Australian drama, Neighbours has been hit with more scandals and accusations.
In her autobiography, Nicola Charles claimed she was offered drugs while on set. She also claimed she helped an unnamed cast member who passed out after taking speed.
The human inside me couldn’t leave her there alone on the couch, barely conscious and strugglimg. Her so-called friends on the cast had conveniently disappeared and washed their hands of the situation.
In return, Charles was offered speed herself the next day in the cast’s bathroom. She declined the offer.
The actress, along with other cast members took speed to keep their weight down.
These events allegedly happened in the late 1990’s. Charles accused Neighbours’ production company, Fremantle Media for turning a blind eye.
Neighbours plagued with scandal
Earlier this year, a number of former cast members claimed they’d been victims of racism and sexism.
In April, Shareena Clanton claimed she’d been a victim of racism and sexism while playing Sheila Canning.
Meyne Wyatt (Nate Kinski) and Sharon Johal (Dipi Rebecchi) claimed they also faced racism and homophobia on set. Johal alleged that some of the perpetrators were current cast members. She accused Neighbours’ production company, Fremantle Media of not taking allegations seriously.
When I first read about racism, sexism and homophobia claims, I was shocked. Neighbours have had a string of people of colour as cast members. To me, the characters of Dipi and Yashvi Rebecchi (Olivia Junkeer), were well developed. They didn’t seem like disrespectful stereotypes of Indian Australians. I could be wrong.
Were Indian Australians added simply for brownie points? Was it just about quotas? Of course, I can’t say for sure either way.
Since around 2010 (maybe 2011), Neighbours featured its first character.
Chris Pappas’ (James Mason) coming out was based on a real person. Pappas struggled with his sexuality during Year 11. He told Summer, whom he dated. The storyline explored homophobia in sport and being ‘outed’ without giving consent.
I rememberr watching the episodes of Pappas’ struggle and it hitting me. It was so raw. I related to it to an extent, having past struggles of my own. That’s when ai stared becoming a fan and regular viewer of the show.