One of the writers of Australian soap Neighbours has revealed that the script for the episode had to be changed after Australia’s historic “yes” vote for marriage equality.
Neighbours’ first episode of the year, aired last night, saw character David Tanaka pop the question to his boyfriend Aaron Brennan in the long-running show’s first ever gay wedding proposal.
The scene was scripted and filmed before the postal survey’s result last November, meaning one important change had to be made to the episode.
Neighbours script producer and writer Paul Gartside explained on Twitter, “The first draft of this episode included a line where David commented that the proposal would just be symbolic, since he and Aaron couldn’t legally marry.
“Never been so happy for a line to be cut.”
The first draft of this episode included a line where David commented that the proposal would just be symbolic, since he and Aaron couldn’t legally marry. Never been so happy for a line to be cut. #Neighbours
— Paul Gartside (@mindlessmunkey) January 8, 2018
Matt Wilson, who plays Aaron, said the on-screen proposal scene was a “fluke” and the writers hadn’t originally intended for it to be so topical.
“The writing department actually fluked this,” Matt told News Corp.
“We filmed this about three months ago and the writers came up with the idea about six months ago, so the timing has worked out perfectly.
“I think it’s very special. A lot of the times we try to attack issues on the show and sometimes they have been and gone in the media or they don’t get as much light as they can but this should absolutely bring the issue to the surface.”
Earlier this month Neighbours producer Jason Herbison said he was “thrilled” with the storyline but hinted it might not be smooth sailing for the couple.
January 9 is the first official day of marriage equality in Australia, and several same-sex couples tied the knot around the country overnight.