Wentworth’s Pamela Rabe on fans and playing Joan ‘The Freak’ Ferguson
“Sometimes fans tremble a little when they meet me,” she says. “They get a bit scared. I think they’re shocked, because they say I’m so nice – which, of course, I am.” [Laughs]
Pamela is astounded by the letters she gets from Wentworth fans in the armed forces in the US, from viewers in Moscow, Sweden and South Africa. They let her know what the world of Wentworth means to them.
“It’s got catnip in it, that show,” Pamela says of the acclaimed prison drama. “People get absolutely obsessed, they tell their friends about it, and the audience for the show just keeps growing.”
Pamela vividly recalls the moment she was offered the role of The Freak, who entered the series as the new governor of Wentworth prison in season two.
Because she tends to be more of what she calls a “theatre animal”, Pamela doesn’t do a lot of television.
The timetables by which theatre and television are made are “completely incompatible”, she says. On this occasion, Pamela had a conflicting theatre role, but was able to get out of it.
“It felt like the stars had aligned,” she says of being asked to join Wentworth. “I was excited they would consider me a good fit for that show.
“I naively went in, but little did I know all the places I would go.”