Seven Studios brings its No. 1 Australian drama Home and Away back to "the Bay" on January 27, 2020, for a staggering 32nd season.
This home grown drama has had it all. Filmed at the fictitious Summer Bay (known to Aussies as Palm Beach on Sydney's north shore), the show has had more weddings, funerals, explosions, domestic violence, affairs, romance, pregnancies, rapes, crime, drug and alcohol addictions and overdoses than any single major city has a right to, especially given its restricted 7pm time-slot.
This despite the fact it centres on a tourist haven with the Summer Bay caravan park (initially sold by long-term resident Alf Stewart to the Fletcher family), surf club, high school and the diner, as the main locations.
The hugely popular program has collected more than 45 Logie Awards and was inducted into the Logie Hall of Fame in 2015. It has also had it fair share of complaints, mainly due to the subjects broached in the early evening Monday to Thursday time-slot.
Summer Bay (Palm Beach) has tours of the exterior locations, which are especially popular with visitors from the United Kingdom. The UK is one of more than 80 different countries which airs the soap.
The ability of the show's writers to introduce new characters and weave their back stories into the lives of existing characters continues to amaze this writer. The focus of storylines is often concentrated on the younger generation, which makes sense given the audience at which the show is aimed. But many of the long-time "residents" of "the Bay" were featured in the latter part of 2019, which ended with the usual cliffhanger.
So what lies ahead for 2020? The Seven Network promos have hinted at romance, betrayal, psychological obsession, a new family, recovery from the tragic death of not one but a second favourite and - spoiler alert - well not really, the re-marriage of Alf Stewart to Martha Stewart, who was thought by their daughter Roo to have drowned years earlier, but in fact suffered borderline personality disorder, which caused her to leave the family.