Home and Away

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Home and Away
Home and away Logo.PNG
Also known as Kodus ja võõrsil (Estonia)
Summer Bay (France)
Otthonunk (Hungary)
Be namu negerai (Lithuania)
Zatoka serc (Poland)
Genre Soap opera
Created by Alan Bateman
Starring Current cast
Theme music composer Mike Perjanik[1]
Opening theme "Home and Away"
(short theme)
Ending theme "Home and Away"
Country of origin Australia
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 27
No. of episodes 5940 (as of 10 April 2014)
Executive producer(s) John Holmes
Producer(s) Lucy Addario
Location(s) Palm Beach, New South Wales
Running time 22 minutes
Production company(s) Red Heart Entertainment
Original channel Seven Network
Picture format 576i (4:3) (1988–2000)
576i (16:9) (2001–present)
Audio format Stereo
Original run 17 January 1988 (1988-01-17) – present
Related shows HeadLand
External links

Home and Away is an Australian television soap opera devised by Alan Bateman. It has been produced in Sydney, New South Wales, since July 1987 and has aired on the Seven Network since 17 January 1988. It is the second-longest-running Australian drama. It originally screened as a 93-minute pilot episode, or a television film as it is known, and a day later aired at its usual time of 22 minutes. The show airs Mondays through to Thursdays at 7:00 pm.

Home and Away is set in the fictional town of Summer Bay, a coastal town in New South Wales, and follows the personal and professional lives of the people living in the area. The show initially focused on the Fletcher family, Pippa (Vanessa Downing) (later played by Debra Lawrance) and Tom Fletcher (Roger Oakley) and their five foster children Frank Morgan (Alex Papps), Carly Morris (Sharyn Hodgson), Steven Matheson (Adam Willits), Lynn Davenport (Helena Bozich), and Sally Keating (later Fletcher) (Kate Ritchie), who would go on to become one of the show's longest-running characters. The show also focuses on the Stewart family. During the early 2000s, the central storylines focused on the Sutherlands and, later, the Hunters. Home and Away had proved popular when it premiered in 1988 and had risen to become a hit in Australia, and after only a few weeks, the show tackled its first major and disturbing storyline, the rape of Carly Morris; it was one of the first shows to feature such storylines during the early timeslot. H&A has tackled many adult-themed and controversial storylines; something rarely found in its restricted timeslot.

H&A has been successful in several countries. It is popular in the UK and Ireland, being one of Channel 5's and RTÉ's most popular drama series, especially since the Irish broadcaster began airing the show just several months after its premiere in Australia. The show remains successful in New Zealand, and in France, where it is titled as Summer Bay.

Home and Away is the most successful programme in the history of the Logies and has earned a total of 38 Logie Awards since premiering in 1988, including Most Popular Australian Drama. The cast has earned several awards including Gold Logie Award for Most Popular Personality on Australian Television, Silver Logie Award for Most Popular Actor, and Most Popular Actress.


After the Seven Network cancelled their soap opera Neighbours on 12 July 1985 due to low ratings, rival network Ten picked it up and turned it into a success.[2] A couple of years later, Seven's head of drama, Alan Bateman, became desperate to get back into the soap market and began to work out how to launch another soap that was not a copy of Neighbours.[3] While on a trip to Kangaroo Point, New South Wales with his family, Bateman began talking to locals who were "up in arms" over the construction of a foster home for children from the city.[3][4] Seeing the degree of conflict the "influx of parentless children on a tight-knit community" was having, Bateman came away with the idea for a new serial.[4] He explained "Nobody in the community wanted them to move in and I began to wonder how streetwise city kids would adapt to the new lifestyle. Suddenly I thought, there is my slice of life in a community."[3] Bateman began outlining the storyline and set the serial in the fictional town of Summer Bay. While Seven Network executives were unconvinced by the idea, audience research was positive.[3] The soap opera was initially called Refuge, but the name was changed to the "friendlier" title of Home and Away once production began.[3]

