12th May 1984
The Roly-Poly nude stage actress the critics called ‘brave’ in steaming gets a TV chance in Prisoner.
Actress Genevieve Lemon, who frolicked nude on stage in the hit show Steaming, will don prison garb for her next role.
In Network 10’s Prisoner series, Genevieve, 24, will play the part of Marlene Warren (nicknamed Rabbit), “a likeable fool who does everything for fun”.
“She’s a practical joker whose jokes backfire and get her into trouble,” Genevieve said.
“But her comedy is a cover-up which takes her future away from reality. Really, she’s just frightened but laughs at everything to avoid accepting responsibility for her actions.
“She’s never really aced up to what she’s done.
“She seems insensitive, rather than cruel or malicious.”
Marelene is in Wentworth for manslaughter, the result of an idiotic prank rather than a calculated act.
While travelling on a train with friends, she throws stones at cars in transit. One stone hits a car’s windscreen causing the driver to hit a telephone pole and be killed.
“While she’s in Wentworth, the gravity of her crime is brought home to her as she’s locked away with people who are cold-blooded murderers,” Genevieve said.
Oddly, the role presents an opportunity for Genevieve to explore her passion for comedy.
“I love laughing at funny things, especially the Monty Python-style of humour,” she said. “I think it’s important to be able to laugh at the ridiculous.
“In some ways, Marlene is very like me. I enjoy being funny, too.
“Sometimes I can be very loud with it, but it’s a defence, because I don’t like to give a lot away.
“I’m certainly not insensitive and I try to contain my humour because you can’t get too close to the bone.
“But in Steaming, I could let it all out. The funnier I looked, the better it was. I honestly wasn’t nervous about appearing nude.
“It was a fabulous experience. I knew people would be laughing at me, but it was the warmth and it all felt very exciting.”
Genevieve played the role of Dawn, a retarded girl. The show featured the lives of seven women who met in a Turkish bath house.
“It was the most nerve-racking for the other women who had good bodes and wanted to make sure they looked good,” Genevieve recalled.
“But because I was overweight, I knew I wouldn’t look good, and it didn’t worry me.
“I’m still overweight and would like to be thinner, but I’m not obsessed about it – just that I’d like to play roles that seem to belong to thinner types.
“I’d also like to feel more attractive. Doesn’t everyone?
“I have done exercises to get fit, but I’m not doing them any more.
“I’ve got lazy and don’t seem to have the time, but I have to do something – I think it would make me feel better, too.”
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