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Character Profiles > Rick Alessi Dan Falzon

Riccardo 'Rick' Alessi 1992-1995
Lived: 22, 24, 30 Ramsay Street
Born: 1976
Parents: Benito and Cathy Alessi
Siblings: Lindsay and Marco
Family Tree: Alessi
Occupation: Coffee Shop Assistant/Manager, Lassiter's Kitchen Hand, Barman, Personal Assistant

Fun-loving Rick Alessi was the youngest son of stern second-generation Italian immigrant Benito Alessi and his wife, Cathy. Rick's older brother Marco let the family down by being something of a drifter so Benito put all his efforts into making Rick excel at school and enrolled him in a private boarding school. But Rick was determined to get thrown out and did all he could to get expelled. Eventually, his mischievous ways succeeded in an expulsion, and Rick arrived on Marco's doorstep in Ramsay Street, where he was staying with their cousin, Christina and her husband, Paul Robinson. Rick thought his days at school were behind him, but Benito wasn't going to simply let his son throw away his education and enrolled him at Erinsborough High School, where Rick quickly came into conflict with principal Dorothy Burke.

Rick soon became a well-known face on Ramsay Street after Benito and Cathy had moved into No. 22 after Christina and Paul left for Hawaii. With his hunky Italian looks, Rick was fancied by many of the local girls, but he only had eyes for Debbie Martin from No. 26. The pair fell in love, despite the attempts of Benito and Debbie's overbearing stepmother, Julie, to keep them apart. When Rick won a trip to London to see Michael Jackson in concert, he knew his father would never let him go away with Debbie so Marco and Deb's gran, Helen Daniels, came up with a plan to get the kids to London without Benito and Julie finding out. Debbie was supposed to be on an Outback painting holiday with Helen, while Marco chaperoned Rick to England, and Benito and Julie would be none the wiser. The plan worked until the lovers gave their concert tickets away to a young leukaemia patient they befriended in London, and appeared on a UK chat show to talk about their act of kindness. The show was transmitted in Australia, and when Julie and Benito saw it, they were furious. But the incident proved to them that Rick and Debbie were devoted to each other, and Benito and Julie had no alternative but to let them keep seeing each other.

Rick and Debbie's relationship hit a snag when Debbie walked in on a semi-dressed Rick cavorting with Annalise Hartman in No. 22. Thinking Rick had been cheating on her, Debbie stormed out, but Rick quickly caught up with her, and explained that he and Annalise were actually pretending to be together so that Rick could get caught by his parents and banned from going to Italy for the holidays with them. Debbie realised she had misunderstood the situation, and ended up feeling flattered that Rick didn't want to go away with his family so that he could be with her. Rick's plans to be left alone suffered a setback, however, when Cathy arranged for his aunt Margaret to stay with him during the holidays. But he quickly schemed to get her out of the picture and Rick then saw an opportunity to make a bit of extra cash by renting rooms out at No. 22 to backpackers.

When Benito landed a job in Sydney, he planned for the whole family to leave Erinsborough but Rick couldn't bear the idea of leaving Debbie behind. Fearful that they were soon to be parted, Rick and Debbie decided to have sex while babysitting Hope Gottlieb one night. This advancement in their relationship led to Rick resolving to stay in Erinsborough so that he could be with Debbie, and he arranged for an AusStudy grant to support himself and a part-time job at Lassiter's Hotel as a kitchen hand in exchange for lodgings in the staff quarters. Benito and Cathy were unhappy with Rick's decision, but they accepted that he was old enough to make his own decisions, and they were impressed by the maturity and commitment he demonstrated by arranging the grant and accommodation. Cathy reassured herself about leaving Rick behind by opening a savings account for him and kept it between the two of them.

