Sunday, April 27, 2014

56th TV Week Logies 2014

Scott Cam is still talking. Flash a light at the back of the room, pull the microphone down. Anything. Shut up.

And finally he mentions his wife who is a "corker". She is a hard worker "holding down the fort" unfortunately for Scott no mention of her appearance. let me remind you Scotty that you blushed after kissing Kylie.

He will renovate the trophy into a bottle opener.

The Richard Wilkins Muppet is back with some creepy uncle innuendo to close the show, with still 29minutes left on the official website before it starts. Spoilers!

Nothing says Australian entertainment like American hiphop as MKTO play out of tune over the credits.

Good night.

11.06pm Gold Logie
Footage of Kylie from when she won Logies 25 years ago when her accent was nasally and Australian bogan. Now it's...its...what the hell is that accent. Show us your cue cards, does Australian television not have an auto cue?

And the Gold goes to Scott Cam he does a hell of a creating drama and interest where there is none as amateurs renovate houses.

Still 49 minutes on the website until the awards commence.

Scott was hewing for a good night with his wife, until he mentioned how it was a good night because he got a kiss from Kylie. He also announced he was sober. After the Kylie kissing remark you might wish you had drunk a bit, to provide some sort of excuse. Mrs Cam's look changed from adoring pride to death - and not in the blink of an eye as she is not blinking anymore. She is staring in a way  that would make Julia Bishop quiver.

Time for the orchestra so Scott Cam can meet his maker. Let's wrap this puppy up.

Criag McLachlan is on with Lady Julia Morris who continues to prove that a queen can be a bogan. They are presenting the Logie for Most Outstanding Drama Series. Craig looks as though they have found him under the stairs from last year's awards, he found some of Bert's Botox jokes from the 80s even though it is he that looks like he has had the work done..  Redfern Now is finally announced as the winner of this Logie for the second year running. Julia is wearing scratchy undies.

Another ad break and the Gold Logie is still "coming up". Just time for one more plug for The Voice. Has anyone mentioned that Kylie is a judge this year?

10.48pm Richard Wilkins is back on with another mention for Myer. In the absence on Bert Newton, Wilkins keeps alive the tradition of bad hairpieces at the Logies. Carrie Bickmore is announced as best dressed. This is the first ad break since the gold Logie was announced as "coming up".

Over on Seven there is a ball on Downtown Abby which aristocrat will bonk a servant in the pantry whilst everyone else dances?

10.44pm Most Outstanding Light Entertainment Program
After Lincoln Lewis and Samantha Armatage demonstrate why the category of most outstanding comedy has been dropped. Housos win and the stars have come in character completing a set piece as their names are announced.

10.40pm Gold Logie Interviews
Hamish continues his "impromptu" interviews with the gold Logie nominees, this time Scott Cam and Andy Lee. He stitches up Scott by asking him when he last actually worked on a worksite, utilising his trade skills.  Hamish wants Andy to win so that he can get a mention in the acceptance speech.

10.31pm Silver Logie Most Outstanding Actor
Craig McLachlan is nominated, he once won the logie for most popular new talent...but he has not added to his collection. Lachy Hulme delivers an anti speech but still manages to to name all of the people he did not want to mention.

The announcer is finally starting to build some sizzle as he forward announces the Gold Logie, we are getting close. But a forward promotion in TV land can still mean many advert breaks before its arrival.

10.25pm Silver Logie Most Outstanding Actress
No addition to the Myer Count as the real awards begin. Another award for Asher? or will her co-star Kat Stewart take it for the steal. Or will Rhonda win it for her real job? As expected it is Asher. Again. There we go she is undeserving in such a remarkable group of actresses. Thanks Asher for pointing out that Wendy Hughes is a woman.

Noni Hazlehurst dressed in her bedspread to introduce the Memorial section of the night. Always an awkward section of any awards ceremony as so many people are not recognised getting no or little applause, made all the obvious as other images will received laud applause and cheers. Made all the words when it is an on-camera personality that is not recognised. Either way the images are eliciting more of a response from the seated guests than any of the imported entertainment is.

