At last, here I am at the end of Flashback Week on Neighbours, and I have to say, I’m a little underwhelmed. Now, I know a lot of people enjoyed this last week of Neighbours, with all the big reveals and returning characters, but I spent most of the week feeling more than a little bit frustrated. I feel slightly more positive about it all now we’re at the end than I did by day three, but I do have quite a bit to say about these special flashback episodes.
I know some fans have felt very strongly about Flashback Week and have been rather disappointed by some of the negativity about it. Still, I’m afraid I’ve got one and a half of my two feet firmly planted in Camp Negative, so if you don’t want to read my series of gripes, you might want to give this one a miss and rejoin me next week.
Time For a Scooby-Doo Flashback
Anyone who’s seen Wayne’s World, please feel free to insert your own “diddly doo” flashback noises here.
So there I am, at the start of flashback week, feeling quite excited about what’s about to be revealed. I was hoping for Eden to be Melanie’s secret love child, but what I got instead was the world’s most long-winded anecdote about several people I could not care less about. It felt a bit like when my mum used to insist on telling me some very involved gossip about some bloke in the village that I’d never even met.
To give props to the Neighbours production team, the flashbacks were pretty seamless and really felt like they had taken place immediately after the street party scenes. It was really fun to see so many characters returning. But I’m afraid that’s kind of where most of my positivity for this last week runs out.
Skip to the End, Melanie
I’m going to summarise what it took Melanie four days to reveal: Krista, Holly, and Eden all know each other and were planning to go traveling together, for which they needed money. Krista knows Melanie from the time that Melanie was her housekeeper in London, so she hits her up for it. It seems that Melanie did a drug deal on Krista’s behalf and was left holding some drugs, for which the police still want her, so Krista tries to use this as leverage to get more money out of her.
David gets dragged into it because he’s now involved with the juice van, and Eden tampers with the van steps, resulting in Hugo being injured. David and Melanie subsequently get Paul involved because he sees them chasing Eden. Then Melanie goes running to Paul after she confronts Krista and pushes her into the hotel pool during a struggle, thinking that she’s killed her. Paul goes to deal with the body but finds Eden there and no Krista. Eden asks for half a million dollars to keep quiet about it.
David tells Aaron and Nicolette about what’s happening, and he wants to go to the police but is dissuaded from doing so because of his being on probation. This is why Aaron, David, and Nicolette decide to leave Erinsborough.
That’s pretty much it. That is what took four days for Melanie to explain, bringing in an ever-increasing audience to hear all about it, to the point where there weren’t enough seats for everyone.
In fact, it takes Melanie so long to tell the story that Toadie has to arrange childcare for Nell and Hugo. The Varga-Murphys barely know Toadie, but they’ve adopted his children somehow.
David the Diva
Genuinely, the most exciting moment for me this entire week is the big reveal that David is now a Drinks Diva, with his dubiously rendered face plastered all over the side of the drinks van. I know he can’t be a doctor anymore, but being a juice guy is not what I had imagined for him. I can’t picture him knocking up pineapple and ginger juices while listening to Melanie’s inane chit-chat all day without eventually throwing himself out of the drinks hatch while the van is moving. That’s what I would end up doing anyway.
Terese Speaks For Us All
My absolute favourite person this week has been Terese – from the moment Melanie turns up on the street, Terese is entirely done with all of it. When Melanie asks them all to sit down so she can begin her epic saga, Terese pipes up with, “Melanie, we’re not serving you afternoon tea,” which sets up how receptive she’s going to be to Melanie’s very slow recounting of the whole sorry affair.
I used to work with this girl who would launch into these incredibly long and tedious anecdotes with no punchline, and at the end, I just sort of had to guess what my reaction was supposed to be. Terese listening to Melanie was me listening to those anecdotes – she was utterly fed up with everything, rolling her eyes and throwing her head back in exasperation, every so often sitting up to tell Melanie to get on with it.
I’ve never identified with Terese as much as I did this week. I, too, was making a lot of the same faces and yelling at Melanie to get on with the sodding story.
My main issue with this whole thing is that I don’t care. I don’t like pale vampire child Eden, and I’m barely invested in Reece, let alone in her sister, whom we never even met until this week. So why do I care about this epically long odyssey about a grotty boy and a stranger? I just don’t. I don’t care.
I know the plot has been structured so that it also brings plenty of the regulars into it, but it all seems quite contrived to me. Their involvement feels very incidental to the main crux of the issue, which is the fate of Krista, a character I have absolutely no investment in whatsoever.
So anyway, David finally gets his way, revealing the entire story, including Paul’s involvement. Everyone gets marched off to the police station (I do hope they have a lot of cells), and Paul finally finds out that he might well be involved in the death of a Sinclair, which is obviously pretty big news for the hotel. Now, this is the only tiny little bit of this plot that I care about in the slightest – I’m fascinated to see what this means for Paul and Lassiters. The look of horrified realisation on Paul’s face, when he hears Krista’s last name, is the only satisfying moment of the entire week.
“If There Ain’t No Body, Then There Ain’t Nobody F***ing Dead”
I’m excited to get to use a Band of Brothers quote here (one of my other TV obsessions) because Bill Guarnere was dead right when he said that if there isn’t a body, then nobody is dead. We haven’t seen Krista’s body. All we’ve seen is a tiny bit of blood on the floor. Eden was on the hotel roof, so what could he possibly have done with Krista’s body in the time it took Paul to get up to the roof? Chucked her over the side? Folded her up origami-style and popped her in his pocket? The only logical explanation I can see is that she isn’t actually dead, which would give us instead a fun reveal when she inevitably shows up again. Now that I will care more about.
Quote of the Week
Despite Terese being the Queen we all needed this week, my favourite quote was when Paul ran in and yelled, “Melanie, don’t. Stop talking!”
I honestly couldn’t have put it better myself…