Get­ting On

Geelong Advertiser - TV Guide - - FRONT PAGE - ALEX BORSTEIN

disease and de­cay aren’t nec­es­sar­ily the stuff of com­edy, but the new pay- TV se­ries Get­ting On pulls off the mirac­u­lous feat of min­ing a fair few blackly funny laughs from the ma­te­rial nev­er­the­less.

An Amer­i­can adap­ta­tion of the ac­claimed BBC se­ries, it fol­lows the daily lives of the rag- tag staff tend­ing to the el­derly pa­tients of a Cal­i­for­nia hos­pi­tal’s ex­tended- care ward, with bed pans, bad at­ti­tudes and bu­reau­cratic red tape just some of the ob­sta­cles the ward’s nurses and ad­min­is­tra­tors must over­come.

Among the staff is vet­eran nurse Dawn Forchette, whose ded­i­ca­tion to her pa­tients is matched only by her dys­func­tional ap­proach to re­la­tion­ships of all kinds. She’s played by Alex Borstein, per­haps best known to view­ers as the voice of Fam­ily Guy’s long- suf­fer­ing Lois Grif­fin, and she spoke about the show and her char­ac­ter.

Alex, how would you de­scribe Dawn Forchette?

She is so com­pli­cated she’s hard to de­scribe. She is very ca­pa­ble in the work­place and likes to be the queen of her do­main.

Her heart is com­pletely in her job, partly be­cause she is ter­ri­fied of end­ing up like a lot of them. But when it comes to dat­ing or look­ing for a man, she is some­what men­tal – she has never re­ally blos­somed in those ar­eas of life.

Were you fa­mil­iar with the UK ver­sion of

be­fore get­ting on board the Amer­i­can one?


Get­ting Yes, and I loved it. It was this weird, wind­ing road that led me to get­ting to play Dawn Forchette. I was writ­ing on the US ver­sion of Shame­less, and I met the cre­ator of the show, Paul Ab­bott, with whom I then started to de­velop a US ver­sion of another Bri­tish show of his, Linda Green. Be­cause of that, I got to know the peo­ple at BBC Amer­ica too. It re­ally was this amaz­ing turn of events: be­cause of my meet­ing Paul, be­cause of my know­ing the folks at the BBC, they wanted me for this.

Does the US ver­sion of the show delve into any is­sues fac­ing Amer­ica’s health­care sys­tem?

It is one of the things that creeps into the show. Even if we say we don’t want it to be po­lit­i­cal, it’s im­pos­si­ble to avoid. The red tape that goes on in hos­pi­tals and the health­care sys­tem is ridicu­lous, and peo­ple re­ally do slip through the cracks. A lot of th­ese nurses and doc­tors are left in a po­si­tion of know­ing how they can care for some­one but hav­ing their hands tied fi­nan­cially. Get­ting On, Mon­day, De­cem­ber 9, Show­case ( pay- TV), 7.10pm

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