Home Television Comedy Last Of The Australians, The

Last Of The Australians, The

1 9 7 5 – 1 9 7 6 (Australia)
26 x 30 minute episodes

This Crawford production from the Australian Nine Network featured the exploits of middle-aged bigot Ted Cook (Alwyn Kurts), a true blue Aussie and mainstay of the local RSL club – and proud of it.

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Lift-driver Ted – a kind of Antipodean Alf Garnett – disliked the Whitlam Labor Government, long-haired youth, the permissive society, Italians, communists, Roman Catholics, the Essendon football team, women’s lib, and anything that didn’t fit in with the way he was brought up.

A staunch Collingwood supporter who believed a woman’s place was in the kitchen, Ted was married to the long-suffering Dot (Rosie Sturgess).

They had a 19-year-old son called Gary (Richard Hibbard initially, then Stephen Thomas in the second series when Hibbard quit to join the Hare Krishna) who was studying at university and whose progressive views were the source of frequent conflicts in the Cook household.

Other regular characters included wet-blanket pessimist “Blue” Dawson (Terry Norris); Ted’s drinking mates  Fred (John Ewart) and Barney (Maurie Fields); and Mr King (Keith Eden), the Cook’s prim and proper next-door neighbour.

Guests who appeared in the series included Johnny Farnham, Jacki Weaver, Noeline Brown, Terence Donovan, Noni Hazelhurst, Gil Tucker and Robert Bruning. Future Labor prime minister Bob Hawke appeared in one episode as himself – when he was the leader of the ACTU (Australian Council of Trade Unions).

The series was recorded live in front of a studio audience (unusual at the time for an Australian production), produced by Terry Stapleton and based on characters originally seen in a controversial play about ANZAC Day called The One Day Of The Year by Alan Seymour.

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Ted Cook 
Alwyn Kurts
Dot Cook 

Rosie Sturgess
Gary Cook 

Richard Hibbard (1)
Stephen Thomas (2)
“Blue” Dawson
Terry Norris
Fred
John Ewart
Barney
Maurie Fields
Mr King
Keith Eden

Episodes

Hordes Of A Different Colour | Double Disillusion | The Hand That Cradles The Rock | Sunday Roast | Trust Gary | The Hydrochondriac | Unholy Mess | Everything’s Relative | Found Wanton | Lavender Blues | Interrupted Malady | The Grass Is Greener | The Big Noise || Eternal Quadrangle | The Compleat Works | Guess Who’s Coming To Get Done Like A Dinner? | Ashes To Ashes | Ted And The Beans Talk | Man Of La Mantra | Present Indefinite | Stars Trek | Have A Good Trip | The Cook House Tapes | The Kill-Joys Of Sex | The Stone Final Utter Bloody End | Finish!

Video