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12 April 2006
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*Erinsborough Features - Todays' top stories * * Is Janae Positive?
Karl breaks the news to Janae, Boyd and Mike
This week Ramsay Street's favourite wild child Janae faces an agonising wait for her HIV test results. We spoke to Eliza Taylor-Cotter to find out more about the dramatic storyline.
"I'd heard rumours around the place a few months before it actually came up. I had mixed feelings about it. If I had HIV, I was worried that it might just be a way of killing off my character. However I thought it would be a challenge, which I loved."
"It was very emotional," she continues. "I had to really put myself in that situation which was kind of daunting. Usually I find it hard to cry on cue but with this it was pretty easy because I just felt really sad for Janae."
Janae discovers that she is at risk when Boyd (Kyal Marsh) finds ex-boyfriend Mike's medical file. Quizzing her about just how serious their relationship was, Janae realises that her past behaviour could finally have caught up with her.
Eliza Taylor-Cotter as Janae
"Janae always used to let men treat her like dirt, which is where Mike came into it," Eliza explains. "She was very troubled when she was dating him."
Sadly it seems that just as Janae has found the right guy, their future together could be shattered by old mistakes. Unable to face the thought that she might have put Boyd at risk too, Janae tries to break up with him.
'Janae's never been very good at rational thinking," Eliza laughs. "She actually ends up saying 'It's over. I'm in love with Mike' and trying to leave him. Thankfully Boyd sees straight through it and realises that she's just trying to protect him. She approaches it the best way she knows how and that's by pushing everyone that cares about her away."
The only person that Janae feels able to confide in is little sister Bree (Sianoa Smit-McPhee). The very last person that she wants to tell is her mother Janelle. Eliza explains why that was tricky to play.
"Nell Feeney (Janelle) and I get along really well so we deliberately didn't communicate much while we were rehearsing. We thought if we got together and had a laugh between takes it would take away the intensity of it."
Intense is the word. This week the agonising wait is over and Janae will get her test results. Whatever the outcome, her life will never be the same again. Either way, Eliza is pleased that she has had the opportunity to explore such a controversial topic.
"I don't think there's enough publicity surrounding HIV," she says. "It's a very serious disease and there are so many people out there suffering from it. I think there should be a lot more awareness about it."

For help and advice on sexually transmitted diseases, visit the Relationships website.

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