The heartthrob, played by Ned Porteous, was seen walking back to the Dales with his suit jacket slung over his shoulder as Cain Dingle told his girlfriend Debbie he'd kill him if he ever returned.
Newly-returned Kim Tate [Claire King], Joe's step grandmother, wants him dead after he tried taking control of her assets, but her right-hand man Graham [Andrew Scarborough] secretly paid Joe to leave and never come back.
However, it looks like Joe can't live without Debbie, who has no idea why disappeared without a word ahead of their wedding.
Viewers wrote on Twitter: "OMG JOE BETTER TELL DEBBIE WHATS HAPPENED SO THEY CAN BE HAPPY SOSJSHSBSBS #Emmerdale
"Yes JOE IS BACK BUT PLS DONT LET IT BE HIM WHO GETS MURDERED #Emmerdale.
"HES BACK! JOES BACK! #emmerdale.
"Hey Joe! #Emmerdale #SoItBegins.
"It’s Joe @NedPorteous #Emmerdale."
Archetypal soap superbitch Kim came face to face with the only character to come close to her over the years: Charity Dingle.
Charity was left reeling when Kim made her feelings clear on her grandson's relationship with Debbie Dingle.
She had to be held back when Kim – played by Claire King, 55 – unleashed her acid tongue on her and targets her children.
Viciously telling Charity how she "doesn't take orders from an ex-prostitute", Kim wasted no time in putting the other villagers in their place.
But when she turned to Charity's son Noah, it proved too much.
Kim told him: "You’re half Dingle and with Chris Tate as a father let’s just say the odds were severely stacked against you."
Charity lunged at her and told her she better watch her back.
Unfortunately for Charity, she did it in front of several witnesses and so later in the week when Kim is attacked she will be prime suspect.
Kim will be pushed through a balcony railing and land on top of a table full of champagne.
She will be left fighting for her life the same day she finally returned home from the village.
But did Charity do it, or was it someone else with a grudge?
The soap has lined up countless suspects all with motive to harm Kim.
The explosive truth will be revealed in Emmerdale this week.
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