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Wentworth: The biggest moments from Australia's favourite prison drama

Setting the standard for Australian television since 2013

By Scott Ellis

It's won several TV WEEK Logie Awards and has a cult following.

And for fair reason – since making its debut on our screens back in 2013, Wentworth has set the standard in Australian television for delivering unique plot twists and powerful performances.

With season six soon to come to a close, we relive some memorable scenes from the acclaimed prison drama.

BEA’S ARRIVAL - SEASON 1, EPISODE 1

Bea (Danielle Cormack) has no idea what's in store for her when entering Wentworth Detention Centre.
Bea (Danielle Cormack) has no idea what's in store for her when entering Wentworth Detention Centre.

Charged with the attempted murder of her abusive husband Harry (Jake Ryan), suburban housewife Bea Smith (Danielle Cormack) arrives in Wentworth Detention Centre confused and terrified.

But she's convinced she'll soon be free. She has no idea of the nightmare her life is about to become.

She gets her first hint, however, when prisoner peer worker Liz (Celia Ireland) shows her the ropes.

"Don't borrow anyone else's stuff without asking," Liz warns. "But if Franky [Nicole da Silva] wants any of yours, don't argue."

And the biggest rule of all?

"Oh, you know the panic button by the front door?" Liz asks. "Don't ever press it."

THE GOVERNOR IS KILLED - SEASON 1, EPISODE 1

Meg (Catherine McClements) is killed in a prison riot, witnessed by husband Will (Robbie Magasiva).
Meg (Catherine McClements) is killed in a prison riot, witnessed by husband Will (Robbie Magasiva).

The first lesson we learn in Wentworth is that nobody is safe – inside its walls or out.

Firm-but-fair prison governor Meg Jackson (Catherine McClements) is married to fellow prison officer Will (Robbie Magasiva), but doesn't make it to the end of the first episode – she's killed in a prison riot. Although Bea is blamed because she's covered in blood, we later find out who was responsible: Franky.

Franky, however, declares it was all "an accident".

BEA FIGHTS BACK - SEASON 1, EPISODE 10

Jacs (Kris McQuade) organises to have Bea's daughter killed.
Jacs (Kris McQuade) organises to have Bea's daughter killed.

It isn't long before the quiet mum is changed and a new tough Bea emerges.

When Wentworth's top dog, Jacs (Kris McQuade), arranges to have Bea's daughter killed on the outside, Bea stabs her in the neck with a pen and leaves her dying on the floor.

FERGUSON TAKES CHARGE - SEASON 2, EPISODE 1

Joan "The Freak" Ferguson (Pamela Rabe) is Wentworth's ultimate villain
Joan "The Freak" Ferguson (Pamela Rabe) is Wentworth's ultimate villain

One of the most anticipated moments in Wentworth history is when iconic character Joan "The Freak" Ferguson (Pamela Rabe) arrives.

She quickly turns Wentworth into her own personal empire, terrorising staff and inmates alike.

An emotionless psychopath – just wait until her goldfish dies to see how little she feels for anyone or anything – Ferguson pushes everyone to the point where they have no choice but to fight back.

MARVELLOUS MAXINE ARRIVES - SEASON 2, EPISODE 4

Maxine's (Socratis Otto) character highlights issues being faced by trans women everywhere.
Maxine's (Socratis Otto) character highlights issues being faced by trans women everywhere.

Reflecting the truth of life in a modern women's prison, transgender woman Maxine (Socratis Otto) moves into Wentworth and soon becomes one of the show's most popular characters.

Tough, tender and fighting discrimination on all fronts, Maxine's story highlights issues facing trans women everywhere. In season four, she bravely fights breast cancer.

BEA BREAKS FREE - SEASON 2, EPISODE 11

Like his mother, Brayden (Reef Ireland) is killed by a revenge-seeking Bea.
Like his mother, Brayden (Reef Ireland) is killed by a revenge-seeking Bea.

Jacs had died at her hands, but Bea still wants revenge on the man who killed her daughter.

So, she hatches an elaborate plan to get out and hunt him down. It plays out over weeks and with other inmates in unwitting roles. Bea has herself attacked, severely injured and then transferred to hospital, where she slips free of her guards.

Finally, with Jacs' son Brayden (Reef Ireland), she has second thoughts… until he grins at her in triumph. And Bea shoots him dead.

FLETCH IS RUN DOWN - SEASON 2, EPISODE 12

Matthew Fletcher (Aaron Jeffery) suffers the consequences for siding against The Freak.
Matthew Fletcher (Aaron Jeffery) suffers the consequences for siding against The Freak.

A former soldier- turned-prison guard, Matthew Fletcher (Aaron Jeffery) has a rough time at Wentworth, pushing the limits of his authority and making enemies on both sides of the bars.

But when he discovers Ferguson's campaign to destroy Will, he decides it's time to side with the good guys. And then The Freak has him run down by a speeding van before he can say a word.

His recovery, and what it does to him, becomes one of the strongest storylines of season three.

THE STEAM PRESS SEASON 3 - EPISODE 2

Boomber (Katrina Milosevic) recovers from her injuries she suffered at the dry cleaner.
Boomber (Katrina Milosevic) recovers from her injuries she suffered at the dry cleaner.

