UK Air Date: 27th March 2006
Writer: John Hanlon
Director: Geoffrey Nottage
Tensions between Alf and Josh reach boiling point, as Josh’s sinister plan for Summer Bay is put into action. As Irene’s mental health deteriorates, her loved ones are left devastated by a heart breaking diagnosis.
The Diner’s a buzz with the shock news that Alf’s been charged with fraud. Alf wants to knock Josh’s block off, but Morag insists he‘ll make things worse. Alf’s chances of winning the election are already slim. Determined to get to the bottom of the bogus donation, Morag tries to track down Paul Moloney – with no success. Meanwhile, it’s getting late and Hayley’s really worried when Martha and Corey tell her that Irene hasn’t come home. Hyde arrives and suggests they split up and search for her. As they check the beaches, Martha fishes, asking Corey about his family. Reluctant to open up, Corey explains that his family fell apart about six months ago. His Dad was caught up in some illegal stuff at his work and ended up going to jail. Inside jail he became depressed and took his own life. Martha puts a comforting arm around Corey, a growing bond between them. Meanwhile, Hyde and Hayley find Irene’s car – but no Irene. Hiding behind a tree, Irene watches them suspiciously. Back at the house, Hyde is about to call the police when Irene walks in, disheveled. Despite their concern, she says little – only that she went for a walk. Hayley notices a deep gash on her arm, but Irene has no idea how she got it. Hayley shoots Hyde a worried look – they should get her to the hospital…
Lucas and Matilda have set up an interview for Alf with a journalist who’s keen to hear his side of the story. The journo grills Alf about the fraud charge – and Alf starts to get fired up. Finally, Alf says that he was set up by Josh West! The kids shoot troubled looks at each other – the last thing Alf needs right now is a defamation suit on top of his fraud charges! Meanwhile in the hospital, Irene’s injury is being tended. Hayley stands beside her, but Irene stares straight through her to an unseen person and says: they all think I’m mad, don’t they? Worried, Hayley asks who she’s talking to. Irene looks at Hayley and says – Ken (deceased). He’s been here all day. Hayley’s heart sinks as she realises Irene is going mad…
Morag is berating Alf for the interview when they hear Josh on the radio responding to Alf’s allegations. Josh is cool, claiming the allegations are merely a desperate ploy from a desperate man to badmouth his opponent the night before the election! Blood boiling, Alf jumps to his feet. Josh’s charming the locals at his pre-election drinks when Alf storms in and punches him out in front of everyone! Next Morning, the headline reads: ‘ALF STEWART PULLS NO PUNCHES IN RACE FOR MAYOR’. Sheepishly, Alf arrives at the Surf Club where the voting booths are set up. Josh is already there, a band-aid on his chin, playing the whole thing for sympathy. Alf tries to hand out his ‘Vote 1: Alf Stewart’ flyers but no one wants to know him!
Dr Jenkins, a psychiatrist, comes out of Irene’s room and explains to Hayley, Hyde and Corey that Irene’s symptoms point to schizophrenia. He can’t be certain, but he’s willing to start her on meds, rather than risk her spiralling further into delusional behaviour. They go in to see her, but Irene says she thinks this is ridiculous, adding with conviction – that Ken agrees with her! Hayley’s forced to face that the Doctor may be right. Back a the Surf Club, Voting’s closed and the announcement is made – the new town Mayor by a landslide is…Josh West! Alf’s heart sinks as applause goes up for Josh. Josh thanks everyone and gives a small speech about the wonderful future of the Bay. Alf’s left stewing, convinced that Josh has something up his sleeve, and Summer Bay will suffer… After the celebrations, Josh looks around his new office, smugly. Now we can get started on Project 56… Summer Bay isn’t going to know what hit it! Alf’s right – Trouble is brewing for the Bay!
MORAG BELLINGHAM (CORNELIA FRANCES)
JOSH WEST (DANIEL COLLOPY)
COREY HENDERSON (ADAM SAUNDERS)
DR. KEVIN GREEN (SCOTT HALL-WATSON)
Fourth appearance, last seen in Episode #4065. Informed Barry of Irene’s condition.
JENNY ROGERS (LUCIA MASTRANTONE)
Yabbie Creek reporter who heard Alf’s campaign grievances over Josh.
WARREN (NOT CREDITED)
Councillor who announced the election results
DR. JENKINS (NOT CREDITED)
Diagnosed a hallucinatory Irene.
NURSE (NOT CREDITED)
Tended to the admittance of a delusional Irene.