The Surf Club has been a prominent feature in Home and Away

When the show began in 1988, it focused on Tom Fletcher and his wife, Pippa.[4] They had four foster children, Frank Morgan, Carly Morris, Steven Matheson, Lyn Davenport, and an adopted daughter, Sally Fletcher. They soon fostered Bobby Simpson, a local tearaway, much to the annoyance of Donald Fisher. They bought the caravan park and quickly built strong friendships with the locals, Ailsa Stewart, Alf Stewart, and Neville and Floss McPhee.

Home and Away celebrated its 21st year in production in Sydney on 23 July 2009.[5] The mayor of Sydney's Pittwater Council presented cast members with the key to Palm Beach, the filming location for the show.[5]

In preparation for the show's 25th anniversary, Seven's new digital channel 7Two began airing episodes from the very beginning. Channel 5 announced similar plans to celebrate the show's 25th anniversary by showing the best of classic episodes of the show (as voted for by viewers), showing two episodes a day from each year the series has been on air, beginning with the 1988 pilot.[6]


Former cast[edit]

Notable former cast members include Heath Ledger (Scott Irwin), Isla Fisher (Shannon Reed), Melissa George (Angel Parrish), Julian McMahon (Ben Lucini), Dannii Minogue (Emma Jackson), Chris Hemsworth (Kim Hyde) Simon Baker (James Healy), Guy Pearce (David Croft), Jason Clarke (Kick Johnson), Ryan Kwanten (Vinnie Patterson), Sharni Vinson (Cassie Turner) and Naomi Watts (Julie Gibson).[7] According to Kip Gamblin (Scott Hunter, 2003–2005), "the acting apprenticeship so many had received on the set of Home and Away had paved the way for their success."[7]


Cast members Steve Peacocke and Daniel Ewing during filming in 2011

All interiors for the show were taped at Seven Sydney's Epping studios until 2010. Following the closure of these studios in early 2010, episodes have been taped at the Australian Technology Park in Redfern. Exterior scenes are taped on location, mainly at Palm Beach, and at Fisherman's Beach, Collaroy in Sydney's Northern Beaches district. The show has filmed in Melbourne twice.[8]

Home and Away was filmed in video (PAL) from the pilot episode up until mid-2003 when it was changed to high-definition video; this gives the show a film look even while watching in standard-definition. In 2007, Seven HD was launched and the show was available in full HD (1080i), although this practice ended on 25 September 2010 when Seven HD made way for 7mate.


Over the years, Home and Away has dealt with some very controversial issues. While the show has had a number of light hearted or comical story lines, there has also been a number of story lines concerned with more adult themes, including domestic violence, bullying (inside and outside of school), gambling addiction, teenage pregnancy, racism, sexual assault, drug dependency, adultery, wrongful imprisonment, suicide, murder, homosexuality, incest and child abuse.

Broadcast and viewership[edit]


Home and Away currently airs on the Seven Network at 7:00 pm from Mondays to Thursdays, going up against rival current affairs shows A Current Affair on the Nine Network, and The Project on Network Ten.[9] The show is aired for approximately 46 weeks each year. Each season usually begins in January and the season finale airs in November. The last five aired episodes shown are broadcast in an omnibus edition each Sunday on Seven's digital secondary channel 7Two.

