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When H&A had good quality, well written storylines

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‘The Bayside Diner era’ was to me, the best era of H&A

The scripts and storylines had more depth and thought put into them, than some of the rubbish. That has been shown in the last couple of years.

It was so much believable and focused, much less on trying to get the ratings up every week with unnecessary whose life is in danger and love triangles. Like we have in today’s H&A.

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Hmmm. I often pondered this myself and am still torn over whether I just look back through rose tinted glasses, or whether it really was totally different. I mean, Bobby dying in the boat and Adam standing trial for it is very much like a story we would see nowadays. Also, we saw the Meg one rehashed lately with Emily and Brad, although the difference being we cared about Blake, and had more time to care about Meg.

I think too that because I was aged 10 to 22 over these years that perhaps it's just that my tastes have changed since, and storylines which interested me then, wouldn't interest me now as an adult.

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Its not so much the storylines that are different, more so the way they are written.

I prefer true character led storytelling, which could include a lot of what we see these days; however the major difference is the way in which the stories are told. I prefer to see the stories written around characters, which is what they used to do, rather than fitting the characters around the storylines. These days there is a total lack of follow threw, nothing effects most of the characters, such as huge events in a persons life like being held hostage or kidnapped…etc these are very traumatic events, but H&A these days don’t bother with showing how it would realistically effect the character and change them etc, whereas back in the day, for the most part, they thrived on doing so.

The music was better, the whole direction and vibe was better (it felt like a small seaside town, where people were close), the casting was so much more than it is today, we had a diverse cast in age range and personalty… the teenagers were written with really unique storylines and weren’t clones of each other, and it was basically just a lot better. The main improvement on then, is the way it is filmed these days, it’s a lot more slick in some regards…however I HATE the hand held shaky camera look, its just annoying.

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What do u mean shaky camera work?

What was the bayside Diner era? Because on Home and away Romances it said that the first diner was called the Beachside Diner...so have there been three diners?! Or did it change from Beachside to Bayside and then Beachside again..OR was it Bayside and then Beachside but "Romances" just got it wrong?!

I enjoyed it then..but i enjoy it now as well....i have to say that 2001 episodes on five life the early years..are considerably weaker than current 2007 season.

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I think he means the increasing amount of handheld camera work that is in todays episodes compared to how it used to be. Being handheld is a way of immersing the audience right into the action :P

The H&A Romances DVD was so well researched that they got it completely wrong - it was Bayside Diner from 1989-2000 and then Beachside Diner from then on.

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Yeah sorry, I mean the hand held stuff when they obviously yet subtly move the camera around from side to side so as to make it appear more like we are there. I don’t mind it for the dramatic sequences and things, but hate it when its just a nice conversation or a more emotional one, because it takes away from the scene imo, I don’t want to feel like I’m there. I prefer slow pans and zooms that are seamless.

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Its not so much the storylines that are different, more so the way they are written.

I prefer true character led storytelling, which could include a lot of what we see these days; however the major difference is the way in which the stories are told. I prefer to see the stories written around characters, which is what they used to do, rather than fitting the characters around the storylines. These days there is a total lack of follow threw, nothing effects most of the characters, such as huge events in a persons life like being held hostage or kidnapped…etc these are very traumatic events, but H&A these days don’t bother with showing how it would realistically effect the character and change them etc, whereas back in the day, for the most part, they thrived on doing so.

The music was better, the whole direction and vibe was better (it felt like a small seaside town, where people were close), the casting was so much more than it is today, we had a diverse cast in age range and personalty… the teenagers were written with really unique storylines and weren’t clones of each other, and it was basically just a lot better. The main improvement on then, is the way it is filmed these days, it’s a lot more slick in some regards…however I HATE the hand held shaky camera look, its just annoying.

You made a good point there. Look at the difference in the aftermaths of Gypsy and Belle's kidnappings. Gypsy woke up in the middle of the night screaming for weeks. Belle's was never again mentioned.

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The H&A Romances DVD was so well researched that they got it completely wrong - it was Bayside Diner from 1989-2000 and then Beachside Diner from then on.

Although it took Colleen quite a while to answer the phone correctly following the change.

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The 'new' H&A, as I see it, has completely lost my interest. I don't watch it and nor do I want to, because there are now a very small amount of character left who I care about and even they are being wasted with sensationalised storylines, which fail to focus enough (or even at all) on the characters themselves. Of course, it's important to acheive good ratings, otherwise there wouldn't be a H&A, but as far as I know, the ratings have certainly been good enough over the past (is it 19 years now?) and the vast majority of those years didn't see a plane crash every week and an avalanche every other, interspersed with murders and infantile relationships aimed at eight year olds.

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Well said Liz. Summer Bay is a small coastal town, not a hot bed of iniquity in the middle of the USA. If the crime rate in Summer Bay was that high they would need a full time murder squad, and certainly police officers with a bit more about them than dopey Jack. The amount of sensationalism is depressing really, and they rip off high rating shows without considering whether or not the issues will work, for example the chopper crash was so obviously LOST. There have been others too, and its got to be a bit of a joke.

tero6, you are right, they don't follow through enough any more. Belle was unaffected by the kidnapping, Gypsy had nightmares for weeks. Irene was totally unaffected after being poisoned for months by Corey, although Martha was traumatised for about 2 episodes because he chased her. Matilda's eating disorder miraculously disappeared, as has Sally's OCD, although Kate does try to get it in there subtly. This would not have happened five years ago. The effects of trauma would have been evident and would have been used as new story lines were developed.

I too no longer watch avidly. I still like to dip in now and again to see my old favourites such as Irene, Alf, and Sally. I watch when guest like Pippa and Don arrive. I think they have some very able young actors in Jess Tovey, Mark Furze and Indiana Evans, but they seem to be on a treadmill of US style soap sensation. It must be very frustrating for them, and for the old guard. Sally must be so fed up with being written as a sort of doomed version of Pippa. One can only hope that Bevan Lee will bring it back to its true roots and get things cokking agian.

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