Tuesday’s episode really cemented for me the fact that Rebecca isn’t an actual character but rather, the embodiment of ~karma~ for Robert.
That’s why they’re overlooking everything she’s ever done, that’s why they’re not letting her have any agency or real responsibility for her actions, because she has to be a victim for it to work.
I’m sure originally she was meant to bring a bit of fresh air and conflicts, stir shit up and create drama for existing characters (ie Robert, Aaron and Chrissie) and she sure did. But while most new-comer characters are more or less plot-devicey, they usually get fleshed-out with time and end up having a life of their own. In the case of Rebecca though, it only got worse instead of better and they absolutely dropped the ball.
Now she serves to represent all of Robert’s wrong-doings, every person he’s ever hurt, every victim of his devious traits, she serves as a wake-up call and a redemption for Robert - by having him recognise how badly he’s treated her and apologise - and of course she serves as his comeuppance, as she is literally carrying within her the ultimate consequence of Robert’s actions, his “punishment”: the baby - which whether or not is ever born or is even his, has already forced him to question his behaviour and cost him aaron (possibly the worst consequence there could be for Robert) so it has played its part regardless.
So yes, this is all about Robert. Using her to demonise him (when it wasn’t fair or necessary), using her to redeem him, using her to carry his child, it’s all about Robert really.. which is problematic in itself but has many other flaws in its narrative, at least for those who care about the character. I think they have overestimated how much we can forget and ignore Rebecca’s original behaviour, they have overestimated how much the audience can accept and forgive a non-character’s actions.
Because, at this point, despite the fact that Rebecca is seemingly a way more likeable and sympathetic person than Robert, I think even the general audience - a lot of whom I’m sure are very critical of and dislike Robert - are still more invested in him and more prone to root for him because Rebecca’s extreme inconsistency makes her untrustworthy. So it kind of takes the focus away from the point - which is that Robert needs to take responsibility - and just makes you angry at Rebecca’s character because why should Robert own up to his shit when she hasn’t at all and keeps acting like an innocent victim (when we know she’s not)? It feels unfair and hypocritical and is quite frankly infuriating (but in the end it’s because they value his character more than hers).
Not to mention that while Robert does need to face up to his mistakes and the pattern of his mistakes, it seems like they are reducing him to a selfish cheater who hurts people and yes the result might look the same but if they’re going to bother with his character and give him a redemption of any sort, they might as well go deeper into his psyche to fish out why he does the things he does rather than just punish him for it (it’s not like there’s nothing to tell here!). Especially considering the reasons for the ONS happening in this case are very different to why he’s cheated in the past and stem from much wider issues within the character so writing it all off as just Robert being a selfish cheater is superficial and lazy, not to mention beside the point.
Hopefully they’ll continue to delve deeper into all things Robert Sugden in the future because there’s loads to uncover :).