Packed to the Rafters: episode guide

The Blank Page


Episode 3.01 (45)
Tuesday, June 29, 2010 (8.30)
Ratings: 1.917 million viewers (1st)
Written by Jeff Truman (3.01)
Directed by Pino Amenta

As Julie recovers in hospital after the birth of baby Ruby, she reflects on how simple Ruby's life is at the moment, while her adult children juggle the complexities of theirs. With Sammy having seemingly departed for London, Nathan announces his intention to move next door to make a new start. Jake has another fit but he and supportive Rachel must wait for a third before epilepsy is confirmed. Meanwhile, Dave joins the modern world of Facebook and Carbo becomes a YouTube sensation.

Starring: Rebecca Gibney, Erik Thomson, Jessica Marais, Hugh Sheridan, Angus McLaren, Jess McNamee, George Houvardas, Zoe Ventoura, Michael Caton

With: ...

Note: George Houvardas and Zoe Ventoura are bumped up into the starring cast

Saturday Night, Sunday Morning


Episode 3.02 (46)
Tuesday, June 29, 2010 (9.30)
Ratings: 1.917 million viewers (1st)
Written by Marieke Hardy
Directed by Pino Amenta

Julie's confidence as a mum takes a beating when baby Ruby resists Julie's attempts to breastfeed. Newly single Nathan hits the town with Carbo, and Ben can't help feeling on the outer. It becomes apparent heartbroken Nathan is merely going through the motions and the brothers reconnect over consolation drinks. Meanwhile, Jake's confronted by the dating scene too when his mum begins seeing someone and Mel's loyalty is tested when she runs into Sammy, who begs her not to tell Nathan she's still in town.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Sarah Chadwick as Trish Westaway, Mercia Deane-Johns as Grace Barton, Sophie Cook as Monique, Kristian Carroll as Stranger, Daniel Cordeaux as Doctor Leclerc, Ally Pinnock as Miranda, Elana McIntyre as Lindsay, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter, Christy Sullivan as Charlotte, Kelly Webster as Bouncer

Note: the first two episodes of series 3 aired back-to-back so cast credits serve both

To Tell, Or Not To Tell


Episode 3.03 (47)
Tuesday, July 06, 2010
Ratings: 1.802 million viewers (2nd)
Written by Abe Pogos
Directed by Chris Martin-Jones

With all seemingly at peace in the Rafter house, Dave wrestles whether to tell mother Chel that the love of her life, his father Tom Jennings is alive. With Julie's advice to tread carefully ringing in his ears, Dave decides to make up his own mind on the mysterious Jennings. Meanwhile, Melissa is finding Sammy's secret increasingly difficult to keep from Ben, and Rachel becomes the green-eyed monster when Jake's client, an attractive housewife, seems to be coming on to him.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Ryan Corr as Coby Jennings, Betty Lucas as Mrs Luscombe, Rebecca Deitch as Heather, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

Note: Chris Martin-Jones directed this episode, not Pino Amenta as credited

A Good Husband


Episode 3.04 (48)
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Ratings: 1.899 million viewers (2nd)
Written by Margaret Wilson
Directed by Chris Martin-Jones

Love is in the air for the Rafters. Ben is plagued with unexpected doubts about his ability in the sack, while a miscommunication between Dave and Julie in the bedroom department sends her into a frenzy of frustration. While Ben and Dave grapple with the concept of being a good husband, Jake's wrestling with the idea of being a good son and finally meets Grace's new boyfriend, Doug.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Mercia Deane-Johns as Grace Barton, Grant Dodwell as Doug, Adam Schofield as Neighbour, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

The Invisible Man


Episode 3.05 (49)
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Ratings: 1.914 million viewers (2nd)
Written by Tony Morphett
Directed by Ian Watson

Ted struggles with feelings of worthlessness when, returning home from a movie, he and Chel are attacked by a gang of teenage girls. Ashamed he couldn't protect Chel and feeling marginalised by the world, Ted begins to retreat into himself. Melissa discovers someone has been using her toothbrush. Already feeling marginalised in the house full of men and lacking in privacy, this is the last straw. Carbo's internet fame jumps to a new level when he begins receiving sexy gifts from a secret admirer. Meanwhile, Ted and Julie become concerned at the quiet absence of neighbour Mrs Luscombe.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, David Baldwin as Frank Reynolds, Graeme Squires as Mick, James Jack as Senior Constable, Alive Livingstone as Woman Passerby, Maddi Newling as Jude, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter, Shayni Notelvitz as Hayley, Alicia Gordon as Gang Girl, Prudence Granger as Gang Girl, Georgia St Ledger as Gang Girl

Home Coming


Episode 3.06 (50)
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Ratings: 1.910 million viewers (1st)
Written by Chris McCourt
Directed by Ian Watson

