In Todd we trust
Todd Lasance provides some rare good news for the embattled Home and Away, writes Colin Vickery
HOME and Away needs a good-news story at the moment. The Channel 7 soapie has made headlines for all the wrong reasons in recent months.
First there was the furore about the lesbian storyline featuring policewoman Charlie Buckton (Esther Anderson).
Then there was the sex-tape scandal involving Lincoln Lewis. The 21-year-old filmed a sex act with a teenage TV starlet and showed it to cast and crew on his mobile phone.
Most recently there was the embarrassment of Jodi Gordon going missing after a bender with a member of a bikie gang. Gordon reportedly told police a quantity of cocaine had been consumed.
At the weekend, former cast member Bryan Wiseman alleged a drug-taking party culture existed behind the scenes of the show.
So thank heavens for Todd Lasance and Jessica Tovey.
Lasance’s character Aden Jefferies is one of Summer Bay’s most popular and his romance with Tovey’s Belle Taylor has struck a chord with viewers.
Lasance has become so popular that he beat a strong field of contenders this year including Eric Thompson and Gyton Grantley to take out the Silver Logie for Most Popular Actor.
The 24-year-old won widespread praise for his sensitive handling of a storyline detailing Aden coming to terms with being sexually abused by his grandfather.
Aden only recently accepted and worked through his past to find happiness with Belle.
In recent episodes of Home and Away, Lasance and Tovey worked through the drama of Belle’s drug addiction and subsequent rehab. After breaking up, Aden and Belle decided they could not be without each other and got engaged.
Lasance and Tovey have worked closely together for the past two years, sharing almost every scene. It has given them a unique bond — on and off the screen.
‘‘Jess is one of the closest girl friends I have now,’’ Lasance says. ‘‘I feel so fortunate that I’ve had such an incredible actress to work opposite.
‘‘The reason I think the AdenBelle storyline has developed is because of that chemistry. We worked out that we’ve spent around 300 days working together and that’s usually in one-on-one scenes.
‘‘I feel so comfortable with Jess and I think that comes across on screen.’’
Lasance says the pair’s relationship isn’t restricted to work.
‘‘There have always been these (untrue) rumours flying around that we’re dating,’’ he says.
‘‘You spend more time with them than your own family. You see them in their highest of highs and lowest of lows.’’
Tovey went through a trough recently when she was deciding whether or not to stay with Home and Away. She turned to Lasance for advice and, in the end, decided to leave the Seven soapie.
LASANCE backs Tovey’s decision but is sad he won’t be sharing any more scenes with his mate.
‘‘I told her yesterday how incredible she is and how fortunate I am that we got to work together. It sets a pretty high benchmark for the next person I work with,’’ Lasance says.
‘‘Jess had been in the show for three years and felt she’d reached a creative boundary. She’d experienced so much as Belle that she needed to branch out a bit.
‘‘We had a discussion. There were days where she said she’d love to stay and it’s difficult to leave because of the close friendships you develop on the show.
‘‘She pulled me aside at work one day and said ‘I’ve decided to leave’. It was sad for me but also exciting because she has so much potential.
‘‘You do reminisce. I see episodes on TV and think ‘it was such good fun working together’.’’
Home winner: Silver Logie winner Todd Lasance as the popular Aden Jefferies in Channel 7’s Home and Away.