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The Slap (TV series)

The Slap is an Australian television drama series. It was first broadcast on ABC1 from 6 October to 24 November 2011. The series is based on The Slap, a 2008 novel by Australian author Christos Tsiolkas, which explores what happens when a man slaps a child, who is not related to him, at a suburban barbecue.

The Slap
The Slap header title.png
Written byEmily Ballou
Alice Bell
Brendan Cowell
Kris Mrksa
Cate Shortland
Directed byJessica Hobbs
Matthew Saville
Tony Ayres
Robert Connolly
StarringJonathan LaPaglia
Melissa George
Essie Davis
Alex Dimitriades
Lex Marinos
Diana Glenn
Anthony Hayes
Sophie Lowe
Blake Davis
Oliver Ackland
Toula Yianni
Eugenia Fragos
Rebecca Downie
Country of originAustralia
Original language(s)English
No. of episodes8
Executive producer(s)Penny Chapman
Producer(s)Tony Ayres
Helen Bowden
Michael McMahon
Running time51 minutes
Production company(s)Matchbox Pictures
Original networkABC1
Picture format720p (SDTV)
1080p (HDTV)
Audio formatStereo
Original release6 October (2011-10-06) –
24 November 2011 (2011-11-24)
Related showsThe Slap (U.S. adaptation)
External links

Filmed in Melbourne, Victoria, the series was produced by Matchbox Pictures' Tony Ayres, Helen Bowden and Michael McMahon, with Penny Chapman serving as executive producer.[1] The directors—Jessica Hobbs, Matthew Saville, Tony Ayres and Robert Connolly—directed two episodes each. The writing team included Emily Ballou, Alice Bell, Brendan Cowell, Kris Mrksa and Cate Shortland.[2][3][4]

The series was aired on DirecTV's Audience Network in 2012, and an American adaptation of the series, also starring Melissa George, premiered on NBC on 12 February 2015.


Main charactersEdit

  • Hector (Jonathan LaPaglia) Hector seems to have it all. He is handsome, financially secure, and married to the beautiful Aisha; they have two healthy children, Adam and Melissa. From the outside it looks like his doting Greek parents have handed him everything on a plate, but under this ideal façade lies Hector's dangerous secret.
  • Anouk (Essie Davis) At 41, Anouk feels the inevitability of getting older but does not want to grow up. She writes for a TV soap, dreams of writing a novel, and is dating a much-younger (and far less mature) man.
  • Harry (Alex Dimitriades) Harry, Hector's cousin, is a self-made man, a mechanic with his own business. He has the perfect wife, the perfect child, the perfect house by the beach...but now all of that is being threatened by a single slap. He'd done it without thinking, although in his opinion, the kid deserved it.
  • Connie (Sophie Lowe) Connie is a 17-year-old orphan who lives with her Aunt Tasha and works for Aisha. She is completing her final year of high school, but has many other things on her mind. Young and curious, she is still working out many things about life. Her best friend is Richie.
  • Rosie (Melissa George) When Rosie first became a mother she had many conflicting feelings about it and took much time to adjust to the massive changes, but now her commitment to Hugo is absolute. She knows that even if she fails at everything else, at least Hugo will grow up knowing how much he is loved.
  • Manolis (Lex Marinos) Manolis, Hector's father, came to Australia from Greece many years ago, as a young man full of hope and excited about the prospect of life in a new country. Now he is a man approaching the end of his life, watching his old friends die around him, and not understanding the younger generation's greed and selfishness.
  • Aisha (Sophie Okonedo) Aisha is married to Hector; her strength and resilience hold her family together. She is also a successful professional woman with her own veterinary business. She enters her forties assailed by doubts about her marriage and future.
  • Richie (Blake Davis) Richie is Connie's best friend at school; like her, he is trying to work out his identity, beliefs, and boundaries. What he wishes most is that the world was a simple, happy place where everyone just got along.

