With the new year of Home and Away now well underway, we bring you a roundup of all of the characters set to leave Summer Bay in the coming months, and preview some of the new faces set to call the seaside townhome.
Home and Away returned to Australian screens a little over three weeks ago, and the drama has begun in earnest.
As is customary each year, a number of favorite characters will go during the following 12 months, to be replaced by a new cast of people, some of whom have surprising ties to the town!
Will your favorite say his or her final goodbyes this year? Let’s have a look…
Home and Away Departures
Ari Parata (Rob Kipa-Williams)
Ari’s possible departure has been rumored for a long time. With so many outdoor scenes filmed at Sydney’s Palm Beach, fans can usually identify when a character has departed when they stop seeing the actor or actress behind them filming sequences at the famed beach, and actor Rob Kipa-Williams hasn’t been seen filming there in a long time.
Late last year, when Sam Frost shared an Instagram story from the Paratas’ backyard in which a number of cast members were dressed in black as if attending a wake, it seemed virtually certain that a character would be leaving the show in the coming months.
Ari first arrived in Summer Bay at the end of 2019, during the siege at Northern Districts Hospital. His sister-in-law Gemma (Bree Peters) and nephew Nikau (Kawakawa Fox-Reo) soon joined him, and his brother Tane (Ethan Browne) came not long after to round out the cast.
After the remaining members of the Parata clan – Anna Samson (Mia), Kawakawa, and Ethan – as well as their close friends and partners – Courtney Miller (Bella), Lukas Radovich (Ryder), and Jacqui Purvis (Felicity) – were all spotted filming after the wake scenes, it seemed almost certain that the funeral would be for the Parata matriarch himself.
Ari hasn’t been seen since the 2nd episode of the 2022 season, when he was arrested after confessing to the murder of Matthew Montgomery (James Sweeny). He has since been placed in remand, and the Paratas have visited him on a number of occasions, but unusually, all of this has happened off-screen.
Ari is strongly featured in spoilers for episodes coming next week in Australia. “Ari faces an emergency” is the title of the triple-bill that will air on Thursday, March 3rd.
“Is Ari facing a death sentence?” the spoilers question in the second episode. “Ari takes a life or death decision” and “Mia’s hopes are crushed” in the last episode.
While these episodes would have been shot in early September, Rob Kipa-Williams has been back in New Zealand since at least October, according to his Instagram posts. Rob’s résumé also claims that his time as Ari was from 2019 to 2021, albeit this isn’t conclusive proof because résumés are frequently modified to reflect current events.
It’s unclear whether Rob will appear in next week’s episodes or if the drama will continue off-screen, but the clues indicate that Ari’s final episodes will be airing soon.
Logan Bennett (Harley Bonner)
One departure we can be certain of is that of Harley Bonner (Logan Bennett), with Seven announcing back in January that the actor had quit the show following the end of production for 2021.
“Channel Seven can confirm Harley will not return to Home and Away when filming returns in the coming weeks” a spokesperson for Seven stated.
“Harley leaves with our best wishes and sincere thanks for his work on the show.”
Although no reason for Harley’s resignation has been given, the news came after Seven announced that all employees must be completely vaccinated against COVID-19 by January 10, 2022.
Dr. Logan made his first appearance as part of the emergency team flown in to assist Mia, Nikau, and Dean Thompson (Patrick O’Connor) following their car accident in August. Logan was then transferred to Northern Districts Hospital, where he quickly took over as Head of Emergency from Tori Morgan (Penny McNamee).
Logan’s relationship with girlfriend Mackenzie Booth (Emily Weir) has been strained this week following the arrival of his ex, Neve Spicer (Sophie Bloom), and while we wouldn’t expect Logan’s departure until around June 2022, it’s possible that scenes were reworked if his departure wasn’t expected so soon.
During the current climate, we have already seen indications of filming being thrown off kilter. Neve’s arrival sequences were originally shot in August with Melissa Bonne in the lead part, but were reshot in the last week of September with Sophie Bloom in the role.
It’s unclear whether Neve will play a factor in Logan’s exit…
Jasmine Delaney (Sam Frost)
Another confirmed exit is Sam Frost (Jasmine Delaney), whose departure was announced in December. It is understood that the actress will be moving to Melbourne in a bid to be closer to friends and family.
“We support and respect Sam’s decision to leave Home and Away,” a Seven spokesperson said in a statement confirming the news.
“Sam leaves with our sincere thanks and very best wishes for the future.”
Sam initially announced that she would be taking a break from the show whilst she underwent a medical procedure and subsequently got vaccinated, but, just a few weeks later, it was announced that she would be leaving the show entirely.
