Asher Keddie as Nina Proudman in season six of Offspring.
Asher Keddie as Nina Proudman in season six of Offspring.

SPOILER: Mixed feelings about the return of Offspring

IF YOU haven't seen the season six premiere of Offspring and don't want it spoiled for you, then stop reading now.

This column is dedicated to my mixed feelings about the show's highly anticipated return from a two-year hiatus.

A dramatic event like a death in the family seems like a natural jumping off point for the show; it needed a reason to return after so neatly wrapping up at the end of season five.

So in theory I had no problem with the show's writers and creators' decision to kill off Proudman patriarch Darcy (John Waters).

The enigmatic Waters is a loss to the cast for sure, but if someone had to go he seems a logical choice.

It's the family's reaction to his sudden death - a heart attack on a cruise ship - that had me confused.

The news of Darcy's death happened within the first minutes of Wednesday's season opener and I expected an emotional outpouring on a similar level to what we saw after the death of Nina's partner Patrick (fan favourite Matthew Le Nevez) in season four.

But Darcy's funeral was a largely tearless affair, with many of the Proudmans seemingly numb (or purposefully numbed in the case of a stoned Geraldine) to the reality of his passing.

That's all well and good if the tears and vulnerability come later on, but for most they didn't or least they haven't yet.

"I keep thinking I'm going to have a moment where it hits but it doesn't," Kat Stewart's character Billie said.

And the family's grief was muddled by the shock news that Darcy had another love child - his estate lawyer Will.

I think Will's introduction to the Offspring world is a good one as it shakes up the existing family dynamics, but couldn't his identity have been teased out a bit longer?

Will's outing at the funeral, and Geraldine's reaction, was the most emotionally charged point of the episode which I expected to be more "explosive" based on Ten's promos.

I am so happy, though, that the show seemed to have no trouble slipping right back into its quirky tone. Nina's inner monologue is still going strong and her sister Billie is as crazy as ever. All of the supporting characters are back too, including Lachy Hulme's priceless Dr Clegg.

I'll definitely keep watching but I hope the remainder of the season hits a few raw nerves to give fans the emotional jolts they expect in amongst all of Nina's romantic interludes, neuroses and family antics.



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