As Home and Away marks Episode 8000 in the UK today, with the wedding of Felicity and Tane, we take a look back at the other ‘thousand episode milestones’ and when they aired in the UK.
Home and Away typically doesn’t make a huge deal out of the thousand episode milestones, although there have been a few that may have increased fan expectations for following celebrations.
We begin with Episode 1000, which aired in the UK on Friday, December 28, 1992, and featured the fallout from a drunk Irene Roberts (at the time, played by Jacqy Phillips), who had a fight with her kids Finlay (Tina Thomsen) and Damian (Matt Doran) in the previous episode, falling down the stairs at Summer Bay House.
Fin and Damian, who thought Irene was dead, left her at the bottom of the stairs and spent the night in the bay, hoping that nobody would suspect an accident. When they eventually went back to the house to confess and surrender themselves in, Pippa (Debra Lawrance) was confused because there had been no evidence of Irene, living or dead, when Sophie & Nick had arrived the night before.
The departure of Angel Parrish (Melissa George), a favorite of the audience, was a significantly more memorable occurrence in Episode 2000 (14th November 1996) than any other. Due to the terrible death of her husband Shane (Dieter Brummer) earlier in the year, Angel left Summer Bay with her son Dylan (Corey Glaister) and infant daughter Shane Jr. in order to start again with Simon Broadhurst (Julian Garner) in England.
After a busy week that included Leah’s (Ada Nicodemou) and Vinnie’s (Ryan Kwanten) wedding, Episode 3000 (February 22, 2002) included Mitch McColl’s (played by future series producer Cameron Welsh) departure. After being located by an uncle he had never met, Mitch had recently traveled to New Zealand to be with his dying grandmother. Upon his return to Summer Bay, he had made the difficult decision to move across the Tasman to be with his family.
His girlfriend Brodie (Susie Rugg), who was trying to grab Mitch before he departed for a final farewell, was hit by a car while rushing to the surf club. In the meantime, Gypsy (Kimberley Cooper) and Will (Zac Drayson) fell in to temptation and engaged in sexual activity in his car, which nine months later resulted in the birth of their daughter Lily.
Episode 4000, which will astoundingly mark the halfway point of the entire show as of next week, was by far the most memorable of the milestone episodes. The episode, which aired in the UK on December 23, 2005, had several characters from Summer Bay’s history visit the community to celebrate Alf Stewart’s (Ray Meagher) 60th birthday.
Fans were treated to a special montage of scenes from the show’s history following tributes from Alf’s loved ones. Chloe Richards (Kristy Wright), who was killed in a car accident, was the unfortunate outcome of the occurrence.
A subtle mention to the number 5000 was made in the opening words of episode 5000, which aired in the first week of the 2010 season on February 5 in the UK. Romeo (Luke Mitchell) and Xavier (David Jones-Roberts) had to decide what to do with a shoebox of cash left by Xavier’s brother Hugo after his apparent demise (he had actually entered witness protection).
The episode aired at the conclusion of a tremendous week that saw the resolution of the 365-day mystery that had exposed Hugo’s involvement in human trafficking. A $5000 portion of it was to be discreetly donated to the refugee appeal, but when it dropped into Leah’s picnic basket, a series of unfortunate occurrences saw them chasing the money across the bay.
Episode 6000 (29th August 2014) saw Alf maintaining a bedside vigil for daughter Roo (Georgie Parker), as she lay in hospital after picking up a mystery illness following her trip to America. Alf pleaded with a comatose Roo to wake up, but the episode ended on a cliffhanger as Roo went into arrest.
Episode 7000 (11th January 2019) came and went with little fanfare, as Tori (Penny McNamee) and Robbo (Jake Ryan) awaited news of her IVF procedure. With Robbo having donated sperm to Tori for the cause, the two were concerned as time went on that only three of the embryos were still viable.
Thankfully when it came to it, two still remained, and one was implanted into Tori, while the other was frozen. Elsewhere, Ben (Rohan Nichol) and Coco (Anna Cocquerel) canvassed for Maggie’s (Kestie Morassi) cancer fundraiser, and Ryder resat his Year 11 exams.
Episode 8000 of Home and Away airs in the UK on Friday 19th May, 1:45pm on Channel 5.
5Star viewers saw the episode at 18:30 on Thursday 18th May.