11 September 2012

Reg Watson - The Very First Neighbours Script - 1984

This is the front of an historic document - the very first script of the Australian soap opera Neighbours, written in 1984 by none other than the show's creator, Reg Watson, formerly producer of England's legendary Crossroads saga!  This script is featured in its entirety at The Perfect Blend website, a brilliant resource for all Neighbours addicts.

Reg Watson first pitched the Neighbours concept to Australian Channel Seven in 1984 and, of course, they took him up on it. The show made its debut there in 1985. 

That wasn't the end of the tale of Neighbours arrival, as the show initially failed to thrill the Aussie TV ratings and so Channel Seven cancelled it. 

Oh no!

 But fear not.

The show was then picked up by Channel Ten, and given a revamp - more comedy was introduced and new characters arrived. The tales from Ramsay Street were suddenly a HUGE hit.   
 "Neighbours" had debuted in Australia on 18 March 1985, and we got our first glimpse of Ramsay Street on 27 October 1986 - the first day of the BBC's daytime service. Des Clarke (Paul Keane) and Daphne Lawrence (Elaine Smith) are pictured.

Wild rumours that this new series would feature a stripper were rampant round where I lived...

Interviewed by Perfect Blend on the occasion of the show's 20th anniversary, Reg Watson recalled: 

 'In pitching the show to Seven and Ten I blithely said, “This concept can run for twenty years”. I knew from the looks on their faces that they thought they'd heard it all before.'

It's still running today, although 21st Century Ramsay Street is rather different from the way it was in the beginning.

But back to 1984 and Reg Watson's very first Neighbours script - the script which introduced us to the suburb of Erinsborough and Paul Robinson, Daphne Lawrence, Des Clarke, Helen Daniels and Max Ramsay - amongst others. It all began with Danny Ramsay's terrifying nightmare. Read the whole script at The Perfect Blend - here. Also,  look here for our very own potted history of the origins of the Neighbours saga and its impact.


Unknown said...

Tony Hatch & I composed the theme to Neighbours despite Reg Watson and his team wanting to call it Ramsay Street in tribute to the UK soap Coronation Street, but it was us that convinced him of the line 'Everybody needs good Neighbours' as we all have them. I'm still around all these years later and you can visit my website at Lots of love and thanks for making Neighbours the most popular theme tune ever Jackie xx

Drew said...

It's a great pleasure to hear from you. Thanks for the information.