If you’re looking for something to binge that’s more panel vans, beaches and beer than cheap reality TV drama, we think we’ve hit on something.
Remember the (somewhat recent) remake of Puberty Blues?
ABC’s new 6-part drama Barons looks like it’s older, grittier black sheep of a brother.
Set in 1971, Barons dramatises the origins of surfwear (but forget brands like Quiksilver, Ripcurl or Billabong – we’re talking the fictional brands of Lightwave and Bare Feet).
The basic premise is this:
Surfer Trotter Dwyer (Sean Keenan, best-known as playing two other surfers – Lockie Leonard and Puberty Blues’ Gary Hennessy), and best mate Snapper Webster (Ben O’Toole) are selling wetsuits from a panel van – Trotter then hatches a plan to upscale to something bigger where they can expand their rag trade and hang out with their mates, including Trotter’s girlfriend Tracy (Jillian Nguyen), pro surfer Dani (Sophia Forrest) and Reg (Hunter Page-Lochard) who’s doing everything to dodge the Vietnam conscription lottery.
Trotter and Snapper then meet American surfers, Buddy and Bernie, who have been surfing and filming in Bali, courtesy of Bernie’s cashed-up parents.
Not only has Barons been described as ‘defiantly Australian’, the soundtrack is full of Mushroom music from the era – it’s also the final screen credit for the late Michael Gudinski as executive producer and fits beautifully with his rock’n’roll legacy.
Barons premieres 8.30pm Sunday on ABC (or binge all episodes on iview).