Sons & Daughters Watching/rewatching/discussing The Aussie Hit Show

Discussion in 'Australian & New Zealand Soaps' started by JROG, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. Richard Channing

    Richard Channing Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    Well, that didn't take long. Episode 212 and Martin is plotting to end John and Jill's relationship. Meddling in your children's affairs because you think you know what and who is best for them all sounds rather familiar. Seems like Martin and Patricia might be perfect for each other!
     
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  2. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    That's it exactly. He has one of the darkest auras of anyone on the show.



    Peter has become a fond favourite of mine this time round. I've found him very engaging and likeable. The bromance with Kevin on that road trip was very enjoyable.



    I agree completely. There's some definite forward planning. I've noticed a couple of characters name checked more than a couple of hundred episodes before they're due to debut. It creates anticipation.



    I quite enjoy the hypocritical duality to Paul. He's definitely conflicted and torn between light and dark. Shades of Joshua Rush, I think.


    Well, if you have the aura you might as well use it. ;)
     
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  3. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm still on the fence with Matt Kennedy. I can't decide if he's a good character or not. Certainly compared with some other recent introductions he is. But I've found it difficult to get past the unethical pervy methods he used to cure Angela.



    Yup!


    This time round I've found a number of Fiona's actions quite ugly. She's constantly stirring things up and manufacturing drama. She always knows best and other people's wishes be damned. Maybe she's just too well written. She's the kind of person I'd actively avoid in real life (but then so are most of them :D).



    Doesn't it just.
     
  4. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    #410

    Kathleen Elliott has arrived. Another character of whom I have no memory at all.

    Jill and Fiona both seem horrified that she has let herself go so appallingly in prison. Never mind that Fiona has seen her in passing for approximately four seconds when Kathleen happened to be in her dressing gown. Anyway, she didn’t look so horrifying to me (I've seen both Fiona and Jill look worse). But she was given a makeover nevertheless. And the big reveal even got its own commercial break. I’m not so sure it was an improvement, but everyone else was, so all's well that ends well.

    Robin bought Jill a shiny tchotchke, which meant she had to kiss him. She has appalling taste in men. One wonders if this pairing was introduced to make Terry seem like an attractive prospect, even given the history. Anyway, Kathleen was understandably unhappy about the situation. There's a bit of the Claudia Blaisdel to her, as though she's on a pendulum that swings between touchingly vulnerable and dangerously vengeful. This gave a brilliantly twisted moment where Kathleen took baby Fi onto the apartment balcony, leaning out to look at the street far below while “suggesting” that Jill should leave.

    Even with such behaviour, Kathleen's character makes complete sense. As a viewer I can understand the angle from which she's approaching the situation. She's just served time having taken the rap for something her husband did, because she loves him so much. All that's kept her going is thinking that he'll love and appreciate her more when they're reunited. But she arrives to find him with a younger woman living in. Someone he spoils with the trinkets and affection she craves. Because her motives are clearly defined, the writers have permission to go to some wild places. And I'm looking forward to the ride.

    In other news from Jill’s romantic rolodex, a letter from Brian (read in an Oirish voiceover) turned out to be the last communication from him. As he’s now been killed. Offscreen. Again. Some of the other men in her life - Terry, Wayne, Robin - have rallied round to support her at Dural. Now she’s off to stay with Beryl and John. Baby Fi is already one well-travelled baby.

    Andy’s officially joined the cult. Beryl is overly optimistic about the situation:
    What’s surprising about this less-than-sparkling storyline is that it’s playing out as a major one, the ripples being felt from Melbourne to Sydney. I’ve just watched an intervention/kidnap scene at Toorak that had many of the series’ key players jostling with Andy: Barbara, Stephen, John, Wayne, Amanda. Even Patricia and Charlie stumbled onto the scene. Having S&D heavyweights inexplicably getting involved is keeping the story the right side of watchable. And as tedious as it’s been, I have to say there have been a couple of moments where, despite myself, I’ve found myself experiencing something like enjoyment. Could it be that by osmosis I’m acquiring Andy’s Stockholm Syndrome?

    There was no Patricia for a number of episodes, with her having checked into a psychiatric hospital after her breakdown. There’s a noticeable stillness when she’s not around. Even when the writing makes her absence relatively unnoticeable for a time, there’s still the absence. Anyway, she’s now signed herself out and is back on the scene, her silver tresses now a daring new shade of platinum blonde. What's interesting is that even with her back for almost a full episode, the stillness is ongoing. It's as though she's circling, getting a feel for the current status quo while quietly planning something. Indeed, she's already manipulated Margaret into suggesting that Patricia should stay at the apartment with David. What could possibly go wrong with this scenario.

    David himself, meanwhile, is jealous that Beryl is having lunch with Jim O'Brien - the brother of him next door, who was the mysterious man with whom Katie was meeting. You have to love the double standards of David's reaction, and again it feels very real and in character. Jim could indeed be competition for David. He's already said "gallah" at least once.

