Soap World - - NEWS - Richard Davies SW

DARKER DAYS Ac­tor Richard Davies re­veals the heart­break fac­ing his char­ac­ter Jimmy in up­com­ing episodes.

immy Proud­man is in a bad place right now and it’s only go­ing to get darker. He has split with wife Zara, the mother of their two kids, and be­trayed his half-brother Will by kiss­ing Will’s ex Kerry and al­most hav­ing sex with her.

These events have led the Uber driver into a neg­a­tive spi­ral that has seen him veer far away from the op­ti­mistic, care­free lit­tle brother we’ve come to know and love. “He tries his ab­so­lute best but … he does love [Zara, played by Jane Har­ber] and he loves his fam­ily and when he can feel some of that in jeop­ardy, it re­ally does send him to a darker place that I haven’t tapped into in other sea­sons as an ac­tor,” says his por­trayer Richard Davies. “So it’s been re­ally ex­cit­ing to have this rich, deep ma­te­rial to just come to set and jump into.”

Not only does Jimmy have his mar­riage to re­pair but his nearmiss with Kerry (Ash Ri­cardo) means that he is car­ry­ing a lot of guilt about what he nearly did with the woman Will (TJ Power) still loves. If Will finds out what hap­pened — and al­most hap­pened — it could de­stroy the broth­ers’ friend­ship.

“When Will first came onto the scene [when he was re­vealed in sea­son six as Darcy’s son from an af­fair] Jimmy was the only one who kept him at arm’s length un­til they re­alised they were re­ally good bud­dies and now they’re two of the clos­est peo­ple in the fam­ily, I think,” ex­plains Davies.

“This sort of stuff is enough to break both of their hearts be­cause of how Will feels about Kerry and Jimmy for what he’s done. I think there’s a lot of stuff to re­pair and hope­fully fix after all that stuff.”

Even though Jimmy is strug­gling right now, Davies says it’s a nat­u­ral pro­gres­sion for his char­ac­ter who has gone from care­free to re­spon­si­ble dad. Now Jimmy must draw on his in­nate op­ti­mism if he has any hope of work­ing things out with Zara.

“In the first few sea­sons Jimmy was sort of like a leaf blow­ing in the breeze, like re­ally happy to be wher­ever the wind took him and make the most of ev­ery sit­u­a­tion — life was this huge ad­ven­ture. “Then when he met Zara and had two lit­tle boys he had to grow roots and stay in the one spot they planted and be re­spon­si­ble fi­nan­cially and emo­tion­ally and be de­pend­able.

“Now with this sea­son he’s fac­ing a whole new set of hur­dles but when he was court­ing Zara in be­tween all that he was sort of like a bouncy ball. He had to keep com­ing back be­cause their re­la­tion­ship was so dif­fer­ent. re­la­tion­ships have all fallen apart. It’s not just Jimmy and Zara and Will and Kerry who have sep­a­rated, Bil­lie (Kat Ste­wart) has bro­ken up with her hus­band Mick (Ed­die Per­fect) as well.

“Usu­ally Jimmy and Zara, even though it’s not been the most or­tho­dox of re­la­tion­ships, they’ve ac­tu­ally, fun­nily enough, re­ally worked for years un­til now,” Davies ex­plains. “And Mick and Bil­lie have had their ups and downs but there’s been in­cred­i­ble pas­sion there. Nina’s had some hor­ri­ble things hap­pen and so it’s good to see when some­times she is happy.” and was di­rected by other friend Matilda Brown.

“That was so much fun, we just laughed our asses off film­ing that and I think the ed­i­tors did a very good job to find stuff in be­tween all the laugh­ter so I can’t wait for that to get re­leased.”

So in true Off­spring style it seems there are plenty of tears, laughs, hope and heart­break to come. And fans will likely feel the same way about watch­ing this sea­son as Davies did about mak­ing it. “It’s like get­ting on a nice favourite T-shirt that you love and haven’t found for a few weeks,” he says. J

ZARA OFF­SPRING WEDNES­DAYS AT 8.30PM ON TEN I think he had to be pos­i­tive and keep on re­al­is­ing how much he loves her and just keep on try­ing.”In the first half of this sea­son of Off­spring there has been a slight tonal shift in the sto­ry­lines with Nina’s (Asher Ked­die) ro­man­tic life go­ing strong for once while her sib­lings’De­spite agree­ing that Nina has been more op­ti­mistic this year Davies does warn it might not stay that way — “There’s a whole sea­son to come,” he says. But even though it’s im­pos­si­ble to pre­dict what might be­fall Jimmy, Nina and Bil­lie in up­com­ing episodes, fans will be able to en­joy an ex­pandedOff­spring uni­verse in a new web se­ries called St Fran­cis.“They’re five very short ab­surd we­bisodes that are set at St Fran­cis Hos­pi­tal [where Nina and her col­leagues work],” says Davies of the on­line show that fea­tures co-stars Jane Har­ber, Lucy Gard­ner (Nurse Kim) and his mate Dave Law­son The Off­spring cast in­clud­ing Davies (far right). He says there are sev­eral changes in char­ac­ters’ re­la­tion­ships this year.

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