Watching Mad Men? ... Ita was there
ICAN see Asher Keddie as Ita Buttrose. I was thinking about this piece of casting as I was watching this week’s Offspring and I thought yeah, that’s not that dumb. Maybe some work on the voice but that’d be easy enough. Get a couple of teeth removed, I don’t know. Anything for your art, right?
So I’m at something the other night — OK, Foxtel’s 15th birthday party — and I’m talking to a couple of people and Ita comes past. I wonder if it’s bad form to relay a private conversation? Probably. On the other hand, everybody knows what I do for a living. Anyway, we’d been talking about Mad Men, how fantastic it is, blah blah, and one of us turns to her and says, you watching it, expecting her to go, of course, because it’s almost a rhetorical question in a room like that, and Ita, and God I loved this, I wish you could’ve seen the look on her face, goes, no, I’m not watching it — ‘‘ I was there’’.
If John Edwards and Imogen Banks can capture one fraction of this in their Cleo telemovie, clearly it’ll be a smash hit.
I’ve decided, and it’s taken me a while to come round to this position, that Asher Keddie is fairly versatile. Nina Proudman drives me insane with her hopelessness but that just tells me Asher Keddie is doing a good job. This week Nina leaves her handbag on the roof of her car and runs over somebody. Who does that? My cousin drove down the street with the cat on the roof once. He’d gone to sleep on it and she’d driven off with him still there. He was old and she was giddy — the waving she just put down to people saying hello — but a handbag? And can I just ask you this — why are the rest of us expected to turn off our phones at the door of a hospital yet Nina can continue to send and receive text messages while pregnant women have their feet in stirrups and that photography gel on their stomach and are trying to enjoy that emotional there’s a picture of something that might very well be my baby moment? For one thing, I would hardly have thought it’s hygienic. Maybe that’s the thinking now. Expose them to disgusting things while the child is still in deep, stop the expensive auto-immune diseases in their tracks.
The phone is an important motif throughout Offspring. If Offspring were made by Alfred Hitchcock the phone would be called a McGuffin. Nina Proudman, with different wardrobe choices, could be a Hitchcock blonde. And I fear (hope) if she tells her sister she had a drunken shag with her sister’s boyfriend, the results could also be Hitchcockian. They won’t be though.
I wish Nina and Mick had waited until Billie and Mick were married, it’d be a much more exciting, dangerous show then. But John Edwards and Imogen Banks have already made that show. It was called Tangle.
Offspring, Channel 10, Sunday 9pm