Nice guy’s race hits top speed
From 0 to 100, Dr Doug gets the girl and a whole lot more, writes
HERE’S an old saying: the only thing worse than not getting what you want is getting what you want.
To illustrate the point, let’s examine the case of Dr Doug Graham (Tom Wren), resident nice guy on Channel 7’s drama hit, Winners & Losers.
For most of the first season Doug was almost sidelined, which was surprising. After all, he’s a good-looking fella with a prestige job in emergency medicine. He wasn’t short of female company, his heart was set on only one.
The woman? Sophie Wong (Melanie Vallejo), one of Winners & Losers’ friends who reunite 10 years after their hellish high school days.
Sophie could be described as high maintenance, but that didn’t stop Doug from carrying a torch for her – a torch Sophie didn’t really notice.
By the end of season one, things had started to turn around.
‘‘He finally gets the girl,’’ Wren says. ‘‘In the second season, you see all the trials and tribulations that ensue when you actually do get the girl. It’s not necessarily as easy as you might hope.’’
What sort of trials and tribulations? Well, they come in the form of a little bundle of joy set to appear six or so episodes into the new season.
‘‘I had a bet with Zoe Tuckwell-Smith (who plays Bec on the show) the writers wouldn’t go through with it, but they did, and Sophie ends up having a kid, which throws a little bit of a spanner into what should really be a sort of honeymoon period for Sophie and Doug,’’ Wren says.
‘‘So the second season deals with how you have a new, blossoming relationship that’s never really allowed to develop slowly. It goes from zero to 100 pretty quickly, and that’s the pace for our whole second season.’’
Wren says the new season of Winners & Losers will have the show’s four central characters – there’s also Virginia Gay as Frances and Logie winner Melissa Bergland as Jenny – often sharing scenes together, but the show is also fragmenting somewhat. That, he adds, gives each member of the core quartet a little room to move.
‘‘In some ways it’s like we’re all going off into our own different shows,’’ he says.
‘‘I’m actually curious to watch this season because I’ll be seeing it as sort of an outsider. I’m aware of what’s going on in some storylines, but there are others that just didn’t cross over at all. Things are going to be quite separate, and I’m interested to see how it’s going to work.
‘‘The benefit is the world of every character gets a little richer and deeper – they were all set up in the first season and now they all get to explore their own stories in these new episodes.’’
But one thing will remain the same: Wren believes Winners & Losers will continue to appeal to a surprisingly diverse fan base.
‘‘The fun thing for me is I never thought guys would pay much attention to it,’’ he says.
‘‘I’ve actually been standing at a urinal when I’ve gone to the footy and some bloke will say to me, ‘I hope you end up getting Sophie, mate. She’s a pain, but she’s probably worth it!’’’
Tuesdays, 8.30pm, Seven, Prime7.