Devil's Playground (TV series)

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Devil's Playground
Psychological thriller
Written byBlake Ayshford
Alice Addison
Tommy Murphy
Cate Shortland
Directed byRachel Ward
Tony Krawitz
StarringSimon Burke
John Noble
Don Hany
Jack Thompson
Toni Collette
Country of originAustralia
Original languageEnglish
No. of episodes6
Executive producersTony Ayres
Penny Win
Simon Burke
ProducersHelen Bowden
Penny Chapman
Blake Ayshford
Running time51 minutes
Original networkShowcase
Picture format576i (SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital 5.1
Original release9 September (2014-09-09) –
8 October 2014 (2014-10-08)
Related showsThe Devil's Playground
External links
[ Website]

Devil's Playground is an Australian psychological thriller television series which premiered on Showcase on 9 September 2014. It was created as a sequel to the 1976 film, The Devil's Playground. The series begins in 1988 and follows the story of Tom Allen, a recently widowed psychiatrist and a secular counselor to the Catholic clergy, who becomes entangled in political and theological intrigue. Simon Burke reprised his role as Tom Allen.


On 26 November 2012, Matchbox Pictures announced that they would produce a drama series for Foxtel that would serve as a continuation to the 1976 film The Devil's Playground.[1]

The series is produced by Helen Bowden, Penny Chapman and Blake Ayshford and directed by Rachel Ward and Tony Krawitz. It is written by Blake Ayshford, Cate Shortland, Alice Addison and Tommy Murphy and the Executive Producers are Tony Ayres, Penny Win and Simon Burke.[2]


The year is 1988. It is 35 years after the events of Fred Schepisi's classic film, The Devil's Playground. Tom Allen, now in his 40s and recently widowed, is a respected Sydney psychiatrist and father of two children. A practising Catholic, Tom accepts an offer by the Bishop of Sydney to become a counsellor of priests. During these sessions and other events, he uncovers a scandal that embroils him through a personal hell hole and the Church's various attempts to cover it up. Tom's quest for justice pushes him to his limits, but it reveals a dark-side of the Church's power and the extent of official corruption, which he could never have envisaged.



Title Directed by Written by Original air date Overnight Australian viewers
1"I Will Bring Fire Onto This Earth"[3]Rachel WardBlake Ayshford9 September 2014 (2014-09-09)48,000[4][5]
In 1988, devout Catholic psychiatrist and former trainee priest Tom Allen is still recovering from the death of his wife and an ill-fated love affair with Alice,a neighbour in a troubled relationship. When a boy at a local Catholic school goes missing, questions are asked. Two popular Catholic clergy — Father Andrassi and Brother Warner — launch a desperate search to find the missing boy in time. However, the church is also facing its own internal moral concerns and anxieties about priestly conduct, and Tom is called in to counsel a number of the priests. As Cardinal Neville prepares to retire, his time in the position is celebrated by local Catholic state MP Margaret Wallace, but a power struggle has also begun for the top job in the Sydney Catholic Archdiocese.
2"The Tail of the Serpent"[3]Rachel WardBlake Ayshford9 September 2014 (2014-09-09)48,000[4][5]
The missing boy's body is found, and a cryptic note suggests the death is not accidental. Father Andrassi becomes a new client of Tom's and a meeting between Bishop Quaid and Brendan Mahony causes Quaid to question the secrets that are being concealed within his institution.
3"He Maketh My Way Perfect"[3]Rachel WardAlice Addison16 September 2014 (2014-09-16)N/A
Bishop Quaid decides to delve into the allegations made by Brendan. Elliot becomes the target of new unwanted attention. Brendan infiltrates Tom's world when he meets his son, David.
4"The Forgiveness of Sins"[6]Tony Krawitz[6]Tommy Murphy[6]23 September 2014 (2014-09-23)TBA
Tom takes his concerns about the ongoing case to Bishop McNallly but later finds that his house has been broken into. Meanwhile, another boy goes missing.
5"The Whirlwind and the Storm"[7]Tony Krawitz[7]Cate Shortland[7]30 September 2014 (2014-09-30)N/A
In the wake of the investigation, Tom discovers his own past is also under public scrutiny and his life is being threatened from unknown quarters. Bishop Quaid reveals the results of his own investigation to Margaret, and Alice learns the truth.
6"Matthew 18:6"[8]Tony Krawitz[8]Blake Ayshford & Tommy Murphy[8]8 October 2014 (2014-10-08)N/A
Tom confronts Bishop McNally and threatens to leak the results of his investigation beyond the confines of the institutional church. Margaret, Tom and Quaid attempt to end the Church's corruption and internal concealment of it, but they could risk their personal relationships and professional careers as they do so.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee Result Ref
2015 Logie Awards Most Outstanding Actor John Noble Nominated [9][10]
Most Outstanding Miniseries or Telemovie Devil's Playground Won


  1. ^ Knox, David (26 November 2012). "Foxtel to return to The Devil's Playground". TV Tonight. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c "Search results for "Winners & Losers"". Foxtel. Retrieved 1 July 2014.
  4. ^ a b Knox, David (10 September 2014). "Tuesdays not so funny for Please Like Me". TV Tonight. Retrieved 10 September 2014.
  5. ^ a b Knox, David (10 September 2014). "Tuesday 9 September 2014". TV Tonight. Retrieved 10 September 2014.
  6. ^ a b c "The Forgiveness of Sins". IMDb. 6 September 2014. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  7. ^ a b c "The Whirlwind and the Storm". IMDb. 6 September 2014. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  8. ^ a b c "Matthew 18:6". IMDb. 6 September 2014. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  9. ^ Willis, Charlotte (22 March 2015). "Here's the full List of 2015 Logies nominations". Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  10. ^ "Logies 2015: full list of award winners". The Sydney Morning Herald. 4 May 2015. Retrieved 26 July 2015.