When the show began, it aired at 5:30 pm in Adelaide, at 6:00 pm in Melbourne and Sydney, at 6:30 pm in Brisbane, and at 7:00 pm in Perth.[10] The launch of Home and Away was hoped to help boost Seven's early evening ratings which had been underperforming in previous years.[10] However, the show struggled to get a hold on the audience, particularly when compared to rival soap opera Neighbours, which was a ratings powerhouse at the time.[10] By the end of Home and Away's first season, its ratings had improved.[10] In January 1992, when Neighbours' high-rating era was over, Seven moved Home and Away to the 7:00 pm timeslot across the network, putting both shows up against each other.[10] This caused Network Ten to move Neighbours to the 6.30 pm timeslot two months later.[10]

In March 2013, Better Homes and Gardens began replacing Home and Away on Fridays, to make way for Seven's AFL coverage.[11] Friday's episodes of Home and Away now air on Thursdays at 7:30 pm.[11] As of 2014, the show is attracting between 800,000 and 1 million viewers an episode, and is often ranked first or second in its timeslot.[12][13]

7Two began showing repeat episodes of Home and Away from the beginning in November 2009, and is now aired each weekday at 9:00 am. Prime7 previously aired repeats between 1999 and 2002. Foxtel also aired Home and Away from the beginning on their now-defunct channel Fox Kids, and later on Fox Soap between 1996 and 1998.



The digital network NT1 commenced airing episodes on Monday, 4 September 2006. The series is titled Summer Bay in France. The show is on the 2008 season (season 20).


The show has been showing in Flanders (northern Belgium, with Dutch language subtitles) since Kanaal Twee (VTM's commercial sister channel, renamed 2BE in 2008) opened in 1995. Episodes are being shown aired seven months earlier in Australia. The show was originally aired once a day at 18:30 but since January 2008, ais ired twice a day; each 25-minute episode is shons at 17:55 and is repeated the next day about 7:45 on VTM. Since September 2013 the show has been aired on a daily basis, again on the motherchannel VTM at 17:10.


In Ireland, the national state broadcaster, RTÉ, has shown the programme since its inception – 1988. The show is aired Monday to Friday at 1:30 pm on RTÉ One,[14] repeating at 6:30 pm on RTÉ Two. A repeat of the week's episodes is aired on Saturday and Sunday on RTÉ Two. The show has consistently been RTÉ Two's most popular televised drama, regularly topping the ratings. Average ratings for the 6.30 pm screening on RTÉ Two are about 250,000 viewers, with 130,000 for the RTÉ One 1:30 pm screening.[14]RTÉ was originally the first channel in Europe to premiere new episodes, However, in 2005, UK's Channel 5 aquired the rights to premiere the show in Europe, therefore, RTÉ cannot screen episodes ahead of Channel 5. RTÉ are 27 episodes behind the Australian broadcast. Previous episodes of the show are available for Irish viewers on the RTÉ Player. The 2014 season (season 27) of Home and Away began airing from 5 March, 2014.

New Zealand[edit]

Home and Away is distributed by Endemol in New Zealand.[15] The show began screening in the country during November 1989, coinciding with the launch of TV3. The show was dropped by TV3 in 1992 and picked up by TVNZ the following year, screening weekday afternoons on TV1 and later moving to TV2 screening at 5pm. TVNZ ceased screening Home and Away in 2002 and a week later the show was picked up again by TV3.[15] Home and Away aired on weekdays at 5:30pm on TV3. Episodes were screened one week after they aired in Australia. The previous day's episode aired the following afternoon at 12:30, with the exception of Friday's episode, which aired the following Monday afternoon. That week's episodes were re-screened as an omnibus on Sunday mornings at 10:00. On 5 July 2013, Endemol cancelled its agreement with TV3, causing them to lose the right to broadcast Home and Away.[15] The show was then picked up by TVNZ once again and it will be aired on TV2 on weeknights, with an opportunity to catch-up the following morning and during Sunday afternoons.[15][16] The series premiered on TV2 on 19 August 13 at 5:30pm.[16]

United Kingdom[edit]

Home and Away debuted on British television, on ITV, in most regions, on Saturday, 11 February 1989 (however, some showed the pilot episode a day later on Sunday, 12 February). It was broadcast on ITV for 11-and-a-half years, episodes 1–2840. The last ITV-broadcast episode was aired on Thursday, 8 June 2000. At the time, ITV were nine episodes behind Australia, therefore there were regular breaks at Christmas and Easter. The regular breaks continue with the Channel 5 broadcast.

