And without further ado, we once again hand over to our expert commentator Red Ranger 1….
Welcome to the 9th biennial Back to the Bay Most Popular Character poll!
It’s been an even stranger year for us than it has for the residents of Summer Bay, but some things can be relied upon, including some of the rather odd names in the first update. So here we go with those who were one person’s seventh favourite character!
124. Andy Barrett (1 point)
Played by Tai Hara
Andy’s still clinging onto his one point and his place in the first update. He was one of the first characters apparently designed as a “new Braxton” type, but actually seemed to spend a lot of his time hanging out with the old Braxtons before having a murder early in his tenure come to light just as his contract ran out…
124= Angel Brooks/Parrish (1 point)
Played by Melissa George
Last time round, Angel was in the Top 50, but this time she’s lost all but one of her points, the biggest fall of any character in both polls. It’s somewhat surprising, because if you ask anyone of a certain age which characters they remember, Angel will probably be high on their list. Maybe Melissa George’s later career is finally starting to eclipse her start as one of Summer Bay’s waifs and strays!
124= Ben Murray (1 point)
Played by John-Paul Jory
Constable Murray has only managed a handful of appearances this year, but with Colby going further and further off the deep end, the guy who was once famous for being repeatedly hit over the head and outsmarted by the latest guest villain is actually coming across as one of the most competent local officers.
124= Doris Peters (1 point)
Played by Gwen Plumb
If you’ve seen the pilot, you’ve seen Doris Peters. If you’ve watched an episode from slightly afterwards, you may have heard of her. Otherwise, you’re probably going to be scratching your head and wondering who this fleetingly glimpsed gossip character actually was.
124= Freya Duric (1 point)
Played by Sophie Hensser
Freya appeared a bit more than Doris Peters, but only just. After her surprise jump up the poll last time, she’s back to having only one person vote for her. She was Xavier’s drug dealing ex who seemed to have no purpose other than keeping him and Ruby apart for a couple of weeks.
124= Jazz Curtis (1 point)
Played by Rachel Gordon
Another one whose lost all but one of her points from last time, Jazz does at least continue to prove more memorable than her regular cast son despite only managing a couple of guest stints. Something of a drunken schemer, Jazz spent most of her time trying to seduce the show’s two alpha males Tony and Miles. It takes all sorts.
124= Josh Barrett (1 point)
Played by Jackson Gallagher
Four years after doing a runner from police custody, Josh finally makes his debut appearance in a Most Popular Character poll, meaning he is now just as popular as his oldest brother! Josh was another of those teens from a dodgy background who looked as though he was going to turn his life around and then, well, didn’t.
124= Julie Cooper (1 point)
Played by Lisa Hayson-Phillips
I must admit, it took me a while to remember who this one was, partly because there seem to have been an awful lot of unrelated characters called Cooper over the years, and partly because we all just called her Nurse Julie anyway. This dependable supporting character managed to help out regular doctors from Flynn to Rachel to Sid before disappearing sometime around mid-2012.
124= Kat Chapman (1 point)
Played by Pia Miller
Well, Kat has actually regained her one point after falling out of the poll completely last time round. Another one of those police officers who made Ben Murray look good, she did admittedly have the right instincts where Robbo was concerned… but probably should have come up with a better plan to help him than getting herself killed crashing into a car driven by his future wife.
124= Lynn Davenport (1 point)
Played by Helena Bozich
Lynn had a tendency to come across as “the other one” among the Fletcher children, as after getting a lot of focus in the early weeks running away from her home after her dog died, she drifted further and further into the background and got axed after six months. Being an original meant she kept getting mentioned in reunion episodes though!
124= Sam Marshall (1 point)
Played by Ryan Clark
This surprisingly long-serving foster child spent ten years getting passed around the various adults in Summer Bay as if they were waiting for the music to stop. He inevitably made the progression from cute kid to stroppy teen, but did eventually manage to come out the other side and prove his Summer Bay credentials by taking on someone else’s child.
124= Skye Peters (1 point)
Played by Marlo Kelly
You might say I voted for Skye so I could say she’s been in a poll. And you might be right. She showed a lot of promise, but introducing a foster child for the Palmers when they weren’t actually on the show wasn’t the best piece of forward planning ever, and left her making up the numbers in teen storylines. If she’d stuck around, we might have been saved years of them pretending Raffy was their daughter.
124= Zac Macguire (1 point)
Played by Charlie Clausen
Zac’s another one who’s slid to the bottom of the pile. Just about everyone was on his side when he cheated on Leah, but she got to stick around and get some audience sympathy back, while he got to slope off to another continent reflecting that at least he got off better than her other husbands.
So, this time there was only one member of the current regular cast who failed to pick up any votes and therefore made a less favourable impression this year than Ben Murray. Guess away!