EastEnders fans in tears as theme song changes to honour Max Branning’s exit

EastEnders fans were in tears following Max Branning's exit as bosses made sure to honour the character who has been in the soap for 15 years.

Played by Jake Wood, the bed-hopping ginger who has slept with half of Albert Square, saw the "doof doofs" ditched just before the credits rolled as he exited the screen for the last time.

As he walked out of the square in the rain, instead of the usual cliffhanger sound, it was replaced by the little-played Julia's Theme.

Named after one of the soap's creators, Julia Smith, it replaces EastEnders' dramatic drums with an emotional piano solo and a choir, to be played only when a major character leaves the show.

The music was also changed for the departures of Barbara Windsor's Peggy Mitchell and Pam St Clement's iconic Pat Butcher.

Following his departure, fans of the soap rushed to Twitter to share their delight over the fact bosses made the change for Max.

One sobbing viewer wrote: "Julia's theme for Max. Damn you @bbceastenders now in tears!!!" followed by a sea of crying emojis.

A second tweeted: "I am very happy they respected you and sent you out wih JULIA'S THEME.

"The look on Little Abi's Face…and yours…remarkable!!! May gooduck follow you."

Another wrote: "So happy Max got a proper send off and got the Julia's theme tune.

"Wish it could have been a happier ending for a true icon though."

Max said goodbye to Walford on Friday evening after he was kicked out of the square following his affair with Linda Carter (Kellie Bright) left him with few friends to turn to.

His granddaughter Abi was left on the doorstep of Lorraine "Rainie" Highway's house, standing by her suitcase with her arms outstretched.

As Rainie (Tanya Franks) welcomed the tot into the house, Max could be seen lurking in the shadows, his eyes welling up with tears.

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Abi turned back and looked at him one last time, her face falling into a frown before Max turned into the night and disappeared.

Jake, 48, has played Max since 2006, quickly becoming a favourite with viewers through his character’s many marriages and affairs over the years.

EastEnders continues on Monday at 7.30pm on BBC One.

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