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Review: Upper Middle Bogan

Imagine if you found out you’re adopted and your biological family are drag racing legends. If picturing that is a little difficult all you need to do is watch ABC’s ‘Upper Middle Bogan’.

Set in Melbourne, the series centers around Bess Denyar, a married doctor with twins who discovers her real family are the Wheelers – drag racing royalty who are also ‘bogans’. Bess is shocked to learn that her posh mother Margaret adopted her from Wayne and Julie Wheeler – her birth parents. Wayne, Julie and their three kids Amber, Brianna and Kayne operate a successful drag racing team called Wheeler racing.

Upper Middle Bogan is the ideal show for families, adults and teens with enough jokes to keep the teenagers laughing, but also has plenty of humor that will fly over their heads to keep the adults amused. Majority of the humor comes from each class misunderstanding each other as well as the realization that they’re not all that different – as much as some of the characters may or may not want that to be.

The show – which is available on Netflix – finds the perfect balance of keeping the show comical whilst addressing a number of problems that life will throw at everyone. Themes such as split families, growing up and different cultures are common issues in each episode and are cleverly worked into a light-hearted and witty program.

The creators of Upper Middle Bogan are two of Australian media’s most experienced in Robyn Butler and Wayne Hope and they’re accompanied by some of the countries most adored actors and actresses. Glenn Robbins (All Aussie Adventures, Kath & Kim), Robyn Malcolm (Outrageous Fortune) and Michala Banas (McLeod’s Daughters, Winners & Losers) are joined by a number of other established and young Australian talents.

The writers and producers of the program have written the characters to perfection. They’ve been able to display both the stereotypical posh and ‘bogan’ characters but never in a bad light. Upper Middle Bogan doesn’t display characters at the expense of the upper-middle class or ‘bogans’.

The ABC program is set to release a third season sometime in 2016 and an American re-write has recently been announced.

By Tom Corrigan

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