VIEWERS of Love/Hate will be at the edge of their seats tonight in what promises to be the popular RTE drama series' most explosive episode to date.
And the bookmakers at least believe another major character will be bumped off.
Producer Suzanne McAuley is remaining tight-lipped about the revelations in store, but revealed to the Sunday Independent that the episode is by far her "personal favourite".
"Episode five is my own personal favourite, an episode I am incredibly proud of," she said. "Love/Hate is full of surprises. I think all of our viewers know we have been building the story on series four and I believe we are hitting the human side of the criminal world this year. Episode five is, in my view, an excellent piece of drama. It's a personal opinion but I do believe it's us at our best."
Last Sunday night, 706,000 viewers tuned in to witness the first fatality of the series, in which Republican terror boss Dano was brutally blasted by one of his own, and the odds are he won't be the last character to suffer such a fate.
Bookmakers Boylesports reported a huge surge in bets last week for flame-haired beauty Susan Loughnane's troubled character, the drug-addicted prostitute Debbie, to be the next for the chop.
"We priced up 'the next Love/Hate character to be killed' market on Wednesday morning, and by noon our traders smelled a rat as all the money was coming for Debbie," said Liam Glynn, PR executive with Boylesports.
"Money started to flow in on Wednesday and we have had to close the market as we currently stand to lose a significant four-figure sum if Debbie is killed off next," he added. "We will just have to take this one by the bullet."
It is not clear if these bets were simply based on a flurry of rumour or fact. The Love/Hate bosses are notoriously secretive and make every effort to avoid any plot leaks or spoilers getting into the public domain.
Tonight's episode sees gang boss Nidge becoming increasingly isolated and paranoid, with an unwelcome ghost from his past, an undercover team of gardai threatening to close in on his empire and, we're promised, more than a few surprises.