Return to Eden: episode guide

Miniseries || Episodes 1 - 8 | Eps 9 - 16 | Eps 17 - 22

Episode 1


February 10, 1986
Written by David Phillips, Christine McCourt
Directed by Kevin Dobson

Stephanie Harper enjoys a relaxing swim with her husband, Dan Marshall, while renovators at Old Eden uncover a box of documents. Jilly Stewart is released from prison after serving her sentence for the attempted murder of Stephanie and the murder of Stephanie's then husband, Greg Marsden.

Lawyer Bill McMaster gathers Stephanie's family to reveal the contents of one of the found documents, Max Harper's Will, and reveals that Stephanie's father has left the entirety of his estate to Stephanie and her half-sister... Jilly. Stephanie hopes the two can make the most of the situation and finally make up but Jilly cannot put the past behind her so easily. Jilly tries to seduce Stephanie's son, Dennis, but he refuses her advances. In a further bid for attention, Jilly fakes a suicide attempt.

Stephanie learns from Bill that her company, Harper Mining, is the target of a takeover attempt by Jake Sanders, an ambitious yet mysterious English businessman. Stephanie offers Jilly a $5 million settlement to relinquish her stake in Max's estate but after reading the fine print which prohibits any further claim on Harper Mining, Jilly refuses to accept, telling Stephanie she wants nothing more than her sister's love and trust. However, Jilly seeks a different deal, one to takeover Harper Mining for herself — with Jake Sanders, who we learn is Greg Marsden's brother.

Starring: Rebecca Gilling as Stephanie Harper, James Smillie as Dr. Dan Marshall, Peta Toppano as Jilly Stewart, Daniel Abineri as Jake Sanders, Peter Cousens as Dennis Harper, Megan Williams as Cassie Jones, Warren Blondell as Tom McMaster, Nicki Paull as Sarah Harper, Angelo D'Angelo as Angelo Vitale, Peter Gwynne as Bill McMaster

With: Ann Brisk as Hilary, Billy Dean as Martin, Olivia Hamnett as Joanna Randall, Frank Lloyd as Caretaker

Episode 2


February 17, 1986
Written by David Phillips
Directed by Kevin Dobson

Stephanie encounters Jake Sanders while out riding. Jilly announces she is moving out of Eden after overhearing Dennis badmouthing her to Stephanie. Jilly reveals to Jake she intends to take down Dennis by setting him and Stephanie against one another. Jake makes an appearance at Harper Mining and offers to sell back his shares in the company but Stephanie refuses to make him rich and sends him on his way.

Jilly manipulates Philip, her ex-husband, into getting her friend, Olive, released early from prison intending to use her in her scheme to bring down Stephanie. Stephanie asks Dennis to make a decision about his future at Harper Mining when she sees him getting distracted by Angelo's boxing career. Working for Jake, Harper Mining employee Cassie agrees to dig up dirt on Dennis.

Stephanie gets her daughter, Sarah, a job at Tara's Fashion House. Dennis asks Dan to lend him $25,000 so he can buy into Angelo's boxing career but refuses Dan's reasonable terms. Dennis encounters Cassie at the office late at night where she is going through his personel file but he is there on his own neferious task — forging Joanna Randall's signature. Bill's son, Tom McMaster, returns from America after studying at Harvard and Stephanie offers him a job on the spot.

Jilly and Jake set up Dennis to get caught in a compromising position with a young woman but he creates a public spectacle in a nightclub all on his own. With Dennis on the ropes, Jake tries to reach an understanding with him the next morning but Stephanie's arrival puts a stop to that, although her insults only add to Jake's determination to bring down Harper Mining.

Jilly is upset with Jake for backing out of their deal to bring down Dennis. He states his focus now is entirely on Stephanie — both personally and professionally. Stephanie is haunted by dreams of her crocodile attack. Jilly meets with Olive to cash in her favour and gives her a gun to kill Stephanie. While Stephanie is out riding, she is shot at and is thrown from her horse.

With: John Lee as Philip Stewart, Olivia Hamnett as Joanna Randall, John Ley as Tony Taylor, Suzanne Roylance as Olive Down, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, Oriana Panozzo as Girl, Barry Davies as Roberts, Wendy Playfair as Rena McMaster, Ann Brisk as Hilary, Ann Sanders as TV Interviewer

Episode 3


February 24, 1986
Written by Tim Burstall, Barry O'Sullivan
Directed by Kevin Dobson

Jake comes to Stephanie's aide after the shooting as Olive reports back to Jilly that the job is done. Awaking in hospital, Stephanie tells Dan someone is trying to kill her. Police arrive at Jilly's hotel room to question her but she has an alibi — she was with her ex husband, Philip Stewart. When the police go to see Philip to confirm her story, Jilly calls him and asks him to confirm to the police that they had breakfast together. He does.

