being a policeman and being a criminal”.
But what is it like to play him?
“He’s a really interesting character. He’s a very cool villain to play, to be honest. He’s very Machiavellian,” the actor commented.
Emmerdale airs Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7pm on ITV.
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