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Sunday, September 28, 2014

More Thoughts on Aussie Soap Neighbours

Since Hulu has posted 65 episodes of Neighbours, I thought it was time to write a catch up on what has been happening on Ramsey Street. This doesn't include any spoilers past what is posted on Hulu so far, and takes us nearly through the end of August's original Australian airings.

I figured this was a good place to write a summary as the last week of August and early September included a tornado in the soap town of Erinsborough. This doesn't include every plot that happened since Hulu started posting episodes, but just my highlights.

Paul is one of the original Neighbours characters, who has been on the show on and off over the years. He's the mayor of the town and owns many of the businesses. He's mourning the loss of his niece Kate (who American soap fans should recognize in flashbacks as B&B's Ivy). Paul has a nephew named Daniel, who has a very relaxed vibe and is nothing like Paul. Kate was engaged to Mark, and he and Paul try to get along even after her death.

Karl and Susan have been on Neighbours for about 20 years, and are happily married. Karl is a physician, while Susan is the principal of the local school. If you need someone to talk to Karl and Susan are always there to help.

Of course, my favorite character is Bossy. If you don't know who Bossy is, you haven't been paying attention to the adorable dog. Kyle is his owner, and he's engaged to Georgia who is a nurse at the hospital. Georgia also sings, but had to have vocal surgery. At the point we are with the Hulu episodes it isn't certain if the surgery is successful. Their best mate is Chris, who is gay and agreed to help them both with their wedding as they each wanted him to stand up for them at the wedding. Kyle is also Sheila's grandson and Naomi is his Aunt. Sheila and Naomi sometimes battle because they are so much alike and Naomi behaves in ways that Sheila wouldn't find acceptable, but more on that later.

Paige Smith is torn between two families as her parents Brad and Lauren are no longer involved, and have other families. Lauren hid her pregnancy from Brad, and was told by her mother that her baby died. Her father Lou had no idea that his former wife lied about the baby. Lauren and the others only recently found out that the child survived. Brad and Lauren left town to look for their daughter and kissed, which eventually should cause repercussions for their marriages to Therese and Matt respectively. Paige lied to everyone about being the "missing" daughter, because she was scared she wouldn't be accepted. Brad and Therese have fraternal teenage twins: Josh and Imogen. Matt and Lauren have daughter Amber and son Bailey. Imogen and Amber have been best friends and share a car named Hermione, guess the girls love Harry Potter. Their friendship was put to the test due to Amber falling for Daniel. Imogen hooked up with Paige's adoptive brother, but he didn't stay in Erinsborough so that relationship wasn't more than a few kisses. Bailey is an aspiring astronaut who dreams of SpaceCamp, but knows that the odds are against him. Mark and Paige are starting a relationship. At first, Paige seemed to bond more with her half-brothers than her sisters, but finally she may be getting along with all of them.

Toadie and Sonya are devoted to one another, but his job as an attorney keeps him very busy. She owns the nursery, and is in recovery. They have a daughter named Nell who is still a baby. Sonya is also Callum's biological mother (Toadie was his adoptive father, but the boy goes to school in the US and is now off the program.) Naomi is Toadie's, but wanted him in her bed. He was loyal to Sonya and stunned by her advances. Naomi went as far as paying someone to pretend to stalk her. Sonya and Toadie weathered that storm, but he was hurt after being hit by a car driven by Lauren's mother, who nearly died. After not getting Toadie, Naomi ended up with another guy: Josh. The two are sneaking around and only Imogen knows about the affair. There was one insane scene where Josh was trying to sneak out of Naomi's home holding a garden gnome in from of his privates.

Those are some of the highlights of life on Neighbours. Due to its tone it feels like a throwback to soaps  of the past. The show has moments of humor, but isn't pure camp. Primarily the program is about the lives of people who live or have lived on the the same street. So perhaps it is a downmarket Knots Landing without the big hair or the primetime budget of the 1980s.

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