BIGASK

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DAR­REN DEV­LYN

APRO­MO­TIONAL clip for The Shire seems to say it all. nar­ra­tor claims it’s the show that will get the whole coun­try talk­ing. Then we hear from a cou­ple of girls who will be pro­filed in what is nau­se­at­ingly re­ferred to as a ‘‘ dra­mal­ity’’ show.

In a bath­room, one of the gen­er­ously aug­mented girls says: ‘‘ I don’t like the nat­u­ral look ... I love look­ing fake.’’ The friend, wear­ing a tight sin­glet over fully de­ployed airbags, re­sponds: ‘‘ I do too. If you weren’t born with it, just buy it.’’

No won­der res­i­dents of Suther­land Shire, NSW, were an­gry when they heard the cam­eras were rolling.

Lo­cals claimed they would use ‘‘ any means pos­si­ble’’ to stop the pro­duc­tion be­cause they were con­vinced the show was de­signed to be a lo­cal ver­sion of the highly con­tro­ver­sial Jersey Shore. Chan­nel 10 in­sisted there was no cause for alarm.

Tegan, lead singer for rock band At­lantis Awaits, is one of the Shire res­i­dents whose life is be­ing tracked in the show. She is adamant many have the wrong idea about the Suther­land Shire and the TV show. We­hear you were in the US be­fore join­ing The Shire. I was there up un­til early this year record­ing an al­bum with the band. It’s plain rock. Some of the pro­duc­ers we had a chance to work with in the US were amaz­ing. Pro­duc­ers who have done Alice in Chains, The Off­spring and Nick­el­back. Did your ca­reer in mu­sic play a part in you want­ing to do The Shire? I’ve been do­ing mu­sic since I was 14. To do the show for me was a no-brainer. The show is so sup­port­ive of my mu­sic. It’s a chance for Aus­tralia to see the band as it truly is. What is your per­cep­tion of the Suther­land Shire? I live there so I may be very bi­ased. I love it be­cause it’s a fam­ily community — a real mix of per­son­al­i­ties and age groups. Why­was there op­po­si­tion to the show be­ing made? Shire peo­ple are very pas­sion­ate about the Shire and that’s why there­was some con­tro­versy. Peo­ple didn’t want any­one to come in and threaten that (sense of community). There were con­cerns it was go­ing to be a Jersey Shore- type show ... I ex­pressed those same con­cerns. But when I got in­volved, it’s noth­ing like that. It’s not Jersey Shore. Have there been mo­ments dur­ing film­ing when you wished you hadn’t said or done some­thing? That’s ev­ery­day life, isn’t it. If there’re parts of the show where I don’t look like an idiot, I’ll be sur­prised.

The Shire, Chan­nel 10, Mon­day,

8pm

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