The Season Finale of Home and Away has just aired in Australia (Thursday 25th November), bringing to an end another dramatic year of the show.
The final episode of the year saw Ari (Rob Kipa-Williams) propose to Mia (Anna Samson), Chloe (Sam Barrett) kill her father just weeks after meeting him, Ryder (Lukas Radovich) face an uncertain future after being buried alive, and Martha (Belinda Giblin) decide she wouldn’t accept a transplant from Roo (Georgie Parker).
Home and Away is now off the air in both Australia and the UK, returning in early 2022. Until then, here’s a recap of the dramatic events of the season finale week, which will air in the UK in late February.
Chloe kills her father
It was touted as “the murder that no-one saw coming,” and, with Chloe and Matthew playing happy families just a handful of episodes before the season finale, that was very much the case.
UK viewers haven’t even met new character Matthew (James Sweeny) yet, but he’s set to change the lives of Mia (Anna Samspon), Chloe and Ari (Rob Kipa-Williams) forever when he arrives on British screens early in the new year.
He’s Chloe’s absent father, and he arrives in Summer Bay after reading a newspaper article about Mia buying the gym. He quickly connects with the daughter he never knew he had, much to Mia and Ari’s chagrin.
In the final week of episodes, Chloe decided to take up his offer to pay her tuition at a prestigious business school in the city. What’s more, she decided to move in with him, as he lives just a couple of streets away from the college. Ari and Mia insisted that there was no way they would let it happen, but Chloe was equally adamant that she was leaving.
Chloe couldn’t understand why her mum and step-dad were so against Matthew, a man who had been nothing but friendly and generous to her since he arrived. The truth is, Chloe was conceived as a result of Matthew sexually assaulting Mia after a party, and his unexpected arrival in Summer Bay has become Mia’s worst nightmare.
Eventually, as Chloe started preparing to leave, Mia finally gave in and told her daughter about the night she was conceived.
When she did so, everything changed. Chloe ran off to the bathroom to be sick, unable to believe what she was hearing. Suddenly, she wanted nothing more to do with the man, felt stupid for falling for his generosity, and was wracked with guilt for putting Mia through weeks of pain.
In Thursday’s triple-bill finale, she started ignoring his calls and tried to cut him out of her life. However, after finally having the chance to connect with his daughter, Matthew wasn’t ready to say goodbye.
He turned up back in Summer Bay in the final episode, a determined streak showing through as he demanded Chloe come with him.
“Do you ever give up?” asked Chloe, now disgusted by the sight of him.
“Not when it comes to something as important as my daughter,” he retorted, the word “daughter” now sending a disgusted shiver through Chloe’s spine. It took Alf’s intervention for him to leave Chloe in peace, but that wasn’t the end of things.
He later turned up at the Parata house, getting aggressive when she continued to refuse to come with him. He went to grab her, and later grappled with Mia when she tried to protect her daughter.
In a terrible few seconds, Chloe, looking for a way to protect her mum, grabbed a rock and smashed it over Matthew’s head, killing him in an instant.
Mia and Chloe then stuffed the body into the back of Matthew’s Mercedes. Leaving Chloe behind, Mia drove off, planning on disposing of the body in the bush.
Unfortunately, Cash happened to be out on patrol, and decided to flag her car down shortly after she left Summer Bay. Realising her top was covered in blood, she knew she couldn’t let Cash see her, so hit the gas and sped away.
How will Chloe and the rest of the Paratas cope in the wake of Matthew’s death? Will someone end up behind bars? There’s a lot more drama in store after the Christmas break.
Felicity struggles with her father’s death
Elsewhere, Felicity Newman (Jacqui Purvis) struggled on the day of her father’s memorial.
Cash (Nicholas Cartwright) had headed to the memorial to join their father’s friends in paying tribute to him, but Felicity refused to go, as she does every year.
After getting drunk and arguing with Jasmine (Sam Frost), Flick ended up passed out by the Parata pool, until Ari (Rob Kipa-Williams) found her and brought her inside to the spare bedroom.
The next morning, hungover and confused as to why she was in a strange bed, she finally opened up to Tane (Ethan Browne), sharing her treasured photo album with him and breaking down in tears as she showed him a picture of her dad.
She was shocked to her core in the final episodes, when Cash (Nicholas Cartwright) returned from the memorial with an unexpected surprise.
Cash has always known that their father killed himself, after struggling to cope when their mother died and their farm business collapsed, but Felicity has always insisted that someone must have murdered him, believing that he would never have abandoned them.
