Viewers were understandably gutted.

EastEnders fans were left in shock following Tuesday night’s episode, which saw one of the soaps most-loved couples, Mick and Linda Carter, teetering on the edge of a break-up.

Things went from bad to worse for Danny Dyer’s character Mick, as evil Stuart Highway’s plan to frame the pub manager continued to tick over nicely.

In this episode, even his loyal wife Linda began to have her doubts over whether he really had shot Stuart. His lawyer, Ritchie Scott, informed her that they had a sworn police statement from a man who claimed that he had sold Mick the gun which had bullets matching those used in the shooting.

EastEnders Linda Carter Mick Carter

Soon after learning the news, Linda headed to the prison where Mick is currently situated, and confronted him with the evidence.

Clearly furious, Linda appeared convinced that her husband was lying about his innocence.

Mick attempted to defend himself, claiming that although he wished he’d shot Stuart, he didn’t do it.

But that was enough for Linda, played by Kellie Bright, who took Mick’s denial as an admission of guilt. She said, “I’ve stood by you through all of this and now you’re telling me that you tried to kill him,

“What is it you always say? Family comes first? Then, I need to protect mine!”

Linda then stormed out of the prison without a second glance back at her husband, before returning to her family at the Queen Vic to tell them they had to choose between her or Mick.

EastEnders viewers were gutted by the shocking turn of events, claiming that they couldn’t believe Linda not standing by her husband after all this time.

One particularly upset fan said, ‘This is unforgivable behaviour out of Linda 😡#EastEnders’, while another agreed, saying, ‘What has gotten into Linda??? #eastenders’.

A third fan commented, ‘Linda don’t you dare turn your back on Mick😭 He needs you #EastEnders xx’.

However, some viewers questioned whether Linda may have been bluffing in breaking up with Mick, in order to ‘get back’ at the evil Stuart.

EastEnders Stuart Linda Carter

One commented on social media, ‘Does anyone else think Linda is putting on a show for Stuart 2 play him at his own game! #EastEnders @kelliebright76 @bbceastenders @DuncanLindsay’.

While another echoed similar thoughts, saying, ‘Linda could be playing a game to get back at Stuart I really hope she is #EastEnders’. While a third fan also said, ‘I have a feeling Linda is playing a game, she knew it would get back to Stuart #EastEnders’.

What do you think?

EastEnders returns to BBC One at 7.30pm on Thursday 4th October.