10.11pm Most Outstanding Tele-Movie or Mini-Series
The Silver Logie acknowledging the best in Australian dramatic television has been won by a UK produced show set in New Zealand. It takes both or Australia's sworn enemies to combine to be able to beat us. This better not catch up in the world of cricket. Top of the Lake is a worthy winner

10.04pm Channel 10 This Is Your Life
Mike Munro does a spoof segue-ladden version of his popular show taking viewers through 50 years of channel ten programs in celebration of its 50 years on air. If only Kennedy had been on Channel 10 it would have provided the perfect opportunity for producers to bring out the footage of Gra-Gra sitting in his dressing gown on set laughing uncontrollably at a dog cocking its leg on the edge of the stage. Don't worry it gets aired nearly every Logies. It must be coming later.

The TV Week Logies website now shows 1hour 59 minutes until the show begins.

Eddie is on. It might get lively now. He has already dropped the C bomb today on the telly. Here's hoping he disagrees with winner of the Logie for Most Outstanding Sports Coverage. The winner is the Melbourne Cup on Channel Seven. Not Eddie's Channel or his team (though he probably owns a horse or two). Bruce Macavaney accepts the special award after being condescending to Eddie - this might be the last time we see this c*** on Aussie TV.  Only Bruce could make horse stats an acceptance speech.

More awards not worthy of being included in the broadcast
Graham Kennedy Award for Most Outstanding New Talent Remi Hii - not able to receive the award in person because his career already has him overseas filming his next project
Most Outstanding Public Affairs Report Foreign Correspondent for "Prisoner X" to other current affairs shows please note that stories about angry neighbours of local council fines are not new or award worthy.
Most Outstanding Factual Program Kings Cross ER and Foxtel wins an award.

9.44pm Most Popular New Talent
By that read talent who is most likely not be heard of again. It is noted that of the many previous winner only six of them have/had a career worth mentioning. Surprise H&A cast member Bonnie Sveen won the new talent award.

It is easy to see why the two Puberty Blues actors who presented the award did not win.

Another international artist John Newman singing through his nose. Are there no Australian singers/bands that can perform on this show? Says something about the esteem in which performers of Australia's shiny floor shows are held. Apparently Australia does not have talent nor does it have the X factor. It might just be that an Australian Artist (even one not from the telly) might elicit a response from the Audience who clearly need some of Karl Stefanovich's no-doze.

SBS are showing the best/worst of Japanese games shows. Ok so Aussie TV might not be so bad after all.

Only 2 hours to go! Time to re-fill the drinks. Now understanding why the opening images were of the celebrities getting cocktails and champagne before the awards started.

9.24pm Hall of Fame
Peter Harvey - a most deserving recipient. What a shame it is presented posthumously. A great reporter who knew how to laugh at himself. He proved that investigative journalism can also be entertaining. And he had The Voice. A true star of Australian television.

I do not know what Peter's son and daughter do for a living but Australian actors pay attention, that's how you deliver a speech.

9.18pm the awards not good enough to be part of the telecast
NRL Footy Show  - Most Popular Sports Program, this award has been shared between the Footy Shows. Though a shock for 2014 as it was the AFL's turn to win this year.

Nowhere Boys - Most Popular Children's Program watch out for this cast to pop up on Neighbours or Home & Away in years to come. As Abbott prepares to cut funding to the ABC it agains win awards for original programming

Better Homes and Garden Most Popular Lifestyle Program again proving that sitting on the couch watching other people do stuff on the cheap is Australia's most popular past time.

9.13pm Most Popular Light Entertainment 
More awkard banter this time Karl Stefanovich making cringe drug references and Amanda Keller. Hamish and Andy win the asexual statue. Who is the little guy standing on stage next to Andy? Ah Hamish just told us - he is the monkey.

Ah Richard Wilkins is on, now that is more like it. Sure he is drooling at the thought of Kylie Minogue singing but holds himself together long enough to promote The Voice - apparently Kylie is on that too. Who knew?

Mmmmm it might be her newest single but it is a long way from being her best. No need to type its title, it won't be referenced in future. Look out on Twitter for the outrage that she is lip-syncing to her own CD. The fact that the microphone was at arms reach from her body may have given it away. The applause sign is obviously working now as the motionless audience applauded at the correct time this time.

