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Originally airing between August 2002 and December 2003, White Collar Blue was a detective show set in the southern
end of Sydney. It followed both the investigations and the
relationships of a close-knit group of detectives in charge
of investigating violent crimes.
Season One's episode Ten was an extraordinary story about
facing down personal demons, both for a haunted detective
and a traumatized young woman, whose demons wear the same
Nine years earlier, Detective Sergeant Joe Hill was involved
in the investigation of the murder of two teenage girls, whose
deaths had clues indicating that a serial killer had emerged.
But the prime suspect in the Dunes Murders, Paul Gill, was
never adequately investigated and so the killings went unsolved...
When teenaged Lilly (Rhiana Griffith) is found by two of
the police on the beach, screaming about a man with a knife,
they discover that she was abducted, drugged, and sexually
assaulted by a man whose modus operandi is identical with
that of the unsolved murders... down to the necklace he forced
Lilly to wear during the attack. Amazingly, despite being
dosed with Rohypnol, Lilly was able to keep enough presence
of mind to escape her assailant before he could hurt her too
badly. For Joe, this is a chance to finally solve a crime
that's been haunting him for almost a decade, and put away
Paul Gill, a vicious rapist and killer, at long last.
But what should be an open-and-shut case becomes complicated
when the investigation begins to be botched. Mistakes are
made, important evidence is missing or inconclusive, and then
the worst development occurs -- Lilly, whose testimony is
critical, takes a mysterious fall from a train that leaves
her a vegetable. With the case unraveling, and a very real
chance that Gill may manage to walk away yet again, there's
only one possible chance left... if someone can entrap the
suspect into confessing his crime. But to do so, they have
to send in someone to act as "prey," and there's
the very real risk she could end up Gill's next victim.
Rhiana delivers extraordinary, riveting performances as Lilly
in this episode. Whether portraying the dazed confusion of
a girl fighting the effects of Rohypnol, or the tearful mixture
of terror and resolve as she nerves herself up to take Gill
on again, her work is solid, convincing, and a marvel to watch.
Rhiana immensely enjoyed her time on the set, befriending
the members of the regular cast. The feeling was mutual --
O'Brien, interviewed as White Collar Blue began to
air, drew specific attention to episode 10, calling it "fantastic."
This was actually Rhiana's second time guest-starring on
a Steve Knapman production, because he was also one of the
creators of Children's Hospital. In an interesting
twist, actress Jodie Dry (Nicole) also had her first major
TV role on that show.
Although a critical success, White Collar Blue struggled
to get good ratings during its two seasons, and ultimately
was not renewed for a third. Ironically, shortly after the
decision not to renew the show was announced, the show was
nominated for several writing and acting awards. White
Collar Blue continues to air in syndication, and may be
seen on the FoxTel network in Australia, along with the Showcase
channel in Canada.
Awards and Nominations:
Peter O'Brien was nominated for the 2002
Australian Film Institute award, for "Best Actor In A
Leading Role In A Television Drama," and won the 2003
"Silver Logie" Award for "Most Outstanding
Actor in a Drama Series."
The show was nominated for three additional
"Logie" Awards in 2003:
- Most Outstanding Drama Series
- Most Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series
- Most Popular New Female Talent (Jodie
Season 1's Episode 14, also written by Kristen
Dunphy, was an award-winner too, taking home an Awgie (Australian
Writers' Guild) Award. The show's television theme by Antony
Partos was also nominated for the 2003 APRA-AGSC Screen Music