After a delay in screening, Home and Away made its début on Channel 5 on Monday, 16 July 2001.[17] At this point, there were still 24 weeks worth of episodes from 2000 to be aired. In addition to this, the programme's end credits returned. The night before the first episode premiered on Channel 5 on Sunday, 15 July 2001, a new hour-long special recapped events from when screenings stopped, and previewed upcoming stories. Home and Away is one of Channel 5's highest rated shows.

Channel 5 are 25 episodes (or five weeks) behind the Australian broadcast. 5* are 24 episodes behind the Australian broadcast. The 2014 season (season 27) began airing from 3 March 2014 on Channel 5 and 28 February 2014 on 5*. In May 2014, the show will take a three-week break on Channel 5 and return on 26 May, now airing eight weeks (40 episodes) behind Australia.[18]

Sky Living repeated Home and Away from 1999–2002 and Trouble from Summer 2002 to early 2003.


In Norway, the show is aired on weekdays on TV2 at 16:00 till 17:00. The channel is airing episodes from 2013. TV2 is airing ten episodes per week, trying to get close to the Australian airing.


In Lithuania, the show was aired every work day before the news on LNK until 2007 (from episode 1), and later on TV1. In 2011, it started on BTV (2005–2007 seasons). The show is called "Be namų negerai" (It's bad without a home).


In Greece, the show is entitled 'Το σπίτι της καρδιάς μας' (The Home of our Hearts) and is aired Monday to Friday at 16:00 on Skai TV. The show is broadcast in English with Greek subtitles. The first Greek episode was Australia's 3761–3762 episodes. It was cancelled due to low ratings four months after its premiere.


In Estonia, the show is called "Kodus ja võõrsil" and is aired on Kanal 11. The channel is airing episodes from 2013.

Theme song[edit]

Indiana Evans, Mark Furze and the crew during filming

The theme's lyrics have remained the same since the pilot episode, but have been gradually reduced in length to keep newer versions of the song at a shorter length. The theme was released as a single in the UK in 1989 and peaked at No.73 on the UK single charts.[19]

The single track includes the opening and closing themes and an additional saxophone section. Since the launch of the 1995 version of the theme tune, extracts from the second verse of the full-length soundtrack have been used to close the show, as opposed to an edited version of the opening song which was used until this point. The theme was shortened in 1996, and again in 2004. John Holmes, executive producer of Home and Away, explained the erosion of theme music in 2007. He said: "That's been a casualty of the accelerated flow which is the abolition of opening credits and having our closing credits condensed to such an extent that they are put on the screen at the same time as we are promoting the next episode."[20]

The 2007–2008 theme was recorded by 20-year-old actor and musician Luke Dolahenty. Israel Cannan sang the theme in early 2007, but due to complaints from fans, Network Seven decided to re-record it, making it the shortest running theme song in the programme's history.

The Home and Away theme is also used as an instrumental underscore on special occasions. It was last used during Sally's final scene and was heard several times throughout the storyline (most notably Sally and Flynn's wedding). In the early years, it was used for commercial break bumpers.

In 2009, the show debuted with a revamped opening and closing theme; however, for timing reasons the lyrics have been shortened slightly and the tune now runs at 15 seconds. The theme has returned to a male/female duet, after eight years of male group/solo singers. As it is much shorter, the theme will once again play at the start of every episode. From June 2006 to November 2008, the opening titles were played occasionally, depending on the episodes' length. The theme is accompanied by the show's first set of cast-less opening titles. The design of the titles is that of a collage, made up from many pictures of Palm Beach, the location used as Summer Bay. The opening theme has not been played since the end of the 2009 season although the closing theme tune still remains for international viewers.

