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Rake: Series 2

Score: 89%
Rating: TV-14
Publisher: Acorn Media
Region: 1
Media: DVD/3
Running Time: 462 Mins.
Genre: Comedy/Drama/TV Series
Audio: English Stereo
Subtitles: English SDH

Features:

  • Bloopers
  • 5 Minutes with Cleaver Greene
  • Behind the Scenes Featurette

Rake: Series 2 starts off with barrister and notorious womanizer Cleaver Greene (Richard Roxburgh, Van Helsing, Moulin Rouge!) having a torrid, back-seat-of-the-limo affair with the wife of the Attorney General, Claudia (Toni Collette, The United States of Tara), who also happens to be the Premier. Naturally, the affair comes to light and Claudia and her husband Cal McGregor (Damien Garvey) decide to spin it, making it appear that Cleave took advantage of Claudia. When Cleaver strikes back loudly and publicly, he sparks the AG into a harassment campaign the likes of which Greene will feel the entire season and beyond.

He's also got his ongoing case with "Harry Sorry" David Potter (Matt Day), only now it's the defamation case Potter has launched against Cleave. Potter also jumps on the bandwagon against the Premier and uses that and other political happenings to further his own career significantly this season. While we don't see David and Cleave's ex Missy (Adrienne Pickering) for a little while, it appears she's been quite busy, not only writing a highly successful tell-all book about her time as a high-end prostitute to Australia's politicians (and Cleaver), but also getting engaged to Australia's answer to Edward Snowden, Joshua Floyd (Martin Henderson, Grey's Anatomy, Miracles from Heaven). While the names of the guilty were changed in the book, needless to say, the public can figure things out and there's quite a shake-up among the political upper echelon. Then, Missy introduces Cleaver to Joshua and he wants Cleave to represent him when he is arrested for treason (see earlier reference to Snowden). And boy is he backed by some deep pockets! It looks like Cleaver's luck is about to turn around and he finally gets his own office, which naturally makes his beleaguered secretary, Nicole (Kate Box) quite happy, especially since she is about to get married and could use a bit less stress. He also gets his old solicitor and best friend Barney (Russell Dykstra) to come help with the case, even though Barney swore to his wife Scarlet (Danielle Cormack, Wentworth) he'd stay away from Cleave after the events of last season. Let's just say that being back with Cleaver causes "Barnyard" to have a few lapses in judgment.

Then there's Barney's wife Scarlet, who is trying to be Sally Homemaker in an attempt to piece their marriage and home life back together, but she misses the legal work. She ends up going to work for AG Cal McGregor, but then gets caught up in one of his webs of lies, much to her detriment. Just like Barney, she'll make some questionable choices this season, but eventually she figures out just what she wants.

Cleaver finds himself still in debt, but no longer to Mick since he went to jail for murder, but now to Kirsty (Robyn Malcolm, The Code), Mick's ex-wife. You'd think she'd be easier to deal with, but as it turns out, she has a thing for Cleave and he finds she tends to forget about his debt as long as they are sleeping together. Lord, but the woman is clingy, and Cleave finds himself being suffocated, but it kind of beats being pummeled by Col (Steven Le Marquand), at least for a while.

Meanwhile, Cleaver's teenage son Fuzz (Keegan Joyce) has broken up with his English teacher, but it turns out he has a thing for older women and has been hooking up with one of his mom's friends and neighbor. Poor Wendy (Caroline Brazier) - between Cleaver unloading his troubles on her and Fuzz's predilections, she can hardly carve out a life for herself, except that she does start dating someone this season, but he has quirks of his own.

Amidst all of this chaos, Cleaver still has a practice to run and his cases run the gamut from a mild-mannered English teacher who crashes high-level corporate meetings, to a Muslim woman accused of terrorism, two high school girls accused of murder, a wealthy man accused of embezzling 2 million dollars from a children's charity, a man accused of Bobbitting a neighbor, and the creep who conned Cleaver's dying father out of his money. Cleave also finds himself defending Missy in a murder trial, then, following the death of his own father, he stands accused of a serious crime after drunk dialing Col (Kirsty's muscle) to ask him to teach the guy who defrauded his father out of his life savings a lesson. Not a murder-y lesson, mind you, and he called Col back to call the whole thing off, but Col had subbed it out to some new guy and mistakes were made. Let's just say that Cleave's position by the end of the season finale is precarious and not fun, to say the least. But hey, in true Cleaver Green style, he takes some high level people down into the mud with him.

Based on how this season ends, I can't wait to see what happens next. Rake: Series 2 was far more about the happenings in Cleaver's life and those around him and less about the individual cases, but it was still quite good. Special features include a Blooper Reel, a short Behind-the-Scenes Featurette and an off-the-cuff interview with the character of Cleaver Greene. Various guest appearances include the previously mentioned Toni Collette and Martin Henderson, Don Hany (Serangoon Road) as the rich embezzler, Maeve Dermody (Serangoon Road, And Then There Were None) as avid reporter Polly Nesbitt, and Stephen Curry (Neighbors) as the accused Bobbitter. Also, although he isn't in many scenes, if you are paying attention, you'll notice that Polly Nesbitt's co-worker and former boyfriend is none other than Socratis Otto who plays Maxine in Wentworth, alongside Danielle Cormack.

Overall, if you enjoyed the first season, you'll want to continue with Rake: Series 2. Cleaver Greene is charming, hilarious, and just fun to watch. You have to feel sorry for him, even though he is a victim of his own design most of the time, but oh the things he endures this season with the Attorney General on his back. It's quite a fun ride.



-Psibabe, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ashley Perkins

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