19 May 2005

Home And Away...

1989 brought Home & Away to our shores, snapped up by ITV, who were impressed with the success of Neighbours on the BBC.

The Home & Away saga had begun in Australia in early 1988 and told the story of Tom and Pippa Fletcher, who moved to a caravan park near the small coastal town of Summer Bay in the pilot episode.

Tom and Pippa were foster parents and the series set out to be harder edged than Neighbours, exploring the reactions of the inhabitants of Summer Bay to these newcomers and issues affecting modern day youth that Neighbours hadn't touched.

There was still room for some lovely hammy old clich├ęs, though... Does anybody remember good old Bobby Simpson's amnesia storyline?!

The early cast, including Judy Nunn as fiery but dependable Ailsa, Sharyn Hodgson as chaotic Carly, Justine Clarke as bitchy Roo, Fiona Spence as sticky beak Celia and Alex Papps as love-lorn Frank. Kate Richie as Sally has grown up with the show. She and Ray Meagher, as grumpy but lovable Alf, are the only two original cast members still in the show today.

Like English soaps Brookside and EastEnders and fellow Aussie production Neighbours, Home & Away raised youth interest in soaps.

The soaps also did good social work - Carly's Crisis, the cautionary tale of poor old spiral-permed Carly's brush with the demon booze, was published here in 1989.

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