A guy, a girl and a dog share sweet chemistry in Aussie sitcom Colin from Accounts

A pair of rom-com leads who are actually together IRL help make new Aussie sitcom Colin From Accounts a breezy and broad experience. Eliza Janssen reckons the show has plenty of potential.

The inciting incident of BINGE’s new Australian comedy series Colin From Accounts hits fast, before we even get to the title card. It’s hard to say who’s to blame for the catalysing car accident: chaotic medical student Ash (Harriet Dyer) crossing the road, or Gordon (Patrick Brammall), the micro-brewery owner whom she distracts with a spontaneous flash of her boob as they intersect?

Either way, in his distraction his car knocks down a scruffy, seemingly stray dog, and so both strangers are inextricably tied together by newly imposed dog-sitting responsibilities. How much time, effort, and midnight walks in the rain to wait for the beast to poop do these people owe each other? It’s complicated. Their vet says that the pup “could live for 12 years. Are you prepared to be complicated with this girl for 12 years?”

From there, the manic accidents in Colin From Accounts stay constant, with sudden work emergencies and dying acquaintances cropping up in a somewhat haphazard and repetitive manner. To be fair, the entire tone and message of the show focuses on the striking chaos of mundane adult life: how all we can ever hope for is to spend our time with people whose messiness complements our own. And at the very least, a pair of lead performers who are actually married to each other IRL make that anxiety-ridden romantic connection something worth tuning in for.

You might recognise Dyer as the poor sis who got her throat slit in that shocking restaurant scene in The Invisible Man. Scripting and starring in this project, she nails the archetypal klutzy rom-com girl part. We understand her hectic qualities better when we meet her domineering mum, a standout supporting character played by Helen Thomson with perfect boomer prissiness.

When she first meets Gordon, he’s saved in her phone as “Dog Car Guy”: she’s labelled “Ashley $12k” on his, a reminder of how much money the broke student doctor owes him for their injured dog’s adorable new wheels. But soon the two lost souls are truly depending on one another, clowning on his disastrous dates with comfy in-jokes in one especially sweet scene.

We all know these two are going to jump each other’s bones at some point, arguably right from the performer’s producer/writer credits and off-screen relationship status alone. So it’s quite impressive that their meet-cute milestones can still feel surprising: an impulsive kiss at the pub, a botched attempt at sex before he remembers that he’s not medically allowed to get hard after a urethra exam earlier that day…

When things go wrong in Colin From Accounts—and boy, do they go wrong often—it’s normally a grab for some pretty low-hanging comedic fruit. Like the dick joke above, multiple scenes of Ash pooping or pissing in the wrong place, characters with silly names, or something really inappropriate being said by/to a delicate old person. The show is more incisive in its jabs at millennial singledom, such as the unicycle in Gordon’s trendy home that marks him as a desperate bachelor.

More than enough of these broad jokes work, though, especially in the sparky and promising pilot that packs in more gags than gentle Aussie dramedies like Offspring or Please Like Me. If there’s a season two on the way, we can count on Ash and Gordon’s ongoing, awkward love story to bump and crash into plenty more obstacles.

Especially if the scruffy dog they’ve been saddled with continues to wheel along as their living embodiment of life’s chaotic, karmic curveballs. Every relationship should have a scruffy little mascot of cosmic disorder, really.