“I quit my dream job at Home And Away to look after my mental health,” Sam later stated on Instagram. “I needed to take a step back, go home, and be with my family. And most importantly take good care of my health and well-being.”
However, it has since been speculated that Sam Frost may make a return to the show in the coming months. Lynne McGranger, who plays Irene, spoke to NovaFM presenters Fitzy and Wippa and said that “the door is not closed, it’s very much an open door.”
Lynne added that Sam was now vaccinated, “possibly boosted as well,” hinting that her vaccination status may enable her to return to Home and Away in the future.
“The way that she is currently gone from the bay, there is plenty of room for her to come back,” Lynne said. “I’m sure, that as we speak, she is in negotiations with the producers.”
There has been no formal confirmation that Sam will return to set, but it is expected that Jasmine will depart in June. Her character is in for a hectic few months before she departs since it appears that at least one cousin will be arriving soon…
Ryder Jackson (Lukas Radovich)
We first reported on our speculation that Ryder Jackson would be bidding farewell to Summer Bay back in November.
Ryder arrived unexpectedly in Summer Bay in October 2017, surprising Alf Stewart (Ray Meagher) by announcing that he was the son of Alf’s estranged daughter Quinn (Lara Cox).
After Georgie shared another photo of her embracing her on-screen nephew, Courtney Miller later added fuel to the fire when she posted a picture of a special artwork she had created for Lukas, referencing his character.
Lukas’ résumé currently claims that he will play Ryder until 2021, similar to Rob’s, and he has been posting photos from a vacation to the United Kingdom this week.
Summer Bay House’s scenes, whatever they are, are expected to premiere in Australia in May 2022.
Bella Nixon (Courtney Miller)
The reappearance of Emmett Ellison (see below) fueled fan conjecture that Bella could be on the verge of a lucrative employment opportunity, which could see her leave Summer Bay after 312 years.
Courtney Miller hasn’t been seen filming in Palm Beach in almost a year, and new social media posts indicate that she has relocated to Melbourne.
Courtney has recently created an Etsy store to sell prints, indicating that she is focusing more on her artistic abilities.
In recent weeks on-screen, Bella has returned to photography and has moved in with Dean and Ziggy (Sophie Dillman) at the farmhouse, leaving the apartment she had shared with brother Colby. We’re sure that any decision to leave Summer Bay would be difficult, especially now that Bella’s relationship with Nikau is on track.
If we do have to say goodbye to Bella, we may anticipate her to depart around June 2022.
Home and Away Arrivals
With so many departures already confirmed for 2022, the show needs some fresh faces to bring this year’s storylines to life.
Rose Delaney (Kirsty Marillier)
Kirsty Marillier, who will play the new regular character Rose, has been confirmed as an official addition to the cast.
Seven revealed the casting in November, when Kirsty had already been filming for six weeks on the show, so we may see Rose on our screens as early as mid-March.
Rose is another new police officer, according to scenes shot in Palm Beach during the last few months, offering a comrade to fellow cop Cash Newman (Nicholas Cartwright), who only arrived in town in August.
Seven had kept Rose’s entire name a secret at the time of their initial announcement, but an update to Kirsty’s résumé has now revealed it… Delaney, Rose.
Naturally, we can only assume that Rose and Jasmine are related in some way.
Jasmine’s mother died in a vehicle accident when she was six years old, we’ve learned over the years. Her father left a year later, unable to cope with being a single parent, leaving Jasmine to grow up in the care of foster parents.
While she had a nice life with her foster parents, Jasmine was disappointed that she had no family or acquaintances from her previous life to invite to her wedding to Robbo (Jake Ryan) in 2019.
This could indicate that Rose is related to Jasmine through her original parents in some way that she is unaware of, ranging from a half-sister to a cousin or even a sister-in-law.
Jasmine’s background has brought up again this week in Australian episodes, as she spoke to lover Cash about her distaste to celebrating birthdays following her mother’s death and father’s absence, in a move that we’re sure can’t be down to coincidence.
Xander (Luke Van Os)
The mystery thickens even more with the addition of Luke Van Os as Xander, a man whose surname is unknown and who is characterized as “a strange individual who arrives in the Bay searching for answers.”
Luke’s character is said to be a relative of a Summer Bay favorite, and he’s been seen filming multiple scenes with Sam Frost, the two looking close as they walk side by side down the beach.
Could Xander be Jasmine’s long-lost brother, and hence a Delaney?
Although Luke is new to Summer Bay, he has a family tie to the Sydney drama. Chris Hemsworth, who played Kim Hyde from 2004 to 2007 before moving to Hollywood, is his cousin.
