Most Popular Character 08 - 21-35

Well here we are we've nearly reached the top twenty. If it were one of those programmes on Channel 4, you'd probably realise it was half eleven and that you had been watching D-List celebrities talking about why they liked Grange Hill when they were younger, why Schindler's List was such a great film and why Heinz Beans is the 83rd best advert ever. I digress however as we look at the characters that finished 21st to 35th, a mixture of current characters who are mediocre and past characters, long gone, but who were heroes to millions when they were on the show. I'll stop talking rubbish now and actually get on to presenting the results starting with everyone's favourite Greek cook. No, it's not Alex, that's a one letter removed from cook.


21. Leah Patterson-Baker - 51 points
UP 31

She's up 31 places since 2006 which is good for a character who has been massively underused of late. Seen too often serving burgers and milkshakes in the Diner, Leah is a character who many love for her warmth, her huge smile and her even bigger heart. Landing in 21st place isn't bad, but it's not great either. Give Leah a few good storylines and more screen time, and her popularity should rise once again.


22. Flynn Saunders - 49 points
UP 8

Throughout the shows history, I don't think there's ever been a character like Flynn. He was a caring, loving and inspirational family man who loved his daughter, his foster children, and the woman that had been there for him through the good and the bad times, Sally Fletcher. Flynn was simply a nice guy who loved and adored his family. However, in 2005 he was tragically diagnosed with cancer. With Sally and Flynn being such a popular couple the only way he could leave would be to have him die. While us fans were upset about this, we weren't to know what an emotional storyline we would be given leading up to his death. From Flynn writing down the things he wanted to do before he died to seeing him and Sally dancing to their wedding song moments before he passed away, it was a storyline that left many with tears in their eyes. Still to this day... It's clear that viewers still love Flynn, and I think they always will... 


23. Tasha Hunter - 48 points

Tasha stepped out of the mists of a mythical world where clothes were an inconvenience, people spoke in pig-Latin, and marijuana was a good base for "herbal tea." She found her husband and soul mate in Robbie Hunter (although she was sometimes too stupid to appreciate it), and they eventually left the bay with a beautiful baby girl to call their own. Sure, Robbie wasn't the biological father - that insidious honour goes to a cult member who may or may not be Jonah (who may or may not be actually named Michael) - but at least Tasha realized just how lucky she was to have a loving family by her side.


24. Drew Curtis - 45 points

Until two years ago, we didn't even know Drew existed. Now, after two very eventful years in the Bay, he has had more storylines than all of the shows characters put together. Most of those storylines revolving around his relationship with Belle, I must add. But he's in the top 25, which isn't bad considering he's a new entry. However, Drew is like Marmite...You either love him, or you hate him. Nevertheless, there are worse characters, and Drew does have some interesting character moments. Drew's best storyline, in my opinion, was the arrival of his mum in Summer Bay. We got to see a different side to him...A softer side that I didn't know existed. However, he was not pleased when she started to cause trouble, so he told her to get out of his life. Not much love loss there then! 


25. Colleen Smart - 44 points

Colleen is the type of character that either you love... or you love to hate. Her not-so-thought-out remarks will either annoy the hell out of you or make you laugh. I think she well deserves to be in the top 25, but considering she's just not used in a serious way regarding storylines I was very surprised. I think everybody would agree that if Colleen would leave the show there would be something missing in Summer Bay, which would be the lighthearted-ness that Colleen Smart delivers every time.

fletcher_pippa.jpg26. Pippa Ross - 42 points

The original supermum, Pippa was kind, caring, sympathetic and the perfect mother figure for the millions of abused and neglected children who found their way to the Caravan Park House. She's not made as many reappearances recently, which may account for her slipping down our poll, but for those who remember her of old, she remains the ideal mother figure. 


