The COVID lockdowns have caused Australians to look in their own homes for their entertainment. Many Australians have begun to take up hobbies, jigsaw puzzles, crossword puzzles, while others play casino games at the popular PlayCroco CasinoMost Aussies, however, have discovered that the Australian film industry is producing high-quality TV shows for viewers of all tastes and interests.

Some of the recent best include:

Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

Miss  Fisher’s Murder Mysteries are set in the 1920s where glamorous Phryne Fisher enjoys life as a modern woman who fights for justice. The series is based on Australian author Kerry Greenwood’s period novels when it was difficult for many to defend themselves against society’s injustice.

Private detective Phryne sashays through Melbourne’s jazz clubs and back alleys, enjoying the attentions of admirers as she amasses evidence in order to serve justice.   Phryne is haunted by the kidnapping and death of her younger sister Janey which occurred while they were at the circus, a crime that Phryne feels that she should have been able to prevent

A more recent reimaging of the original Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries was released in 2019 and  follows Phryne Fisher’s niece, Peregrine Fisher, who inherits her aunt’s home  in the ‘60s and becomes a private detective in her own right.

Laura’s Choice

Laura’s Choice takes on a serious topic and tells it with humor in relating the story of Laura Henkel who decides, at age 86, that she wants to be in control of the  time and place of her death. Laura is decidedly eccentric, feisty and outspoken. By the time that she reaches her 90th year she feels ready to start making plans for ending her life and she asks her daughter and granddaughter, Cathy and Sam, who are filmmakers, to record the process.

Laura prepares to travel to Switzerland where there is a clinic that will fulfill her wishes to die legally. As she gets ready for the journey she prepares a joyous farewell party that celebrates her ability to approach dying in a dignified manner of her own choosing. The show also explores the reactions of her family, community and the larger society who all question Laura’s decision.

Mystery Road

Is a six-part spin-off of Ivan Sen’s Mystery Road and Goldstone feature films, Mystery Road Series tells the story of Detective Jay Swan who investigates crimes in the outback. The first series focuses on the disappearance of two young farmhands from a cattle station in the outback. One was a white backpacker and the other was a local indigenous football star. The events take place in between the Goldstone and Mystery Road films and follow Swan as he works with local policewoman Emma James to uncover the reasons for the disappearance of the young men including drug trafficking and past injustices.

Jack Irish

The Jack Irish TV series was adapted from the Peter Temple crime fiction novels. The first Jack Irish productions were feature-length movies and they were adapted into three six-episode series, the final one which aired in 2021.  In the series, Jack Irish is a high-powered criminal lawyer who becomes depressed after his wife is murdered. Irish slips into an alcohol-fueled funk but is inspired to pull his life together and become an investigator. He uncovers corruption, searches for missing people, investigates murders and other crimes.

Good writing and great plots along with a charismatic lead and charming secondary characters have made Jack Irish a hit both I Australia and in other regions around the world.

McLeod’s Daughters

McLeod’s Daughters was one of Australia’s most popular television series, running for 8 seasons and picked up for broadcast in many other locales including the United States, Canada, Ireland and a number of European countries. The show is set in Drovers Run, a cattle ranch located in the Australian outback. The ranch once belonged to Jack McLeod but after he dies, his two daughters team up to run it. They are supported by mother-figure/housekeeper Meg, Meg’s teenaged daughter Jodi and Becky, a local girl who has had troubles of her own in town.  The storylines portray the hardships that the women face but also their love of the land.

Mr. InBetween

Life is complicated is you’re a hitman for the mob, especially if you have to juggle your girlfriend, your daughter and your friends in the mix. That’s what Ray Shoesmith, a charismatic yet volatile hit-man must do in this re-imaging of the acclaimed movie The Magician.

The series ran for 3 seasons, providing fans with a glimpse into the dark world of a man who must balance different aspects of his life as well as different parts of his personality. Comedy and menace collide in this world view in which nothing and no one is clear and uncomplicated.

A Place to Call Home

A Place to Call Home ran for 6 seasons and was a critical and popular success worldwide. The series follows Sara Adams who moved to Europe from Australia and lived there for 20 years including during the years of World War II. Upon returning to Australia in 1953 Sara meets the wealthy Bligh family on the boat, each of whom has his or her own secret.

Once they are back in Sydney, Sara and the Bligh families lives continue to intertwine. Sara must confront the news that her Jewish husband in Europe has been found alive and the Bligh family members must deal with infidelity, homosexuality,  illegitimate births and more. 

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