The Idiots Guide to Offspring… By Someone Who Has Never Watched It

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It all began with an innocent Facebook post. Well, if I am to be entirely honest, it wasn’t an innocent post. It was in large part designed to convey my jubilation and relief at the series finale of Offspring and in even larger part designed to poke my Offspring-loving friends for a reaction.

It started with this.

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And descended to this; posted in reply by one of my friends.

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Like Pandora charms, mani/pedis, Thermomixes, false eyelashes and designer handbags, Offspring is yet another one of those chick-things I simply fail to understand. I don’t get it. I don’t get the obsession with Nina’s quirky style. I don’t get the emotional masochism of investing so heavily in a show that it reduces you to a blubbering mess every. single. week.

Seriously, it was getting to the point of ridiculous. Every Thursday without fail, my newsfeed looked like this.

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And I just looked like this.

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Or this.

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Or this.

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(that’s not my text on the image, for the record)

Now is probably a good time to confess that I have never actually seen a single episode of Offspring, but that I thoroughly enjoy trolling Offspring fans in the inevitable de-briefing threads that pop up on Thursdays after every new episode. It’s kind of like a hobby of mine.

Whilst ducking and weaving multiple virtual punches from my friends (aka the Nina Proudman Fan Club), I came up with the genius idea to write “The Idiots Guide to Offspring”, and I wasn’t going to let the fact that I’ve never actually seen the show stop me from doing it. I’ve watched the ads, I’ve eavesdropped on conversations in online forums and I’ve boorishly gate-crashed every single Facebook thread my friends have ever posted about this show.

I like to think that makes me an expert.

I gave myself one rule for crafting this article: I was prohibited the use of Google or any other online resources to supplement my meagre knowledge of this program with actual fact. Instead, I’m going to scour every last cell of grey matter in every last corner of my skull for everything I know about this show. And I am going to share it with you.

      THE IDIOT’S GUIDE TO… Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 2.26.21 pm

Number one thing I know about Offspring: Fans of the show are intensely devoted to it and insanely protective of it. Criticise Offspring, you damn well better be wearing your Teflon undies, because shit is gonna get real. I’ve got mine on fresh out of the dryer.

Number two thing I know about Offspring: It turns hordes of otherwise sane women into crazy weeping creatures every week; a quivering mass of oestrogen who forever seem poised to explode into hysterical tears at every new outlandish plot twist.

Number three thing I know about Offspring: The main character is called Nina Proudman. She allegedly works in a hospital as an OB/GYN, but I have never seen her wearing scrubs or consulting with patients or delivering babies. She wanders around the hospital in thigh-high suede boots and jewel-toned cardigans, looking like she just stepped out of a Witchery catalogue. Always on the hunt for the next man to break her heart. And, scarves. Always scarves.

Number four thing I know about Offspring: She had a baby with a man called Patrick, but he died. I don’t know how he died, I don’t know why he died, but I do know there has not been a bigger and more visceral outpouring of public grief since  Princess Diana’s funeral. It was all I could do to hold myself back from shaking people and screaming  “He’s a FICTIONAL CHARACTER! He’s NOT REAL!!”, but it felt kind of insensitive, so I just shut up about it.

Number five thing I know about Offspring: Her sister is called Billie and is married to someone called Mick. A very fuzzy part of my brain seems to recall that they split up because of infidelity; possibly because Billie was having an affair with Carl Williams, the infamous drug-dealer from Underbelly.

Number six thing I know about Offspring: Patrick’s ghost. The ghost of dead Patrick seems to be a recurring character in the series, presumably coinciding with times when the actor who plays him in real life is out of work over in LA, where he went to get his “big American break”. Patrick’s ghost seems to pop up in every other bloody episode, so I’m hazarding a guess that might not have been a good career move for him.

Number seven thing I know about Offspring: Nina’s best friend Mel died in a car crash while she was texting on her phone. I’m going to be honest here, I’m not entirely sure if this happened in Offspring or Packed to the Rafters (I’ve never seen an episode of either show), BUT it did lead to a lot of women falling about the place in over-wrought tears for a very long time, so that would place it firmly in Offspring territory for me. It’s killing me not to google it.

Number eight thing I know about Offspring: Bouncing back from the traumatic end to her relationship with Patrick – and despite the fact that he still stalks her in metaphysical form – Nina falls in love with a man called Leo, a single parent with no kids. Or a widow. Or something. Turns out, the greasy little ass-monkey was married to a woman in the late stages of pregnancy, who no doubt hassled him for one foot rub too many. His wife was taken to Nina’s hospital for an emergency delivery, he turned up to catch the baby and got busted, leaving Nina with a broken heart again.

 Number nine thing I know about Offspring: I’m seeing a lot of Leo and Thomas discussions around. I’m placing bets on some kind of love triangle that, you know, breaks Nina’s heart.

 Number ten thing I know about Offspring: Shit. I couldn’t think of a tenth thing and I couldn’t help myself so I googled. I was wrong about the car accident. Great. Now I look like a complete idiot who has no idea what she is talking about. Sigh.

So, Offspring fans, how did I go? Was I close with any of this?  


68 thoughts on “The Idiots Guide to Offspring… By Someone Who Has Never Watched It

  1. Oh Thank the Christ! I thought I was the only female person on social media who didn’t watch Offspring. I totally missed out on the cult of Patrick and needed a sick bucket for the outpouring of grief that polluted my FB feed after that character left the building. Meanwhile there will be one mighty outpouring of grief from me if Jon Snow ever bites the dust ( and we know there’s a high probability that he will).