Recovering at home, Stephanie receives a visit from Jilly who manages to become the one who needs comforting. Jake Sanders is next in line for the police. They come armed with a search warrant and recover photos of Stephanie and a handgun. At the gym, Dennis and Angelo's manager, Tony Taylor, agree on a deal for Dennis to buy into his friend's boxing career for $25,000.

At the Harper Mining board meeting there is disagreement on how to deal with Jake Sanders who already owns 18% of the company — just shy of the 20% he needs for a seat on the board. Tom suggests the "Pac-Man defense" and recommends the company go on the attack and start buying up Jake's investments. Stephanie endorses the idea and the board agrees. Outside the room, Cassie listens in, ready to report back to Jake.

A foal is delivered to Eden, a gift for Stephanie from Jake. Dan doesn't want to accept it but Stephanie overrules him. The Police return to Jake the photos and gun, which didn't match the bullet that killed Stephanie's horse. Despite the high cost of the corporate battle, Jake isn't ready to give up. At Tara's Fashion House, planning us underway for a fashion show when Tom brings news to Stephanie of an unknown expense account item authorised by Joanna's poorly forged signature. Dennis is still losing money at the track but Jake is on hand to give him a quick loan — and a winning tip.

Stephanie confronts Dennis about the money he stole from the company which he is now able to pay back thanks to Jake's tip. All parties converge at the fashion show where Dennis makes a drunken spectacle of himself on stage. Meanwhile, Olive orchestrates another attempt on Stephanie's life, having a crocodile delivered to the swimming pool at Eden.

With: Tony Blackett as Det. Insp. Jennings, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, John Ley as Philip Stewart, Suzanne Roylance as Olive Down, Olivia Hamnett as Joanna Randall, Nick Holland as Det. Sgt. Adams, John Ley as Tony Taylor, Barry Davies as Roberts, Jenny Kee as Fashion Designer

Episode 4


March 03, 1986
Written by Betty Quin
Directed by John Power

After dancing with Jake at the fashion show the night before, Stephanie reassures Dan that their relationship is strickly professional. Stephanie narrowly escapes the snapping jaws of the crocodile in the pool before Dan, responding to her screams, shoots it. However, the traumatic experience gives Stephanie flashbacks to her previous attack.

Cassie tells Jake they've spent their last night together. In her view she's become expendable given his growing relationship with Stephanie. Jilly has no alibi for the most recent attack on Stephanie but despite her protestations, the police like her for the crime.

Dennis holds a press conference to address his temporary advancement into his mother's job. His actions don't sit well with Harper Mining General Manger Bill McMaster who vows to oppose him. Tom's eagerness to see Stephanie back at work doesn't sit well with Dennis yet he still suggests they work together to strengthen the company. Angelo is taken aback when his manager tells him to take a dive in his first professional fight and he's not given the option to refuse.

Dan brings a psychiatrist to see Stephanie at the house. Stephanie is convinced she is disfigured and confuses recent events with those of the attack at the hands of her former husband, Greg Marsden. Angelo's father opposes his son's boxing career, warning him no one is looking out for his well-being. They are interrupted by Tony Taylor and his goons who threaten the pair. Stephanie gathers the courage to face her demons pool-side but Jilly's arrival causes a relapse.

At Harper Mining, Dennis tries to fire Tom but Tom informs him his employment is based on a personal contract with his mother, not the company, and he's not leaving unless she tells him to. Jake arrives for a meeting with Dennis and boldly asks for the minutes from the last board meeting, informing Dennis he will have a seat on the board soon enough. Dennis has him thrown out of the building but their encounter leaves Dennis pensive.

Not content to rely on Angelo throwning the match, Tony tries to rig the fight by drugging his opponent. The arrival of Angelo's father spurs him on to victory despite a slow start. Unfortunately, his opponent in rushed to hospital with a severe brain injury which turns out to be fatal. Tom and Sarah's relationship continues to take shape and Stephanie continues to be haunted by visions of her disfigured face.

With: Tony Blackett as Det. Insp. Jennings, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, Martin Vaughan as Dr. Bennett, John Ley as Tony Taylor, Dalibor Satalic as Vittorio Vitale, Wendy Playfair as Rena McMaster, Rocky McDonald as Eddie King, Nick Holland as Det. Sgt. Adams, Julie Breen as Cheryl King, Les Foxcroft as Gus Bernard

Episode 5


March 10, 1986
Written by Chris McCourt
Directed by Kevin Dobson

Stephanie goes missing but turns up at Tara's Fashion House having reverted to Tara Welles, the identity she assumed after the disfiguring first attack. Angelo is still reeling after the death of his opponent when Tony and his goons burst in seeking restitution. Dennis offers to make good on the debt but Angelo still cops a beating for not throwing the fight.