    The sight of Charlie appearing at the Palmers’ door has blown my mind a little. Somehow it seems as outrageous as anything I've seen on the series to date. Even having seen it, it still feels as though I dreamt it:
    The big disappointment about Charlie’s suburban excursion was that John was the only person at home. It would have been so much more memorable - and fun - had Beryl opened that door to Charlie's smile and had to wearily endure a barrage of backhanded compliments.
     
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  5. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator

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    A story or scene that makes me clutch my pearls is usually a good one.
    It does indeed. Needless to say, I only watch critically acclaimed porn movies.
     
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  6. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    #413

    Gosh - the end of #412 was so very Swan Song - even though it preceded it by over a year. It seems almost too coincidental for the Dallas writers not to have seen this (it probably is a coincidence, much as I’d like to think they were inspired by this).

    Robin is now in a coma. Not that you’d spot the difference really. Great work, Kathleen.

    The chemistry between Patricia and Jim O’Brien is great. There’s a terrific scene in #413 in which she gets stroppy with him and asks him to leave but they end up laughing and making up. Both actors look like they’re having a blast with it and the smiles feel for real. It has such a feel good factor I had to watch it a couple of times. Now I'm really hoping they pursue these two as an item.
     
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  7. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    #426


    My goodness. The revolving door has been working overtime in recent episodes. There are so many comings and goings - and some characters have done both.

    In minor terms, Sean O’Donnel has arrived, had a stint on the Jill/Fiona merry-go-round of lies (these two exhaust me with their capacity to make drama out of a crisis) and left when he eventually found out that Jill had lied to him about Fee being Brian’s daughter so that he would pay for Robin’s treatment. I lost track of whether he was meant to be Fee’s grandfather or great grandfather, but since he turned out to be neither it’s a moot point. The most notable thing about him - apart from his curious Scottish/Irish accent - was that he was played by Mr Anne Haddy. That considered, it’s a shame he missed Rosie by just a few episodes. But that was remedied on Neighbours the following year when Douglas Blake conned Helen Daniels out of $50,000.

    Then there’s the secondary-but-quite-important level of new arrivals. The Carlyles are now on the scene. First Roger, alternating between seedy and sinister, with his eye on one O’Brien sibling. Then young Luke, with whom the other O’Brien sibling is completely infatuated. Roger has already put Jim out of business for speaking out to him. But as Willie has said, their arrival is much, much more significant in the scheme of things and means dark times indeed for one of the series’ most important characters. And a turning point for the series as a whole.

    She’s bold. She’s outspoken. She won’t speak to anyone until she’s had a cup of tea and a cigarette. And she can’t stand Meryl Streep. Irene Fisher has hit the scene. And not a second too soon. She’s a fond favourite of mine from watching in the Eighties and already she feels like a breath of fresh air to the series. I’m enjoying her attitude and slightly brash air. It’s struck me that our introduction to her is very similar to the way we met Fiona back in the opening episodes. Earthy landlady of a boarding house to whom a character in trouble with the law gravitates. She trusts her instincts and begins to offer help. It’s comfortingly familiar, while at the same time having a pleasing hint of newness. The best of both worlds.

    It was so good to see Angela return for a flying visit. I’d forgotten about this, which made it even more welcome. It was appropriate that she was the catalyst for John’s exit and extremely satisfying that the twins left together. Perhaps it’s telling about the change in direction of the series that their departure felt very low key. John himself acknowledged that he’d just been floating around recently. He felt it was since Lisa Cook’s departure. For me it felt like the character had struggled to fit in since his return from the army with that terrible bleach job. All the same, in recent storylines I feel he’d found his place in the series again. Because of that connection to the opening storyline where they embodied innocence and naivety, Angela and John leaving forever feels like the symbolic end of an era.

    Speaking of low-key exits, Margaret’s final scenes were also very restrained, given the history of the character as the vengeful dark angel who played psychological games with Patricia. In a way, it’s rather Knotsian. Like Sid Fairgate, she survived that dramatic crash and all seemed well until she died of complications during surgery. There’s also a hint of the Pam Ewing. Margaret struggled with the way she looked because of the burns. Even though she was advised against having the surgery, she went ahead to look her best for David. So her underplayed death felt quite sudden and unexpected. And very real.

    The ripples from her death have been pleasing. For one thing Patricia, despite her new Pat Butcher hairdo, has once again become “a very wealthy woman” (how many times has that line been uttered to her on this show).

