As we kick off proceedings, we hand you over once again to our esteemed commentator, Red Ranger 1…

Welcome to the 2022 BTTB Most Popular Character poll! With the vote having been opened to anyone visiting the site rather than just members, we received thousands of votes…but that doesn’t matter if only one person voted for you, so here are those at the bottom of the pile.

168. Joey Rainbow (2 points)

Played by Alex O’Han

One of the more memorable late-90s teens, even if that is damning with faint praise. Introduced as the son of a creepy cult leader who ended up living with Irene, he got a few memorable storylines focusing on mental health issues and actually managed to last longer than the year or so most of his contemporaries had.

168= Josh West (2 points)

Played by Daniel Collopy

Originally a kind-hearted lifeguard, Josh ended up being downgraded to a recurring antagonist who kept turning up with dodgy get-rich schemes like planning to bulldoze the town and build a highway. There was no shortage of suspects when he got shot dead.

168= Luke Cunningham (2 points)

Played by John Adam

Saxophone-playing, long-haired schoolteacher who was probably everything Donald Fisher didn’t want as an employee, although he didn’t really get on his bad side until he tried dating his daughter. Also managed to be one of Irene’s first lodgers when she bought the beach house.

168= Martin Bartlett (2 points)

Played by Bob Baines

One of the lesser-seen Summer Bay High principals who took over from Sally and hung around a couple of years overseeing a couple of near-disasters at school events before going on a very long holiday. Maybe he finally came back and that’s why we don’t see the school anymore?

168= Max Sutherland (2 points)

Played by Sebastian Elmaloglou

Rhys’ nephew who came to live with his family in a way that relatives only really do in soap operas. By the time they introduced a peer group for him, he was pretty much on his way out so spent most of his time on the show with older characters.

168= Neve Spicer (2 points)

Played by Sophie Bloom

One of the shorter-lived characters from this year, Neve just hung around for a few weeks being stressed out and trying to throttle Mackenzie before being carted off by military police. At least she didn’t get shot, I guess…

168= Peta Janossi (2 points)

Played by Aleetza Wood

Last time, Peta was in the Top 80 with six points, meaning she’s had the biggest fall in terms of places for anyone in both polls. Still best remembered for her extremely unofficial marriage to Edward, she was one of the last residents of the caravan park house before the Sutherlands took it over.

168= Sam Marshall (2 points)

Played by Ryan Clark

Sam’s gained an extra point from last time to nestle alongside his fellow member of the Summer Bay Class of 2000, although he lasted a little bit longer and kept popping back afterwards. He was the foster son of Bobby. And Michael and Pippa. And Travis and Rebecca. And Donald.

168= Shauna Bradley (2 points)

Played by Kylie Watson

Back in the days when the child you’d given up for adoption turning up didn’t result in a kidnapping, Shauna was revealed after a year or so on the show to be Ailsa’s daughter, a fact neither of them had known. The result was an emotional reunion just in time for Ailsa to die of a heart attack just a few months later.

168= Simon Fitzgerald (2 points)

Played by Richard Norton

The second character to fill the role of “Blake’s best friend” and…yeah, that was pretty much it. He stuck around for a little under a year feeding lines to Blake, Sophie, Fin or Adam before randomly going off to live with the father he’d stayed in Summer Bay to avoid.

178. Alison Patterson (1 point)

Played by Kathryn Ridley

The original Summer Bay bad girl, Alison was the bane of the lives of Bobby, Carly et al, carrying out such dastardly schemes as, um, trying to put itching powder in Bobby’s dress. So a bit minor by Home and Away villain standards, which may be why she got turned into an off-screen success story.

178= Ben McPhee (1 point)

Played by Justin Rosniak

The grandson of regular characters Floss and Neville from the show’s first year, who at least gave Sally someone her own age to talk to before getting forgotten about within the first hundred episodes.

178= Charlotte Adams (1 point)

Played by Stephanie Chaves-Jacobsen

Part of that group of unfortunate Summer Bay doctors who ended up spending as much time receiving medical treatment as giving it. Her abrupt death by drowning was pretty much Josh West’s start of darkness so maybe it’s appropriate she’s here.

178= Chelsea Campbell (1 point)

Played by Ashleigh Brewer

Probably not Kate Ramsay in witness protection. Chelsea joined up with the local police force and married Colby in a big end of season wedding, only to think better of it and get the heck out of there a couple of weeks into the next season.

178= David Croft (1 point)

Played by Guy Pearce

From one Neighbours regular to another: David was Donald’s short-lived nephew, who’s best known for somehow managing to get teenager Sophie pregnant despite only knowing her for about a month.

