Love My Way: articles


FAMILY way… front, Claudia Karvan, Asher Keddie; back, Dan Wyllie and Brendan Cowell from Love My Way.

Special kind of love

Pay-TV's first Logie winner is back. Erica Thompson meets the stars of hit drama Love My Way

WHAT'S the secret to great television drama?

"No TV moments," says Brendan Cowell, one of the stars and co-writers of Foxtel's critically acclaimed series Love My Way.

"In TV, you get those moments where relationships get resolved in one episode and there's an explanation for why everything happens and everyone can go to bed at night. We never have those moments. The conflict just keeps evolving and you go: 'This is great this is like real life'."

On location on a stunning Sydney clifftop now synonymous with the show's central character Frankie (Claudia Karvan), the entire Love My Way "family" has gathered for a game of cricket.

It's Christmas Day, but celebrations are tainted by the ghosts of the past and the group soon abandons the match.

It has been more than a year since Frankie and Charlie's (Dan Wyllie) eight-year-old daughter Lou (Alex Cook) died and Karvan says fans may be in for a shock when the series returns on Sunday.

"Because we start after a period of time, the territory is kind of unrecognisable in episode one," she says.

"A lot happens in this series a hell of a lot which is really exciting. But we're throwing the audience in the deep end again."

Karvan admits to feeling much more "sure-footed" the second time round both as an actor and co-producer.

"When we wrapped last time, one half of me was thrilled we'd created the show we'd wanted to create, but there was also a lot of trepidation about whether we'd find an audience and whether anyone would like what we'd done," she says.

"I was kind of ready to have my heart broken."

Asher Keddie, who plays Julia, agrees it was hard to know how the gritty drama would fare, particularly in an industry littered with flops. "It was intense and confronting for us as actors, but it did feel like there was something special going on," she says. "But you just never know. It could have been perceived as too indulgent."

Dan Wyllie, who plays Keddie's husband Charlie, says winning a number of awards including five AFI's and a Logie may have helped restore their confidence. "To have some kind of success made us trust ourselves," he says.

"You kind of think it's so much of a Sydney show and maybe kind of limited, but I think we tapped into something more universal than that."

While the central theme of modern families did strike a chord, it was the death of Lou that really showcased Love My Way's strengths.

"It challenged that whole world we had created," Karvan says.

"As horrendous as it was to actually do, it kind of worked because it dealt with the heart of our show mortality and family."

Unfortunately, commercial television audiences will never have the privilege of seeing these characters. Foxtel has refused to sell the rights to a free-to-air station and also offers the cast and crew something commercial networks cannot complete creative freedom.

"In a way that's fantastic, but in others that's a tragedy," Cowell says.

"They call this raw and edgy, but it's just honest.

"I wish we were allowed to tell the truth on commercial television. Not contrive it. Not have to cast pretty little things. Not have to dance around topics.

"So, it's great that cable is doing this, but it's unfortunate that no one else had the courage to."

Love My Way, W Channel, Foxtel/Optus, Sunday 7.30pm/8.30pm

By Erica Thompson
February 02, 2006
The Courier Mail