EASTENDERS fans were left in hysterics as the soap attempted to convince us that Ruby and Martin were holding hands during socially-distanced filming.
The BBC One soap returned to our screens this evening after going off-air due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
While filming picked up over the summer, the cast have to follow strict health and safety guidelines – including remaining two metres apart and having no physical contact with each other.
However, EastEnders tried clever camera trickery to show lovebirds Martin and Ruby be affectionate with one another – but it didn’t quite impress viewers at home.
At the start of the episode, the new couple could be seen strolling through Albert Square while discussing their evening plans.
The pair, played by Louisa Lytton and James Bye, are walking apart from each other but have their arms reached out as though their hands are touching.
Where their hands would meet is obscured by some bushes and a fence – but fans blasted the soap for the unnatural scene.
While some moaned that the trick was too obvious, others chuckled at how long it made the actors’ arms look.
Taking to Twitter, a fan wrote: “Oh how awkward was Ruby and Martin making out they were holding hands? #EastEnders really shouldn’t have gone to this effort.”
Another added: “Ok, Martin and Ruby ‘holding hands’ was really lame”.
A third agreed: “Really obvz they aren’t holding hands.”
One more laughed: “I can’t take social distancing in soaps seriously… Martin and Ruby certainly wouldn’t be holding hands but still stand 2m apart”.
A viewer tweeted: “Anyone else notice when Martin and Ruby were supposed to be holding hands with blurred railings in front of them?
“Their arms must have been 6 feet long apiece to have made their positioning hand hold be a real thing.”
Despite the distracting hiccup, EastEnders was largely well-received by fans as it made its much-anticipated return, which ended with an explosive cliff-hanger as Dotty finally revealed that Ian was responsible for Sharon’s son’s death.