Arthur Thomas stepped up his campaign of terror against 'rival' Archie Sharma last night, and Emmerdale fans were left horrified by his actions.
On Tuesday night (November 12), schoolboy Arthur lashed out in anger at Archie for 'ruining' his dad's birthday and turned nasty towards the younger boy - punching him and knocking him unconscious to the floor.
And some of those watching from home are terrified that Arthur is turning into an abuser like his dad Ashley before him.
Although many soap fans remember Ashley fondly as the village vicar, the now deceased character inflicted a disturbing pattern of abusive behaviour towards his elderly father Sandy (played by the recently departed Freddie Jones).
In 2012, the elder abuse storyline came to a head when Laurel witnessed husband Ashley lashing out at his dad.
Laurel subsequently demanded answers from Ashley and a furious showdown left their marriage in tatters.
Viewers had seen Ashley snap after caring for his elderly father, and eventually took out his stresses on him with violence - even hitting him.
Arthur is behaving exactly like Ashley did when Ashley was being abusive towards his dad.
After being caught out and confessing, Ashley was arrested and cautioned - leading him to resign from his job and lose his wife.
Unemployed and homeless, Ashley broke down, having lost everything, while his father went into a home for the elderly.
Now that Ashley's son Arthur has also started being violent towards the meeker Archie, fans are worried he's following in the footsteps of his dad.
One wrote: "Arthur taking after Ashley when he was beating and abusing Sandy."
Another said: "Arthur used to be such a cute kid. Remember Ashley used to hit his dad Sandy."
A third said: "Arthur is behaving exactly like Ashley did when Ashley was being abusive towards his dad. A cycle of abuse is emerging here. @Emmerdale snaps once again. Shining a spotlight on the most vulnerable."
"Wow, Arthur is definitely his father's son, in the fact he likes to abuse people meant to be close to him. But let me guess, Laurel will wrap him up in cotton wool and say he's lashing out because of losing Ashley?"
In a disturbing sequence of events on Tuesday, Archie was knocked unconscious and left lifeless on the floor of a pirate ship.
The nasty altercation came after Arthur told him no one missed his mum Rachel now that she was dead.
He made it clear he hadn't been welcome to the picnic for Ashley's birthday, before lashing out with his fists.
When Laurel and Jai found poor Archie on the floor, Arthur told them he'd fell by accident.
But later, Jai and Laurel found more bruises on him.
However, when they questioned Archie about how he got the marks, Arthur blurted out that Jimmy King was to blame!
While some viewers branded Arthur a "demon child", others insisted blaming the boy was too easy, and suggested he needs help with his anger issues.
Ever since Archie appeared in the Dales, Arthur has clearly been jealous of the attention he has been getting from Laurel.
But blaming Jimmy was a step too far for some of those watching from home, who claim he could never hurt a fly.
One of the Arthur haters tweeted: "Whoa Arthur! Really becoming a little demon child now!"
Another said: "Poor little Archie... Arthur's a bully."
A third added: "Never liked Arthur, but he has completely gone off the rails, horrible little boy."
"Ashley will be turning in his grave at Arthur, what has happened to him? Vile child," blasted another.
However, some fans were more sympathetic, with one tweeting: "Arthur isn't vile. What Arthur is doing to Archie is awful and blaming Jimmy for it terrible. If you listen to what Arthur says to Archie, to me it explains a lot.
"Arthur needs someone to recognise that he needs attention and understanding. I'm not excusing bullying, far from it."Another said: "I wish someone would recognise what Arthur is going through #Emmerdale."
A third added: "Oh this Arthur and Archie stuff is sad. These two boys are great little actors."
"Laurel is so insensitive," said one more. "Why did she go back on her promise for it just to be her and her two kids that day? Why did she ruin something so special for Arthur?"
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