In September 1984, Rowena Wallace taped her last scene with 'Sons and Daughters'. However in 1987, Rowena returned for 10 weeks but "the thing is, I don't return as the old character, you see." Story editor Bevan Lee had said in 1984, "We're going to keep the audience guessing. Her life will be in jeopardy for some time. It will be better than the 'Perils of Pauline'. She's such a bitch, we want mayhem around her departure." Not long after taping her final scene, Rowena, who was Australian television's most-wanted actress at the time, began working on her new role in the PBL Productions of 'Glass Babies'.
Inspired by Russell Scott's 1981 book, 'The Body As Property', the 2-part Australian mini-series 'Glass Babies' sought to examine the controversial subject of new fertilization science, or in-vitro fertilization (IVF). Shot on location in the Chateau Tahbilk Estate in Victoria, 'Glass Babies' went on air in Australia in April 1985. One critic complained, "'Glass Babies' is almost as drawn out as 9 months of pregnancy (for a 4-hour program)."
Also starring Deborra-Lee Furness, reviewer Geraldine Walsh remarked, "One would imagine that the in-vitro fertilization program would be, by its very nature, an abundant source for drama scenarios. But somebody at PBL couldn't leave well enough alone and had to superimpose on the IVF program and surrogacy an Australian version of 'Dynasty' and 'Dallas.'" As a result, "a valiant attempt is made to explain the technicalities of the IVF program but the moral and legal questions IVF and surrogacy raise are swamped by the melodrama of the series and are looked at superficially."
'Sons and Daughters' ran on Australian television between 1982 and 1987. The show centered on "an everyday story of family life in 2 cities", the Hamiltons of Sydney and the Palmers of Melbourne. Rowena Wallace played "Australia's answer to J.R." In 1982 and 1983, the Logie Award winner spoke to Prue McSween of 'TV Week', "I can say here and now that I'm not like Pat at all. We've created this monster now and everybody is intrigued to see what happens to her. Where do you go from here? I don't know.
"It's an interesting challenge of keeping it up over a long period of time. I know people do the same thing on stage if they have heavy, emotional scenes to play night after night, but somehow I feel it's a little different when it's the same thing that you are doing and you're working up to it from a beginning, a middle to an end. You work up to this high point, then it's usually resolved at the end of the play, so it's a kind of entirety, its made its point and it's finished, it's resolved itself. But in a series situation, these things just keep going on and on and on.
"Speaking as an actress, the exposure that I've had and the opportunities the character has given me for variety in performance have been terrific. It will be very interesting to see what happens. I'd love to crack a film one of these days. It's in the lap of the gods. She's fairly mercurial and changeable, so it's also been difficult, but I suppose any character that is interesting to play, or is a challenge to play is hard.
"(Patricia) is the most continually divisive character I've ever played and that's simply because of the practicalities of it all. She's on every week, so she is doing it continually. I think she gets away with far too much, and the other characters give her so much that it is ludicrous. No one would get away with that much. She never lets up and she's more complex because with something like 'Water Under The Bridge' (1980) the character of Honor had a beginning, middle and an end. But with Patricia you never know what the writers are going to come up with. She is limitless. In fact, I can't imagine what she's going to be doing next, but I think I might have to leave the country?
"She's a very neurotic woman who can't get her life in order, and she has obsessions about things. I understand these things and know they are aspects of human nature that exist in all of us to some degree. We all grapple with them, but in her they're larger than life. I couldn’t cope with being a woman like her – it would be exhausting and very sad. Her mind must be in terrible turmoil at times. God, we talk about her as if she really exists!
"She is interesting to play because there is the challenge of keeping it up over a long period of time. She tends to be so erratic in her actions and her thoughts so for me, as an actor, to keep something solidly as some kind of continuum is a challenge. The complexities do make it interesting because the more you have to deal with, the more that's on your plate and the more you have to try to make a picture out of it, the more interesting it becomes for you.
"I loved playing Diana Von Flugel in 'Outbreak Of Love' (1981). I had that wonderful book to work from, the rather spiritual thing about Australia and Australians, one's country, the roots. It was fantastic because the character was so tied to those thoughts. I loved playing Honor in 'Water Under The Bridge' because although she was a bitch who was cold, determined and steely, she was a well-planned one. I don't think Patricia is like that. She is far more mercurial. The role of Anne Griffin in 'Prisoner' (1980 and 1981) was another I loved. She was quite mad and a departure from anything I've played before. It was interesting because I realized there is such a fine line between what we call reality, sanity and the other side. It was a bit freaky but I loved it."