27. Selina Roberts - 39 points
UP 5

Selina arrived in Summer bay with a reputation for being the town bike. She was quickly taken under Irene's wing and found a real home at the Beach House with Chloe and Joey, even eventually changing her name from Cook to Roberts. Selina dated a number of guys during her time in the Bay. She 'stole' Curtis from Shannon and then had the same done to her when Chloe 'stole' Jesse McGregor away from her, despite Jesse seemingly still wanting her back. She had a brief fling with Irene's son Damien when he returned for Shane and Angel's wedding and she became pregnant as a result. She lost the baby and later had a near death experience where she believed her baby, called Maddy, had been talking to her. This made her susceptible to becoming a victim of a cult led by Saul. Saul was obsessed with Selina and despite her family's best efforts, managed to talk her into joining them. When she finally saw through to their twisted plans she escaped but Saul continued to terrorise her, kidnapping her twice before being shot by constable Terri Garner, just as Selina began to see his good side. The love of Selina's life was science teacher Steven Matheson and their illicit affair while she was still at school made them the talk of the town and he lost his job. He left the Bay briefly but returned and the two were reunited and planned to marry. On the morning of their wedding day Selina was once again kidnapped by Saul and told Steven she didn't want to marry him. We later saw her and Steven reunited in England where he proposed to her. However we found out five years later, after possibly the longest engagement ever, that Steven had married, but it wasn't Selina. Luckily the Dan Bennett era put all that right with a simple line telling us that Steven and Selina were back together.


28. Hayley Lawson - 38 points

Hayley and Noah were one of the power couples of Home and Away, but when Noah was killed by Sarah Lewis, Hayley had to settle for loving his ghost until she was ready to let him go. Sarah's death, too, haunted Hayley, but in a much different way. Sarah's vengeful lover, hiding behind the cheery facade of Zoe McAllister, befriended Hayley and tricked her into going on a joy ride flight with Kim which she had sabotaged to crash. In the ashes of the tragedy (which claimed the life of the pilot) Hayley and Kim shared a kiss which started up a short term love affair. However, Zoe's stunt backfired when she herself became involved with Kim, only for Kim to cheat on her with Hayley. Hayley then became pregnant, and the paternity test revealed that it was Kim's baby... but Zoe, to punish her boyfriend and friend for their betrayal, had switched the results. The real father was Scott Hunter, whom Hayley was actually in love with. This whole confusing mess went on for the entire 9 month gestation period and wasn't resolved until much later when Kim had an accident and it was discovered that he didn't share the necessary blood type to be baby Noah's real father. Realising that Scott was indeed her baby's father, Hayley was free to abandon Kim and his many varied issues for a dream life in France.


29=. Dani Sutherland - 35 points
UP 11

This is a good example of a character you either love or hate, and because of the massive focus on her family's problems during "the Sutherland era" I think there are more haters than lovers for this character. I do have to say though, that I think some of this hate towards Dani is unfair, and much due to other characters. I never liked Scott, and I think the main reason I found Dani pretty annoying was because of their relationship. Scott did in my opinion make Dani way more annoying than she would have been without him, and when Kane Phillips came back and the writers did all they could to make the viewers feel sorry for him, that just made Dani come across as a whiny princess again. As a grand finale for this character they managed to mix her into Rhys' annoying storyline of getting back to his ex wife. Dani was good during the Felix and Sarah storyline, but unfortunately they made her go from that to her annoying exit with the Stafford storyline.


29=. Tony Holden - 35 points
UP 33

The fiercely protective patriarch of the Holden trio - "HotDad" to some. The sweet man-boy next door who defended his son Jack from the murderous accusations of the townsfolk, and then went on to woo Beth Hunter to the point of proposal. Unfortunately, Beth had had two bad marriages before and wasn't interested in trying for a third. She went away to find herself instead, and while she did plan to return to Tony, fate intervened. Beth died on the way home, and the sight of her mangled corpse sent Tony into a self-destructive spiral of sleeping with anything that moved. This included unwittingly hooking up with Naomi, one of Lucas' short-lived conquests, which didn't sit well with any of the Hunter/Holden clan. Lucas was not only disgusted but jealous, and that jealousy grew to an all consuming hatred that raged against Tony and anything that got in the way (namely Geoff, who Tony unconsciously treated as a replacement son). Luckily for Tony, he was too oblivious to Lucas' problems to particularly care, and he had a new minx, Jazz, to keep him busy. Sadly Jazz, like Beth, was not the marrying kind, and Tony eventually had to let her go too.


31. Bobby Marshall - 31 points

Bobby Simpson first appeared in the pilot episode of Home and Away as the local tearaway who terrorised the Fletcher girls and who was despised by local school teacher Donald Fisher. Ailsa though, and Pippa, saw beyond her rebellious ways and reached out to the girl who had been adopted at birth and badly treated by her adoptive father Al Simpson. Bobby was one of the most popular characters of the early years; if the producers wanted a big story they gave it to Bobby. She was bitchy, argumentative, but also loyal and loving. She married her first love Frank Morgan and began trying to research into who her real parents were. She was disgusted to find out that her mother was despised Judge Morag Bellingham, who went out of her way to make her life a misery. She was less displeased to realise her father was Donald Fisher, as the two had bonded over the death of his son and her friend Alan. They began a tentative relationship and became very much father and daughter. He was a big support to her when Frank left her for Roo Stewart.

