Home Television Drama Hollyoaks


1 9 9 5 – Current (UK)

Set in Chester (though filmed in Liverpool), this soap opera from Phil Redmond, designed specifically for a teenage audience, was surprisingly free of social conscience and angst, given his track record with Grange Hill and Brookside.

With its ‘Britpack’ cast of hunks and hunkettes, and a Ray-Ban perspective on the life of British 17 and 18-year-olds (all puppy love and consumer goods worship), the show was quickly dubbed ‘Chester 90210’.

But Redmond was unable to let old habits die completely, and a prominent early storyline saw Natasha die of a drug overdose.

The characters – mainly students and young business owners – instead of mundanely struggling to put food on the table, were ducking and weaving to escape stalkers and serial killers.

Originally a weekly series with a Sunday omnibus, Hollyoaks went twice weekly in September 1996. The show was shot on video but with the tapes manipulated in post-production to give the series the quality look of film.

In an inexplicable piece of casting, aged rock star Alvin Stardust played Natasha’s ill-fated father and landlord of the Dog & Duck public house.

Kurt Benson
Jeremy Edwards
Jambo Bolton
Will Mellor
Dawn Cunningham
Lisa Williamson
Maddie Parker
Yasmin Bannerman
Tony Hutchinson
Nick Pickard
Bazz FM
Toby Sawyer
Jude Cunningham
Davinia Taylor
Natasha Andersen
Shebah Ronay
Jack Osborne
James McKenna
Kevin Daniels
Robert Weatherby
Sam ‘OB’ O’Brien
Darren Jon-Jeffries
Louise Taylor
Brett O’Brien