IT will be interesting to see how the Australian tv viewing public warms to the new ABC drama Pine Gap. And considering the current Federal Government’s open fear and loathing of Auntie, it will also be extremely interesting how they view it too. Sadly, many of our elected representatives have trouble separating truth (global warming) and fantasy (clean coal) and they might not realise this Pine Gap is a pure work of fiction. The production qualities are superb as is the cast and you wouldn’t believe it is filmed in a studio and not the real Pine Gap defence facility in South Australia. The plot explores the socalled strong alliance between Australia and the United States but, as in real life, it’s not all roses and chocolates. A shocking secret will also bring the world to the brink of destruction; not bad for a little Aussie spy facility that has been protested against since it was built. An impeccable source reveals there are 800 plus employees at the CIA complex which is jointly run by Australian spooks so it’s surprising noone else has thought of using it for a television series. The cast list is impeccable led by Parker Sawyers, Jacqueline McKenzie, Tess Haubrich, Stephen Curry, Steve Toussaint, Mark Leonard Winter and Sachin Joab. The series began with the detection of a missile being aimed somewhere in Asia, far too close to where the US President happens to be at that moment. Is it deliberate or coincidence? And why didn’t Pine Gap know about it beforehand? The American mission director Gus Thompson (Sawyers) takes the fall for the failure to detect the chatter, and the mysterious Jacob Kitto (Curry) is called in to investigate what went wrong. Gus still has time for an affair with an Australian spy of Serbian background, Jasmina Delic (Haubrich), even as his boss Ethan (Toussaint) is telling him not to trust the Australians, who are more intent on covering their own backsides than uncovering the truth. This is good looking and fun and far more appealing than the competition in this disappointing timeslot that features so-called current affairs programs, repeats or reality tv. Let’s hope Alan Jones likes it so it’s not pulled before the series can end.
◆ SO ADULT: Australia’s very own spy drama Pine Gap features one helluva cast.