Working in the kitchen at Lassiter's proved to be hard work for Rick, and he was given a hard time by head chef Harvey Johnson when he first started. Harvey intimidated Rick so much that he caused him to walk out on the job, but Harvey later apologised for the way he'd been treating him and Rick agreed to return. Rick then became friends with Harvey, and took to going clubbing with Harvey after work most nights. Debbie was unhappy with this situation, especially since Rick was also juggling his schoolwork with the job. But Debbie was really against Rick's friendship with Harvey because she fancied him and Rick eventually came to realise Debbie had feelings for him. After persuading Deb's little sister, Hannah, to let him look at Debbie's diary, Rick discovered that Debbie had feelings for Harvey and he dumped her. Debbie's infatuation with Harvey started to fizzle out after he turned his attentions towards Annalise and Beth Brennan instead. Rick, meanwhile, had started to date Sarah Lim and Debbie was overcome with jealousy by the romance, especially when Rick asked Sarah to the school dance.

Rick thought he had hatched an ingenious plan to learn to drive without having an instructor by using a dummy he christened 'Roy' to accompany him around town as he practised. But as people began to realise what Rick was up to, he decided he had to get rid of 'Roy' and pushed him over a cliff, only for Lou Carpenter's car - which he had been using for his lessons - to follow the dummy over. Rick was forced to confess all to an irate Lou, and he made him pay off his debts by working for free at his car yard. Upon hearing of Rick's latest antics, Cathy visited Erinsborough and when she saw how tired and run down he was from all the jobs she was doing, she pleaded with him to come back to Sydney with her. But Rick insisted he wanted to stay in Erinsborough with all his mates, and so, Cathy arranged for Rick to move in with Lou at No. 24. Rick was initially dead against living with Lou because he had become used to his independence. But Lou saw a lot of himself in Rick, and, unlike his own father, treated him as the adult he was and Rick grew to be very fond of Lou, looking on him as a surrogate dad.

When Debbie fell for ex-con Darren Stark, Rick knew Darren was just stringing Debbie along, and his suspicions about Darren were confirmed when Rick caught him kissing Debbie's arch-enemy Louise Barker. Rick paid Debbie's brother, Michael, a visit in the detention centre where Darren had also been, and Michael revealed to Rick that Darren had a grudge against him and was planning to get Debbie involved in a petrol station robbery. Rick helped Michael to escape the detention centre and the two rushed to rescue Debbie from being roped into the crime with Darren. Darren was arrested, and Debbie realised Rick had been right all along. She thanked him for all he had done to help her, and apologised for the way she had treated him throughout her relationship with Darren.

Having finally had enough of school, Rick quit to run the Coffee Shop for Cathy after Phoebe and Stephen Gottlieb moved away. But Rick got on the wrong side of the staff within days of his arrival at the shop. He sacked Annalise, and cut Kristy's hours from 20 a week down to 10. Unimpressed, she quit for a job at the uni library leaving Rick in the lurch. Debbie agreed to help Rick out during the holidays and hit on a winning formula with Helen's recipe for shepherd's pie. But when she and Rick both put too much salt in the pot, they ended up with inedible pie - costing the business a lot of money. More problems abounded when Rick was smooth talked by an attractive rep into buying ten kilos of food extender, despite warnings from Debbie not to. When he realised that the extender was a waste of more money, Rick decided to add food dye to the shop's food in an effort to make the menus more colourful and attractive. But his plan backfired when young Nicholas Greenway had a hyperactive reaction to the dye and suffered a seizure. Debbie then found out that she was being paid much less than Kristy had been and told Rick if he didn't increase her wages, she'd leave. When Rick refused, Debbie quit and told Rick that she wanted to be back dated to match Kristy's wage otherwise she would tell Cathy about what a mess he was making of running the Coffee Shop. Rick had no alternative but to pay Debbie what he owed her, but Cathy subsequently found out about the mess the business was in anyway, and made Rick go back to school.