Now serving life without parole for murder, Bea sets out to take over Wentworth.

She starts a riot, faces down Ferguson and fights back against prison enforcer Boomer (Katrina Milosevic). In a scene that makes every fan terrified to set foot in a drycleaner, Bea slams Boomer's hands in the giant clothes press and lets the steam fly.

BORN INSIDE - SEASON 3, EPISODE 9

Doreen (Shareena Clanton) is one of few characters in *Wentworth* to be released and to never return.
Doreen (Shareena Clanton) is one of few characters in Wentworth to be released and to never return.

After meeting a male prisoner on a work-release program, inmate Doreen (Shareena Clanton) falls pregnant and, while still inside, gives birth. Baby Joshua changes everything for Doreen, and leads to her eventually being released.

She's one of the few inmates who has never returned.

THE FREAK FREAKS OUT - SEASON 3, EPISODE 12

Will deals with the aftermath of the prison's fire which was set alight by The Freak.
Will deals with the aftermath of the prison's fire which was set alight by The Freak.

Ferguson's reign of terror comes to an abrupt end when she kills an inmate and sets fire to the prison to cover her tracks.

Unfortunately for her, she's caught in the act and soon finds herself on the other side of the bars – and the prime target for every killer inside.

But this is The Freak, after all, and she has one last card to play, calling on Kaz (Tammy MacIntosh) to protect her inside.

BOOMER’S CONJUGAL VISIT - SEASON 4, EPISODE 4

Boomer on her date with ex Daz (Rom Budge).
Boomer on her date with ex Daz (Rom Budge).

Not everything is doom and gloom inside Wentworth.

And one of the lightest moments comes when the prisoners are finally granted conjugal visits. First to set up a romantic date is none other than Boomer. She's given a makeover and sent off to see her ex, Daz (Tom Budge, right).

Everything doesn't go to plan, however, when Boomer confesses she wants to be a mum. Daz, deadbeat that he is, nearly becomes the first man to attempt an escape from Wentworth.

LOVE IN THE GUARDROOM - SEASON 4, EPISODE 10

Governor Vera (Kate Atkinson) and guard Jake (Bernard Curry) form a romantic bond.
Governor Vera (Kate Atkinson) and guard Jake (Bernard Curry) form a romantic bond.

It isn't just the prisoners who fall in and out of love. New governor Vera (Kate Atkinson) throws off her "Vinegar Tits" nickname to jump into bed with fellow guard Jake (Bernard Curry).

It's a rocky relationship, but the repercussions of their passion really come to a head in the current season.

THE DEATH OF BEA - SEASON 4, EPISODE 12

"I win". Bea sacrifices herself to make sure The Freak is locked up for good.
"I win". Bea sacrifices herself to make sure The Freak is locked up for good.

Proving nobody is safe inside, Bea pays the ultimate price to make sure Ferguson will never be released. She confronts The Freak as she's ready to walk free, forcing her to stab her. "I win," Bea whispers as Ferguson's fury takes over.

And she's right. The attack is witnessed, Ferguson is locked back up and Bea has made sure the world will be safe from her forever.

Or at least until the next season.

FRANKY RETURNS SEASON 5 - EPISODE 2

Franky (Nicole da Silva) returns to Wentworth after being accused of the murder of celebrity chef Mike Pennisi.
Franky (Nicole da Silva) returns to Wentworth after being accused of the murder of celebrity chef Mike Pennisi.

Bea is gone, but Franky isn't so lucky.

When the celebrity chef she had assaulted years before, Mike Pennisi (Felix Williamson), is murdered, all fingers point to her. And once again, she's back in Wentworth.

This time, however, she knows she's been set up. So a bitter – and smarter – Franky sets out to prove her innocence.

It's a plan she needs to be outside to complete. But how can she escape?

WILL SAVES KAZ’S LIFE - SEASON 5, EPISODE 5

Will rescues Kaz from a sinking prison van.
Will rescues Kaz from a sinking prison van.

All her life she's hated men, but then… Kaz (right) is trapped inside a sinking prison van and Will comes to her rescue in one of the show's most claustrophobic moments.

It sets in motion a series of decisions that will force Kaz to break her own rules. And it'll see Will cross a deadly line and alter the future of Wentworth forever.

FREAK IN THE BOX SEASON 5 - EPISODE 12

Allie (Kate Jenkinson) and Franky follow through with their escape plan.
Allie (Kate Jenkinson) and Franky follow through with their escape plan.

Franky and Allie (Kate Jenkinson) have hatched an elaborate plan to escape. But what Franky doesn't know is that Ferguson is going to join her on the trip… or so she thinks.

While Franky and Allie's breakout goes as planned, Ferguson takes a deadly side-trip to remote bushland.

Here, the crate she's locked in is lowered into the ground. As she hears someone begin to bury her alive, Ferguson sees a portrait of Bea tacked inside – thanks to her lover, Allie – and realises she's been the victim of a scheme to avenge the former top dog.

In one of TV's greatest twists, we see the digger is Will!

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