From whodunits, to alien abductions, the downright dramatic, to tearful final farewells… Soap exits are nothing if not memorable. Here’s our top 10 most memorable soap exits.
1. The Colbys: Fallon abducted by UFOs
Memorable for being the most amazing exit ever, it’s Fallon Carrington Colby’s alien abduction from Dynasty spin-off, The Colbys.
Apparently, there were multiple takes as actress Emma Samms saw the funny side.
In the show’s most memorable finale, Fallon sees a shimmering spaceship descend from the sky. Mesmerised, she steps aboard to be greeted by what looks like a tall man in a leotard, erm, we mean, alien!
2. Dallas: It was all just a bad dream…
When Patrick Duffy, who played hunky oil heir Bobby Ewing, decided to leave the failing telly drama, Dallas producers decided to kill off his character.
So Bobby met his end after being run over by his ex-wife’s crazed cousin.
Or so everyone thought… He later reappeared back home in the shower the following morning. It was all just a bad dream for Bobby – and viewers!
3. Neighbours: Madge Bishop’s tear-jerking final moments
It was one of the saddest deaths, as one half of the golden Aussie couple slipped away. How would Harold cope on without his beloved Madge?
Thanks to some nifty screenwriting, life would go on Down Under. Well, it had to as, in 2001, actress Anne Charleston decided to leave, while her on-screen hubby, Ian Smith wanted to stay.
So, after Madge was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, the devastated couple planned a trip to Paris. Sadly, Madge’s time was cut short and she passed away in her bedroom with Harold by her side.
4. Emmerdale: Kim Tate tales flight…in a helicopter
Way back in 1999 it was more common to leave a soap in a black taxi than a helicopter. But Kim broke that mould when smashed her hubby over the head with a paperweight, then fled the Dales in style.
5. Eastenders: Janine pushes Barry off a cliff
Even for scheming Janine, it was a pretty brutal moment when she shoved her hapless hubby, Barry, off a cliff, then left him for dead.
It’s certainly a memorable moment for soap’s fifth reincarnation of Ben Mitchell, Harry Reid. He told the press, ‘Janine just shoves him and as sad as it was, it was quite funny seeing him roll down a hill. The fact that there was one rock that he smacked his head against – [Barry] was so unlucky – he never had any luck and he rolls down that hill and bam. That just summed up Barry’s life.’
6. Coronation Street: Evil Richard drives into a canal
Who could forget one of telly’s most memorable psychopaths, Richard Hillman.
All eyes were glued to Corrie as Gail’s evil fiancé yelled, ‘This is it! I love you!’ then drove the Platt family into a Manchester canal.
Thankfully, everyone but the crazed killer himself survived.
7. Eastenders: Saskia is bludgeoned with an ashtray
WARNING: CONTAINS SWEARING!
Steve Owens was getting on brilliantly with Melanie Healy. That is, until Saskia Duncan rocked up to the club hell-bent on causing havoc.
When she threatened to ruin Steve’s life, let’s just say things got more than a little out of hand, and he killed her – with an ashtray.
Only in soap world…
8. Hollyoaks: Maddie hit by a flying car door
WARNING: CONTAINS SWEARING!
It’s drama, drama, drama as always on Hollyoaks. And Maddie’s exit was no different.
Moments after lying about Esther, Maddie was fatally hit by a car door, which flew through the air and landed on her head.
Ridiculous? Yes. Far-fetched? Definitely. Memorable? Absolutely!
9. Eastenders: Den’s done in with a brass doorstop
Soap veteran Dirty Den finally came to a bloody end when his tormented wife Chrissie smacked him round the head with a brass doorstop.
Den was originally thought to have been killed when he was shot through a bunch of daffodils in 1989. But he returned, revealing his death was faked and he’d been living undercover.
It didn’t stop him meeting a grisly end, thanks to his tangled love life.
After walloping him over the head with a doorstop, Chrissie buried Dirty Den in the Queen Vic’s cellar.
10. Home & Away: Sail away
Long-running character Bobbie drowns in the ocean. During what should have been a day of celebrations in 1993 at the drama-magnet haven that is Summer Bay, Bobbie hopped in a boat with some of her mates for a spin around the Bay. Sadly, her jovial sail was marred when a floating log struck her boat and she was thrown overboard. The end.
Sinister soap stats
Turns out, Emmerdale is one of the safest soaps, with an average 1.3 murders a year in the village. Steer clear of Albert Square though, where the murder rate is higher.
As for Hollyoaks, with 11 deaths per 1,000 residents, it’s a no-go zone if you want to escape with your life!
Corrie averages three murders in every 1,000. The first murder on the long-running soap was Lynn Johnson, back in 1975, who was beaten to death by her husband.
What are your most memorable soap exits? Let us know…