For the 6 second opening titles that have been in use since 2010, short versions of the theme have been in use:

In 2010, the 1988 opening notes which were used right at the very beginning of the theme tune. In 2011, another version of the music was introduced; this was a much more upbeat and more recognizable version of the opening notes of the 1988 theme. Mid-2012, a brand new arrangement of the opening music included the "Closer Each Day, Home and Away" section of the theme at the beginning.

Version Artist Duration
Karen Boddington and Mark Williams
January 1988 – November 1994
Doug Williams & Erana Clark
January 1995 – November 1999
The Robertson Brothers
January 2000 – November 2003
January 2004 – December 2006
Israel Cannan
January – April 2007
Luke Dolahenty
April 2007 – November 2008
Luke Dolahenty & Tarryn Stokes
January 2009 – present day
(closing credits)


Home and Away is one of the most complained about shows on Australian television. From 1 July 2005 to 30 June 2006, there were 23 written complaints about the show as viewers thought it was inappropriate for it to be shown in its 19:00 timeslot. Home and Away was the 8th most complained about show on Australian television and was the only drama in the top ten complaint list.[21]

In March 2009, it was alleged that the Seven Network agreed to censor a scene with a lesbian kiss, after pressure from religious groups. This action was publicly condemned by several parties, including media commentator David Knox. Bevan Lee, Seven Network's Head of Creative Drama, later denied the censorship allegations, calling it a media beat up.[22][23]

In July 2009, former Home and Away actor Bryan Wiseman wrote in The Sunday Telegraph alleging a culture of drug and alcohol abuse among the younger members of the cast. The allegations followed incidents involving cast members Jodi Gordon and Lincoln Lewis. Lewis was "disciplined" by Channel Seven after it became public that he had filmed himself and a "starlet" engaged in a sexual act and then shown the film to Home and Away colleagues. Gordon and a male friend reported to police that they had seen, on a security camera, men armed with guns in the backyard of the friend's home. No men were found and the pair later admitted to police that they had consumed drugs during that day. No charges were laid.[24][25][26][27]


Books and magazines[edit]

Name Release date/year Publisher Author ISBN
Home and Away Annual
Home and Away Special
Home and Away Annual
Home and Away Special
The Official Home and Away Annual
Home and Away Annual Authorized Edition
Home and Away: Behind the Scenes
The Frank Morgan Story
The Carly Morris & Steven Matheson Stories
The Bobby Simpson Story
The Matt Wilson Story
Home and Away: Carly's Crisis
Home and Away: Bobby & Frank
Home and Away: 2 in 1
Home and Away: Dangerous Ride
Family Matters
Home and Away Volume 1: Summer Bay Blues
Home and Away Volume 2: Scandal at Summer Bay
Home and Away: Hearts Divided[28]
Pan Australia
Leon F Saunders
ISBN 978-0-330-36461-4
Home and Away: Dani on Trial[29]
Leon F Saunders
ISBN 0-330-36495-2
Home and Away: Prisoner No. 2549971[30]
Pan Macmillan
Leon F Saunders
ISBN 978-0-330-36496-6
A Place in the Bay
October 2004
The Long Goodbye
November 2004
June 2005
Second Chances
September 2005
Home and Away: Celebrating 21 Years
(official collector's edition)[31]
January 2009
Pacific Magazines
Home and Away: Celebrating 25 Years
(official collector's edition)[32]
5 November 2012
Pacific Magazines

DVD, VHS and soundtracks[edit]

Name Release date/year Type of annual/book
Home and Away: The Movie (original pilot episode)
Classic Home and Away
Home and Away: The Official Summer Bay Special
(includes episode 1)
Home and Away: Secrets and the City[33]
Home and Away: Hearts Divided
Home and Away: Romances
(includes pilot episode)
Home and Away: Weddings
Home and Away: The Sounds of Summer Bay
Home and Away: Songs from and Inspired by the Television Series
Home and Away Hits
Home and Away Hits 2


