More than 30 years after they left Ramsay Street behind, Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan have returned to the TV show that made them household names.
Long-running Australian soap opera Neighbours is finally coming to an end, and to mark the occasion many of its most popular actors from years gone by are returning for what promises to be an epic final episode.
Back in the 80s, no Neighbours characters enjoyed quite the same level of popularity as Kylie Minogue’s Charlene and Jason Donovan’s Scott, the soap’s golden couple. The on-screen relationship was of particular interest to audiences as Kylie and Jason were also a couple in real life for a time.
As Neighbours was hugely popular in Great Britain as well as Australia, the show also proved a launchpad for Kylie and Jason’s respective pop music careers. Both soon became hugely successful, chart-topping singers in the UK, which prompted Kylie to quit Neighbours in 1988, with Jason following suit in 1989.
However, where Kylie proved to have real staying power as a pop star, Jason Donovan’s career soon declined in the wake of various controversies and high-profile drug problems (including a near-fatal overdose in 1995).
It’s been some time since the two were seen together, but fans were delighted to see Kylie tweet images of herself with Jason on the Neighbours set, captioned ‘Now we’re back together’ – a quote from their duet Especially for You, which hit number one in the UK and Ireland in 1989.
The first official images have also been released of the actors on the Neighbours set, with Kylie’s Charlene clad in her signature mechanic’s overalls.
Neighbours first hit screens in 1985, and enjoyed its greatest success in Britain, where it aired on BBC1 and was a major TV staple in the 80s and 90s.
However, as the soap’s popularity waned it was dropped by the BBC and moved to Channel 5 in 2008. It struggled there too, and when Channel 5 confirmed they intended to drop the show in February 2022, the soap was promptly cancelled.
Nonetheless, Neighbours is going out with a bang, with the final episode set to feature appearances from a slew of its best-loved stars from yesteryear: as well as Kylie and Jason, we can expect to see Ian Smith (Harold Bishop), Mark Little (Joe Mangel), and one of the biggest stars the show ever produced, Mike Young actor Guy Pearce.
The last ever episode of Neighbours is scheduled to air on Britain’s Channel 5 on the 29th of July.