Local stories.

Been watching any good local TV lately?

Here’s some of my recent favs.

The Doctor Blake Mysteries – moody, murder mysteries set in 1950s small town Australia. Love the use of colour and the sets. Ballarat is gorgeous. Really get the oppressive, claustrophobia of post-war Australia. The acting is top notch too. Worth getting a box set to watch.

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Rake is hysterical. Witty, mad, poignant. (That’s both the show and the central character.) He is ethical and deeply honourable while being a lying, cheating, drug-taking, gambling, alcoholic. Self-destructive and infuriating; he is manic and like the catherine wheel fireworks on the opening credits, he burns himself out in an increasingly speedy mania. But you have to love him. Can’t see the American adaptation working. If you don’t like swearing, don’t watch this. (Or if you don’t like any of the other things that get it an MA rating.)

Farck, can’t wait for its/his return.

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The end of Janet King was a bit obvious but it told a good tale of corruption and murder. And isn’t Marta Dusseldorp brilliant and beautiful?

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Love her in Series 1 of A Place to Call Home and can’t wait for the next series. OK, this is a bit melodramatic and soapy, but again the series really captures the era, and the drama is good.

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Of course, everyone loves The Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries. Will there be another series? Hope so.

My god, the costumes are brilliant. I saw the costume exhibition. Just amazballs.

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A break from drama is Shaun Micallef’s Mad as Hell. Being satirical, the topics will date, and the show may not travel well outside of Australia. Still, he is so clever, and can pull the most amazing faces. A very funny show.

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No reality shows among my list. No weight loss. No bake off. No renovations but only in one hour/day/weekend.

We need narrative to entertain us; good narrative needs good writers.

And we need to see and hear ourselves. (I do watch a lot of shows from the UK and the US. A post for a later date.)

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12 thoughts on “Local stories.

  1. Miss Fisher was back n TV last Saturday night, not sure if new but I hadn’t seen it. I also like Death in paradise though not Australian, its set in St Moritz & is just gorgeous : )

    • Love Death in Paradise too. Even though it can get a bit silly.

      Miss Fisher wasn’t new but can always be re-watched. There’s always something not noticed, especially in the costumes, scenery and sets.

  2. I very much agree that we do need good local narrative…but I watch TV so little that I haven’t seen any of these. I did watch a bit of the latest “Underbelly” series but of course – very low-brow! Still interesting as a local Melburnian though as you know most of the incidents, locations and even some of the local figures. I should try to get into Miss Fisher. I think it’s on the Exchange at school.

    • I know it is contradictory, given that many of my favourite shows are about murder or use language that some find offensive, but I won’t watch any of the Underbelly shows. Hate glorification and glamourising of low life scum.

      • It is glorification and it represents the criminal world as quite glamourous…I can see that there is a stand to be taken in not watching it. I’m not quite there yet, though…there’s still that prurient interest in knowing how things like the ‘gang wars’ throughout the 90s could happen. I think it was 30-40 murders in that period…a major piece of Melbourne’s history.

  3. Yes Lucinda I pretty much agree with your verdicts. My non-Australian faves at the moment- The Bridge Season 2, Downton Abbey, The Accused and just started watching Orphan Black via SBS On Demand (sci fi drama about clones – not my usual but still enjoying it).
    I’d love some more recommendations for Scandinavian crime shows- love them, although I’ve probably seen all of them.

    • Bridge looked too bleak. Those Scandinavians,the long days of dark must get to them?

      I watched one episode of The Accused. The one with the transvestite. Maybe too bleak for me. Need some new world happiness and optimism.

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