    The opening act of #423 makes it a contender for the most creatively structured episode of the series so far - certainly by standards of Aussie TV at the time. It’s exciting enough that it has a good number of the main cast - Barbara, Gordon, Patricia, David, Stephen, Wayne, Amanda, John and… Angela (Angela and John side by side on location once again!!!) - gathered round an open grave; dressed in dramatic blacks and dark browns; listening to platitudes from the person conducting the ceremony; half heartedly reciting The Lord’s Prayer in unison and looking round at one another with looks that vary from concern to anger. But then as the camera lingers on each character, we are told the story in flashback, with each remembering a conversation that has taken place between the end of the previous episode and the beginning of this one. Not only are the flashbacks a clever way of adding interest and speeding up the story (with perhaps a couple of episodes’ worth of reactions in the flashbacks), they also play out in sepia, as though the end credits had come to life and been given their own spinoff.

    Although the series got back into a more conventional way of storytelling very quickly, it did deliver by episode's end with a dramatic graveside vow and an aerial shot of Patricia standing amongst the destruction she’s just caused.
     
  8. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Star

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    I'm up to Episode 90, still red-faced and wheezing at the back of the race.

    As soapy businessmen go, Gordon's unusual in that he's not a Blake Carrington/JR Ewing, he's not a mover and shaker. He mostly reacts -- to Patricia and Wayne's transgressions, to market forces and strikes, etc. He tries to be fair and even-handed, but pisses people off for not taking a side; then when he does take a moral stand, he gets accused of being self-righteous and inflexible. He's not outwardly arrogant, but he's not a hero either. He just wants a quiet life. He's kind of like an ordinary man trying to remain standing in a soap opera whirlwind and in the process, his flaws -- a certain pomposity, an indecisiveness, a wanting to be liked -- are exposed, but they're all very understandable and forgivable. Thinking about it, he's a bit Ken Barlow.

    Yes, when Rob turns up at the Hamiltons' in Sydney and immediately takes a dip in the pool, it's like when Sammy Jo or Mickey Trotter first arrived at the Carrington mansion or at Southfork. Through Patricia and Angela's eyes, he feels like a totally new character even though we've already spent x amount of weeks with him in Melbourne.

    A great "cutting the bread role" moment: Patricia offering Rob a drink, assuming he'll want a beer, only for him to say he'll have a small whisky and water. She deliberately invites him to add his own water and rolls her eyes as he fills up the glass to the brim. Then later on, brilliantly, you get John, of all people, turning his nose up at Rob for handing him a beer without a glass.

    Rob is so similar to the recently departed Mick (father of sick kid Stevie) -- both are from the country with strong ties to Beryl's family, both have a happy-go-lucky persona which hides a more sensitive side, both are attracted to Angela -- that I wonder if Rob was brought in as a last-minute replacement because Mick had to be written out for some reason (which would explain the abrupt killing off of Stevie). There again, Rob being Beryl's brother works so perfectly, it's hard to imagine that wasn't the idea all along.

    I never ever liked Charlie before, always dismissed her as being a terrible actress, but now I think she's perfect. She's the opposite of Barbara in that she symbolises everything that's shallow and soulless about being rich. You almost get the impression Patricia would like to be that superficial herself -- it would certainly make life easier for her -- but those pesky emotions keeping getting in the way.

    Yes, it does. It's funny - while the American soaps were championing older women taking a toyboy lover, Angela and Rob look like they're about to be sick as they describe seeing Charlie carrying on with a nineteen-year-old.

    It's so funny watching Lynne be really scared of him. I know I should be on the side of the vulnerable mother-to-be, but I hope he turns out to be a total psycho. (So far he hasn't done much beyond caressing Susan's bank book and chucking her boring letters to Bill in the trash.)

    This was an amazing scene --John comes home to find Patricia's had a few too many drinks. It's the first time either he or we have seen her like that. She's in a good mood, all her schemes are going well, but she then pushes her manipulations too far and she's slurring her words and he's kind of repelled by her. It's one of those powerful, 'lightning in a bottle' scenes you sometimes get on soaps, which you feel has caught the camera crew and maybe even the actors themselves by surprise. And it comes out of the blue and isn't really referred to again, so you're almost left wondering if you imagined the whole thing. (At least that's how it felt on weekday afternoons in the '80s.)

    It's so interesting how Patricia goes from fawning over "Mrs Armstrong" at the start of the series to telling her coldly, "I don't like you and I never have" eighty-something episodes later.

    Barbara's a bit like Donna Krebbs -- plain-spoken, no-nonsense and somewhat superior, with an offscreen husband who's killed off at the earliest convenience. They both have the Sabrina in Charlie's Angels thing of being so intelligent, they can never wear a bikini.

    Oh my word, the graves being ploughed up and then Fiona's reaction when she finds out over the phone: it's like a Greek tragedy. And at the very same time, Cecil Colby turns up to die and leave Lotus Point to Fiona and Patricia!
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
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  9. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator

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    Thanks for the updates, Mel. Will post some of mine tonight - especially since we've been out-populared by the the Baywatch thread (!), according to the most-popular-threads email from soapchat. The whole situation has conspiracy written all over it!:mad:
     
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  10. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Oh, please take your time, James. It's enriching my viewing to be reminded of some of these character moments and get a sense of journey.


