The writer, Millen Baird, developed the script based on his personal Outward Bound experiences, and – working with fellow creators of Auckland Daze and Find Me a Maori Bride – pulled together a stellar cast of well-known New Zealand actors to deliver the dry, off-the-cuff wit that characterises the show. Filming was done in and around the Outward Bound school in Anakiwa over a 12-day period in February 2015, with Outward Bound instructors on hand to give advice and step in as extras when needed.
“My first experience of Outward Bound in 2001 was a gift from my parents with a gentle word in my ear saying ‘you’d better start doing something’,” says Millen. “It kind of set off some sort of light inside me and I took a lot away from it.”
The story’s lead character, Darryl, is also on a road to discovery after his long-distance running ambitions collapse in the closing stages of the Taranaki Mountain to Surf Marathon. His obsession to win the next marathon drives him to Outward Bound, where his interactions with a mixed-bag of personalities make the comedy series the story it is today.
Darryl has been an ambitious project, but I did it for my love of Outward Bound – I love everything they stand for.
“Outward Bound has a huge alumnus and each person takes away their own story" says Millen. "This story is Darryl’s story.”