Soon after returning to school, 14-year-old Ally Slater fell for Rick, and he initially dismissed it as a simple crush. But Ally told the girls in her class that she and Rick were going out together but had to keep it a secret. When they asked her to prove it, she told them she could get Rick's necklet and wear it for a day. Ally enlisted her younger brother, Sean's help to plot a way of getting the necklet, and they eventually decided to slip some herbal tonic into Rick's drink to knock him out. The deed done, Rick came to and panicked when he realised he had lost the necklet, which held a special meaning to him as it was a gift from Marco. After 'proving' to the girls at school that she and Rick were together, Ally sneaked into Rick's bedroom to put the necklet under his bed, so that he would think he lost it there. But Ally was forced to hide in the wardrobe after hearing Rick coming, and was treated to the sight of Rick stripping down to his boxers - before he heard a movement in the wardrobe and discovered Ally standing there. She managed to talk herself out of the situation by telling Rick she had been dared by her classmates to sneak into his room, and even managed to turn the incident to her advantage by threatening to tell Lou she had been in Rick's bedroom unless Rick took her on a date. It eventually turned out that Ally was simply craving attention in the wake of her parents' messy separation, and Rick proved to be a reliable confidante for Ally during the troubled period.

When Cody Willis returned to Ramsay Street after two years in the States, Rick was instantly smitten. Although Cody was also attracted to Rick, she had had her heart broken in the States, and was reluctant to get involved with him. And Rick joined his parents for Christmas in Hong Kong soon after Cody's return, meaning that any possibilities of getting together were put on hold. When Rick returned from Hong Kong he was annoyed to hear that Cody and Michael Martin had been spending a lot of time together. Rick decided to find out once and for all where Cody stood with him, and asked her if she would still consider going out with him. Rick was thrilled when she told him she would, but Michael put a dampener on things by telling Rick that he was already going out with Cody. Rick pressed ahead with his attempts to win over Cody, and they finally kissed, only for Michael to walk in on them. Rick was glad that Michael had caught them, because everything was now out in the open, and he felt confident Cody had proved she liked him as opposed to Michael. But Rick was shocked when Cody suggested they cool things off for a while so that they could spare Michael any further upset.

Rick celebrated his 18th birthday without telling anybody after his parents failed to call to wish him a happy birthday. When Lou found out from Debbie that it was Rick's birthday, he organised an impromptu party for him at No. 24. Rick returned home depressed, thinking everyone had forgotten his special day but he soon cheered up when all his friends were present for the party. Lou surprised Rick by giving him a second-hand car from the car yard, and his day was made complete by a phone call from Benito and Cathy.

Rick's new car was to have a massive impact on his life in ways he could never have expected. After Rick boasted of how fast his car was to his classmates Gary Briggs and Lenny Hooper, they challenged Rick and a reluctant Cody to a drag race. But events took a tragic twist when the car carrying Briggs, Lenny and Danni Stark crashed. Briggs was killed in the accident, and Rick was charged with reckless driving. He was racked with guilt in the wake of the accident, especially after Alan Briggs stormed over to No. 24 blaming Rick for his son's death. But Lou and Cody helped Rick come to terms with his guilt and grief, and he gradually put the episode behind him.

After Lou moved his partner, Cheryl Stark and her family into No. 24, Rick decided to move out and rented a room across the road at No. 30 with Annalise, and her fiance Mark Gottlieb. Soon after settling into No. 30, Rick fell in love with his Japanese language teacher, Sally Pritchard, who was three years his senior. Although Sally was attracted to Rick too, she was adamant that nothing would come of their feelings for each other due to their teacher/pupil relationship. Desperate for Sally to see him as more than a high school student, and disappointed with his exam results, Rick decided to leave school and accept a position as Cheryl's trainee at Lassiter's Hotel. He started out as a bar man in the Waterhole, and after wrangling a $2,000 advance in his salary, bought an engagement ring and proposed to Sally. Sally was shocked by Rick's proposal and tried to explain to him that it was far too soon into their relationship to be thinking about marriage. But Rick insisted he knew what he was doing, and so, Sally agreed to think about the proposal. Rick was convinced that Sally would accept his proposal and met her after school the next day with flowers, telling her he'd keep asking until she said yes. But Sally would never feel as strongly about Rick as he did about her, and she turned his proposal down, before leaving Erinsborough.

