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By Shaun McCormack

GENRE: Comedy

Three drug addicts, one drug dealer living in a halfway house, with a deluded idea that they are the human form of their chosen vice.  



Crooked Obsession “..It’s like you are all addicted to yourselves..” In the City of Lost Souls the cop wants them to serve time; the social services officer wants their time to be fruitful and the addicts …..are just wasting time being wasted. Crooked Obsession is a black comedic sitcom that shadows the lives of three current addicts and one former drug addict who has become the prominent dealer in the fictional Australian city of Lost Souls. Skags, Coko, Alice D and Method live together in a halfway house which is over seen by their helpful but ever suffering Human Services officer Donald McDonald. Along with their British backpacking friend Eckes, the four housemates, attempt to get through each day in the best way they see fit. This best fit though runs against the laws of the city which the clever Detective Dennis Pagan attempts to uphold. The addicts are not warm, thoughtful or trustworthy and after Alice D convinces the others that they are the human form of their chosen drug, the idea posed is whether you can be completely addicted to yourself. The show relies on the perception of drug taking as the comedy is about the situations an addict can be found in and how they use their own survival skills to escape, jail, injury or even death. Their survival skill cannot however be without help from the others around them so the four have learnt to lean on each other even though they cannot be trusted because how can you trust someone who is addicted to themselves. The Characters THE RING MASTER. The narrating guide gives us a tour into the lives of the addicts and their desire to survive by manipulating, lying, stealing and any other adjective you can find that describes those who are slaves to drugs. Like a gifted footballer running on the boundary line the Ring Master narrates us through this dark, satiric sitcom that oversteps the mark only when the referee is not looking; actually the referee is looking but has been paid not to care. METHOD. This guy is brutal with his persona and speech. Born Alex Ishchenko an eastern European immigrant to Australia after his family escaped their countries civil war, becoming an elite soldier he turned to Methamphetamine when he arrived back from his final tour. He shook off his addiction and became the dominant manufacturer and dealer of crank in the City of Lost Souls. He is over confident, and believes he is invincible; and he loves to taunt Detective Dennis Pagan, as they play a game of cat and mouse as the detective tries to send him back to jail, while Method continues to flaunt his so called untouchable dealing of meth. There is a softer side to Method and even though he is direct and blunt, he is a protector. After losing his parents in his teenage years in a car accident in his own strange way he wants to make sure his fellow half way house mates are looked after and protected. However after being beaten by a catholic priest after a confession goes wrong Method only sees violence and bullying as the way to stay strong but it is actually his dry, witty sense of humor is what makes you see he is actually half human. COKO Coko is the half way houses village idiot. He was once Jose Romero a successful corporate lawyer, but he lost it all when he started doing cocaine when the stress of his workload and the continual bullying by his superiors which caused him to have a nervous breakdown. It was between the breakdown and his cocaine escalation that he turned from a responsible mid thirties professional to mind of a teenager. A self taught musician he has now grand delusions that he has a band, except it is only him, but it doesn’t stop him from asking someone in each episode if they would like to be in his band. Like numerous addicts he has survival skills that come to the fore when in desperation situations he comes up with ingenious ways to get out of his predicaments. A surfer he uses the water in Lost Souls to get his larger supply of cocaine by paddling out to waiting boats, with the boards either filled with money or drugs. He has a childish naivety that comes across with jokes that could nearly be described as a “Dad Joke”, but you can’t help but smile because the majority of the time he has absolutely no idea, even though he is playing with his life from overdose and freedom from jail. ALICE D The most complex character in the show, Alice D or as her parents named her Shannon Grant; is young, pretty, sweet and from the exterior very innocent. However she is far from it. Extremely intelligent and well read she, is able to manipulate strangers to get what she wants whether it is to play with her or to help out her fellow housemates. She is literally a colourful character, and is an artist which is where she became hook onto LSD after she began using at university when she found it expanded her mind. Her parents are reformed sixties hippies however her mother has a physic ability which was passed through to Alice D. Through her trips she not only sees strange and wonderful things but through these episodes she it can be a mirror image of what is actually happening in the real world. Alice D has splashes her artistic colours throughout the plain and dirty half way house. The colours are indiscriminately splashed through the house which is shows a porthole into her mind. The only organised artwork is the yellow brick road that has begun being painted on the passage way wall which does show she is still capable of a normal existence. SKAGS Daniel Wells aka Skags the heroin addict had no chance but to be a junkie. Born in a prison while his mother did time for armed robbery to feed her own heroin addiction, and from that moment TIME is what characterisers Skags. As a youngster he fell in love with the long slow game of cricket. As he grew he threw away his watch and now tells time as