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Ten controversial stories from the Neighbours back catalogue

We look back at 10 contentious storylines from Neighbours’ history as the show’s back catalogue launches on Amazon Video and Freevee on Thursday and brand-new episodes arrive later this year.

The news that previous seasons of Neighbours will start to appear on Amazon Prime and Freevee starting on Thursday, February 23, has fans all over the world jubilating.

Before the show returns in the second half of the year, Amazon has said that at least one season would be uploaded each month, starting with the 2012 season.

Throughout the past 37 years, Neighbours has included plenty of heart-pounding drama, from baby lies and deceptions to clandestine romances and murder. Here is our exhaustive list of contentious tales to watch out for!

Baby Steph’s Lie (2010)
Steph Scully (Carla Bonner) and Libby Kennedy (Kym Valentine) were the closest of friends for the greater part of a decade. But as Libby and Dan’s (Brett Tucker) marriage crumbled, he wound up spending the night with her best friend. Steph soon discovered she was pregnant, as is often the case in the land of soaps.

Although she was able to conceal the fact by claiming the child belonged to Toadie (Ryan Moloney), Paul (Stefan Dennis), who played the secret for everyone to hear at Charlie’s, eventually discovered the truth and outed her. Of course, Steph had already married Toadie at that point in order to make the baby deception seem even more plausible.

What started as an oversight turned into a Ramsay Street brawl as pregnant Steph attempted to talk to a furious Libby who had barricaded herself in with her parents at No. 28. But when Steph’s exclamations of “Libby!” grew too loud, a furious Libby went outdoors for a fight.

I wish I had never met you. Steph received a hiss from Libby, ending their friendship.

Dee Is Alive! (2017)
When Madeleine West returned to the character of Dee Bliss in 2017, the rich material of “what happened to Dee?” finally solidified itself.

The person claiming to be Dee said that Willow, her partner Toadie’s child, was born after they survived their automobile accident in 2003. (Mieke Billing-Smith).

She was ultimately revealed to be a con artist by the name of Andrea, and she ended up sleeping with Toadie while he was FaceTiming his wife.

 

The story was told in five chapters over the course of three and a half years, and it is far simpler to summarise than to read each chapter in detail:

It’s Dee, but it’s really Andrea in early 2017! When Toadie first sees Willow, his “daughter,” he discovers that she is really another ruse. Toadie shares a bed with “Dee.”
Mid-2017: “Park Bench Man” and the woman sitting on the bench. Is Dee the real deal after all?
Around the middle or end of 2018, Sindi (Marisa Warington) appears with Hugo (John Turner). He is actually Toadie’s child, but with Andrea, who is currently in a mental hospital. Heather/Alice tries to murder Sonya.
In 2019, Andrea located a woman by the name of Karen, and it turns out that Dee actually survived!
2020: Dee decides against maintaining a connection with Toadie and instead wants to get to know her mother and sister.
The plot’s unexpected turns split viewers, and many of them questioned whether the writers were simply making it up as they went along.

Even though Dee survived in the end, the plot was greatly enhanced by the presence of Andrea and her outrageous mother Heather (Kerry Armstrong). maybe she was Alice?

Sarah and Karl’s Relationship (1997/1998)
Nobody anticipated the union of these two persons. The nearby physician was Karl (Alan Fletcher). Well regarded, happily married to Susan (Jackie Woodburne), and the father of three kids. His helper Sarah (Nicola Charles) was a lot younger. What would she discover about him?

Yet as they continued to collaborate, their affections for one another deepened, and in the 1997 season finale—hailed as one of the best—Karl and Sarah enjoyed a passionate kiss.

In a now-famous scene, Susan was seen slapping Karl after the truth emerged some months later.

 

The story’s beauty, perhaps? For many years after the incident, it had an impact on the show. The fact that Karl and Susan were put to the test by the plot even when Sarah returned in 2013, and then again in 2016, was a testament to the acting and storytelling of the day.

Yes, and it was discovered afterwards that Karl and Sarah did not simply kiss…

Ingrid Hoyland (2003-2007)
There are many surprising things that Natalie Bassingthwaighte did while playing Isabelle Hoyland on Neighbours, making it difficult to single out just one.

Was she attempting to trap Karl (Alan Fletcher) by lying about the baby’s father? Was it having a sexual relationship with Paul’s daughter’s ex-boyfriend? Was it trying to give her daughter a sibling by stealing Karl’s sperm? Or was it romancing Mal (Benji McNair), the son of Karl and Susan?

Whatever the case, Izzy was followed by controversy. She frequently argued with any of Ramsay Street’s prominent ladies, including Susan, Lyn (Janet Andrewartha), and Elle when she wasn’t plotting to get her own way (Pippa Black).

Then again, aren’t those vixens everyone’s favourite villains in the end? She developed into one of those characters that we loved to despise.

air crash (2005)
About Izzy Hoyland, only her stepson (sort of!) was possibly more cunning at the time than she was. When Izzy and Paul (Stefan Dennis) started dating, Robert (Adam Hunter), pretending to be Cameron (Adam Hunter’s twin brother), arrived in Erinsborough and caused mayhem. They were unaware that Robert had incapacitated Cameron so he could exact retribution on his family.

