Jack Irish Part Two
See Part One Jack Irish posted on December 24th 2012
So i like the dialogue in Jack Irish it is funny, terse and sometimes poetic when Jack gets drunk and sorrowful. Jack, drunk and slumped on his armchair on the phone to his girlfriend in Sydney:
“The chairs in my parlour seem empty and bare” (ahh..)
Jack & his friend Cam and the horse racing elderly crook are at a funeral of a jockey who died in a house fire. Jack:
“Its like a munchchkins meeting, its wrong to see them off their horses”
Yes, he died in a fire, probably couldn’t reach the smoke alarm to change the battery”!
As laid out in Part one: Jack is a one time high flying successful Lawyer who came down to earth with a bump after a terrible personal tragedy: and has slowly come back to a semblance of his life and self by working in a furniture workshop under the tutelage of a Master Cabinet Maker called Charlie.
Jack Irish, whose name is revealed as not being Irish at all, still seems to hang out in an Irish pub where all the old men seem to be Irish and talk about an old football team they all supported or played in called the Lions. Jack’s Dad who liked a drink and had a tendency to get into trouble, sadly died when Jack was young in some kind of fight.
Jack is friends with all the old men in the Pub, Charlie the cabinet maker and a low level elderly crook who runs some kind of horse racing scam. The elderly crook has a right-hand man who is an Aboriginal actor by the name of Aaron Pedersen and is called Cam Delray in Jack Irish.
Cam Delray drives the Jaguar like a dream very successfully away from gun toting gangsters chasing them one time and admirably keeps his calm:
“Do you wanna pass me that box under the seat please?”
to Jack who sits in the front. The box has a gun in it.
I say successfully since the Jaguar unfortunately is slower than the gangsters’ car and Cam decided to then fight the gangsters off from behind the car with said gun after a screeching sliding stop of the Jag. Two classic cars in Jack Irish then. Jack’s huge white finned car so far unidentified by me and the blue Jaguar.
The horse racing scam i think is getting the odds talked up on an old horse that the elderly crook buys. The horse still has a bit of racing left in him and so confounds the odds or wins the race.
Quite how Jack is involved in the racing scam apart from going over to the bookies at the beginning of the race and placing loud bets on their horse to drive up the odds haven’t figured out yet. Except that Jack hangs out with the two men and sits in the front seat as Cam drives the crook around.
According to my research on Jack Irish (more of that at the end of this piece) Jack Irish works as a part time debt collector so presumably for the elderly crook for whom i can’t find a a name and Cam Delray.
Jack is still a lawyer but now only helps people out who come to him in need. Jack’s old buddy from his old Law Offices helps Jack out with research and hangs out with him. A stereotypically pot bellied burger eating and burping Cop also helps Jack out with information when Jack goes on one of his mysterious quests.
For the life of me I have no idea where the eponymous Computer Expert (Tec) lady came from as a character. I swear Jack just burst in on her and we were expected to accept that he asked her to solve his Tec problems on a regular basis yet we had never come across her in the Drama.
Charlie, the Master Craftsman(on being called a carpenter)
“Cabinet makers are to carpenters what Rolex is to sundials”.
Jack (on meeting a mysterious man called Dave)
“Dave?, that’s not really enough, is it?”!
“I was never any good at team sports Dave”..
Jack and his lawyer mate sitting and swigging from a bottle of wine outside at night next to a wooden cupola when Jack’s girlfriend has left for Sydney for a super duper job as a News Reporter:
Jack:”Want another bottle of Château disappointment?”
I like that the music in Jack Irish can be corny but it gets away with it. In one scene we see Jack and Cam both sitting in the front of the Jag moaning about “the corny music” that the elderly crook insists on having played.
“There was no Elvis available in the airport” So he must have bought this music. (Elvis being not corny at all of course)
Several scenes later we are treated to the sight of the Jaguar gliding along seamlessly down the road, the same previously described as “corny” music playing. Yet now the music has performed some kind of minor miracle since as it continues to play we find ourselves thinking, hey, this is all right as we notice Jack and Cam in happy silence nodding to the beat of the song and smiling. In perfect time. Under the speeding trees and the wide Australian sky.
As mentioned in Part One of Jack Irish (see December 2012) it is a touch Raymond Chandleresque. Jack Irish stops just short of being really dark and hard hitting. Thank goodness. I wouldn’t like it so much then. Although there were some icky scenes with certain unspecified organs in jars from a grateful somewhat psychopathic ex-client of Jacks’s. Luckily those did not seem sinister to me but i think they were meant to be.
Oh and i realised that now Jack’s brave & beautiful girlfriend is in Sydney being a Newsreader that i was secretly pleased as i enjoy that rarest of things: a drama peopled by mainly men. Plus they reversed the sexist trope and we saw Guy in the shower!
Whilst Guy slouches about in non-de-script shirts whilst still managing to look like a missing male model, i am really liking Cam’s outfits:last week Cam wore a double-breasted pale mustard jacket with jeans, check shirt and a giant wild-West style belt buckle. Cool.
OK here is the bad news:remember my wonder in Part One of my review of Jack Irish about the episodes being two hours long?
Well after some research it transpires, sadly that this was for a reason. The two episodes i saw were “tele-movies” and there is only two of these episodes. Boo hoo.
The two episodes of Jack Irish i saw are called:Bad Debts and Black Tide. The good news perhaps is that these episodes are based on the ‘Jack Irish’ books by Peter Temple. Hence the demonstrably good dialogue and Raymond chandler Detective style feel to the whole thing.
So no more episodes after those two, it was just a ‘one off’ on FX. (now called FOX)
According to my research:The actor Aaron Pedersen who plays Cam Delray in Jack Irish is in a current Australian series on SBS called The Circuit in which he plays a character called Drew Ellis. Aaron Pedersen was nominated for a Most Outstanding Actor Award for his role in The Circuit in 2009.