Name Release date/year Type of annual/book
Fan Cards
The Game of Home and Away
Board Game
Home and Away the Magazine: Issue 1
Home and Away Calendar

Awards and nominations[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Parker, Helen (22 August 2012). "Life's a beach: The real story behind soapie hit". Herald Sun (The Herald and Weekly Times). Retrieved 24 August 2012. 
  2. ^ Mercado 2004, p.205.
  3. ^ a b c d e Mercado 2004, p.251.
  4. ^ a b c Rand, Hannah (25 January 2009). "Home and Away in LA". The Daily Telegraph (News Limited). Retrieved 26 August 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Field, Katherine (23 July 2009). "Happy birthday for Home and Away". The Australian. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  6. ^ "Home and Away UK summer break confirmed classic episodes to air". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. 21 June 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Kent, Melissa (8 February 2009). "Cast and fans of Home & Away well on the way to belonging forever and ever". The Age (Australia). Retrieved 15 July 2009. 
  8. ^ http://www.tvtonight.com.au/2012/06/home-away-films-in-melbourne.html
  9. ^ Knox, David (8 January 2014). "Nine to stick with one hour news". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f "Home and Away". Televisionau.com. Archived from the original on 7 April 2014. 
  11. ^ a b B, Alicia (14 March 2013). "Home and Away Programming". Throng. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  12. ^ Knox, David (20 March 2014). "Ratings – Wednesday 19 March 2014". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  13. ^ Knox, David (4 February 2014). "Ratings – 3 February 2014". TV Tonight. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  14. ^ a b http://www.rte.ie/tv/listings.html
  15. ^ a b c d Whittingham, Clive (5 July 2013). "TVNZ swipes Home & Away rights". C21Media. Retrieved 5 July 2013. 
  16. ^ a b "TV2 announces Home and Away launch date". The New Zealand Herald (APN News & Media). 11 July 2013. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  17. ^ "Home and Away: Q&A". bbc.co.uk. 16 July 2001. Retrieved 12 October 2011. 
  18. ^ "Home and Away to take three-week break on Channel 5". Digital Spy. 14 April 2014. Retrieved 14 April 2014. 
  19. ^ "Home and Away single". www.chartstats.com. Retrieved 31 October 2007.
  20. ^ Elder, Bruce (5 November 2007). "Themes tuned out". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  21. ^ "Home and Away tops complaint list". backtothebay.net. 6 March 2007. Retrieved 18 March 2011. 
  22. ^ Meade, Amanda The Australian, 28 March 2009.
  23. ^ "Christian Taylor, www.samesame.com.au". samesame.com.au. Retrieved 2012-06-10. 
  24. ^ Moran, Jonathon (26 July 2009). "Home and Away's culture of cocaine, sex". The Sunday Telegraph. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  25. ^ "Lincoln Lewis' sex tape was not as bad as having cancer, says mum". The Daily Telegraph. 5 June 2009. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  26. ^ Ramachandran, Arjun (5 June 2009). "False report: Home and Away star Jodi Gordon off hook". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  27. ^ Lawrence, Kara; Barrett, David (5 June 2009). "Jodi Gordon's bizarre police raid". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  28. ^ "Home and Away: Hearts Divided / Leon F Saunders". National Library of Australia. Retrieved 15 July 2009. 
  29. ^ Saunders, Leon (2004). "Home and Away 2: Dani on Trial". Google Books. ISBN 9780330364959. Retrieved 15 July 2009. 
  30. ^ "Home and away : Prisoner No. 2549971/ Leon Saunders". National Library of Australia. Retrieved 27 September 2009. 
  31. ^ "Home and Away celebrates 21 years". Yahoo!7. Retrieved 15 July 2009. 
  32. ^ "Celebrating 25 years". Yahoo!7. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  33. ^ "Home and Away – Secrets and the City @ EzyDVD". Ezydvd.com.au. Retrieved 2012-06-10. 

External links[edit]