What followed was a protracted and complicated tale of who was Cameron and who was Robert as Robert abruptly switched places with his brother to make Cameron responsible for the commotion he had started, including an incident that occurred months earlier.

A bomb was planted aboard the light plane carrying numerous Erinsborough favourites across the Bass Strait when it was travelling to Tasmania. The bomb exploded in midair, killing everyone in the Bishop family instantly and upsetting the community. Notwithstanding how dramatic it was, Robert Robinson’s reign of terror had just just begun.

Isle of Fire (2020)
Speaking about reigns of terror, Elly (Jodi Anasta), the niece of Karl and Susan Kennedy, became the target of one in 2017 when her ex-boyfriend Finn (Rob Mills) started working as a teacher at Erinsborough High.

In his first tenure, Finn cultivated student Xanthe (Lilly van der Meer), interfered with Susan’s multiple sclerosis treatment to get promoted to acting principle, accused Elly of murder, and then claimed he had a brain aneurysm that had affected his judgement. Although he was imprisoned, this wasn’t the last time we saw him.

Similar to Dee Bliss’s comeback, Finn’s storyline was divided over several chapters. He then made a comeback in 2018, this time posing as a crippled guy named Patrick and dating Elly’s half-sister Bea (Bonnie Anderson), and eventually ran Xanthe over quickly. He was discovered camping in the woods months later, having been pushed off a cliff by Susan. Many months later, he came out of his coma with amnesia and thought he was still 19 years old.

Due to her sorrow over what she had done, Susan took Finn in, and he became an integral part of the family, falling in love with Elly’s younger sister Bea (Bonnie Anderson) once more and making amends with his own.

But, as Elly’s 35th birthday drew near, Finn’s memory came back, and he hatched a plan to murder many of the people living on Ramsay Street. He detonated a bomb, shot Gary Canning (Damien Richardson) in the heart with an arrow, set a boat on fire, tried to kill Elly, slipped, broke his neck, and drowned in a shallow grave while Elly watched.

Annalise and Lou (1993)
Lou Carpenter and Annalise Hartman met when Annalise Hartman (Kimberley Davies), Beth Brennan’s friend (Natalie Imbruglia), first arrived on Ramsay Street (Tom Oliver). Beth was seeking for a roommate, and he was the landlord of No. 24. Lou quickly fell in love with Annalise and encouraged her to live with Beth and Cameron (Benjamin Mitchell).

Lou and Annalise started getting along after just three episodes on the show, but even though Beth spotted Annalise kissing another guy, it was Annalise’s mother’s bombshell that put an end to their brief relationship.

Lou discovered that Annalise was only 17 years old, which made her more than thirty years Lou’s junior and ready to begin Year 12. Consequently, Lou put an end to their relationship shortly after this. Would the plot still hold up in 2023? Most likely not. Was it contentious? Of course!

Glen and Lucy (1991)
Lucy Robinson (Melissa Bell), who had returned to the show in a new appearance, started dating Glen Donnelly (Richard Huggett). There was just one problem—the two were actually half-siblings!

Despite knowing the truth, the couple continued to date and eventually got ready to get married. Fortunately for them, their brother Paul (Stefan Dennis), who acted quickly to stop the situation, grabbed them just in time. When their grandmother and disapproving father intervened, Glen and Lucy went their separate ways.

The plot was fully broadcast in Australia, but due to the strict censorship of the UK, it was left off the air until many years later.

Suicide of Julie (1994)
Suicide? Given that Julie (Julie Mullins) died tragically, many people could object to the language, but there’s a backstory.

The script team at the time concocted the plot that Julie would go into depression and, unable to cope, commit suicide by jumping off the castle. This tale was developed following the decision to kill off Julie, which itself followed Julie Mullins’ resignation. The actor acted it out in this way before she fell. Up until the day of filming, when the network intervened and suggested that she should instead die by drunkenly falling to her death.

After making it appear as if the actress committed suicide, she was unhappy. After a murder inquiry, it was determined that Julie’s death was merely the result of the character making a mistake, but such is life. Disputed on the screen? No. Dispute off-screen? Absolutely! About twenty years later, Julie made another appearance on an alternate reality show!

Angus and Rachel (2007-2008)
It’s a common theme in soap operas: the pupil-teacher dynamic. Although it had been done before and had been done again, there was something new in the friendship between Rachel (Caitlin Stasey) and her teacher Angus (Jonathan Wood). The distinction? Even though Rachel was aware that the relationship wasn’t meant to be, she persisted all the way through.

Over the course of ten months, Rachel and Angus’s romance played out as the teen chasing the teacher who wasn’t interested in any of it. Slowly, he became exhausted, and they kissed. They tried to stop it, but they couldn’t because he acquired a permanent job at the high school.

Angus was given a prison term, but he was released after a short while, and they resumed their conversation.

Although several individuals were thrown for a loop by the whirlwind, Angus eventually went to Adelaide, and Rachel decided to stay in Ramsay Street to engage in yet another unsuitable fling despite her desire to follow him. How charming!

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