Review: Wentworth, season 8

Robbie Magasiva, Kate Atkinson and Bernard Curry in Wentworth

Wentworth (in some locales Wentworth Prison), season 8, is available on Netflix US now. In this season, a rash of new characters entered the prison to create trouble and chaos. Seasons 8 and 9, already set, are supposed to be the final seasons for this long running Australian women’s prison series.

The situation in Wentworth Prison at the start of the season is unsettled. There was ‘the siege’ at the end of season 7. The writing technique that pits women against women, thrives on rumors and false information, and keeps everyone stirred up remains the same, no matter the season. There’s always someone believing bad advice from someone with an ulterior motive.

Jane Hall in Wentworth

A new administrator Ann Reynolds (Jane Hall) is there to make money by bringing in high risk prisoners and cutting back on expenses at the same time. She micromanages the new governor Will Jackson (Robbie Magasiva) so badly the place almost grinds to a halt.

Vera Bennett (Kate Atkinson) is home with her baby when the season starts. She comes back because Ann promises to keep Will on as governor. Vera becomes head of the new money-making phone bank operation.

Jake Stewart (Bernard Curry), the father of Vera’s baby is turning into a pretty good dad. He’s still a guard. Linda Miles (Jacqueline Brennan) is a guard as well, although she’s turned mean.

Kate Box and Zoe Terakes in Wentworth

The first newcomers to the prison population are Lou (Kate Box) and Reb (Zoe Terakes). They are a couple. Lou takes care of Reb, who is a transgender man. Zoe Terakes describes themselves on Instagram as a trans masc prince. This is an improvement over the cis man who played the part of Maxine for years. Weirdly, Boomer (Katrina Milosevic) goes off on Reb and acts like she never had a trans best friend. Lou and Reb do just about anything to raise money for Reb’s top surgery.

Vivienne Awosoga in Wentworth

A woman arrested for hacking and releasing sensitive government secrets is in Wentworth waiting for the Americans to pick her up. She’s Judy (Vivienne Awosoga). Boy, is she trouble. Allie (Kate Jenkinson), the top dog, likes her and trusts her. Big mistake.

 Pamela Rabe in Wentworth

Pamela Rabe is back. For most of the season she’s a meek and mild amnesiac who doesn’t answer to Joan Ferguson. Vera, Will and Jake are all terrified she’ll remember who buried her alive a couple of seasons ago.

Speaking of past seasons, I really like the constant references and reminders of past seasons and former prisoners. (Except for Boomer’s transgender blip.) This series stays consistent from season to season. If the characters change it is for reasons that make sense. If there’s a reference to something like a former top dog, it fits into the story perfectly.

Marta Dusseldorp in Wentworth

Late in the season, when we think we have the new characters and situations all figured out, Marta Dusseldorp as Sheila shows up. She is connected to a cult where a mass murder and fire killed everyone. And the cult is connected to people inside the prison who aren’t happy to see Sheila at all.

The season ends abruptly on two big cliffhangers. Ready for season 9?

The women who directed in season 8 include Fiona Banks, Beck Cole, and Corrie Chen.

Here’s the season 8 poster if you feel like pinning something on Pinterest. Nicole da Silva is on the poster but does not appear in this season. Other faces you see like Leah Purcell, Rarriwuy Hick, and Susie Porter are definitely part of the action in season 8.

Wentworth season 8 poster

Here’s the season 8 preview.

Have you stuck with Wentworth over the years, as I have? What did you think of season 8?

16 thoughts on “Review: Wentworth, season 8”

  1. I can’t wait to watch it. The only character that I never liked and has turned into top dog is Allie? I don’t know if it’s the actress who is so blah and uncharismatic or just this meek character. Most likely a combination. They’ve written off some of the best characters ever starting with Bee. I’m sooo glad that Joan will be back!

    1. What a disappointment! All the good characters are gone an season 8 made no sense. They should have kept all the original people. It sucks now! An I’m sad!

  2. Allie looks too put together with her expensive haircut and botoxed-looking face. Not realistic at all, far too pampered looking. The rest of the prisoners look pretty realistic, though Marie also should lay off the botox for a more authentic, believable look. Looking overly coifed affects my ability to be fully absorbed into the show.

    This season was pretty good, but not as good as past seasons. Got tired of Jeb’s story. Hoping Season 9 is back to early seasons’ quality.

  3. The last scene of S8 will haunt me. Cruel! I wish they had not done what they did (no spoiler!) … good catch on Boomer’s former friend Maxine, but I thought her qs were more about what Lou would do, not about Rs progress. Some characters are upsetting from the get-go – Lou was one for me. I may not watch S9. They gutted Ferguson – and I guessed what the last moment would be, so obvious – and the storyline was very abrupt. Going one way, suddenly spun on a dime to go another. Vera’s fear was way overplayed. Not blaming the actress, who is great, blaming the writing. A new admin who takes away all the safety precautions and tells things to a prisoner? Not believable. I have such an anxiety about breathing – the two scenes with B and JF ruined me for sleep. Have to turn on stupid game shows to be able to take my mind off meandering there.

  4. The worst season of all! I am such a fan and I was truly looking forward to seeing the continuation of this exciting series. “Such a disappointment!’ – to use the quote from this show seems more than justified.

  5. Chelsea Lynn King

    Worst season!!!! It didn’t even end right? Is allie dead? None of the scenes had any closure. Super disappointed

    1. They totally ran out of ideas-They could have done so much with the great Pamela Rabe as Ferguson and some others-the music was blah-some heavy scenes however…I binged it all in one day-the end was satisfactory….

  6. By the 8th episode I guessed what would’ve happened. From the moment they showed Joan sitting on the couch alone. I’m tired of characters I’m beginning to like (always loved Bea) die off, each were horrific, not to mention. However, I liked the season overall. To be honest, it will take me a while before I could watch that show again. That last scene…

    1. The last scene was just ok…again, they could have done so much more with the great Pamela Rabe as Ferguson and Allie-and the great Boomer…there were some heavy scenes from Lou to Marie-to Allie-Vera but I could sense they just ran out of ideas Bummer.

  7. I struggled with this season. I think there were a lot of storylines that were almost “time wasters”. When the guard was suspended for hitting Ferguson (After 2 previous write ups), and then she just shows back up to work basically…. what was the point of all that? I found the Ferguson storyline super dry… especially with all the anticipation in the first few episodes… and the season 7 season finale and then it was blah. I was bored of her by the end. I wish the writers had her slip up mid-season and then Vera would’ve struggled trying to prove that she was faking it all. I hope season 9 is better!

  8. It’s split into two parts that’s why it didn’t end properly. Season 9 is actually season 8 part 2 and is the final season. I for one aren’t worried. Rita is gonna end up back inside and will clean house, ending the run with her as top dog like in Cell Block H. What’s interesting is how will the freak show her hand? What’s going on with the female Julian Asange and will Reb get her pecker??

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