Supporting charactersEdit


No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Hector"Jessica HobbsKris Mrksa6 October 2011 (2011-10-06)
Family and friends gather at Hector's house for a BBQ to celebrate his 40th birthday. But during the festivities a guest slaps a child who is not his own. No-one can see it at the time, but this single act begins to unravel the social fabric which once linked them all together.
2"Anouk"Jessica HobbsEmily Ballou13 October 2011 (2011-10-13)
In the days and weeks after the slap Anouk discovers that the incident has unleashed unexpected responses from those around her. She is torn between her friendships and her beliefs and faces decisions about her own life which threaten to overwhelm her.
3"Harry"Matthew SavilleBrendan Cowell20 October 2011 (2011-10-20)
As the police become involved, Harry and Sandi begin to fear that the slap will threaten their reputation, lifestyle and, most importantly, their family. Harry tries to take matters into his own hands but it's too late.
4"Connie"Matthew SavilleAlice Bell27 October 2011 (2011-10-27)
Things with Connie and Hector haven't been the same since the slap. She decides to confront Hector but his reaction propels her into a decision that will have serious consequences.
5"Rosie"Robert ConnollyCate Shortland3 November 2011 (2011-11-03)
Rosie's outrage has been building since the slap and now finally she is given her day in court. The friends from the BBQ gather again but this time under very different circumstances.
6"Manolis"Tony AyresKris Mrksa10 November 2011 (2011-11-10)
Struggling to understand the selfishness and greed of his children's generation, Manolis watches in alarm as the slap divides his family. He calls on a special bond to try to put things right.
7"Aisha"Robert ConnollyEmily Ballou17 November 2011 (2011-11-17)
The slap has taken a toll on Hector and Aisha's relationship, or maybe it has just exposed the issues that were already there. They go away together to try to restore their marriage, but their holiday does not turn out as planned.
8"Richie"Tony AyresBrendan Cowell24 November 2011 (2011-11-24)
Lies, betrayal and adultery all come to a head as people are forced to make decisions about their lives and behaviour. When Richie gets caught in the crossfire, he looks to a desperate solution.



The Slap was originally screened by ABC1 each Thursday at 8:30 pm from 6 October 2011.[5] Repeats followed on the preceding Friday nights on ABC2.[6]


  • In the United Kingdom, this series first aired on BBC Four each Thursday at 10 pm from 27 October 2011 with repeats following late Saturday nights.[7]
  • In Poland, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Turkey and Asia, this series first aired on Sundance Channel each Thursday at 10 pm from 12 April 2012.[8][9]
  • In the United States, this series first aired on Audience Network each Wednesday at 10 pm E/P (9 pm C) from 15 February 2012.[10][11][12]
  • In Ontario, Canada, this series first aired on TVO each Monday at 10 pm from 4 June 2012 with repeats following Friday nights at 10 pm.[13][14]
  • In Brazil, this series has been acquired by Globosat, premiere on 11 September 2012, at 10:00 pm.[15]
  • In New Zealand, this series first aired on TV3 each Wednesday at 8:30 pm from 11 July 2012.[16]
  • In Israel, the series first aired from late September 2012 on Hot's video on demand service and will be shown later on the Hot 3 channel.
  • In Sweden, this series first aired on SVT2 each Sunday at 8:00 pm from 13 January 2013. The title in Swedish is Örfilen.[17]
  • In Norway, this series first aired on NRK2 on Thursdays at 9:30 pm from 15 May 2014, with re-runs on NRK 1 on Tuesdays at 11:45 pm from 14 October 2014. The title in Norwegian is "Et slag i ansiktet" (A slap in the face).[15]
  • In Finland, this series has been acquired by Yle and aired on Mondays at 9:30 pm from 11 November 2013. The title in Finnish is Läimäys.[15][18]
  • In Iceland, the series aired on RÚV on Mondays at 9:00 pm from 4 March 2013. The Icelandic title is Löðrungurinn.[19]
  • In France and Germany, the series first aired on Arte, each Thursday at 8:15 pm from 5 September 2013.[20]