178= Drew Curtis (1 point)

Played by Bobby Morley

Drew tends to be a less consistent presence in this poll than many of his contemporaries but he’s made it back onto the lowest rung this time. He got together with Belle shortly after arriving in the Bay. Then he got together with her again…and again…and again. Oh, and her mother.

178= Floss McPhee (1 point)

Played by Sheila Kennelly

It’s not clear what lesson we should learn from Floss getting the same number of points as her grandson, despite appearing in about five times as many episodes. One of the first of the original cast to leave in early 1989, she languished in obscurity until making several returns in the 2000s.

178= Freya Duric (1 point)

Played by Sophie Hensser

Sophie Hensser/Bloom makes her second appearance in this update! Over a decade before playing Neve, she made an even briefer appearance as another troublesome ex of a regular character, who was probably more deserving of being taken into custody than Neve was but instead got off scot free.

178= Grant Mitchell (1 point)

Played by Craig McLachlan

The character name that it’s impossible to say without smirking. This Grant turned up in Summer Bay in 1990 as the first of a long line of young hip teachers destined to give Donald headaches and spend more time than you’d expect with their students out of hours.

178= Jordan Walsh (1 point)

Played by Benny Turland

Three years before becoming a hit on Neighbours, Benny Turland showed equal promise on Home and Away as John and Marilyn’s first foster child, but unfortunately was abruptly written out after just a few weeks.

178= Josh Barrett (1 point)

Played by Jackson Gallagher

Josh has retained his one point from last time. One of the many immigrants from Mangrove River to have ended up in Summer Bay over the last decade or so, Josh managed to take the virginities of two of his classmates, then shot his teacher.

178= Lee (Tex) Wheeler (1 point)

Played by Lucas Linehan

The only character on one point to have appeared this year. Viewers were rather enamoured by the apparently kindly caravan park manager, and so a bit disappointed that he turned out to be a guest villain. The reveal that Tex wasn’t what his mother called him was a bit less of a surprise.

178= Lucas Holden (1 point)

Played by Rhys Wakefield

Well, turns out Drew is just as popular as another of his contemporaries, with another of the Summer Bay High Class of 2007 making it back into the first stage of the poll. Lucas kind of got pigeon-holed as the nice one, which translated to “gets dumped by most of the girls in his year”. But at least he got a positive exit going off to be a writer!

178= Maddy Osborne (1 point)

Played by Kassandra Clementi

One less point than last time means Maddy finishes on the same number as one-time boyfriend Josh. But then she had a lot of one-time boyfriends, so the odds were pretty high. After being mostly used as a designated villain to make the other teens look good in her early years, she managed to win most people over prior to her exit by getting cancer and losing an arm.

178= Penn Graham (1 point)

Played by Christian Clark

Penn turned up in Summer Bay in the last half of 2010 looking for revenge on Alf for…something or other. He did actually cause Alf to end up in jail for murder…but as it was for Penn’s, that probably wasn’t his plan.

178= Phillip McCarthy (1 point)

Played by Nicholas Cassim

Sergeant McCarthy replaced Mike Emerson as the long-suffering semi-regular chief of Yabbie Creek Police Station, trying to keep the likes of Kat and Colby in line before quietly disappearing somewhere around early 2020. It’s perhaps no wonder his replacement’s been keeping his head down.

178= Scott Hunter (1 point)

Played by Kip Gamblin

The sixth one-time Neighbours regular to get one point. They should form a club. The oldest Hunter sibling spent a big chunk of his time in a relationship with a rather half-hearted Dani Sutherland before leaving with fellow spare part Hayley Lawson after unexpectedly turning out to be her baby’s father. Unexpectedly to him, anyway.

178= Sophie Taylor (1 point)

Played by Bridgette Sneddon

Another one who’s gone from two points to one since the last poll. She gave Martin Bartlett a run for his money in the disastrous Summer Bay High principal stakes, although she wasn’t actually too bad at her job, just at not letting husband Nate drive her mad.

178= Tamara Kingsley (1 point)

Played by Kelly Paterniti

After a vaguely promising start, Tamara spent most of her time on the show bouncing back and forth between Casey and Kyle while getting kidnapped, having amnesia and nearly going blind after being run over. She was probably glad to see the back of Summer Bay. And that she could see it.

178= Tug O'Neale (1 point)

Played by Tristan Bancks

Starting off as the bullying rival of Shane and Damian, Tug was one of the first to turn his life around once one of the regulars took him under their wing, eventually going off to work on a farm. And apparently to marry a girl he dated for about three months over a year before he left.

And for the first time since I started doing these write-ups, not only did all of the current regular cast get a vote, but all of them got, well, more than two points at least. Congratulations to the Cast of 2022!