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Inconceivable’s Carine Rous intends to show humanity of her character, Rachel

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Inconceivable’s Carine Rous takes on the complex character of Rachel, whose actions have led viewers to question if they are on the side of ethics or emotion.

Inconceivable’s lead actress, Carine Rous, portrays the character of Rachel, who set off a domino effect of consequences for the people around her after stealing a baby. Carine has been able to deliver Rachel’s warped logic in a way that has made viewers sympathise with her and understand where she is coming from. In an interview with JustNje on Friday, 9 October 2020, Carine explained that she intends to show the humanity of Rachel, and hopes that the country will pick sides between her and Marieke.

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

I have received such positive feedback… Mainly, people are saying that they are completely intrigued by the story, and they feel proudly South African when they watch it because the standard of the show is of international quality. At this stage, the public approaches me in shopping malls to tell me that they feel bad because they want my character, Rachel, to keep the baby. They express how torn they feel that the character has done something so wrong (stealing someone else’s baby), but that they feel that she is actually a better mom for the baby.

2. Rachel has done something that is so outrageous, yet somehow, you are able to make viewers sympathise with her. Was that the intention of the character? 

I really wanted to show the humanity of the character. Nobody is perfect, we are all flawed and we all have that in common. I wanted people to feel empathy for her. In order to do that, I needed to not judge the character, but merely portray her with empathy; and my main job as an actor is to portray the humanity of the character. The audience need not agree with her decision, but they need to understand how she has arrived at that decision. The intention of that character was always to divide the country’s audience into team Rachel and team Marieke, and for people to really start talking and perhaps feel divided about moral issues (stealing a baby is wrong, but would you intentionally give a baby back to someone if you had all the information i.e. to someone who is struggling with alcoholism?). So in that regard, I feel like we’ve achieved the intention of the character.

3. What was the most difficult part about playing Rachel? 

Shooting intense and emotional scenes amidst COVID -19 was very difficult. Emotional scenes already make you feel vulnerable as an actor, so when you throw an actual life-threatening virus into the mix (because as an actor, you take your mask off for scenes) the stakes are much higher. But this series and this character were incredible to be a part of. As difficult as it was, it was incredibly fulfilling to portray such a complex female character. It is a role you dream of playing when you are studying drama, so when it comes along, you just say ‘thank you.’

4. How did you mentally prepare for this role? 

I made sure that I had a good support structure in place, family, faith and friends have carried me through hard times and great times. I was able to break away from the character after every day’s shoot, and that is a blessing.

5. Would you categorize Rachel as the bad guy, or is she someone who is severely emotionally damaged? 

I would say she is a woman whose heart was broken when her baby died, and that she made some poor choices after experiencing trauma. She represents someone who seems normal, but due to circumstances and bad decisions, she leads herself down a bad path (i.e. she is responsible for making poor decisions and she doesn’t play the victim).

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

They are all characters to be admired… James Bishop. I am fascinated by his character. There is so much more to him and he is a massive reason as to why Rachel makes the decisions she does.

Sayushka Naidoo
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