BOB HART OUT OF THE BOX

Herald Sun - Switched On - - Monday -

FIRST, a con­fes­sion: I have a daugh­ter who has been hooked on this se­ries since the first episode. At first, I could not un­der­stand this. And when I stayed with her, I would hide un­der the couch on Sun­day nights, which is when it screens in the US, where she lives.

Then she told me, huffily, that Rachel Grif­fiths was in it, and Sally Field, and Cal­ista Flock­hart, and so I watched a cou­ple of episodes.

It’s a soap. A su­per­soap be­cause it has a su­per­stars. But if it’s slip­pery like soap and lath­ers like soap, it’s a soap. And soapy stuff hap­pens, week in, week out. In­volv­ing soaper­stars.

Tonight things are par­tic­u­larly soapy as the in­fu­ri­at­ing Nora Walker be­comes clum­sily over-ex­cited, as usual, at the prospect of son Tommy (Bal- thazar Getty) re­turn­ing home with a ‘‘ big sur­prise’’. Which turns out to be a fi­ancee. Gosh. Who saw that com­ing?

Any­way, the fi­ancee, Rose, is a real es­tate bro­ker who hun­grily ad­mires the Walker fam­ily home in se­date Pasadena. This ruf­fles Nora’s feath­ers, nat­u­rally. Rose also has an ob­ses­sive in­ter­est in fam­ily trees and is hard at work on the Walk­ers.

Where­upon — and you will never guess this bit— she finds an ir­reg­u­lar­ity be­tween the date on Nora’s mar­riage cer­tifi­cate, on-line, and the date on which Nora al­ways cel­e­brates her an­niver­sary. Whoa!

What can this mean? Is that a shot­gun I see be­fore me? This is a soap, re­mem­ber. And in soaps, ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties are what make the world turn, OK?

Do we need to know more about Nora’s mys­te­ri­ous early love in­ter­est? I think so.

Mean­while, Kevin and Scotty, who are, you know, mar­ried, be­cause this is Cal­i­for­nia, and, any­way, their cus­tody of lit­tle Olivia is a strug­gle, and there is a rea­son, other than the ob­vi­ous. So they buy Olivia a gecko. That should do it, right? A gecko. Can I come out from un­der the couch yet? Brothers& Sis­ters Chan­nel 7, 9.30pm

Sur­prise: Balt­hazar Getty

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