    Now you say it, yes he is. Cardies and all.


    Wonderful. I knew you'd spot some of these moments that I didn't catch.



    A really interesting theory, and the timeline would certainly support it. It would also explain how instantly attracted Rob and Angela were to one another (although it's also very in character for both to fall head over heels in minutes).



    The timing of this is interesting, as I'm currently watching a similar scenario play out (or at least being heavily implied) with reversed genders and there's not the least bit of frivolity with it. It's very dark indeed.



    Yes. And it feels very in-keeping with Patricia's mercurial nature.


    I absolutely get that.


    Ha. So true.


    Isn't it wonderful? Even having seen a lot of water go under that bridge, I think of Fiona's reaction and I feel quite moved.


    Yes. Yes!!
     
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  11. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator

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    I thought she was being good at playing the character in such a consistently OTT way, and not giving a f**k about the fact that other characters disapproved of her "performance".
    Which seems to suggest that she's one of the stronger characters, despite her many clueless moments.
    I think there was a little bit of Beverly Moss in early-Patricia, and the Armstrongs (S&D's answer to The Colbys) were true blood high-society.
     
  12. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    This is such a shocking turn of events it needs a sepia freeze frame.
     
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  13. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Speaking of things Charlie, I hadn't realised (or if I knew I've forgotten) that Sarah Kemp died in 2015.
     
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  14. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator

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    Oh...this may affect my viewing of Charlie, at least for the next couple of episodes.
     
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  15. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes - mine too.

    I stumbled across it randomly when doing a quick search to compare the ages of Sarah Kemp and a male actor playing another character with an eye for younger love interests (turns out he's younger, even though he doesn't look it).
     
  16. James from London

    James from London Soap Chat Star

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    Charlie's another one who cropped up in DOCTOR WHO, back in the 70s - when she went under the name of Gypsie Kemp!

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Apparently she was also in Benny Hill. Perhaps bit more Charlie-esque than her Doctor Who role.

    [​IMG]
     
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  18. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson SoapLand Battles Moderator

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    Dee Morell's will gave the writers a lot to play with. Divorce, deceit, blackmail, shocking paternity revelations and most notable the return of Margaret Dunne.
    Those six months in jail have toughened her up and she's more of a predator now.
    Still pulling the wool over everyone's eyes (excluding Patricia) but not over my eyes, and I think I prefer the Margaret who was a little bit more naive, spontaneous and unpredictable.

    The jury's still out on the rape issue without being too forceful about the subject itself, and it feels particularly well-plotted.
    Lisa Cook thinks she understands why he did, this may be a differerent kind of forgiveness but it's forgiveness nonetheless, especially when it's voiced by a calm and reasonable person like Lisa.
    They also create various rescue-scenarios for Terry that make him come out smelling of roses. "Salt of the earth", as Beryl put it.
    But when Jill has second thoughts about the baby because she thinks it'll always remind her of the rape, the whole situation is being reverted again.
    Most of the damage however comes from Fiona.
    John tells her a few home truths about her decision to put Terry above everyone else, and it's exactly her weak and very biased defence ("but you don't know everything about him") that makes Terry the rapist again.
    At the risk of stating the obvious, the only forgiveness that counts is Jill's.

    Fiona bulldozes over everything and everyone, telling them what to do and how to feel, she can be such a fishwife sometimes!
    If Patricia had bitch-slapped her it would have been totally justified.

    Stephen penalizes Patricia for harassing poor tormented Helen, but then it turns out that Helen's secret is much darker then we thought.
    She can be standing there wringing her hands and ask Andy to understandy, but she's nothing but a big fat lying slut.

    The multiple cliff hangers season finale was exciting, but I've got to say the fight and stunt scenes are abysmal, and we never get the full view anyway.

    I think there was a goof in episode 353. Beryl calls from Woombai to Dural, but I could hear the peep-peep-peep in the phone. Both properties are in the Sydney area, right?

    Jill contacts Scott for help, and then when he offers to help her find a job she tells him off. I mean, talk about being rude.
    "I don't need your help, I can manage".
    Oh really, Jill? Whose place are you going to crash this time? These characters have a very strange perception of independence.
     
  19. Victoriafan3

    Victoriafan3 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Spoiler Alert!!!

    37C90F98-B940-4693-B4D6-E50B1755F0B2.jpeg

    I had totally forgotten the brief but wonderful (and appropriate indeed) reappearance of Angela, Mel Yay!

    Here’s a page from TV Soap in Jan 1985...
     
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  20. Mel O'Drama

    Mel O'Drama Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Oh James... I've got avvy envy.
     
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