Thankfully the presenters spent a minutes explaining what news is, I never would have understood what the category of Most Outstanding News Coverage was really all about. Channel Nine won for its coverage of the NSW bush fires. It is noted that all nominated stories were all tragedies of one sort or another. Squirrels on tiny water -skis never get the accolades they deserve.

After the break - Kylie! Go get your hot pants ready.

According to the Nine News promo adults are carrying their mobile phones in their handbags and have them with them at work! Shocking.

Dave Hughes is presenting the Logie for the Most Outstanding Light Entertainment program. Maybe it is the sound set up but it sounds like canned laughter as Hughsie does his routine, a man who knows how to tell jokes in front of a large crowd. Finally some entertainment.

As an anticlimax to the segment the winner was announced, My Kitchen Rules,  I wonder whether Chloe and Kelly's smelly and crazy fish won. Manu clearly does not script his own comments on the ratings juggernaut.

40 minutes into the broadcast the TV Week Logies website countdown clock still shows 3hours and 13 minutes until it begins!  All the while Ed Sheeran sings "Sing" channelling Barry Gibb's falsetto head-voice.

Meanwhile on Ten Elementary  has Holmes and Watson making an explicable breakthrough on some crime, but its only 15 minutes into the show. Still plenty of time for him to break the rules and solve the real crime.

8.36pm Silver Logie for Most Popular Drama
First lets start with a fake argument between the presenters trying to prove who has had the least successful career.  Clearly demonstrating their credentials to be presenting an award.  The Logie goes to Home and Away again proving that fans of the Aussie soap are more likely to vote for the Logies than the fans of any other TV show. The whole cast has made it on stage. The biggest surprise so far Ray Meagher (Alf Stewart) makes a speech that is coherent and intelligible.

Carrie Bickmore and Essie Davis provide some light entertainment as the ruminate on their chances of wining gold

Lindt may make great chocolate but do not make great ads. Perhaps employ actors and not tennis super stars, the dialogue is as wooden as the banter between Logie presenters.

8.28pm awkward banter between presenters thanks Steve Curry and Shane Jacobs before they announce nominees for Most Popular Presenter.  And the winner is...Scott Cam. Apparently he modestly "puts together a great show that people love to watch."

8.25pm Most Popular Actor
Rhonda has just announced Chris Lilley has won the Silver Logie. Ironically winning the award for playing a girl. Australian television can feel good about itself and multicultural as it cheers for a Sudanese refugee-cum-actor accepts the award on Lilley's behalf.

8.16pm First Award - Most Popular Actress

No Surprises as Asher Keddie wins her fourth consecutive Logie in this category. The phallic can be added to her dominatrix kit bag, watch out Jay!  And our first mention of the "television family". I am also on the look out for "journeys" "dreams" and "deserving winners (who are actually losers)". On Extra Nutribullet is releasing the nutrition at the cellular level of our meals buy turning all food into sludge.

No hosts for tonight's telecast, probably a blessing. It means not Australian comedian will be forced to end their career. Hamish and Andy are presenting the first night, and squeeze in some obvious banter about Andy's chance to win gold. Not doing his chances any good as Hamish again proving where the majority of duo's talent lies. Get comfortable and pour yourself a long stiff drink there are 22 awards to be presented tonight.

8.05pm it starts now!
Jason Derülo is opening the show, a change up for the international guest who traditionally presents the Gold Logie at the end of the night. Derülo must have a good agent, getting on early he might be able to sneak out and go do something entertaining with his evening.

And aren't the stars of Australian TV loving his performance as they all stand motionless hands clasped together at their laps like TV weather presenters truing to hide the remote control for the weather charts.  And our first long pause of the evening - the gap between the end of the opening song and when the audience started to applause. Where is Michael Pope - Australia's best audience warm-up guy - when you need him.

The voting has commenced in MKR someone has undercooked their fish but no time to find out whose fish it was but someone's dream is sure to be thrown back. On Ten a mother new episode of Modern Family is about to start hopefully they won't be so caught up on the setting that they remember to add some jokes. And the women's fashion continues thanks to who Sonia? Myer? oh that's right. Thanks Jules for confirming it was Myer. And one more mention just for good measure. Total Myer count 12.

