Hollyoaks (Channel 4, 1995-present)
Hollyoaks is a soap from the makers of Brookside about the lives of various teenagers and their families in Chester in the north west of England. I never really watched the show that much in the 90s, but my sister did, and here is the reason why. She was fascinated by one of the characters, she thought that he was really great and was a big fan of him and would watch every episode that he was in. Who was it? It was none other than Mr Basil McCourtey!
Bazz as he was known to everyone was a character who fancied himself as a DJ and he even used to run his own radio station called Bazz FM, he was also in a band as a keyboard player and even amusingly did some work as a clown. He used to sleep in a van and his main storyline was that he was confused about his sexuality and didn’t know whether he was gay or not.
My sister thought Bazz was great partly because he had magnificent hair and he reminded her of the bloke who used to be in indie band Mansun who were popular at the time who coincidentally also came from Chester and she was a really big fan of them too. She was intrigued by his storyline and recorded loads of episodes with him in and I have put some of them on YouTube which have been popular. Bazz was played by Toby Sawyer (brother of Miranda I think) and when after a couple of years he left Hollyoaks at the end of 1997 she never ever watched the show again.
As for me, I only ever regularly watched the show for a few months when I was 18 around 2001/2002 which is about the only age that I think anyone would want to watch it really. It was around that time that it used to be repeated endlessly on E4 too, plus of course the Sunday morning omnibus.
When Hollyoaks started it was shown only twice a week but it is now on every weekday which I feel is too often but it is now established as Channel 4’s main soap. There were also occasionally some late-night editions with more risque storylines. There is still one original cast member in the show, Tony Hutchinson played by Nick Pickard, he’s been there for nearly 20 years now.
Actors who appeared in Hollyoaks who went on to further success include Will “Jambo” Mellor and Natalie “Carol” Casey. I’m sure it’ll continue for many years to come but there’ll never be anyone to rival lovely Bazz!