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Shannon Reed - Isla Fisher


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I have been re-watching 1995 for the first time as an adult (I was 7 when this season original aired), and I must say I have a new-found appreciation for Shannon Reed. She really was one of the most groundbreaking teen characters we have ever had in Home and Away. Shannon was given some of the toughest and challenging storylines of any teen character and Isla Fisher smashed it out of the park every time. 

Shannon also seemed to have a genuine optimism and energy (compared to say, Selina who I felt was always moaning or complaining) and one of the few teen characters who generally seems to have good rapport with literally every character on the show. 



The three biggest storylines: 

The abuse storyline - I've not watched much of mid 1900 through to late 1994, but was she the first character to have a storyline like that? I'm referring to her PTSD from her uncle abusing her as a child. 

The eating disorder - easily the most realistic and harrowing depiction of an eating disorder in Home and Away, if not soaps in general 

Her relationship with Mandy - way ahead of its time for 90s primetime television and another first for H&A. 


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She was my favourite character at one time. Compared to some of the earlier teen girls like Carly, Sophie, Sarah and Angel she is a much better, more interesting and stronger character i think. 

5 hours ago, beachside said:

I loved Shannon so much!!

I wish they explored the idea of her and Shane further!!

I would have preferred to see Shane with Shannon as i never liked Angel and found her to be a total nag to Shane.

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  • 8 months later...

For me Shannon was one of the best looking girls in the early years of Home and Away (Sophie and Chloe would be included). But more than that she had a certain charisma and sparkle that set Isla Fisher out among her contemporaries. 

But there was something about how she was portrayed to the audience as a character which showed that she was always a slight outsider, and never to become the star in the way Sophie had been a few years earlier. 

During her time (1994-1997) the show IMHO very much looked to Selina and then Chloe to be the sensible settle down types who were the main focus of events.

Shannon's outsider qualities, as seen in her bisexuality (merely hinted at for most of her stint, but noticed), and her challenging intellect (Chloe was not challenging in the same way despite her intelligence), for me at least, made it feel like she had great potential, yet never quite lived up to that potential as a character. 

It was never going to happen in 1995, but I did wish at the time that her storyline with Mandy wasn't curtailed as it was, and that they'd have developed it with Mandy staying as a permanent character for the next year or so. Shannon's crush on Mandy was brilliantly portrayed by Isla Fisher, I think so much so that Tristan Bancks (Tug) cheekily asked if she'd had any real life experience when he brought up the storyline in G'Day Summer Bay. Alex was perfectly okay as her boyfriend post Mandy, but this return to the quotidian was a disappointment to me at the time.

I think that had this story line occured three or four years later in the days of online chat forums and Warrior Xena Princess, just maybe they would have been braver with the Mandy storyline after her first visit, as opposed to waiting for her departure two years later to reignite the feelings.

I also tend to think her best storylines were in the time before Michael died and that she kind of lost something afterwards, but perhaps I'm nitpicking too much.

On a slightly sour note, I do think Shannon is slightly diminished as a character for all of Isla Fisher's rubishing of Home and Away in the years since she left, but heyho, live and let live. And after all she isn't the only one.



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