Only a final few minutes before the real show begins. In the meantime ore inane interviews and montages of people off the telly on telly wearing nice clothes. It even included a couple of men being quirky in tuxedos. Rhonda is here, no sign of Ketut.

Which of the Minogue sisters has the worst fake posh accent?

Alex Perry's forehead is still proving to be sensitive to light, as he wears his own sunnies atop his bonce. Another 4 mentions of Myers. Including three in the one Alex Perry sentence. No wonder Myer is going to launch an exclusive range of clothing from the designer.

We are back from the ads (ending with Myer, of course) to meet the diminutive Kylie Minogue. 25 years since she won the gold...and left television. Tina Arena has arrived - that is a relief for the producers as she is performing during the tribute for dead TV personalities and for her manager as she gets to promote her tour later in the year. Sonia Kruger has stolen the microphone from Dancing With the Stars. Looking forward to watching Madeline West attempting to sit down for the awards, her dress is so tight she struggled to complete a turn on the rotisserie.

I never thought I would say this, lets focus on the dresses and suits, anything to stop the unintelligent interviews with actors who are demonstrating the importance of script writers.
"Myer"count (major sponsor of the best dressed competition) 5. And now we have our first ad. Flick over to MKR  it is dessert time. Very little cooking but a lot of rhetoric about how this is the most important meal and personalities on plates and life long dreams of being cooks - ignoring how many hours cooks spend pealing potatoes.

7.35pm Red Carpet
The opening sequence gives us some clues on how to survive the 4 hour marathon broadcast. The celebrities are all shown with alcohol. Jules Lund and Sonia Kruger hose the red carpet. What no Richard Wilkins? What kind of hell is this? Jules what does the Mrs think about your flirting with Carrie Bickmore?

Here we go, Chloe and Kelly's smelly fish dish on My Kitchen Rules will have to wait. Is it cooked perfectly? Just how crazy is the "crazy water"? The Red carpet is about to start.

Here's hoping that the Logies broadcast follows the template for all competition shows on television: to-camera talking-head superfluous commentary from all of the nominees in a back room describing what we have already seen and adding false emotions to the event  followed by an overly long pause complete with orchestral drone - an an advert break - before each award is announced.

Logie for best product placement, Tourism Australia for the 2minute montage that ended Modern Family the Australian episode. Lovely scenes but no story or jokes and an interesting grip on geography.

6.50pm More Red Carpet
Model Lauren Phillips is wearing designer Aurelio Costarella to the Logies, and is clearly hoping to wear him after the after-party too. She brought the designer as her date. Beware Luaren he is not wearing socks so perhaps you might leave the shoes on tonight. Rebecca Judd is clearly pushing for a role in season two of Netflix' Orange is the New Black. Oh no, wait no she's not. Its just fake tan.

The Logies telecast has a history of being somewhat embarrassing and cringeworthy. Fortunately for Channel 9 and TV Week, Australia has already been subjected to Channel 10's Modern Family: An Aussie Adventure. Angela Bishop got excited because famous people from the telly were in Australia.

6.40pm Red Carpet Preview
Asher Keddie has dressed as a dominatrix - a darker storyline for Offspring this season? Sonia Kruger  got her designer to exactly colour match the fabric of her dress with the actual red carpet. Kat Stewart may be wearing the belt down up one buckle too tight. It has created an awkward shaped bump below and a ridiculous puff of material above, she looks as though she is wearing a throw cushion for a corsage. Susie Elelman (who? exactly!) is wearing her cleavage to the logies in a desperate attempt to raise her career beyond "weekly guest spot" on The Morning Show.
Jason Derülo the 2014 American guest who will spend the night wondering what on earth is going on and if all of these people and shows are winning awards why has he not heard of any of them.

Join me tonight for all the going's on from the 56th TV Week Logie Awards  and red carpet - as shown on Channel Nine. Who will win and lose on the red carpet and on the stage. Kylie Minogue returns, after starting her international career on Channel 10's Neighbours will Channel 9's The Voice signal the end? Will the red chair be her shark and her hitting that red button be when she jumps?
Who will the female stars wear tonight and who will care what the male stars wear? Can "& Andy"  win the gold to join his best friends and comedy partner or will the voting public tell him once and for all that Hamish is more popular/talented. Will Bert Newton's hairpiece make another show stealing cameo?