However, Cash returned from the memorial with the police file on their dad’s death, including the autopsy report. It contained the gruesome details and photos which prove once and for all that their dad did in fact end his own life.
It was a tough read, but it was enough to make Felicity finally admit that her dad wasn’t murdered. However, she now harbours plenty of anger towards their father for abandoning them, and there’s plenty more work to be done in her recovery.
She and Tane took off on a road trip in the final episode, heading to a remote log cabin as a way to help her come to terms with the revelation.
Will the time away with her new boyfriend help Felicity get closure, or is there much more drama to come between the Newman siblings in 2022?
When Mia finally told Chloe the truth about Matthew, it seemed like things were finally looking up. Chloe apologised for the way she’d been treating her mum and Ari, and the trio got back to playing happy families.
In an emotional scene in the Parata garden, the whole family gathered around for a lavish meal, before Ari got down on one knee to pop the question.
“Getting a second chance with you is more than I ever thought I ever deserved. So I’m asking, will you marry me?”
“Here’s to your happily ever after,” gushed Chloe in a toast to her mum and soon-to-be-official-step-dad.
However, their happiness was short lived when Matthew turned back up, and the Paratas ended the 2021 season with a very uncertain future. Will Mia and Ari get to walk down the aisle together in 2022?
Ryder left trapped underground
Ryder and new arrival Theo (Matt Evans) have spent the past couple of months thinking up stunt after stunt to impress followers on their growing YouTube channel (or Summer Bay’s equivalent video sharing platform). They quickly went viral, and the advertising revenue soon began rolling in.
Yet their business venture was short lived, and the two went their separate ways when Ryder discovered Theo had kissed Chloe during one of their earlier challenges.
Ryder initially wanted nothing more to do with Theo, but he eventually agreed to carry on with the videos, as it was his only way of paying off the La Cucaracha debts to his friends and family.
Their next set of challenges were fairly tame, and the penultimate week saw Theo and Ziggy competing in a timed, blindfolded wheel-change at Summer Bay Auto. It got some views in, but it was hardly the big stunt that they needed to go viral again.
Finally, Theo came up with a great idea to get the views flowing in – they would bury Ryder in a wooden coffin out in the remote bushland, live-streaming his reaction to their thousands of followers. If he managed five hours underground, he would win the challenge.
In the final dramatic episode, the stunt began.
However, things took a disastrous turn when Theo, who was safely above ground and keeping a watchful eye over proceedings, tripped over a tree root and fell to the ground, hitting his head and knocking himself out in the process.
Ryder realised something was wrong when he couldn’t get in touch with his stunt mate, and, as the clock carried on ticking, he started to panic.
“If this is a joke, it’s not funny. Answer me!” pleaded Ryder in a desperate voicemail.
The camera panned out to show the newly covered earth, hiding Ryder buried beneath, with Theo unconscious just meters away.
With none of their Summer Bay friends and relatives having any idea that the stunt is even taking place, is anyone going to find them when Home and Away returns in 2022?
Roo battled with transplant decision
Martha’s (Belinda Giblin) kidneys have been failing ever since the gas attack at Salt back in October, which aired as the UK’s season finale last week.
Tane’s stalker tried to take him out, but, while the Parata brother survived the attack without a scratch, it was Marilyn (Emily Simons) and Martha who bore the brunt of the organophosphate’s effects. It left Marilyn (Emily Simons) with a transformed personality, and Martha needing a kidney transplant to avoid a life on dialysis.
In the final weeks, Roo (Georgie Parker) was revealed to be a match for a transplant, and was delighted at the prospect of being able to bring her mother’s medical woes to an end. However, Martha was reluctant to accept her daughter’s offer, not wanting Roo to endure a lifetime of medical woes of her own.
After visiting a psychiatrist, Roo then began to have doubts of her own, and didn’t know whether she could take the risk of giving up one of her kidneys.
In the three-part special that brought the season to a close, the Stewarts came together to make the big decision – would they go ahead with the transplant or not?
Alf took to church, asking God for help to support his family, “whichever way this goes.”
Finally, Roo decided to go ahead with the transplant, but, just as they were heading to the operating theatre, Martha announced that it wouldn’t be going ahead. She simply can’t take her daughter’s kidney.
What will this mean for Martha? Is she giving up?
What does the future hold for Chloe after killing Matthew, and will Ryder and Theo survive their ordeal?
If you can’t wait until 2022 to find out what’s coming up on Home and Away, read our brand new spoiler article previewing everything we know about the year ahead.