BOB HART OUT OF THE BOX

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Sunday -

IT IS a strange and trou­bling place, the past — es­pe­cially when it is repli­cated as ac­cu­rately, and as mer­ci­lessly, as it is in this crack­ing mini-se­ries. Ita But­trose lived there once, as a glowing sym­bol of the 1970s: young, fresh, in­domitable and, apart from flicked-up hair and an en­dear­ing lisp, she looked for all the world like Asher Ked­die.

In those days, Ita was a match for the abom­inable Pack­ers who also lived there — the ir­ra­tional Sir Frank and the fe­ro­cious, gen­er­ous, du­plic­i­tous, ca­pa­ble and strangely in­se­cure Kerry.

This is the story, spread over tonight and to­mor­row night, of the cre­ation of Cleo —a pub­lish­ing tri­umph that un­folded against all odds.

Cleo, very nearly Cleopa­tra, was the Pack­ers’ re­sponse to the US own­ers of Cos­mopoli­tan who, at the 11th hour, took their mast­head else­where.

The new mag­a­zine was given its chance to scup­per Cosmo al­most by de­fault, and be­cause of Kerry’s in­struc­tion to But­trose to ‘‘ lose’’ a damn­ing ad agency as­sess­ment of its chances. True story.

But­trose, ap­par­ently, is happy with her por­trayal by Ked­die, though not en­tirely com­fort­able with her char­ac­ter’s lisp. It sounded about right to me. But

Look-alike: Asher Ked­die

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