Jilly brings Stephanie back to Eden where Dan assures Sarah that her mother's recovery is his top priority. The board of Harper Mining votes against admitting Jake but he has a proposition of his own — to sell them his shares in the company. The price is high but Bill agrees in order to keep the shares off the open market. Tom and Sarah spend the day together but at a family dinner she feels shunned by his mother who reluctantly admits to Tom that she and his father don't think he should be seeing Sarah.

Detective Jennings reports to Dan the police are making little progress on the two attacks on Stephanie. Philips proposes marriage to Jilly. Tony pays Angelo another visit at his father's restaurant hoping to get him back into the ring but Angelo is adament his boxing career is over. Tony draws a gun but Vittorio chases him off with a shotgun.

Harper Mining stock prices tumble on word of Jake's share sale and he seizes the opportunity to buy back even more at the deflated price. Dennis is furious at Bill for his mismanagement of the company. Jilly's phychiatrist believes she made an unconscious decision to withdraw from reality and recommends treatment through hypnosis. Jilly is asked to sit in on the therapy session which ends in Stephanie attacking Jilly.

Jilly informs Jake of Stephanie's pending return to Harpers and wants assurace that she still has a place in his plans. Dan tries to get Stephanie to agree to a vacation but she is determined to stop Jake and won't take time off. Tony Taylor interupts Dennis' date with Cassie and threatens her life in order to get Dennis to convince Angelo to keep fighting. Dan receives news there will be a Coroner's inquest into the boxer's death and his role as the surgeon. Stephanie has a midnight meeting with Jake at Harper Mining. He informs her he's on the verge of getting his seat on the board and kisses her just as Dan walks into the room.

With: John Lee as Philip Stewart, Tony Blackett as Det. Insp. Jennings, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, Martin Vaughan as Dr. Bennett, John Ley as Tony Taylor, Dalibor Satalic as Vittorio Vitale, Wendy Playfair as Rena McMaster, Ann Brisk as Hilary, Julie Breen as Cheryl King, Judy Lynne as Nurse

Episode 6


March 17, 1986
Written by David Phillips
Directed by John Power

Dan storms out of Harper Mining as Jake enjoys having put Stephanie in a difficult situation. The following morning, Sarah finds Dan on the beach in a contemplative mood watching the sun rise and reflecting on his relationship with Stephanie. After the funeral for boxer Eddie King, Angelo speaks with the priest seeking advice on how to deal with Tony Taylor.

Stephanie heads up a meeting to discuss the direction of Harper Mining in light of Jake's stock manipulations and stresses the importance of a united front regardless of how they procede. In advance of their wedding, Philip gives Jilly half his shares in Harper Mining. Dan interupts Stephanie's meeting to discuss her kiss with Jake the previous night. Despite her protestations on innocence, Dan isn't convinced and a poorly-timed phone call from Jake only reinforces his doubts.

Cassie is frightened by a series of threatening phone calls. Inspector Jennings informs Dan that Eddie King was drugged before the fight and he was not responsible for the man's death. However, Stephanie's well-meaning words of support aren't well received by Dan. With the support of his friends, Angelo stands up to Tony Taylor and beats him up. Jilly and Philip are married at Eden and she promply runs into Jake's arms to deliver him her new Harper Mining shares. Outside, Tony's goons cut the break lines on Cassie's car. When she and Dennis leave the wedding her car careens out of control and only narrowly misses going into the water.

Dan tries to get Stephanie to go away with him but she is reluctant to leave the company in a time of crisis. It is a choice that could spell the end of their marriage. Tony's goons catch up with Antonio on the docks and force him to call Dennis. Dennis arrives and tries to negotiate for his friend only to join him inside a freezer. After giving the order to have the pair killed, Taylor turns to leave just as Inspector Jennings arrives and charges Tony with manslaughter for his role in Eddie King's death.

Cassie visits Jake to thank him for his behind-the-scenes role in stopping Tony. In return, he asks that she help him conceal the source of his new shares. Back at Harper Mining, Stephanie whisks into the office hoping to quickly deal with Jake before joining Dan at the airport. Her delay is the last straw for Dan who won't even accept a phone call from her before he departs alone. Jake arrives triumphantly at Harper Mining with a symbolic gift of 21 roses for Stephanie ⁸ one for each percent of her company he now owns.