  2. I must confess: I’ve never watched it either though Miss 17 is a devoted fan. I told her how Nina Proudman is something of a style icon (not my style though) and she was like “really?! that must be for all the middle aged women out there coz I don’t think so”.

    Thanks for the belly laugh, the pics were classics!

    • LOL, looking for those pictures gave me the giggles. That pic of “Sad Dawson” will never get old. And I have to confess the I used to love Katie Holmes in Dawsons Creek, she was so cute and cool.

  3. You got about 7 or 8 out of 10, which is pretty damn good for someone who never watched the show. Breathe a sigh of relief because I’m fairly certain it was the final episode the other night. I doubt there will be another season. We can all move on from the How To Dress Like Nina Proudman posts. Not that I ever bothered reading them.

    • I know, right? That is testament to the obsessive and painstakingly regular Offspring discussions I was exposed to in my online mother’s group. They were at least marginally more interesting than the Thermomix threads.

  4. haha I LOVED Offspring but will admit to finding this season a little tedious and depressing. One of the best things about the show was how the awkwardness of some social interactions was portrayed. Those moments made me laugh until I cried and they were seriously lacking in this final season. You did a pretty good job on your list for a non watcher! Leo is the nice guy though, not the loser having an affair. And yes we do see her deliver babies…like the baby of the sleazebag boyfriend. This season we also saw her deliver a baby to a woman who promptly went into heart failure and died reassuring pregnant first time mums everywhere that childbirth is indeed easy peasy. 😉

  5. Ok you might be my new favourite blogger. I laughed almost as much as when I read the blogess. And I am a huge offspring fan (yay for a 6th season ) but loved your take on it. Your friends must talk about it a lot. None of mine do, I rely on bloggers for that. Deb xx

    • Thanks Deb! I think it was less that my friends wanted to talk about the show and more that they wanted to use it as a form of mild torture so they could get back at me for, well, all the other times I gave them shit about stuff. Which was a lot, I think….

  6. Oh god the WAILING about Patrick got on my nerves too! I watch it every now and then but there’s only so much forced “quirkiness” I can watch before my eye starts to twitch.

    Now MY fave show at the moment is “Masters of Sex” which is based on the story of the great sex researchers Masters & Johnson. Hilarious and seriously interesting from both a social and historical perspective.

  7. Yeah, I’m feeling better about never watching it now. All I pick up from the ads is the scarves thing, so I’m glad someone else noticed it! 😀

  8. I watched the first series and started watching the second but gave up. I think I blogged about it but the ‘poor hapless Nina’ thing shitted me. God, she hooked man after man and had nothing to complain about for god’s sake.

  9. I’ve never watched Offspring and never intend to…it was cringing enough just seeing my Twitter feed when it aired.

    So I won’t mourn the fact it’s finally over (but will need counselling if Tyrion Lannister ever carks it!) 🙂

  10. I didn’t watch it either. But I feel as though it’s like War and Peace or some other great epic novel I’ve never read but have enough passive knowledge about that I can hold my own at the water cooler. The ads were too annoying some weeks for me to even attempt a full viewing.

    • YES! Totally. They should release the Cliffs Notes version for People Who Have Better Things To Do so we can painlessly hold up our end of those conversations before going on out merry way.

    • LOL, that one is a total no-brainer! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, even though you have now successfully distracted me from my work with visions of curly-haired hotties 🙂

  11. OHHHHHHH FINALLY. Women aren’t even ashamed they watch this shit!! I feel embarrassed for them. AND yes, I did watch a few of the first few episodes in bits and pieces. (No, it did not demand my full attention for the length of airing). It kind of reminds me of the Twilight series or 50 Shades in that the woman seems to be a total weakling when it comes to a man or men, many men? Gross. And I haven’t seen either of those. Thanks for finally telling it like it is. We can do better, ladies. We can. Try House of Cards! BAM!

    • LOL. I know, right? It feels kind of liberating to get that out there! Thanks for the recommendation – one of my friends keeps harping on about House of Cards so it’s one I definitely need to check out.

  12. I love Offspring, but I love your take on it too.
    PS FYI Leo is still in with a chance – he wasn’t the one with the wife and baby – it was Thomas!

  13. That’s 10 more things than I know about Offspring. Now I have even less interest in ever watching it, though as I didn’t know of its existence prior to about a week ago (when said twitter feeds started buzzing about the finale), there was a very slim chance that I ever would. Now I never will. It sounds even more ridiculous than that other hospital show with that annoying whiny skinny girl who’s in love with that McCheeseburger fellow. Sheesh. Send them all off to a Gaza hospital to do something real with their lives.

  14. Have just found your blog…. And am in heaven! A sarcastic, cynical, wonderful, dark humoured heaven. Thank you for letting me know I am not alone in my complete lack of interest in offspring!

  15. I love it! Sobbed every week while my husband laughed at me but was on standby for more wine and hugs. I even made Patrick cupcakes – got his picture on the icing – I kid you not! But Ya know, I think fave TV shows is like music. You like what ya like. A friend can recommend their heart out about a show/singer – but if it doesn’t click with you it’s arse! Great post – have you been secretly watching it? Lol!

    • Oh you are just the sweetest thing EVER! Hand-on-heart have never watched a single episode. I have several friends who are Offspring obsessed and there would be a debriefing thread every week in our online mother’s group, which I always took great glee in derailing. Pretty much everything I know about that show I learnt from them. Chicks be crazy for Offspring.

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