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Anel Alexander sympathises with her character’s moral dilemma on Inconceivable

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Anel Alexander portrays Marieke Meyer on M-Net’s Inconceivable, who is thrust into a morally difficult situation involving keeping the secret that her best friend stole a baby.

Anel Alexander’s character on Inconceivable, Marieke Meyer, showcases a loyal friend and medical professional, whose life is turned upside down after the actions of her best friend, Rachel, played by Carine Rous. Marieke’s loyalty to her friend ends up getting her into a lot of trouble, as the fate of her practice hangs in the balance when Rachel threatens to tell the truth. In an interview with JustNje on Friday, 9 October 2020, Anel Alexander admitted that she sympathises with Marieke, and completely understands why she initially chose to keep Rachel’s damaging secret.

1. How have you felt the public’s reaction has been to the show as a whole?

I think it has been very satisfying, in terms of the fact that people seem to really be in two different camps. Carine and I, in the beginning, were joking about how viewers are either going to be #TeamMarieke or #TeamRachel, but people seem to be divided very much down the middle. I think that is great and a sign of good writing – when you really make people think about this moral dilemma of “Is it right or is it wrong?” I have been very surprised by the public’s reaction, and I think there is enough hating and enough loving on both sides – which is exactly what you want.

2. Do you understand Marieke’s point of view when it comes to keeping Rachel’s secret?

I do… I think she is in an unbelievably difficult position, and I think that Marieke is such a loyal friend. One of her best characteristics is that she is so loyal, and it is the same characteristic that gets her into so much trouble. It is her loyalty to her friend that sets this inconceivable act into motion. So, I do understand, and to think that Rachel really threatened her family and her job, which is like a family to her because she cares about the people that work for her. Marieke is just being put in this absolutely impossible situation, which I do think, in the beginning, she truly believes that she can convince Rachel to do the right thing, and then the situation completely spirals out of control.

3. You have been able to perfectly portray a character who is morally and ethically conflicted, how are you able to convey that?

That is a very big compliment. I’m older now, and as one gets older, you do start to realise that everything isn’t always black and white. An issue isn’t always as one-sided as we think it is, and that’s what I really do love about the story of Inconceivable, it’s that it really makes you as the viewer think, “Well, what would I have done in that situation?”, a situation where the right thing to do is so obvious, but becomes very complicated when the human element is brought into it. I think I really tried to tap into that thing of putting myself in someone else’s shoes and walking a mile in them before I could judge.

4. In what way do you relate to Marieke and in what way do you differ?

I would hope that I am as loyal a friend as she is. I do also really love my job, and I am also a little bit of a workaholic. [Our differences are] I would have been more decisive and would have acted quicker. I would like to think that I wouldn’t have let this situation get as out of control as it did, but I also know that things are never clear cut and it is hard.

5. If you could play any other character on Inconceivable, who would it be?

Funny story – I originally auditioned for Rachel. From the character brief, I thought in my personal capacity, I was more like her. I am more of an A-type personality and perfectionist. But when I saw what Carine Rous did with the role, I [must admit], I would gladly bow out and step away to you Queen Rachel, because she just nailed it.

Sayushka Naidoo
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