The rejection Rick suffered caused him to become something of a womaniser, and he took to spending every night out clubbing. Cody grew concerned about Rick, and tried to make him realise how he was changing. Rick initially dismissed Cody's concern, but he eventually confessed to her how devastated he was at losing Sally and Cody proved to be of enormous support to him. The situation had brought them closer again, and Rick happily agreed to escort Cody to the deb ball at Erinsborough High. However, Cassandra Rushmore entered the equation when she instructed Rick on a parachute jump, and began to chase after Rick afterwards. Cody was jealous of Cassandra, and it made her realise once and for all that she wanted to be with Rick. Cassandra, meanwhile, offered Rick a 20 percent pay increase plus benefits to join Lassiter's rival hotel, Parkside Pacific, which was owned by her father. Rick was strongly tempted by the offer, but refused to sign the contracts until he'd spoken to the owner of Lassiter's, Rosemary Daniels. Rosemary was impressed by Rick's ambition and determination to work his way up in Lassiter's and agreed to match Parkside Pacific's offer. Rick was delighted to be staying at Lassiter's, and shocked Cassandra when he rejected her offer. However, Cassandra told Cody she'd continue trying to lure Rick away from the hotel, only to be told by Cody that she would never let it happen since she was protecting 'her boyfriend's' interests. When Cassandra mentioned to Rick that Cody had referred to him as her boyfriend, he was thrilled, and took it as a sign that Cody wanted to start going out with him. He was right, and the couple finally got together.

After Cody started studying medicine at uni, Rick began to feel left out as she spent more and more time with her new friends. Rick even began to suspect Cody of having an affair with one of her tutors. The root of Rick's problem, however, was that he felt inferior around the students Cody had befriended, and he feared that Cody wouldn't want to be seen with a school drop-out. But Cody assured Rick that this was not the case, and they went on a romantic weekend away together to reaffirm their commitment to each other. The weekend proved troublesome, however, when Rick did his back in, and Cody got badly sunburnt. But they made the most of the time they had away together, and learnt a lot about each other before they returned to Ramsay Street. However, upon their return, Rick was summoned to Darwin to train in some new recruits at the new Lassiter's hotel there, and he and Cody were disappointed that they were to part so soon after their glorious weekend away. When Rick returned from Darwin, Cody was shocked when he revealed that he had been offered the position of Assistant Food and Beverages Manager at the Darwin Lassiter's, and wanted her to move up there with him. Cody was unable to make the move with Rick, however, because there were no med schools in the Northern Territory and Rick was torn between staying behind with Cody or advancing his career. The couple eventually agreed to try a long distance relationship, and spent their final weeks spending every moment together before their impending separation.

On Rick's last night in Erinsborough, Danni interrupted his quiet drink with Cody in Chez Chez to tell him he was needed urgently back at No. 30. Thinking something was wrong, Rick hurried back to Ramsay Street and was delighted when he got to No. 30 to find all his friends gathered there for a surprise going-away party. The next morning, Rick bid a tearful farewell to Cody and Lou, and left for his new life in Darwin.

After a few months, Cody began to fall for Stonefish Rebecchi, and decided there was no way she and Rick could continue with the relationship, and so, called things off. Rick was devastated by Cody's decision, and pleaded with her to reconsider. But Cody insisted it was the best thing for both of them, and they agreed to remain friends. Tragically, Cody died in a freak shooting accident a year after Rick's departure, and Rick penned a touching tribute to Cody, which was read at her memorial service, where he lamented that although they had parted due to distance, he had never stopped loving her.


Biography by Moe