The adult Bobby went into business with Ailsa running the Beachside Diner and adopted Sam Marshall before falling in love with his real dad Greg. They married and, despite him having an affair, were happy enough until her life was tragically cut short when she was fatally injured in a boat crash. Her life support machine was turned off and her friends and family said a tearful goodbye. She later made a reappearance in the fridge as Ailsa suffered from hallucinations. It also appears at some point she must have appeared in Tudor England.


32. Donald Fisher - 30 points
UP 7

Fisher or 'flathead' was the real villain of the early years, despised by adults and pupils alike. He softened though after the death of his son Alan and allowed a book, depicting him as a monster, to be published. He became close to Bobby before realising she was his daughter and when they did find out the truth the two became very close. His relationship with Bobby caused him to be kinder and more liked at school and he continued on the typical Summer Bay route of taking in waifs and strays, namely his niece Lucinda, her boyfriend Nick Parrish and his brother Shane. Perhaps the lodger he was closest to was Angel Brooks who challenged him both at home and at school and reminded him very much of Bobby. He was there for Angel when she lost the use of her legs and walked her down the aisle at her wedding to Shane. When Shane died he was the only person she wanted to see and their bond lasted well up until she left the Bay. His real daughter Rebecca and her protégé Casey were next through his doors, and grandson Sam lived with him for a time, but it was his relationship with Marilyn that caused the most raised eyebrows. He was the older, stuffy head teacher and she was a ditsy blonde beautician, but they made a good couple and caused lots of laughs as she dragged him home from school to try for a baby. Eventually they had a child only for him to die of cancer and for Marilyn to leave. He found out he was a grandfather once again when Seb, illegitimate son of Alan, came to town, and had brief dalliances with his nanny and Judith Ackroyd before eventually finding love with June Reynolds. They eventually left the Bay together.

Fisher recently returned to The Bay, broke and in need of money to go and visit a sick Marilyn in America. He returned to teaching but managed to rub a lot of people up the wrong way. He did however get through to troubled pupil Annie Campbell and his bond with Sally showed him to be the kindhearted Fisher that we knew and loved. This might account for him climbing back up the poll this year.


33=. Josie Russell - 28 points

Is it Angie? Is it a one-off random judge? No, it's Josie! Laurie Foell's third crack at the H&A whip - not an inappropriate turn of phrase to describe Josie Russell, the entrepreneurial Madam of a city brothel. She was discovered lurking in the recesses of the Russell family tree by Irene and Dylan, who were shaking it's branches on Tasha's behalf, to see who fell out. Josie turned out to be one fateful identical-cousin-swap away from being Tasha's mother herself, since it was Josie's boyfriend (Ian Osbourne) who Angie hadtricked into impregnating her with Tash. As it was, Josie developed a strong maternal bond with Tasha. She was devastated when Tasha turned on her for cheating on Jessie, and again when she helped seal the deal to bulldoze the Caravan Park (formally owned by Tasha). Fortunately the Caravan Park was saved, as was Josie's relationship with her niece. Josie moved to Boston, finding nothing more to keep her in the bay, and later sent an invitation for Tasha and Robbie to join her, which they gratefully accepted.


33=. Cassie Turner - 28 points
UP 4

Stealing jet ski's and skinny dipping with strange boys is no way for a young lady to behave. Apparently, no one ever told Cassie that. In fact, Cassie missed out on a lot of lessons like that because she was far too busy learning that you can't always trust the people who claim to love you. She was the victim of sexual abuse when she was a child, perpetrated by her uncle, and was afraid to let Ric get close to her because of it. Just when she let her guard down, Ric displayed the side-effects of his own abusive childhood by beating up a friend of hers that he suspected she was having an affair with. They had an on again off again relationship after that, but Cassie was ultimately drawn back to the truly untrustworthy people that entered her life - like Aden, Macca and Henk - despite the vehement warnings of others.


35. Dan Baker - 27 points
UP 8

Dan is another person on the list of people who aren't being used to their full potential, and it shows him in a light that makes you think he's a 'meh' character. But if you take time to look at the full picture, you realize that he was portrayed as a wonderful person with a love for his family and other people. Dan, being just as underused as Leah, still contributed to the show a lot from the shadows of off-screen and It's nice to see there are a couple of people who listed him as their favourite. Plus, Tim Campbell is an extremely nice man.