Critical receptionEdit

The series received generally positive reviews. Holly Byrnes of The Daily Telegraph said after viewing the first episode that The Slap is "arguably the best Australian drama produced this year",[21] and Luke Buckmaster of Crikey commented after seeing previews, "The dramas and interpersonal relationships are engrossing from the get-go, the story like a David Williamson script that actually has bite, tension and doesn't pander to racial or cultural stereotypes. The Slap presents a view of middle class multicultural Australia rarely seen in film and television."[22] David Knox of TV Tonight also praised the series, writing after episode one, "I was completely hooked by its ability to present three-dimensional characters on the screen and its strength in telling an urban story. So confident are the sum of the parts that frankly it feels like this will only get better. The Slap is one of the bravest dramas of the year."[23] Yet, Clem Bastow of The Sydney Morning Herald had the opposite view, writing the program contains, "listless direction and lifeless editing (huge pauses between great swathes of dialogue), an adaptation that squishes large passages of the narrative into bite-sized chunks (witness Hector and Connie's divebomb from flirty glances and kissing to Connie suddenly deciding he was repellent), and the actors wandering around in the middle of it all."[24] Despite this earlier negative review, the Herald subsequently gave The Slap its "Couch Potato" award for best Australian drama of the year.[25] Kit MacFarlane in Metro offered further negative evaluation of the series, finding that "despite a strong dramatic foundation, The Slap is ultimately an exercise in announcing drama rather than exploring it, presenting a scenario drenched in forced excess, sensationalism and artistic posturing" and describing it as "around seven hours of soap opera masquerading as earnest drama." MacFarlane goes on to suggest that its critical popularity might point to "a regression in the ability to analyse screen texts and narrative nuances" and that "The Slap's themes and cultural ideas have been explored countless times before in a variety of different ways."[26]

Viewer responseEdit

The initial episode gained viewing figures of nearly 1 million people, winning its timeslot, when it was first shown on ABC1.[27] Later, excluding figures for the final episode, the ABC announced that The Slap was averaging 952,000 metro (five main capital city) viewers on ABC1 and a further 232,000 viewers on ABC2 with 14% of viewing as Timeshifted (watched later through various PVR devices). It has recorded 566,000 plays via ABC iview and 204,000 plays via the official website.[28]

Series ratingsEdit

Episode Title Original airdate Viewers Nightly rank
1 "Hector" 6 October 2011 0.946[29] 5
2 "Anouk" 13 October 2011 0.912[30] 7
3 "Harry" 20 October 2011 0.858[31] 7
4 "Connie" 27 October 2011 0.811[31] 9
5 "Rosie" 3 November 2011 0.915[31] 7
6 "Manolis" 10 November 2011 0.906[31] 6
7 "Aisha" 17 November 2011 0.832[32] 7
8 "Richie" 24 November 2011 0.831[33] 8

Awards and nominationsEdit

Diana Glenn pictured with her AACTA Award
Year Award Category Recipient(s) Outcome
AACTA Awards[34][35][36][37]
Best Telefeature, Mini Series or Short Run Series The Slap Won
Best Lead Actor Alex Dimitriades Won
Best Lead Actor Jonathan LaPaglia Nominated
Best Guest or Supporting Actress – Drama Diana Glenn Won
Best Director Matthew Saville Won
Best Director Jessica Hobbs Nominated
Best Screenplay Brendan Cowell Won
Best Screenplay Kris Mrksa Nominated
Best Male Performance Lex Marinos Nominated
Australian Directors' Guild Awards[38]
Best Direction in a TV Drama Series Matt Saville Won
Australian Writers' Guild Awards[39]
Best Television Mini-Series Adaptation The Slap Won
BAFTA Television Awards[40]
Best International Programme The Slap Nominated
Equity Awards[41]
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Television Movie or Miniseries Cast Won
Logie Awards[42][43]
Most Outstanding Drama Series, Miniseries or Telemovie The Slap Won
Most Outstanding Actor Alex Dimitriades Nominated
Most Outstanding Actress Essie Davis Nominated
Most Outstanding Actress Melissa George Won
Monte-Carlo Television Festival[44]
Outstanding International Producer (Drama Series) Michael McMahon, Tony Ayres, Helen Bowden Nominated
Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series Blake Davis Nominated
Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series Anthony Hayes Nominated
Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series Melissa George Nominated
Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series Sophie Okonedo Nominated
Screen Music Awards[45][46]
Best Music for a Mini-Series or Telemovie Antony Partos Nominated
Best Soundtrack Album Michael Lira, Jono Ma, Antony Partos, Irine Vela Won
Best Television Theme Antony Partos Won
Virgin Media TV Awards[47]
Best Actress Melissa George Nominated