With: John Lee as Philip Stewart, Tony Blackett as Det. Insp. Jennings, John Clayton as Priest, John Ley as Tony Taylor, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, Barry Davies as Roberts, Ann Brisk as Hilary, Les Foxcroft as Gus Bernard, Steve Rackman as Jacko, Marcus Cloherty as Chicka

Episode 7


March 17, 1986
Written by John Alsop
Directed by Rod Hardy

With her company and personal life both in jeopardy of falling apart, Stephanie returns to Eden. Afraid of being caught hiding the source of Jake's shares, Cassie is having cold feet about working with Jake but he threatens to tell Dennis about their past if she doesn't cooperate. Jake invites Stephanie out to dinner, enticing her with the prospect of finding out where his shares came from. Dennis is eager to dig up some dirt on Jake to learn his secrets and receives Stephanie's endorsement. Having encouraged Stephanie to go after Dan, Jilly drives her sister to the airport and hears of Jake's intension to tell Stephanie about his shares.

Bill and his wife, Rena, agonise over revealing a long-held secret to Stephanie — that Tom and Sarah are brother and sister. Jake's glowing opinion of Stephanie causes Jilly to tell him about her sister's dark past, namely having a child when she was 18 — a child she was told died after she was sent oversees following the child's birth.

Tom wants Cassie's help to go through the company's share transaction records to learn where Jake got his shares. Cassie offers to do the work herself and destroys the last remaining paper records. Jake gives notice to the board to he intends to call a meeting to hold a no-confidence vote against Stephanie. Jilly asks her ex-convict friend, Olive, to track down proof of the birth of Stephanie's first child. Dennis finds Cassie crying in the office and she begins to confess her stock obfuscations when Jake interupts them. All of Bill's attempts to contact Stephanie to tell her about Tom and Sarah fail and their relationship progresses...

Dennis contacts Stephanie to tell her about Jake's attempt to take over her company. She hopes to chair the meeting over the phone but the line goes dead — cut but Olive. Bill tries to stall for time but the vote goes ahead. The no-confidence motion passes by a narrow margin and Jake is subsequently voted in as the new chairman of Harper Mining. Dan and Stephanie rush to their boat to get to another phone but a cut fuel line leads to the boat exploding with Dan onboard.

With: John Lee as Philip Stewart, Suzanne Roylance as Olive Down, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, Wendy Playfair as Rena McMaster, Barry Davies as Roberts, Vivian Zink as Mrs. Thompson, Basil Clarke as Sir Donald Bruce, Peter Boswell as Mr. Sweeney, Noel Adams as Mr. Carmichael, Judith Metcalfe as Pretty Girl

Episode 8


March 24, 1986
Written by Betty Quin
Directed by John Power

While Dennis and Sarah search for the wreakage of their mother's boat, Jake breaks the news of the accident to Jilly and accuses her of organising it. Even Philip has his suspicions about his wife's involvement.

Anton chides Jake about his obsession with Stephanie. Jake acknowledges his feeling for her could stop him from fulfilling his promise to his dead brother. Not getting answers from Tom about the status of his relationship with Sarah, Bill forbids his son from seeing her but Tom refuses. With hope running out, Dennis locates his mother washed up on a beach.

Despite Stephanie's safe return, Jilly is confident she and Jake have already defeated her and Jilly sets her eyes on controlling Tara's Fashion House — Stephanie's pride and joy. With Dan still missing, Stephanie regrets her fight to keep Harper Mining if it ultimately costs Dan his life.

Cassie's inability to uncover the source of Jake's shares causes Bill to accuse her of working with Jake to cover his tracks and he fires her. Cassie drowns her sorrows at the bar where Angelo encourages her to go down swinging. Cassie threatens to expose how Jilly has been working against Stephanie by helping Jake. Olive witnesses the exchange and offers to 'take care of' Cassie and admits she played no role in the boat explosion. Olive informs Jilly she has discovered that Stephanie's son is still alive.

Jilly goes to Bill offering to take over Tara's but when Bill refuses, Jilly reveals that she knows Stephanie's child is still alive. Bill resigns from Harper Mining placing the blame squarely on Jilly. Stephanie is supportive of Sarah's relationship with Tom and advises her not to waste a moment. Stephanie comes to terms with Dan being gone for good when footprints in the sand lead her to her husband lying unconscious on the beach.

Back at Eden, Dan is recovering and Stephanie is resigned to having lost Harper Mining. Jake offers Cassie the job of running Tara's in front of Dennis and Jilly who responds by exposing Cassie's relationship with Jake causing Dennis to storm off. Bill arrives at Eden to finally tell Stephanie the truth about her child. However, he is stopped by the arrival of Sarah and Tom who announce their engagement. The shock of the news causes Tom to have a heart attack but he musters his strength and manages to a tell a shocked Stephanie that Tom is her long-lost son.

With: John Lee as Philip Stewart, Suzanne Roylance as Olive Down, Rod Anderson as Anton Parker, Ann Brisk as Hilary, Robert Hughes as The Search Coordinator, John Douglas as The Doctor, Michael Falloon as The Search Leader

episodes 1.09 - 1.16