> Guest Character
Zack Shaw Owen Lee
Zack Shaw 2001
During an eco-warrior phase, Michelle Scully broke into a science lab into order to film evidence that they were testing on animals. After being caught by a security guard and being fined in court, she decided to do something more substantial to give back to society and started a clean-up campaign at Lassiter’s Lake. Whilst there, she met Zack Shaw, who was helping out as part of his community service for a graffiti charge. Hoping to impress Zack, Michelle explained that she was also there because she was forced to help. The pair quickly bonded as Zack spoke about how much he enjoyed working outdoors with nature, and arranged to meet up the next day to do more work on the lake.
That next day, Michelle made more effort with her appearance, despite the fact that she was soon covered in dirt. When Zack arrived, Michelle took every opportunity to make conversation with him, asking him about his favourite colour and his astrological sign. As the pair were making their way to the Coffee Shop later that day, Michelle was disappointed when Zack spotted some of his friends and left her. Michelle’s older sister, Steph, encouraged her to find out what he was interested in, and soon the pair were bonding over social politics. Zack then proved that Michelle’s feelings for him were reciprocated as he became jealous when he saw her chatting with neighbour Joel Samuels. Someone else came between the young couple when Michelle introduced Zack to her best friend, Bianca Nugent. Bianca immediately set her sights on Zack and started flirting with him, but he quickly made it clear that he didn’t like her and that he had far more in common with Michelle.
Zack and Michelle’s relationship finally got a kickstart when another of Michelle’s sisters, Flick, wrote a love letter on Michelle’s behalf, and Zack asked her on a date to the movies. However, when Steph – who was in charge of the Scully household with their parents away – found out, she told Michelle that she couldn’t go out on a school night. Michelle decided to sneak out anyway, and was caught by Flick, who agreed to cover for her for one hour and Michelle got to see Zack, and they spent their time spraying anti-global warming graffiti outside the garage. Michelle was then in for a big shock when Zack started at the same school as her, Erinsborough High, and ignored her completely as she tried to get his attention in the corridor. He later explained to her that he had been forced to transfer by his parents, and reluctantly agreed to join Michelle for lunch that day. When Zack didn’t show up, Michelle was upset and later confronted him about his feelings. He admitted that he didn’t want a ‘school’ relationship and thought it best that they only saw each other outside academic hours – Michelle, desperate not to lose him, agreed.
When Zack then asked Michelle to the school formal, she was delighted but overheard some of Zack’s female friends, Cecile Bliss and Lucy Potter, bitching about her in the toilets and she ran out of the school hall in tears. Although Zack didn’t even bother going after her, he later visited her to apologise for acting so macho in front of his friends. By way of apology, Zack created a huge piece of graffiti of Michelle’s name at the back of Lassiter’s and she was touched by his gesture and, despite the trouble it got her into, agreed to give him another chance. When Michelle later saw that the graffiti had been painted over, she and Zack decided to replace it with something more political and so wrote ‘meat is murder!’. Zack then asked Michelle to join him at a rave at Hemisfear nightclub, but she realised that her parents would never allow it, so she snuck out of the house. During the rave, Zack started talking to Michelle about taking their relationship to the next level, and mentioned going away on a camping trip together. Michelle was torn – she wasn’t sure whether she was ready to sleep with Zack, but didn’t want to lose him.
After being informed by her friends, Tad Reeves and Elly Conway, that perhaps she shouldn’t go on the trip with Zack if she wasn’t happy about the pressure he was putting on her. Still unsure of her feelings, Michelle ended up joining Zack on the camping trip, but decided not to sleep with him and asked if he was disappointed. Zack assured her that he respected her decision, but later admitted that he wasn’t sure whether he viewed their relationship as a long-term thing. He then asked her to come over to his house, as his parents were out, but she told him that she didn’t want to, and complained that he never made her feel special. When Michelle didn’t turn up at his house, Zack proceeded to ignore her at school, instead turned his attentions to Elly. When he asked her to accompany him to a gig, she turned him down, so he went to her house, next-door to Michelle’s, and tried to get her to reconsider. Their conversation was interrupted by Michelle, who refused to believe that it had been Zack coming on to Elly. Realising how hurt Michelle was going to be if he dragged their relationship out any longer, Elly tried to convince Zack to end things quickly. In the end, Michelle confronted Zack and he told her that it was over between them and they were better off as friends.
Michelle was upset when, a few weeks later, she heard that Zack had been starting rumours about her being frigid. Along with Elly, she broke into the school one night and wrote ‘Zack is gay’ on one of the blackboards. Despite a lecture from teacher Susan Kennedy on the use of the word ‘gay’ as an insult, Michelle felt that she had got her own back for Zack’s terrible treatment of her.
Biography by Steve