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form y separately published work icon Confessional single work   film/TV   crime  
Issue Details: First known date: 1972... 1972 Confessional
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

The script held in the Crawford Collection in the AFI Research Collection includes the following character notes:

'DES MUNRO Early thirties. Small time crim, moderately successful. Trying to enlarge his field by using gelignite to blow safes. Specialises in jobs on churches - which is linked beneath the surface to a deep religious upheaval somewhere in his past. Disparage, scoff, protest as he may, there is still some belief lingering there.

'FRAN CARMODY Early-mid twenties. Catholic. Very strong on religion. Believes everybody should have some sort of faith. Doubtful about Munro at first, but decides that he is in need of spiritual help and that perhaps she can supply it, or part of it. Possibly attracted to him as well, but too self-possessed and single minded to let it show.

'DOREEN LANE 35-40. Has been getting around with Munro for some time. Returns with him to Matlock to see her father - and also to pick up some easy money. (She helps in a minor way with his jobs). Conscious of the age difference between herself and Munro, suspicious of any younger woman in whom he takes an interest. Has been kissed-off so many times before, she is determined not to let it happen again.

'TED LANE Around 60. Possibly older. Doreen's father. A farmer who has tried to discipline his daughter from an early age. Now reconciled to her loose behaviour, no longer voices his disapproval - but still retaining some hopes for her.

'FATHER RYAN 50-60. Priest of Matlock's largest Roman Catholic church.

'OXLEY 30-40. Though age not important. Explosives expert called in to defuse the sacristy safe.

'SIMPSON 40-50. Runs a small farm on the outskirts of Matlock. Well known for his anti-religious, particularly Anti-Catholic [sic] views.

'WHITEHEAD Late teens, early twenties. Boozy young lout who gets a kick out of playing around with explosives.

'SYKES Whitehead's mate, same age, attitudes - but subservient to Whitehead.

'HUTCHINSON Licensee of the Railway Hotel, about the lowest grade hotel in Matlock.

'EXTRAS For church scenes, also for montage.'


  • This entry has been compiled from archival research in the Crawford Collection (AFI Research Collection), undertaken by Dr Catriona Mills under the auspices of the 2012 AFI Research Collection (AFIRC) Research Fellowship: see The Writer in Australian Television History.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Note: Storey suggests that Jacob was credited as director and Conway as film director.
    • Melbourne, Victoria,: Crawford Productions ; Network Ten , 1972 .
      Extent: 44 min. 59 secs (according to the script)p.
      Series: form y separately published work icon Matlock Police Terry Stapleton , Ian Jones , Everett de Roche , Ian Jones , Terry Stapleton , Keith Hetherington , Patrick Edgeworth , Tom Hegarty , Douglas Tainsh , Graeme Koetsveld , Peter A. Kinloch , Sonia Borg , Don Battye , Robert Caswell , George T. Miller , Gwenda Marsh , Cliff Green , Vince Moran , Luis Bayonas , David William Boutland , Phil Freedman , Keith Thompson , Denise Morgan , C.F. Barnes , Robert Bruce , Alan Cram , Vern Perry , Martin Robbins , John Dingwall , George Mallaby , Jim Stapleton , Simon Wincer , Melbourne Australia : Crawford Productions Network Ten , 1971-1976 Z1638563 1971 series - publisher film/TV detective crime

      The Matlock Police series (originally simply titled Matlock) was commissioned from Crawford Productions by ATV-0, in response to the popularity of rival-network police dramas such as Homicide and Division 4. Crawford's was initially reluctant to create another police series, but ATV-0 pressured the company for some time. Eventually, Ian Jones and Terry Stapleton devised the concept of a regional (Victorian) police series to provide viewers with something different. The more relaxed atmosphere of the country-town setting also allowed the writers to delve into the private lives of the main characters, rather than focusing heavily on big-city organised crime. In this respect, the series was situated somewhere between Homicide/Division 4 and Bellbird. The series did, however, cover typical rural policing, including such issues as break and enters, domestic issues, itinerant workers, brawls, petty crime and robberies, road accidents, the occasional homicide, and cattle rustling. On other occasions, the Matlock police also assisted Melbourne police in locating criminals on the run (among other problems). The idea behind the show was to reflect the causes of crime in a small community and show the effects on both the community and the officers themselves.

      The fictional town of Matlock (loosely based on Shepparton in Victoria) is situated inland on the Central Highway, approximately 160 kilometres north of Melbourne. Although the town's population is only seventeen thousand, this increases to around seventy-five thousand when the district is included. The Matlock Police Station is typical of a Victorian country town, with a Uniform Branch and a Criminal Investigation Branch (CIB). The CIB is headed by Detective Sergeant Vic Maddern, who grew up in the Matlock district and is an accomplished bushman. Second in command is Detective Allan Curtis, aged in his mid-twenties. Previously from Melbourne, Curtis has just been sent to his first country posting (against his will) when the series begins. Head of the Uniform Branch is Sergeant Bert Kennedy, an Englishman who migrated to Australia in 1950. A thorough but also easy-going man with a good sense of humour, Kennedy is married to Nell and enjoys the country life in Matlock, so much so that he has knocked back promotion to avoid moving to Melbourne. Several constables are attached to the Uniform Branch, but the most prominent is a motorcycle cop, Constable Gary Hogan, who performs a wide variety of duties. Hogan is about thirty, a friendly, easy-going person who grew up in the country and is always willing to help in whatever work is going.

      Number in series: 63
      1972 .
      person or book cover
      Script cover page (Crawford Collection at the AFI Research Collection)
      Extent: 77p.
      (Manuscript) assertion
      • The file contains two copies of the script, both copied on pink paper. The script is labelled 'Episode 5F' on the cover page of copy 1; copy 2 is missing its cover page. Neither copy contains any indication of to whom these copies of the script were designated.
      • There are no signs of annotation on either of the copies of the script.
      • The file also contains the following ancillary material, access to some of which is restricted:

        1. Casting call sheets.

        2. Three copies of the videotape artists' roll, all annotated:

        One is labelled 'Wardrobe' in the top right-hand corner, and lists arrival times next to the actors' names (plus lunch and tea breaks).

        One is labelled 'Jan Tyrell' in the top right-hand corner and lists departure times next to the actors' name. (According to the Crawford Productions' tribute website [], Jan Tyrell worked in continuity and then as production co-ordinator from c. 1971.)

        One is labelled 'Co-ordination' in the top right-hand corner, has taxi times next to some of the actors' names, and has three memos noting taxi bookings stapled to the back of the sheet.


      Held at: AFI Research Collection
      Local Id: SC MAT : 63
Last amended 29 Mar 2017 16:59:11