The second installment of the ABC’s Redfern Now titled ‘Starting Over’ is a follow up from an episode in the first series. Remember the cop Aaron (Wayne Blair) who was caught up in the Aboriginal boy’s death in custody? He’s back and trying to recover from the death that saw his whole community turn their back on him. Aaron is still having nightmares about the boy’s death in custody and the community hasn’t forgotten that he let one of their own die behind bars.
Aaron is trying to get his life back on track; he is seeing a psychologist and attempting to begin a new relationship with Allie (Lisa Flanagan) whose husband has just been locked up for domestic abuse. These two make a cute couple but the town and her husband’s thug friends won’t allow the relationship to blossom.
In a ‘love story’ kind of way this second episode of Redfern Now was still as relevant and poignant as episode one. It’s mouthy, violent, confronting and the audience is left wondering each minute what on earth will happen next. There are no happy endings instead writer Jon Bell has created an atmosphere of confusion and distrust. Although Aaron and Allie end up together there seems to be no guarantee of their future especially knowing her husband will be released from prison eventually.
There were some lighthearted moments that allowed the audience to take a short breath before the walls came crashing down once more.
Making a guest appearance is the loathsome policeman Hobbs, played with gusto by a very skinny Stephen Curry, a cop so jaded and racist he needs to be put out of his misery to stop infecting others with his hateful words.
Once more, Redfern Now has shown us how great Australian drama is made. The writer, the camera work and the actors all work together like clockwork and have created a product that is good enough for cinema. We need more programs to be funded of this quality to make our mark on the international stage. This is HBO type stuff right here in our own backyard. Watch it and be amazed at our talent.
Redfern Now airs on ABC1 Thursday 8.30pm