Australian comedy television
series (2002 - ) featuring two women with a love-hate relationship
: Kath and her adult daughter Kim. The pair are extreme caricatures of suburb-dwelling Aussie sheilas - hedonistic
, fickle and foolhardy with money, who bitch
at each other in cacophonically nasal strine
. Kath's catchphrase used to attract her pouting daughter's attention is Look at me Kimmy...look, look, looook...Look at mooi Kim-mooi
, followed by an offer of something delectable like frankfurter
s or yogurt
Eternally optimistic Kath (Jane Turner) insufferably overestimates her worldliness, much to the embarrassment of Kim (Gina Riley) when it involves fads or fashion directed more to a younger market (be it running lingerie parties or patronising gay discos). Kim, somewhat estranged from her husband Brett (Peter Rowsthorn) she recently married, moved back to live with her mum at the beginning of the first series (and now in the second series is closer to him now that she is [pregnant). She wallows in self-pity, surrounding herself with the accoutrements of the 'effluent' class while launching barbed comments at her only friend, an overeager dumpy netballing army reservist called Sharon (Magda Szubanski - better known to non-Australians as Ms Hoggett the farmer's wife in Babe). Kath, a divorcee, has just married a painfully cheerful sensitive new age loser called Kel (Glenn Robbins).
The stars of Kath and Kim have done comedy together for over twenty years in a variety of other comedic shows (The D Generation, The Games, Fast Forward etc). It is remarkable to note that the actresses playing the mother and daughter duo were both born in 1961.
The show has been unwillingly dragged into the culture wars by those who claim it belittles suburban middle class Anglo-Australians. Yet Kath and Kim manages to rate well with Australian audiences, an unusual feat for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Anyway a large chunk of the audience are Anglo-Australian suburbanites who nevertheless find the show funny, even if they are mildly disturbed about being able to relate to any one of the pathetically insecure characters portrayed.
It took me a while to realise that the word hornbag is a complement to describe a sexy person, and is not an insult synonymous with 'slut'