Show starts in about 90 minutes.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Things that go ping in the night

 So the black box no longer pings. We can make a box that will survive almost any disaster that befalls an aircraft but we cannot make a decent battery. We can land a man on the moon but we can not make a good long life battery. Maybe that is why the moon land conspiracy theorists are so dogged. It would make more sense, the other way around. We can not make a battery that holds its charge, no wonder they had to fake the moon landing.

It may also calm the nerves of countless iPhone users the world over who are continuously frustrated at the battery that does not last 24 hours

Thankfully Courtney Love has also stopped pinging in relation to this disaster mystery.

A “ping” is important. With out a ping, table tennis is just pong and there is a reason why it is now hard to find a version of this1970s arcade game. Without a ping the 1933 children’s duck-related fable would be merely The Story About…”

Monty Python’s Meaning of Life made famous machines that go ping. In that case it was to impress the administrator of the hospital that the medical team were doing a good job. I personally have never worked out in a hospital whether you want to be attached to a machine that goes ping, or not. If you are do you want a machine that pings when everything is going well or one that pings when there is a problem?

As Kramer suggested in Seinfeld: The Heart Attack you do not want to end up with a hose coming out of your chest attached to a piece of luggage.

What is unusual in the search for MH370 is that there does not appear to be any debris in the search area as identified by the “pings”. Not one piece of the aircraft itself, no wing tip, nose cone or food service trolley and not a single piece of luggage.

Ukraine has reportedly trained dolphins and other marine mammals to plant sea mines and kill frogmen. Famously in Russia’s take over of the Crimean peninsula the dolphins have changed nationalities. It must be difficult for a dolphin not to smile in its passport photo. Perhaps these military training sea creatures could use their natural sonar and tracking skills to find the lost plane, its passengers and cargo. Maybe then Putin would have something really worth Pinging about.

Just quietly part of the problem might be that they are look for a box box whilst the in-flight recorder is neither black nor a box!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Melbourne International Comedy Festival Week #4

This is the final week of the 2014 festival - don't miss out

Dave Callan A Little Less Conversation
To be honest when I left the house to see some festival shows tonight I did not expect I would be seeing Dave Callan's show. I also did not expect it to be so funny. The show is the perfect mix of dance comedy and viking. Callan and his dancing girls take the audience through the history of dance. Callan is surprisingly nimble and knows how to work the stage and his audience.

The Comedy Zone
The Melbourne International Comedy Festival has hand picked 5 emerging comedic talents from around the country, as expected in a such a showcase some of the comedians have emerged ore than others. Aaron Chen (NSW) - previous Class Clown winner - delivers a strong set working his nervous schtick for some great laughs. I can't wait to see Geoffrey Windle (QLD) in a full hour solo show.

Wolf Creek The Musical
One of Australia's great horror mysteries is turned into a musical. A comedy musical. Damn it is good. The amateur nature of the acting and staging is all part of its charm and a strong part of the humour. The performers ham it up delivering sensational one liners and poke fun at some of the major plot points of the movie. If only all product placements were this funny. One of the death scenes is very Monty Python-esque and just as funny.

Stella Young Tales From the Crip
I have not seen such a strong opening to a comedy show for along time. This is an hour of jokes you will be repeating on your way home and you will never look at the carrot section of your local fruit and veg shop the same way again. Stella skilfully confronts the taboo of being a "cripple" people in a "normal" world.

Ronny Chieng Chieng Reaction
Ronny is annoyed. A lot, About everything. The more mundane the better. No one performs an angry yelly rant quite like Ronny. He is the big thing in Aussie comedy at the moment. Buy his CD, MP4 or long play vinyl! Last arrival to his show - 48 minutes into a 60 minute show!

Kevin Bridges Live
Kevin is a UK comedy superstar. Sure he is a potty mouth but damn he is funny. Well mainly - I missed some of his material because I just could not understand his accent, which was my loss. Resplendent in a suit, his comedy is pub storytelling at its finest.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Melbourne International Comedy Festival Week #3

Perfect Tripod Australian Songs
This could be one of the best shows I have seen. Never has 4 part all male a cappella sounded so good. Eddie Perfect and the Tripod boys combine to perform unique renditions of some Australian music greatest hits. The banter between (and sometimes during the songs) was perfectly timed and funny. Some unexpectedly funny moments were built into the lyrics of these re-worked anthems  It has been a long time sines I have participated in a standing ovation. I even bruised my hand from clapping so much. They are NOT a boy band. Don't stop the harmony!

