'Tis the season for a Shortland Street cliffhanger (+photos)

As Shortland Street fans countdown to tomorrow night’s Christmas cliffhanger – and the big serial killer reveal – we take a look back at past Shortland Street finales.

Although the soap has been on air for 15 years, it wasn’t until 1994 that the producers introduced the Christmas break and the popular season finale.

1994: Jenny was shocked to discover she was pregnant. Michael McKenna announced he was taking a break from being hospital boss. And Stuart Neilson disrupted Lionel and Kirsty’s fairytale wedding.

1995: In the last week of 1995 a truck crashed into the hospital. Carmen was struck on the head, but seemed fine initially. On Christmas day Guy proposed to Carmen … minutes before she collapsed and died, leaving him and baby Tuesday alone.

1996: Rangi and Rachel broke up for good and wheelchair-bound Rangi found himself in a tight corner when he was trapped in the garage by a drunk Rachel who then passed out leaving the car running. In Fiji, Ellen told David she was pregnant. And Lionel and Kirsty decided to give their marriage another go.

1997: Donna and Rangi’s passionate romance came to a sudden halt when they discovered they were half-brother and sister. Tiffany was rushed to hospital after a potentially fatal collapse and Caroline was sentenced to life imprisonment for Annabel’s murder. As Kirsty and Lionel rushed back to town to support Caroline, the small plane they were travelling in crashed.

1998: Lionel proposed to MacKenzie, unaware of her villainous activities. Minnie discovered Oscar in Ellen and David’s dining room, apparently dead. Ellen and Mike enjoyed a harbour cruise until the boat hit a reef and began to sink. Mike and Ellen tried to jump to safety but Ellen hit her head and the show ended with Mike frantically searching for her underwater.

1999: Donna discovered that Rangi wasn’t her brother after all and tried to contact him with the good news. Rangi and policewoman girlfriend Janet were dealing with a road crash site when Janet became stuck under the truck, crushing her legs. As Rangi promised to stick by her forever a second car crashed into the wreckage and everything went up in flames.

2000: Nasty Eamon begged for his life as he hung off the side of a cliff, with only Kate (the woman he raped) there to help him. Fergus proposed to Waverley but called off the engagement when Wave accused him of drug use.

2001: Mad Jack Hewitt attempted to kill Chris Warner. After proving unsuccessful, he kidnapped Rachel and tried to stage a creepy mock wedding. Nick declared his love for Waverley and asked her to come to the UK with him. Barb’s Christmas party turned to tragedy when Marshall’s illegal drug lab exploded.

2002: Toni dumped Adam, Waverley was diagnosed with breast cancer and Shannon announced she was pregnant to Tama. Rachel’s alcoholism led to the demise of her and Chris’ relationship. Trying to talk to Chris on her mobile while driving drunk, she had a serious car accident. Back at the hospital, prisoner Kurt Matakuare had been brought in for treatment and overpowered his guard, stabbing Adam with a scalpel.

2003: Who killed Geoff Greenlaw? As Delphi prepared to leave Ferndale for Sydney with evil Dom, she was horrified to discover Dom was the murderer. Chris Warner’s world collapsed when Donna dumped him for cheating and he was arrested on charges of sexual molestation … all thanks to Dom. Across town at a charity function, Anne and Tama were trapped when the building collapsed around them.

2004: A celebratory one-hour special that screened on Christmas Day, the centerpiece was Tama and Shannon’s romantic beach wedding, attended by old favourites Victor, Donna and Mihi. The year ended with a combined wedding reception and A Christmas Carol wrap party at Coltrane, the romantic reunion of Barb and Sticky and the start of Sarah and Andrew’s ill-fated relationship.

2005: Craig, Sarah, Judy and Maia formed a band to entertain their colleagues at the hospital Christmas party. Sarah was dating Hamish and Craig was with Huia, but Sarah and Craig’s chemistry was undeniable as they sang the Dance Exponents’ hit Why Does Love Do This To Me?

2006: The staff headed to the beach for the end of year Christmas party. Baxter got in over his head when he accepted LSD from an already high Alice. A friendly volleyball game turned personal when tensions between Craig and TK could no longer be contained. Sarah finally made a decision after months of conflict about who she really wanted.

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Source: NZ Herald. Read more »

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About the author

Kyle Wadsworth

Kyle Wadsworth is a trained multimedia journalist with a passion for film and television - notably Westside and Outrageous Fortune! Also known as TuiKiwi (the name of which has also featured on Outrageous Fortune as a guest-starring beer brand).
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