Sultana's Dream

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Sultana's Dream
April 2012


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Family Cocktails 

Sometimes after a long day at work, there’s nothing nicer than sitting down and escaping into the homes and lives of a television family. It comes as no surprise then that the moments of love, hilarity, pain, loyalty, and drama that come with family life have inspired generations of television writers and producers.


When you manage to find a television family whose impossibly tidy house and immaculate children don’t make you feel depressed, you welcome them in and sit back and enjoy their company. The Brockmans of Outnumbered are a middle-class south London family whose lives are as easily recognisable as our own. In the great tradition of British sitcoms like The Office, Outnumbered takes the mundane reality of family life and presents it with a quiet, understated humour. Parents Pete and Sue attempt (with sometimes limited success) to manage their three unruly children whilst dealing variously with elderly relations, taxes and demanding bosses.

Perhaps the greatest charm of the show is the unscripted nature of the children’s dialogue. The writers of Outnumbered recognise that in most sitcoms children rarely speak naturally so, to make conversations between their characters sound realistic, a lot of the dialogue is improvised. This is probably why viewers feel such empathy for the players, as they remind us of our own friends and families.

Outnumbered airs on ABC1 on Wednesdays.


The Count of Monte Cristo has been ‘revived’, and he lives in the Hamptons - the playground for America’s wealthiest families – and he has a daughter named Amanda. Modelled loosely on the Dumas classic, Revenge tells the story of a daughter’s quest for vengeance against those responsible for framing her father and ruining their lives. It’s the ultimate story of familial loyalty driving a young woman to extraordinary and dramatic extremes in order to systematically destroy the lives of those responsible for her father’s downfall.

The show explores family, love, revenge, guilt, friendship, and regret; adds fantastic fashion, slightly implausible storyline twists and a cast of ridiculously good-looking people. Though you wouldn’t actually want to spend time in any of these lavish family homes inhabited by the calculating, selfish mega-rich, Revenge provides enough drama and intrigue to have you coming back for more.

Revenge airs on Channel 7 on Mondays at 8:45pm. 


Fattimah Imtoual
TV/DVD Reviewer