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Shortland Street celebrates 6000 episodes

As New Zealand's favourite soap marks the special occasion, take a look back at some of the memorable moments.
Shortland Street 6000 episodes

Amelia\'s rustic wedding was very different to her character Bella\'s winter wonderland.

New Zealand’s favourite soap is celebrating 6000 episodes this week.

Shortland Street first appeared on Kiwi televisions in 1992, and that first episode featured a birth, a (now famous) sex scene between Dr Chris Warner and an aerobics instructor played by Suzy Aiken, and what remains the show’s most famous line “You’re not in Guatemala now, Dr Ropata” delivered by Nurse Carrie Burton.

Over the past 24 years, the show has continued to deliver storylines not usually associated with weeknight soaps, including an HIV scare, incest, teen suicide, euthanasia, sexuality, civil union, drug use and mental illness.

“We do push the boundaries because we tell the truth about things that matter,” says producer Maxine Fleming.

“And we always try to do this with humour and humanity because, first and foremost, we are here to entertain, but also to reflect what is happening around us in New Zealand.”

Over the course of 6000 episodes, Shortland Street has seen over 40 deaths of core cast and major guest cast characters, 23 births, 35 weddings and the first transgender actor playing a transgender character.

Stars have gone on to appear in Hollywood blockbusters, hit international television shows, and one of them almost became James Bond.

Take a look through some of the memorable moments on – and off – screen.

Shortland Street 6000 episodes

Who could forget Bella’s winter wonderland wedding to Luke?

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Shortland St 15th Anniversary

In 1997, the Christmas cliffhanger saw Kirsty and Lionel injured in a plane crash.

Skip forward to 2007, and serial killer Joey Henderson was wreaking havoc on the hospital.

A year later, and Ethan Pierce, AKA Dr Evil, was shot by a mystery shooter as he tried to leave town.

Chris Tempest in character as fallen Dr Josh Gallagher, who shocked fans during the show’s 2013 Christmas cliffhanger episode.

Behind the scenes with Shavaughn Ruakere before filming one of her final scenes of the show in 2013.

Amanda Billing

Amanda Billing broke audience’s hearts when her character, Sarah Potts, died in 2014.

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Shortland Street actors bullied online and spat at on street

Remember these faces?

The Cooper family were Shorty favourites.

And fans were heartbroken when mum Wendy (Jacquie Nairn) died this year after being shot.

We’ve been there for big days off screen, as well, including watching Ido Drent marry wife Mandy in 2011.

And Amelia Reid’s big day with husband Shadon Meredith.

We welcomed Anna Jullienne’s little lad Ted into the world.

And met the famous families behind some of the show’s favourite faces.

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Teuila Blakely Interview with WomensWeekly

Cam Jones

The show has created national heartthrobs, including Martin Henderson, the Magasiva brothers, KJ Apa and Cam Jones, who played the hunky ambulance driver Dallas.

Special guests have included Ed Sheeran and Sol3 Mio.

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Christmas cliffhangers have seen weddings, deaths, explosions, trucks crashing into receptions and an armed standoff.

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