TV-related merchandiseEdit

The Region 4 DVD and Blu-ray was released on 1 December 2011.[48][49][50]

The Region 2 DVD was released on 9 January 2012.[51]

The accompanying paperback book was released on 24 August 2011: Tsiolkas, Christos (2011). The Slap. Allen & Unwin. ISBN 978-1-74237-560-1.[52]

U.S. adaptationEdit

An eight-episode adaptation of The Slap premiered on NBC on 12 February 2015,[53] in which Melissa George reprised her role of Rosie.


  1. ^ Brady, Nicole (28 May 2009). "The Slap gets nod for small screen". The Age. Retrieved 28 September 2011.
  2. ^ High profile cast join The Slap - Inside Film: Film and Television Industry News and Issues for Australian Content Creators
  3. ^ Dimitriades, Lowe and Hayes to star in The Slap | Encore Magazine Archived 8 January 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Slap adaptation will be awesome: Cowell | Encore Magazine Archived 4 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine
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  6. ^ "ABC2 Programming Airdate: The Slap (episode one)". ABC Television Publicity. Retrieved 30 September 2011.
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  12. ^ Munn, Patrick (1 February 2012). "DIRECTV's Audience Network Acquires The Slap and The Shadow Line". TVWise. Retrieved 1 February 2012.
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  17. ^ "Örfilen". Retrieved 21 May 2014.
  18. ^ YLE Teema   (31 July 2013). "Läimäys (16) | YLE Teema |". Retrieved 21 May 2014.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  19. ^ [1] Archived 16 March 2013 at the National and University Library of Iceland
  20. ^ "La Gifle / The Slap – (diff. du 5 au 26 sept.) – Série Fiction « ARTE PRO - Professionnels de l'audiovisuel". Retrieved 21 May 2014.
  21. ^ Byrnes, Holly (6 October 2011). "Christos Tsiolkas' acclaimed novel The Slap on ABC1 is arguably best Australian drama of year". Daily Telegraph. Sydney. Retrieved 27 October 2011.
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  31. ^ a b c d "The Slap: Episode guide". TV Tonight. Retrieved 31 October 2017.
  32. ^ "Thursday 17 November 2017". TV Tonight. 18 November 2011. Retrieved 31 October 2017.
  33. ^ "Thursday 24 November 2017". TV Tonight. 25 November 2011. Retrieved 31 October 2017.
  34. ^ "Inaugural Samsung AACTA Awards nominees" (PDF). AACTA Awards. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 May 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2012.
  35. ^ "Vote for the AACTA award winners". The Advertiser. News Limited. 17 January 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2012.
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  44. ^ Sperling, Daniel (5 April 2012). "'Downton Abbey', 'Game of Thrones' nominated for Monte Carlo TV awards". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 25 April 2012.
  45. ^ "Nominations". Screen Music Awards. Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
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  51. ^ "Revolver Entertainment: The Slap DVD". Peter Noble PR. Retrieved 19 November 2011.[permanent dead link]
  52. ^ "ABC Shop: The Slap Book". ABC Shop Online. Archived from the original on 31 October 2011. Retrieved 6 October 2011.
  53. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (25 July 2014). "Peter Sarsgaard & Mary-Louise Parker To Star in NBC Miniseries 'The Slap'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 9 August 2014.

External linksEdit