Pick of the week
Five indigenous teenagers arrive in Sydney from their homes, far away. They bring with them different talents and all the angst of youth. They arrive at a hostel, Arcadia House, run by Vee (Christine Anu) and Mick (Lasarus Ratuere), but they don’t bond instantly. “You’re all here because you’re special,” Vee tells them at dinner. For some it’s an opportunity of a lifetime, for others it’s their last chance to make something of themselves. In the first of 13 episodes, Lily (Leonie Whyman) makes it clear she’s not staying; Zoe (Madeleine Madden) is a sprint champion whose goal is the Olympics but first she has to win over the bitchy girls at the local high school; Ava (Majeda Beatty) must overcome nerves to perform before her music class; Levi (Aaron McGrath) has what it takes to become a great footballer; and Dylan (Liam Talty) swaps his talent as a violinist for his passion for electronic music and graffiti art. Then there’s Reece (Christian Byers), who befriends Lily at school and yearns to join Arcadia House. A subplot features the antagonism between Zoe and Levi, who discover their families are on opposite sides of a mob dispute back in Darwin. This terrific series — by the multiaward winning producers of Dance Academy and Redfern Now — is snappily scripted and is very more-ish. It could easily transfer from this children’s channel to mainstream ABC.