As the 2022 season of Home and Away begins next week in the UK, the race is on to save Ryder and Theo – could this be their final goodbye?
Last week, Ryder Jackson (Lukas Radovich) found himself in a hazardous situation after his and Theo Poulos’s (Matt Evans) latest online challenge went horribly wrong.
Ryder wanted to go all out for their next video in the hopes of earning much-needed funds to pay back his debt to his loved ones after being unceremoniously dumped out of his business by ex-girlfriend Chloe (Sam Barrett), and after being dumped out of his business by ex-girlfriend Chloe (Sam Barrett).
When he came across a brochure for a coffin while visiting step-grandma Martha (Belinda Giblin) in the hospital, it inspired him to come up with his wildest notion yet: being buried alive!
Even rogue Theo thought the plan was insane, but he started about creating a primitive coffin while the two scouted a distant site in the bush not far from the caravan park.
When the five-hour challenge eventually started, the duo’s subscribers flocked to the live stream, some joking that the two shouldn’t be doing this.
What Ryder hadn’t counted on was Theo’s disappearance! When he called Theo an hour into the challenge to find out he’d left him on his own to buy some lunch from the diner, he was furious, and even more so when he opened his own lunch to discover the bag full of chili peppers.
Theo ultimately made his way back to the cemetery site after being sidetracked by Chloe, as Ryder rang him again. Ryder wasn’t sure if Theo was pulling another one of his pranks when the connection went silent.
Unfortunately, Theo had been knocked out after falling off a rock platform and tangling his leg in some barbed wire. With no one else knowing where Ryder is, it’s almost clear that Ryder will perish unless Theo shows up in time!
When we pick up the story this week, Theo has awoken, but he’s snagged by a wire that’s biting into his leg—and his phone is just out of reach!
One of Ryder’s scientifically-minded viewers calculates that he’s probably only got 90 minutes of oxygen remaining in the coffin, but that shouldn’t matter too much with the five hours approaching completion…
But when Ryder shouts out the safe word as the timer goes off, there’s no response from Theo!
As time passes, a worried Ryder tries to contact Justin (James Stewart) to inquire about Theo’s location, but the signal is too weak, and his battery dies when he tries to call the cops.
Hours pass and Ryder yells out in agony when his torch eventually dies later that evening, plunging him into darkness!
Alf (Ray Meagher) and Roo (Georgie Parker) ask Justin if he’s seen Ryder the next day, and he mentions the phone call. Roo thinks it odd because she had no idea Ryder and Theo were friends until she learned about the challenge videos.
When Justin checks their channel the next day, he is alarmed to learn what they were up to the day before, especially when they discover that the live stream was switched off in the early hours of the morning.
Fortunately, Roo recognizes the challenge’s location as a plot of land near the caravan park, and she and Justin rush over to discover a heartbroken Theo. He tells them not to worry about him and instead focuses on finding Ryder, who must have run out of oxygen by now!
Roo and Justin arrive at the casket after some frantic digging, only to discover Ryder unconscious.
Roo, on the other hand, is the least of Theo’s concerns. When Alf enters the ward and launches into a diatribe against Theo, all hell breaks free.
Justin tries to soothe him by explaining that the accident wasn’t entirely Theo’s fault, but Alf’s ire is high as his grandson fights for his life.
Later, Logan (Harley Bonner) informs Roo and Alf that Ryder’s oxygen levels have returned to normal, but he is still not responding properly.
Justin then interrupts, insisting that Roo and Alf watch the video of Ryder and Theo’s challenge so they can understand all that happened. Ryder was using the videos to generate money to pay them back, Justin explains to them both.
However, as Justin scrolls through the video, he accidentally reveals Roo and Alf a section of the video that he hadn’t seen before.
Ryder made known his plans for after his death, with all money going towards their obligations and Martha’s medical treatment, at a point when he had plainly given up hope of being found.
It’s difficult for Alf and Roo to watch as Ryder begins to cry and tells them that he loves them, and the two are left wondering if they’re seeing Ryder’s ultimate goodbye!
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