The hell of living
An ugly Auckland echo of those problems around Wellington with the Mongrel Mob – a suburban mother’s cry from the heart:
“Thank you, Mr Booth, for recognising dent, and post-grad, as that quiet and decent a single ‘party-minded’ people have a right 20-something. – God given or not – to “We moved out beenjoy the decency of cause we assumed we the neighbourhoods would be moving into we bought into. a quiet, family-friend
“I am increasingly ly environment, most aggrieved and peeved conducive to raising by the various columns our family, providing and comments that optimum educational appear to try and apfacilities, etc. pease our local ‘hoons’ “However, luck of the – because there is no draw – boy, did we luck better word for them. out.
“Loud music, broken “Just one unfortubottles on the street, nate neighbour situamy autistic four-yeartion has changed our old drinking beer that new life from idyllic to was thrown into our absolute hell.” garden, ‘wheelies’ or ‘burning rubber’ or whatever the term is on a regular basis.
“Seriously bad language – to the extent I had to take my fiveyear-old out of her room, and move her into our office, a tiny room that three of us now share because it is further away from the neighbours’ dramas.
“I lived in Ponsonby and Grey Lynn for many years as a stu-
So I am not the only critic of the Mr AsiaUnderbelly TV show, although my criticism has prompted its executive producer Des Monaghan to defend it in Wellington’s Dominion Post where the column was published.
He describes himself as bemused that despite my having no intention of watching Underbelly: The Mr Asia Story I offered a “strongly worded critique”.
“If he did watch it, he would clearly see that the series paints a picture of Terry Clark, subsequently known as Alexander Sinclair, as a cold-blooded killer who sadistically came to enjoy killing.
“Screentime, the creators of the show, do not seek to glamorise criminals.
“One of the reasons we chose to emphasise violence was to reveal just how cruel and brutish the world of Clark and his associates was. Their world was terrifying, not glamorous.”
Mr Monaghan defends his writers and research as meticulous.
“We talked to police, reporters and a number of criminal identities who had direct knowledge of Clark and his activities. News reports from the time – including some filed by Booth – were tremendously valuable in our research.”
And he says the show does not claim Clark was Mr Asia.
Surely the advertising and title can only add then to the confusion. Certainly while others have skimmed around it at least one writer in a national newspaper referred to Mr Asia “aka Clark”.
If she was confused, what about the viewers?
A justification of the show from its producer comes as no surprise.
But he does not respond to my major criticism that digging up a version 30 years later exposes mourning families to a replay of their original and continuing grief and distorts the truth.
The Monaghan defence does, however, includes a significant sentence: “Ultimately, what the show seeks to do is to accurately convey a sense of what happened.”
A sense of what happened.
But not for The Mercury in Hobart, where the Tasmanian