Ms Represented by Annabel Crabb [8/10]

What a refreshing “of the moment” series from veteran political journalist Annabel Crabb! The four episodes of “Ms Represented” examine the history of female parliamentarians and senators in Australia, from the early days when a single woman might swim amongst the sharks, through the awakening decades when handfuls of women got elected, through the glory days of our first female Prime Minister, up to the present day. Crabb has a natural affinity with her many interviewees, so that the tale is told through the eyes of a panoply of female politicians from all political parties, buttressed by her sure narrative and wonderful historical footage. The series takes no prisoners, slamming the pervasive sexism over the past century, a sexism that still reigns supreme in the corridors of Canberra. The various interviewees are all a delight, and the fact that Crabb is able to get some of them to ham up in telling the story is a credit to the rapport she achieved. Steady direction and surefooted scripting ensures smooth, immersive viewing. In the end, I was left with a joyful sense of hard-won progress tempered by the realisation that Australian politics remains blokey and primitive. Ms Represented is a perky, intelligent blast of immediate history.

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