if he is watching a cricket test match. It is either the start of the days play, lunch, tea or stumps. He is typical heroin addict where he falls asleep quite easily and sometimes midway through conversation, and when he wakes it as if nothing has changed. He rarely leaves the house or for that matter his room the majority of time he does is to score. He sees his fellow half way house mates as his only family he has ever had. ECKES Aaron Edwards or Eckes is a British backpacker and is neither a former addict nor a current one. He arrived in Lost Souls as a tourist and stayed when he began to love the party life. He became friends with Method when he walked as a casual bartender in the illegal fight club. Method is bad for him but he finds him as a big brother he never had. Speaking of casual he likes to take ecstasy but he wants to give it away completely but being a very god looking guy girls love to party with him and the addicts love to play the game of trying to get him wasted. Unlike the addicts he has a dream and it is a simple one which is to buy an ice cream van but with his partying ways, the bad choice of friends and his undisciplined use of his money he has an up hill battle. DETECTIVE DENNIS PAGAN Dennis Pagan lives and breathes the game with Method and the other addicts. Married with two pre-children he is living on the edge with his wife because he is never at home. He is basically a workaholic, and is addicted to the trying to bring the addicts down. This of course is not lost on the half house residents as Coko points out to him “Hey man, why aren’t you home with your wife and kids, we will be here tomorrow for you, still creating havoc?” On the exterior he is strong, intelligent and determined which is very similar to Method’s personality and there is only room for one victor and it a competition on who blinks first. DONALD McDONALD This guy is a nice person caught up in the wrong kind of job or is he? He is an officer for the Department of Human Services and he cares too much. Ironically out of all the characters in the show he is actually the strongest because he has the stubbornness and perseverance to try and set the addicts back onto the right path. He is very good at leaving his work at the office. He is a loving husband with three grown up children (one male two female) and three grandchildren who he loves playing with. The addicts think he is a pushover and ninety percent of the time he is. He fails constantly but he doesn’t stop giving them 100% of his time when he clocks on, and even though the addicts continually let him down he continues to come back the next day, He is an optimist with a good heart, and sometimes those who are meek but determined win. EPISODES Episode One Pilot: C’mon Bud It begins at night with Method and Eckes on the way to the illegal fight club, but Method accidently sets off an explosion with his portable meth lab with the help of a sandwich and a rat. Eckes has money riding on the fight between a husband and wife and if the wife wins he will have enough money to buy his ice-cream van. The next morning Coko has meeting with Donald McDonald at the Human Services Office and that is where Detective Dennis Pagan finds him asking where Method is. By the time the detective has finished with Coko he realises he is high and orders Donald to get a urine sample from Coko and an unclean sample is what could send him back to jail. Alice D’s morning of making trips is interrupted by two Mormans at the front door, which Alice gladly lets them in so that she can get them high. In the meantime Skags is in his bedroom just watching cricket. Episode Two: A Wave of Triplets While Alice D is painting she begins hallucinating that she is a secretary taking minutes for mythical beings, which include Father Time, Santa Clause Easter Bunny, Mother Nature and the Tooth Fairy. It is in this meeting that Alice D realizes that maybe her and her housemates are not just addicts but the human form of their chosen drug. Skags is in withdrawals and desperately hits the street to meet his dealer but when the dealer tries to vomit up the cap and it gets caught in his throat. Skags is in melt down as he tries everything possible to get the heroin out of the dealer. Donald McDonald decides he will take a nice walk down the harbor to check out the fight club and finds a restless crowd. Method is under pressure because the fight is between two feminine gay males and it’s boring the spectators too riot level. Surfs up for Coko as he paddles out to a boat to collect his supply of cocaine but Eckes has accidently tipped off Detective Pagan that Coko has gone surfing. Episode Three: The Clique of Death While sitting alone in the lounge room Alice D sees an episode of Skags having to do battle with bowel cancer in a game of snakes and ladders while it is watched on by Coko and The Grim Reaper. In the real world Method notices that Skags looks like he is OD’ing on his drugs. He calls in the help of Ekces and Coko to get him to hospital. However Eckes advises that Method that has persuaded the local mayor that all OD victims should be reported at the hospital and if they are on parole then they go to jail, once they are well, and Skags is one on parole. So they get to the hospital they realise that Dennis and Donald are in the hospital in the hope of stealing Narcan to revive Skags. Episode Four: The Ultimate Sportsmanship Method goes to church to pray but has a flash back to his childhood. Coko is caught in a media frenzy as he is spotted with a current and ex-football champ and rumours are rife he is dealing coke to them which brings in Dennis Pagan. Donald McDonald tells Skags he now needs to be a certified drug addict which means taking a written test to get his Methodone. Alice D however is on the case to steal the papers. Eckes has an ingenious way of making money for the van which is a kissing booth but the girl’s boyfriends don’t like it. And the girls just want to pay him in E’s.

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