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Character Profiles > Toby Mangel Finn Greentree-Keane, Ben Geurens

Toby Mangel 1988-1993
Lived: 30, 32 Ramsay Street
Born: 1979
Parents: Joe and Noelene Mangel; Kerry Bishop (adoptive)
Siblings: Sky (adoptive)
Family Tree: Mangel
Occupation: Student

Toby Mangel was born to Joe and Noelene Mangel, when they were only young. Having married at sixteen, Joe and Noeline lived in squalor as they started their married life, and just after Toby was born, Joe took off and left Noeline to bring Toby up alone. When Toby was nine, Noeline got engaged to Ted Vickers - a man who hated Toby and put him down constantly. Ted even persuaded Noelene to send Toby away while they went away to get married and so, Noelene tracked Joe down in Erinsborough. Toby was excited about finally meeting his father, but was disappointed when Joe showed no signs of interest or happiness at seeing him. Luckily, Toby's older cousin, Jane Harris, was also living at No. 32 with Joe and she took Toby under her wing and tried to help him settle into Erinsborough. Toby also made a friend in the family's pet labrador, Bouncer, and also with Katie Landers, a little girl from across the street.

Eventually, Joe came to appreciate the fact that he had a son and a bond began to develop between him and Toby, culminating in Joe affectionately calling Toby "Tobes". But just as this happened, Noelene and Ted returned from their honeymoon and Toby was forced to leave Ramsay Street behind. However, when Joe learnt that Ted was abusive and hitting both Toby and Noelene, he was quick to rush to the defence of his son and ex-wife. Joe sent Vickers on his way and warned him never to come near Toby or Noelene again.

Joe and Noelene patched up their differences in the wake of this ordeal, and agreed to remain friends and share custody of Toby, with Toby spending weekends and holidays on Ramsay Street with Joe. But when Noelene landed a job in Darwin, Toby was forced to choose between making the move up north with his mum, or staying in Erinsborough with Joe. He opted for Darwin with Noelene, and bid an emotional farewell to Joe, who had recently married Kerry Bishop, and given Toby a little sister via Kerry's daughter Sky. Tragedy struck, however, when only a few months after moving to Darwin, Noelene was knocked down by a car and killed. A heartbroken Toby returned to live in Erinsborough with Joe and Kerry, and struggled to come to terms with his mother's death. He became very quiet, and unresponsive, and Kerry even discovered he had been wetting his bed at night. Joe fretted over how best to help his son through the nightmare, but only time could heal the pain Toby was going through.

Eventually, Toby began to smile again and even started to look up to Kerry as a mother figure. Toby also found grandparents in the form of Kerry's father, Harold, and his wife, Madge. And when Kerry offered to adopt Toby as her own - at the same time as Joe planned to adopt Sky - Toby was thrilled at the prospect and even began calling Kerry 'mum'. The icing on the cake arrived in the form of the news that Kerry was pregnant meaning that Toby and Sky had a little brother or sister to look forward to. However, all their happiness was shattered when Kerry was killed by a stray bullet while protesting against off-season duck hunters. Although devastated at losing a second mother, Toby proved his maturity by being there for Joe in his lowest moment.

The Mangel house was filled up again when madcap Melanie Pearson moved in as a lodger. Sparks of attraction were immediately evident between Joe and Melanie, although it was to prove a rocky road to getting together. When it finally did happen, Toby was delighted and even more so, when Joe and Melanie got engaged. In the middle of the engagement, however, Joe and Melanie had a massive argument over whether or not they were having more kids, and when Toby overheard a conversation the wrong way and felt he was not wanted, he ran away with Bouncer. A huge search got underway in the neighbourhood, but to no avail. However, Toby had luckily befriended an old homeless man in the city, and he persuaded Toby to return home. Assured by Joe and Melanie that they loved him, Toby threw himself into wedding preparations and was chuffed to be asked by Joe to be his best man.

But yet another act of tragedy was about to strike Toby. In the midst of the engagement, Toby's beloved granddad, Harold, went missing, presumed dead, after being washed away to sea while on holiday with Madge. Toby had been particularly close to Harold, especially since they both shared a love of pool, and it took him a long time to get over his death. Indeed, Toby proved himself to be fiercely protective of Harold's memory for when Madge began to date Lou Carpenter, an old love rival of Harold's, he made no bones about his disapproval of Lou. Lou won Toby over, however, by giving him a job washing cars at his car yard and Toby came to give Madge and Lou his blessing.

Meanwhile, Toby's home life was about to undergo another shake-up. After Joe and Melanie got married and enjoyed a brief honeymoon in the countryside, word reached Joe that his mother, Nell Mangel, was to undergo major heart surgery in England and needed to sell No. 32 to pay her medical expenses. Joe and Melanie were upset at the thought of leaving Ramsay Street, but were equally concerned about Mrs. Mangel's health, and they planned to make an extended trip to England to be with her. They initially planned to bring Toby along with them, but because he was in his first year of high school, realised it wouldn't be right for him to miss so much schooling. So instead, it was arranged for Toby - and of course, his beloved sidekick Bouncer - to stay in Ramsay Street and live with Dorothy Burke next door at No. 30. Toby was initially hurt by Joe's decision, especially since Dorothy was also his high school principal. But he accepted the idea in the long run, and bid Joe, Melanie and Sky an emotional goodbye in the airport, delighting Melanie in the process by calling her 'mum'.

Toby and Dorothy soon got on like a house on fire, and Dorothy made Toby's separation from his family that little bit easier by making a fuss of him at first. They were also soon joined by 16-year-old high school student, Phoebe Bright, who had recently lost her father. Toby and Phoebe got on extremely well, with Toby even developing a slight crush on Phoebe for a time. They also both came to look on Dorothy as an aunt type figure, and gave her the affectionate name of 'Mim', which was an abbreviation of Dorothy's middle name, Miriam.

When Joe and Melanie returned from England, they bought a house in the countryside. Toby was all set to join them in their new neighbourhood until they discovered that there was no school out there yet and he would have to remain in Erinsborough a little longer.

Toby found himself in trouble with the police when he and his best mate Ben Nicolls started shoplifting magazines from the local newsagents. But they got off with a warning and a stern talking to from Dorothy.

Toby was delighted when Joe called to tell him a school had finally opened near them and he made plans to move up. He was further delighted when Dorothy landed a job teaching at the new school and the two left Ramsay Street and a now married Phoebe behind as they drove to the country with Toby's beloved dog Bouncer, where at long last, Toby was reunited with his family.

Trivia Notes
Ben Geurens played Toby from 1990 onwards

854-1142, 1189-1843

Biography by Moe