Talking to Australia’s The Daily Telegraph, Luke revealed that he turned to his cousin for advice before his audition.
“When I was asked for a callback for the chemistry test, I actually zoomed with Chris the night before and we ran [the scene] and kind of just got into a good headspace,” Luke explained.
Luke filmed his first scenes in late October, and we estimate he should making his debut appearance towards the end of March.
Dimitri Poulos (Salvatore Coco)
Salvatore Coco would be resuming his role as Dimitri Poulos, 17 years after his previous appearance on the show, we announced late last year. Leah’s (Ada Nicodemou) brother, the eldest of the Poulos siblings, was last seen at her 2005 wedding to Dan Baker.
Since then, there hasn’t been much mention of Dimitri, but the recent arrival of his son, Theo (Matt Evans), has resurrected him in the thoughts of viewers. Theo and his father were discovered to have a strained relationship, and Dimitri ejected Theo after discovering that he had been defrauding his car garage’s customers.
A fan photo of Salvatore filming in Palm Beach with Lynne McGranger (Irene) and Harley Bonner verified Dimitri’s homecoming.
In response to our story about Dimitri’s return, Salvatore commented on Instagram that the bay isn’t going to know what’s hit it!
“The material I was given was so fulfilling as an actor I had so much to work with and @thisismattevans was really awesome to work with,” he said.
Dimitri was always the most irritable of the Poulos siblings, as he tried to live up to his father’s expectations and keep the family’s traditions alive—but may following in his father’s footsteps, or perhaps going farther, have contributed to his poor relationship with his son?
It seems that we’re soon going to be delving more into Theo’s upbringing very soon, with spoilers for next week indicating that Theo will be recalling his “traumatic past”.
A photo of a filming schedule posted on an Instagram account by a crew member last year also revealed that Dimitri’s activities will cause problems for his sister, with Leah presumably making the difficult decision to report her brother for some unknown misdemeanor!
We expect Dimitri’s first scenes to appear around April of this year, depending on Seven’s erratic scheduling of the show.
Emmett Ellison (JR Reyne)
Last year, Emmett Ellison came to Summer Bay as a photographer for Sienna Blake (Rose Riley), the agent that hired Nikau as a model.
Bella was soon working as his apprentice, and the two became fast friends thanks to their common passion for photography. Bella’s work had a lot of potential, so Emmett urged her to co-organize an exhibition in the city, exposing their work to Sydney’s finest art collectors.
When Emmett was headhunted and won a job with a renowned New York agency, Bella was upset. He couldn’t pass up the opportunity, so he flew out of Summer Bay in late July (early September in the UK), promising Bella that if she ever needed anything – “a reference for a gallery, a couch to sleep on in NYC” – he’d be there for her.
In early December, JR Reyne posted a photo to Instagram from Palm Beach, the real-life location for many of Summer Bay’s external scenes.
JR was photographed on set again a few days later by fan account @theking.j.r. This time, he was dressed in the same black leather jacket that defined his character, lending credence to the theory that Emmett may return in the new year for a brief guest appearance.
Tex Wheeler (Lucas Linehan)
Spotted for the first time on set this week was another new face in the form of actor Lucas Linehan, with his résumé confirming that he is playing a character named Tex Wheeler.
Kawakawa posted an Instagram story of Lucas filming with Ethan Browne outside the surf club, in a scene which was also seen by witnessed by fans on the Home and Away Tour.
Another scene filmed also appears to show Tex getting up close and personal with the new copper Rose.
At this moment in time, nothing further is known about the character, or how long he’ll be around.
Unknown characters (Angelina Thomson, Rob Mallett and Jamaica Vaughan)
Recent photos taken at Palm Beach have shown three new characters set to join the show later in the year.
Actors Jamaica Vaughan, Angelina Thomson, and Rob Mallett have photographed filming sequences for the program earlier this month, according to the Daily Mail.
Rob Mallett was observed gazing at a poster for a live music event at Salt called ‘Lyric’ while wearing a blue singlet and a black trilby hat. During an animated conversation with Angelina Thomson’s character, the character took one of the posters.
Fans of the event speculate that he could be a musician based on his appearance and his focus on the poster, but it’s unclear if he’s a backpacker in town for a quick performance at the live music night or a newbie who’ll be staying in Summer Bay.
Jamaica Vaughan was photographed on the beach in a separate incident, but the images provided no further context. On her forearm, her character was shown with a big snake-like tattoo.
There’s currently no information on any of the characters, including whether or not they’ll be staying in Summer Bay for the long haul. We anticipate seeing them on screen in June.