Johnno Dean

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Johnno Dean
Colin Wells as Johnno Dean
Hollyoaks character
Portrayed by Mark Powley (2002–2003)
Colin Wells (2003–2017)
Duration 2002–2005, 2017
First appearance 9 October 2002 (2002-10-09)
Last appearance 31 October 2017
Classification Former; regular
Occupation Fitness Club manager

John "Johnno" Dean is a fictional character from the British soap opera Hollyoaks, played originally by Mark Powley. He first appeared in October 2002, and from April 2003 was replaced by Colin Wells until his exit on 22 July 2005. The character returned on 26 October 2017 until 31 October 2017 for a guest stint to tie in with the exit of Frankie Osborne.


Mark Powley originally played Johnno but the role was recast in 2003 with Colin Wells.[1] Hollyoaks did not anticipate Johnno becoming a central character. Powley could not renew his contract due to commitments in place to other projects. A spokesperson for the show revealed that they were delighted to cast Wells in the role, but warned he would not be like the "lothario" character Jake Booth he previously played in rival soap opera Crossroads.[1]

On 6 October 2017, it was announced that Wells had reprised his role and would return during the week commencing 23 October.[2] Johnno returns as part of "a huge new storyline" for the Osborne family. He tempts his former wife Frankie Osborne (Helen Pearson) to join him on the road as a Cher tribute act, leaving her to make the big decision of whether to leave her husband and family in Chester.[2]


Johnno arrived in Hollyoaks with his wife Frankie, and their children Jake, Debbie, and Craig. Their youngest daughter Steph was already introduced as a student at Hollyoaks High School. Johnno and Frankie had had problems in their marriage but were mostly happy. He had a good relationship with all of his children, but was particularly close with Steph.

Johnno began working as a lorry driver with Les Hunter. Generally a friendly, good-natured personality and a devoted family man, Johnno's early storylines see him confront Ellie Hunter about her false testimony that her brother and his daughter Debbie Dean's boyfriend Dan Hunter committed a series of attacks, when the attacker was actually Ellie's husband Toby Mills. Johnno also caught his other daughter Steph Dean physical attacking Dan and Ellie's sister Lisa Hunter and had to pull Steph off her victim, before publicly reprimanding her for her behaviour.

The family become heavily in debt after Johnno lost his job when his workplace collapsed and the Deans had to move homes. This resulted in a number of arguments between Johnno and Frankie that almost led to the collapse of their marriage. Johnno briefly turns to alcohol to cope with his troubles but when he realises how much he feels alienated from Frankie and how distressed Steph is after she is diagnosed as having epilepsy, he stopped drinking as heavily..

After losing their house, Johnno and Frankie patched up their differences and began renting a house. Johnno began working for Richard Taylor, who took him on at his fitness club, Body Boost. When a rivalry between the Dean and Taylor families began, Richard terminated Johnno's job contract. However, Richard later re-employed Johnno at Body Boost and Jake took out a mortgage to help clear the family's debt accumulated. Still feeling alienated from Frankie, Johnno began an affair with 19-year-old student named Michelle. Frankie discovered Johnno’s affair and confronted him. Frankie still tried to save the marriage but decided to divorce Johnno when he revealed that Michelle was seven months pregnant with his baby, After learning the truth of their father, Jake, Debbie and Craig decided they did not want to have any contact with their father, except Steph (which she was completed devastated and begging him to come back home), as Johnno told her that, if there anything she need, he will help her, causing Steph forgiving him first, and then he left. His departure caused Steph began to alienated her mother and siblings for abandoned their relationship with him, and will never forgive them for hurting him, although she hide it for secret. In December 2004, Steph contact her father to wish her a Merry Christmas, and will return to Hollyoaks as soon as possible, which makes her happy.

Johnno briefly returned in July 2005, telling his family that Michelle had left him for someone her own age and that she had told him that her baby was not his. Debbie has left town, but the rest of the family is still there and he wants a chance to make things up to them. Frankie, Jake and Craig are angry at him still for his affair. Steph begs her mother and brothers to forgive him.

The family they is prepared to give Johnno another chance, however, Craig is unconvinced by Johnno's story so he rings Michelle and finds out that Johnno was lying and that he had in fact left Michelle and their newborn son Presley out of desperation after realising that he could not handle being a father again at his age. The family is disgusted by his behaviour, only Steph was willing to forgive him, angering her brothers and mother.

Frankie eventually agrees to forgive Johnno for his affair as she felt life was too short to remain hostile towards the father of her children. Johnno still wants another shot with Frankie, but she makes it clear she is happy with her new partner Jack Osborne, and there was no hope of them reuniting. Johnno realises that Michelle and Presley need him more than his other family and decides to go back home and make up with Michelle. Frankie tells him he will always be her best friend. Her final words to him are: "For the first we met, we were standing at a bus stop in 1979, your cheeky grin, the white leather jacket, hair slicked back, Johnno Dean, who treats girls mean to keep them keen."

For the next few years, Johnno is pretty much out of his children's lives and they all begin to consider Jack to be their father. Although, Steph does maintain a closer relationship with him then her brothers and sister. When Johnno couldn't attend her wedding to Max Cunningham due to work comments, Steph asks Jack to walk her down the aisle. In 2010, Johnno didn't attend Steph funeral.

In 2016, Frankie went to stay with Johnno after visiting their daughter Debbie. Upon her return to the village, she mentioned to Jack that Johnno was doing well and his relationship with Michelle was stronger. A year later, Johnno returns to the village and see Frankie once again to invite her to tour with him as a Cher impersonator. She tells him she wishes they hadn't broken up but is torn about whether to leave Jack and accept his offer. She eventually chooses Jack and Johnno leaves after Frankie tells him that he is still her best friend. Two days later, Jack called him that Frankie is dead, which devastated him and couldn't attend the funeral, after he allowed him to go, due to his impersonator tour.


  1. ^ a b Baker, Andy (29 March – 11 April 2003). "Request spot". Inside Soap. Hachette Filipacchi UK (228): 63. 
  2. ^ a b Dainty, Sophie (6 October 2017). "Hollyoaks is bringing back Frankie's ex-husband Johnno Dean for huge new Osborne story". Digital Spy. Retrieved 6 October 2017. 

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