A Place to Call Home

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Television -

Sun­day, 8.30pm, Seven One of our finest his­tor­i­cal dra­mas con­tin­ues with this sec­ond episode. There’s a nice catch-up col­lage at the very be­gin­ning for re­cal­ci­trants who missed last week’s de­but. Though it it not so grand, and is set in the 1950s rather than the 20s, there is a hint of Down­ton Abbey about A Place to Call Home, mostly in the dia­logue and the sense of scan­dal en­gulf­ing a well-to-do fam­ily of pas­toral­ists, the Blighs, who live in a coun­try man­sion and get about in Rolls-Royces. Thank­fully, in the egal­i­tar­ian Aus­tralia of the 50s, we are spared all the te­dious class con­flicts that are the bread and but­ter of Down­ton. But that doesn’t stop the med­dling of de­fen­sive ma­tri­arch El­iz­a­beth (Noni Hazel­hurst, in fine form) who thinks our lovely cen­tral char­ac­ter — nurs­ing sis­ter Sarah Adams (Marta Dus­sel­dorp) — will eas­ily be paid off and dis­patched back to Eng­land, af­ter she un­suc­cess­fully tried to block her em­ploy­ment. The Adams woman knows too much about sui­ci­dal James (David Berry), who im­pul­sively tried to top him­self by jumping over­board on the boat they shared from Eng­land. El­iz­a­beth is not en­tirely thrilled by the chem­istry brew­ing be­tween her son Ge­orge (Brett Climo) and this dread­ful Adams woman. Some­thing has to give.

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