Things start to get a bit more serious as it takes multiple votes to get to this point. Here’s those who scored 11-14 points.
32. Aden Jefferies (14 points)
Played by Todd Lasance
Aden has the biggest fall of last times’s Top 10, having been up there at No 9 two years ago. He’s been a regular feature in the Top 10 since the days when he and Belle were the show’s golden couple, but it looks like he may finally be fading from people’s memories. Still, we found out this year that Nicole definitely isn’t with Angelo anymore, so maybe he’s finally got lucky?
32= Nikau Parata (14 points)
Played by Kawakawa Fox-Reo
A fairly high placing for one of this year’s new characters. Nikau is another one of those characters who’s a bit too quick-tempered and prone to making dumb choices at times, but does at least seem to be trying to do better. He was brave enough to try and romance Bella, which isn’t the easiest thing to do but he got there in the end.
32= Raffy Morrison (14 points)
Played by Olivia Deeble
Raffy has the second biggest fall of last time’s Top 10: Back then she was one place below Aden, this time she’s on level pegging albeit over twenty places lower. Being off screen for over a year probably hasn’t helped, and neither did her spending her last few months trading barbs with Ryder. A shame, because the show finally seemed to be starting to balance her being with the Morgans and the Palmers.
32= Robbo Shaw (14 points)
Played by Jake Ryan
Robbo’s another one who’s taken a bit of a tumble after bowing out in dramatic fashion at the beginning of the year. Given that his introductory storyline was abruptly dropped after about six months, we could probably have lived without knowing who murdered his family. And we could definitely have lived without them coming back to murder him and a bunch of other people we liked.
36. Justin Morgan (13 points)
Played by James Stewart
Meanwhile, Justin’s made a huge leap up the table after only managing five points last time. He can still be the grumpy older brother at times, but most of his main targets have either left (Robbo) or don’t have much to do with him anymore (Dean). He’s also managed a popular romance with Leah, and has the sense to know these things go better if he doesn’t marry her.
36= Kane Phillips (13 points)
Played by Sam Atwell
Kane was probably the first character who managed to stay on the show after doing something that would normally mark the end of him. It was slightly bemusing to see him get embraced by Summer Bay but somehow the show pulled it off, at least until they gave him an exit that seemed to be a cross between Kyle’s and Josh and Andy’s, with a dash of Brax’s.
36= Kirsty Sutherland/Phillips (13 points)
Played by Christie Hayes
On the same number of points as her ex-husband, Kirsty somehow managed to end up as the most troublesome of the Sutherland sisters despite Dani being there. Her teen marriage saw her settle down a bit, even if she didn’t always seem to make the most sensible choices. Managed to skip town soon enough to avoid having a private life as messy as Leah’s.
36= Mackenzie Booth (13 points)
Played by Emily Weir
Another newcomer who’s managed to crack the Top 40. It seems these days a new regular doesn’t even need to be part of a family to gain a previously unknown half-sibling. (Watch out for Ari and Tane’s half-brother in the next poll.) After a rocky start, she’s built a good sibling relationship with Dean and had the foresight to realise Ari was a better prospect than Colby. Just.
40. Celia Stewart (12 points)
Played by Fiona Spence
Another of Alf’s sisters, Celia was pretty much the early days’ equivalent of Colleen, so we probably should have worked out they had the same DNA. She’s apparently not a missionary in Africa anymore, but it’s not entirely clear what she is doing, after a muddled last appearance involving a gambling addiction and matchmaking between Heath and Bianca.
40= Hayley Smith/Lawson (12 points)
Played by Bec Cartwright & Ella Scott Lynch
And another of the Smith siblings makes an appearance. Hayley first appeared in the last few years of the show’s run on ITV for UK viewers, which made the fact she was still there eight years later even more obvious. Her final sunset ending with Scott would have been a bit more palatable if they hadn’t spent so long mired in the horror that was Paternitygate.
40= Rachel Armstrong (12 points)
Played by Amy Mathews
Ever since she dropped out of the poll back in 2014, Rachel’s fans have done their best to make sure it hasn’t happened again. A committed doctor (some might say over-committed at times) who filled the resident doctor role in between Flynn and Sid, and managed to fit two weddings and a full-term pregnancy into her time on the show.
40= Ruby Buckton (12 points)
Played by Rebecca Breeds
Ruby seemed to go through peaks and troughs of popularity, as she suffered the usual soap trajectory of starting off as a lively breath of fresh air and ending up as a screwed up mess. She hasn’t warranted a mention since her less-than-happy exit, but maybe she and Morag are currently sharing the same continuity black hole.
40= Willow Harris (12 points)
Played by Sarah Roberts
A debut showing for Willow, who failed to pick up any points last time. She didn’t quite commit to the whole turning-your-life-around thing she had when she was with Justin, since it abruptly changed into “He’s trying to change me.” Sometimes she seems to be the voice of reason among the new Mangrove River lot. And sometimes she’s the one telling the police “Look over there.”
45. Dani Sutherland (11 points)
Played by Tammin Sursok
And here’s Dani, finishing one place below her sister. She started off as the one who hated living in Summer Bay, but the town worked its charm on her eventually, at least until she got offered a new deal as a writer and skipped town. Of course, her time on the show included being raped, sent to jail and held at gunpoint, so maybe the charm had run out.
45= Mason Morgan (11 points)
Played by Orpheus Pledger
Once upon a time, being the token nice guy in a group meant you got no storylines and an unremarkable exit. These days, it seems to mean you’re the one who gets a shock death during the year’s big event. Mason really would have been better off taking that job in the outback rather than at the hospital that had a bomb go off in it a few years earlier.
45= Steven Matheson (11 points)
Played by Adam Willits
Another one of the originals, Steven was in and out of the show for over 20 years (but mostly out, it has to be said). He seemed to be in an age group on his own for a time, which meant that nearly every girl his age seemed to end up being his love interest at one time or another.