The writers of Nothing Trivial, TV One, Sunday, are really quite evil. In this, the final of season two, they resolved the gripping suspense over the gross domestic product of Chile for 2011, but left the pending infant product of Brian and Emma the potential scion of a broken home.
There had better be a third season, or NZ On Air might be the subject of picketing.
Followers of this deftly plotted ensemble drama have been both irritated and sceptical about the Brian-Emma thing, knowing that Princess Pollyanna and downmarket love rat are a doomed match in the normal course of things. But clever character development – ie, even serial philanderers can mature, and even perky cheerleader types need not be without depth – has drawn the viewer in close. This ill-matched couple have negotiated such improbable hurdles – from his insomniac inability to share a bed with a woman for a whole night, to the stray pregnancy from his one-night-fling with the rough-as-guts Courtney – that it would be unthinkable for them to give up now.
But there's always a bad fairy along – sometimes even before the christening. A cruelly manipulative rival has drawn Brian into a near-lapse into love-ratness, resulting in sleazy images of him pashing another Courtney type.
Emma has forgiven much, but, heavily pregnant and with a long list of atrocities already forgiven Brian, this might be the last straw.
At least the writers have finally brought together the series' anchor characters, Catherine and Mac – and after a moving storyline for Catherine's ex, Jules. record producer. The male midlife crisis, as so often marked by falling hopelessly in love with an unfeasibly young woman, has seldom been portrayed more aptly. Catherine sees, in a touching and embarrassing encounter between Jules and the girl, that he is lost – both to her and to himself.
Even as you cheered that she might finally get together with lovely Mac, your heart ached for Jules' husked state.
Writing and acting in light drama doesn't get much better than this.
- The Dominion Post
Have you read Kiwi author Eleanor Catton's Man Booker Prize-winning novel The Luminaries?Related story: What now for Eleanor Catton?