Rachel is forced to deal with the fallout when Alex reacts badly to the many changes that have taken place in the Barton household in his absence. Feeling increasingly on the outer, Alex's issues erupt at drinks at the Rafter house, leaving Grace and Jake humiliated and the Rafters reeling. Meanwhile, Nathan learns a lesson in life when he helps Chel with her taxes, Melissa and Ben try to find ways of making the Karandonis house more like home, and Carbo has a disastrous encounter with a woman he assumes is his internet romance.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Mercia Deane-Johns as Grace, Kristian Schmid as Alex, Grant Dodwell as Doug, Sophie Katanis as Natalie, Brenna Harding as Georgia, Ross Kennedy as Hugo, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

Simple Needs


Episode 3.07 (51)
Tuesday, August 03, 2010
Ratings: 2.017 million viewers (1st)
Written by Rick Held
Directed by Lynn Hegarty

Julie has been uncharacteristically disconnected from the daily ups and downs of her family, focussing entirely on baby Ruby. But when Dave reveals the crushing news that he has been rejected as a kidney donor, Julie forces herself to re-engage. Nathan has his own crushing news to deal with when Ben and Melissa reveal that wife Sammy never went to London and is ready and strong enough now to reconnect with the Rafters, and meet baby Ruby. Meanwhile, Rachel struggles with deep-buried jealousy towards baby Ruby and Carbo attempts to discourage his teenage stalker.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Brenna Harding as Georgia, Lucy Egger as Policewoman, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter; School Friends: Hannah Dawson, Jaylyn Smith, Claudia Vaccaro

Rites of Passage


Episode 3.08 (52)
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Ratings: 2.001 million viewers (1st)
Written by Jenny Lewis
Directed by Lynn Hegarty

Nathan is forced to question his motives for wanting to donate a kidney, triggering a crisis of confidence. Will he be able to put his demons to rest and in doing so, save Chel's life? With Chel's health on the decline, Julie and Dave decide there's no time like the present to hold Ruby's Naming Day ceremony. Meanwhile, there are problems at the Barton house, with Alex struggling to accept his mother's new relationship, and Carbo struggles with his own rite of passage when he discovers some grey hairs.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Mercia Deane-Johns as Grace, Kristian Schmid as Alex Barton, Andrew Crabbe as Michael O'Leary, Jane Fullerton-Smith as Binti Bloom, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

The Price Of Parenthood


Episode 3.09 (53)
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Ratings: 1.904 million viewers (1st)
Written by Trent Roberts
Directed by Cherie Nowlan

Someone's watching the Rafter house — and the surprise culprit leads to Dave and Nathan meeting Dave's dad Tom in prison for the first time. Realising his daughter's suffering from cabin fever, Ted suggests she do something for herself and Ruby — join a mothers' group. Meanwhile, Rachel is shocked to find that Jake and Alex's domestic standards in their new bachelor pad are far from ideal, forcing her to make an ultimatum.

Featuring: John Howard as Tom Jennings
With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Ryan Corr as Coby, Kristian Schmid as Alex Barton, Brenna Harding as Georgia, David Wilson as Prison Guard, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

Out of the Comfort Zone


Episode 3.10 (54)
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Ratings: 1.917 million viewers (1st)
Written by Marieke Hardy
Directed by Cherie Nowlan

Ben is forced to step outside his comfort zone when a moral stand clashes with workplace politics. Julie steps out of her comfort zone too by joining a local mother's group. Ted recognises Derek's daughter Hayley as the leader of the girl gang who assaulted him and Chel. Jake jumps at the chance to babysit Ruby, however, his plans go awry when Rachel is called into work and Ruby won't stop screaming. Resisting the negative impression Tom Jennings gave Dave, Nathan decides to give him a second chance.

With: James Stewart as Jake Barton, Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Peter Bensley as Derek, Phoebe Tonkin as Lexi, Shayni Notelvitz as Hayley, Torquil Nelson as Hamish, Melissa Ambrosini as Stephanie, Renee Lim as Anh, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

Lessons In Happiness


Episode 3.11 (55)
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Ratings: 1.847 million viewers (1st)
Written by Boaz Stark
Directed by Chris Martin-Jones

Rachel rides the ups and downs of happiness, struggling to find it in the frenetic pace of life. But will her choices have future repercussions for her relationship with her family and Jake? Meanwhile Ben and Melissa are happy with their decision to have a baby and are all over each other at any opportunity — much to Nathan's and Carbo's chagrin. Over the moon at the prospect of a grandchild, Julie unwittingly puts pressure on them by giving them a cook book.

With: Gillian Jones as Rachel 'Chel' Warne, Kristian Schmid as Alex Barton, Martin Lynes as Paul Morgan, Belinda Bromilow as Libby, Michael Booth as George, Paul Tassone as Lewis, Diarmid Heidenreich as Camel, Renai Caruso as Amy Greenblatt, Brynn Loosemoore as Silent Farter, Barry Fielding as Security Guard, Ruby & Emily Langley as Ruby Rafter

Note: James Stewart (Jake) is promoted into the starring cast

Episodes 3.12 - 3.22