The Underlads Cock(pit) Malfunction
The duo play the role of flight attendants, or is it in flight customer service officers and the audience are the passengers. Some cleverly planned props. A great premise for a comedy show unfortunately timed considering missing flight MH370.

Angus Hodge Finding My Rose-coloured Glasses
Hodge cleverly weaves a number of narratives from his won life. This is not a "break-up" show. The small room at The Forum and Hodge's relaxed delivery makes for an intimate and enjoyable hour of comedy.

Bob Franklin Steven Gates & Roz Hammond The Writers
This is sketch comedy at its best. Franklin, Gates (Gatesy from Tripod) & Hammond bring together all of their comedy and acting skills for this show that is laugh out loud from beginning to end. Some of the funniest moments were from a facial expression or subtle body movement. The team prove that laid back and subtle comedy is just as funny if not funnier that loud and frantic performances. I am not sure if they skilfully broke the fourth wall or if it never existed in the first place. If it is possible to ham it up and underplay the role at the same time then these three seasoned performers achieved it.

Milton Jones
Jones is an expert in the deadpan online pun. This is how dad-jokes should be delivered. My face hurt from laughing I was exhausted at the end of the hour. He uses an overhead projector (remember those?) to put a simple but highly effective visual layer to one section of his show. He interacts with the audience maintaining complete control for some of his biggest laughs.

Tim Vine The Chat Show
Another master of the pun.  He breaks the golden rule of comedy by not only inviting audience members onto stage but also giving them a microphone as Vine hosts his version of a chat show. The night I was there the audience members on stage were not offering him much to work with but just when it felt the show might unravel Vine hits out with some hilarious word play and quick-fire puns.

Denise Scott Mother Bare
Quite rightly Scotty has been nominated for the 2014 Barry Award. No-one tells a story quite like Denise Scott. She again sets a bench mark for all other comedians to attempt to attain. Mother Bare is an abridged autobiography. Scotty weaves the stories together with simple projections, wildly funny physical comedy and hilarious interactions with the large and adoring audience. Whilst not unexpected her audience is somewhat older than many shows at this year's festival, that said there is no reason why all ages would not find this one of the best shows in 2014

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Melbourne International Comedy Festival - Week #2

Another week of shows...

Stephen Hall, Raiders of the Temple of Doom's Last Crusade so you wanted to watch all original three of the Indiana Jones movies but your vcr/dvd/internet is broken? Get to this show and watch one man do them all. It is very silly - but when you are doing a farce of a movie franchise that is itself a farce it has to be silly. Some clever visual gags. The better you know the movies the funnier this show will be.

Pat Burtscher's Overwhelmed Pat is my surprise find so far in this year's festival. To be honest I only went to this show because it was on at the time I was looking for a show and it was close by. But so glad I went I laughed beginning to end. Pat is a philosopher, in the same way a taxi driver is. He wants the world to be simpler and happier. Ignore the fact that this show is playing in a ramshackle of a room in a warehouse and get out to see this.

Geraldine Quinn MDMA: Modern Day Maiden Art  I was still laughing about this show days after seeing it. Geraldine performs music comedy like no other. The show is built on a narrative and the songs add as much to the laughs as they do to the story. Her audiences should be as big as her voice.

Elbowskin's POV The nice guys of Melbourne comedy do it again. Their laid back style, easy interactions with their audience, the harmonies and Dave and Ern's own sense of enjoyment in what they do all add to make this a strong show full of laughs. It is not about anything - just funny. Oh and I won a packet of Cheetos! Playing at the Forum, it does appear they are playing under the stairs.

Shappi Khorsandi Shappi is Iranian who has and many opportunities on UK television and radio. This is sort of a meandering story with a lot of strong laughs. The best material was when Shappi played with the audiences prejudices and stereotypes - in the nicest possible way.