PHOTO: Dick Slider: Instagram character turning Australia’s most controversial industry into comedy
Dick Slider, a satirical persona crafted by Richard Carwin, a self-proclaimed ‘eight-time world champion of real estate,’ has gained a dedicated following on Instagram for his humorous take on the real estate industry. Interestingly, his most ardent admirers happen to be other real estate agents. While Richard Carwin is a real estate agent based in Sydney, he is more widely recognized in the city’s eastern suburbs as his alter-ego, Dick Slider.
About five years ago, Mr. Carwin brought to life the character of Dick Slider. After working in the real estate field for several years, he decided to transform the countless amusing anecdotes he’d encountered in his profession into Instagram sketches.
In his own words, “Dick Slider is a strangely familiar figure who simultaneously pays homage to the real estate world with a tongue-in-cheek twist and delves into the world of larger-than-life, flawed individuals.” He further elucidates that Dick Slider encapsulates the highs, lows, humor, and drama that he has witnessed in his professional journey.
“Dick Slider is the guy you turn to when you want to market a haunted house as a ‘vintage living experience.’ He truly believes in the fantasies he peddles. He’s a salesperson at heart but also a human with his own ups and downs, simply striving to achieve his version of the Australian Dream.”
Dick Slider revels in the limelight, according to Mr. Carwin, and employs a feigned American accent to distinguish himself from the sea of real estate professionals. His videos showcase humorous encounters, like slowing down when passing an ambulance next to a wealthy older lady’s house or handing his business card to a bickering married couple in a restaurant. In one video, he explains, “In my career, I follow the rule of three Ds – death, divorce, and debt.”
Initial reactions to Dick Slider in the real estate industry were mixed, with Mr. Carwin acknowledging that the character cost him a job on a couple of occasions. While some appreciated the comedic take on the intense field, others felt it hit too close to home. Nevertheless, over time, Dick Slider has become an unofficial influencer among Australia’s real estate agents, with the majority of his 14,000 followers belonging to the industry.
Mr. Carwin believes that real estate agents are drawn to Dick Slider because he provides an exaggerated but endearing reflection of their profession. He pokes fun at the job in a way that is both relatable and charming. Furthermore, Mr. Carwin suggests that there is a sense of relief among real estate agents, knowing that no matter how challenging their day was, at least they are not in Dick Slider’s shoes. He serves as comic relief, a mirror, and a cautionary tale, all rolled into one.
The 2023 Ethics Index reveals that real estate agents are the least trusted professionals in Australia, with their behavior perceived as ‘somewhat unethical.’ Simultaneously, real estate reality shows are highly popular in the country, reflecting the widespread interest in the field. Nonetheless, there is a lack of comedic and satirical content focusing on the real estate industry, according to Victoria Carwin, a producer and co-creator of Dick Slider. Mrs. Carwin manages Scenario Productions, a Sydney-based production company and talent agency.
The Carwins are currently working on a TV series centered around Dick Slider and have set new goals for the character. In the meantime, Dick Slider has become a ‘homemade celebrity,’ frequently recognized by locals in Bondi, Sydney, whether Mr. Carwin is catching a wave or buying groceries.