Home and Away star says it’s time for the young ones

    Georgie Parker has no trouble giving the spotlight to newer actors after spending 12 years in Summer Bay and 35 years on television.

    The actress who portrays Alf Stewart’s daughter claims, “Bluntly speaking, Home And Away is a younger show that’s fueled by younger storylines” (Ray Meagher).

    “I have no problem with that. I actually don’t have any complaints, but I believe it’s crucial to understand that when you agree to watch these long-running dramas at my age — 58 this year — the storylines don’t usually focus on your demographic.

    However, Parker says she is currently enjoying a major plotline with Marilyn (Emily Symons), another of the show’s more established characters.

    As we like to refer to ourselves, “the senior cast,” Parker explains, “we occasionally dip our toe in and direct the plot or mentor a storyline, or we even be the principal carrier of a storyline.”

    “That makes me pleased. Because it provides you more choice to play how you want, I enjoy being able to enter other people’s narratives. It offers you a little more room to play if you’re not the main character, and I appreciate that.

    Since 1989, when Parker rose to fame as Nurse Lucy Gardiner in A Country Practice, she has been a constant presence on Australian and New Zealand television.

    She then portrayed Sister Theresa (Terri) Sullivan, a nurse and former nun, in the well-known medical drama All Saints from 1998 to 2005.

    For her performance on those shows, she has been chosen four times as Australia’s most popular actress. She has also twice taken home the prestigious Gold Logie, given to television’s most popular star.

    The actor, who plays Roo, has experienced some horrific plotlines while playing the character, including a devastating ectopic pregnancy, a meeting with her psychopathic half-brother Kieran (Rick Donald), and a string of failed relationships, most recently with Owen (Cameron Daddo), Ryder’s uncle (Lukas Radovich).

    Parker has also just wrapped a long-running storyline in which she donates a kidney to her critically ill mother Martha (Belinda Giblin).

    Martha suffered kidney failure after a toxic gas attack at restaurant Salt in October last year.

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    But even though Roo was soon found to be a donor match, her obstinate mother took months to consent to the transplant.

    Parker claims that she appreciated the plot for a number of reasons.

    “It was an extremely difficult, complicated process for one of my sister’s closest friends to donate her kidney to her sister. She adds that she has long been an advocate for organ donation and that she simply found it to be extremely intriguing to read through.

    “The storyline didn’t change my mind about anything. It just made me more aware of the personal cost and the personal risks you take when you do donate an organ.”

    She also enjoyed working out why Roo was so determined to help the woman that had, in many respects, abandoned her as a child and did not re-enter her daughter’s life until Roo was in her 50s.

    “When Roo is an adult and no longer needs that bond, Martha re-enters her life. So, the question arises, “What is that relationship?” That’s what I do. I need to figure out why she acts the way she does,” adds Parker.

    “Roo doesn’t really have a significant other. Despite having a mother and a father, she is a single woman. It makes you wonder, “What is she doing and living for? “

    Parker notes that while she would like to see her character, Roo, get into a relationship (she has previously urged the producers to bring Daddo back), she would also like to see Roo get a job.

    “She was a teacher, but since we lost the school set, you don’t see me doing the job,” she says.

    “I think it makes it easier to play a scene if you’re doing something other than just looking like you’re passing through.

    “However, at the moment, I’m not pushing anything because it’s been so hard. We’ve had Covid running around and they’ve recently introduced a lot of new characters, so the writers’ focus really has had to be on establishing those new characters and establishing new families. I’m more than happy to bide my time.”

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