Home And Away Misses Another Opportunity To Cover Disability As Amputee Maddy Osborne Leaves Summer Bay
In Home And Away episodes airing earlier this month in Australia, a gas explosion rocked Summer Bay’s beloved Caravan Park. University student Maddy Osborne lost an arm in the explosion.
Our editor has been watching Home And Away for over 25 years now. She loves it with a passion rivalled only by the passion she has for Neighbours. However, the only thing our editor doesn’t like about Home And Away is its absolute failure to cover disability positively.
As our editor has written here several times before, everyone who ever becomes disabled on Home And Away is either miraculously cured or leaves the Bay before their disability storyline can be fully explored.
As our editor wrote here just a few weeks ago, when she first heard about Maddy Osborne’s upcoming amputation, amputated limbs don’t just grow back. So there is no chance of a cure for Maddy.
Our editor had high hopes for Maddy Osborne. High hopes that maybe Maddy Osborne could be the character through which Home And Away would finally cover physical disability positively. Before the accident, Maddy was young, beautiful, had a long-term boyfriend and was at Uni. There were so many issues that Home And Away could have covered through the storyline of her amputation, if they had chosen to do so.
However, Same Difference can report that in the episode which aired today in Australia, Maddy Osborne left Summer Bay for good, with her biological mother. She plans to travel the world, not wanting the injury to change her dreams. So once again, Home And Away covered one tiny aspect of becoming physically disabled, without letting us see the character’s full story on screen.
Same Difference would like to remind the people at Home And Away that the programme has disabled viewers, too. Sadly, every time the programme has an opportunity to represent them on screen, they seem to miss it.
When will Home And Away have a long term disabled character? And what message are they sending to their many disabled viewers by not having one?