Ep 107: National Bingo Night, Cavemen

What a great big show we have for you. We discuss The Leaders Debate and National Bingo Night and decide which one is more relevant to our lives. The Fall Season brings us Moonlight and Cavemen. I Don’t Buy It looks at bad ad execution and we welcome the return of Deirdre Says.

Big Bubbles:

No Troubles: So send us a letter already.


  1. BBC. Shambles. Cut news. Fund Radio 6 on digital only with two people listening. Shambles.

  2. National Bingo Night. It’s been clear to me for some time, and Josh mentioned it, that since airing ‘The National IQ test’ which had a target audience of all of Australia, that each station is trying to find that one show that can appeal to the entire country all at once, and therefore is likely to have higher ratings.

  3. By the way, Brett, I thought Speersy was very even-handed in the debate and you’re showing your lefty proclivities.

  4. Plus, Glenn Milne is a
    Liberal Party stooge. He’s not a journaliat anymoe – absolute disgrace.

  5. I laughed when I saw the Chaser song, I figured that they had added it in just to get the news story the next morning because some “shock jock” would complain about it. I think they are doing this stuff now just to get free advertising (especially seeing they are talking to commerical stations).

    As for the worm coverage, I laughed because the picture was getting smaller and smaller on channel 9. I only watched to see the worms reaction. Is it just me or was everyone asleep when Howard was talking (I actually pulled out my gameboy when he spoke).

    It will be interesting to see what happens with Bingo night this week, I think the debate helped its ratings along nicely.

    Has the HD channels programming up on the web yet?

    Damn Channel 9 has dropped Weeds. That was their best show, guess its one less channel I have to worry about with the scheduling.

  6. David Boxcutter says:

    Brett is a lefty? That’s curious, jimbo. What makes you say that, has he ever said anything on-air to indicate this, or do you know him personally?

    I thought it seemed pretty unbalanced. For starters, Speers opened with the Fox News slogan – “Fair and Balanced” – what the hell is up with that? Is that some kind of nudge-nudge-wink to the conservatives, or merely a slip-up? It’s hard to imagine such a gaffe finding its way into the openeng remarks by mistake.

    Then there was his repeat of the Liberals’ talking point about “70% of Labour are Union Officials” – which had already been shown to be factually incorrect on The Insiders that morning. Yet somehow the 70% figure kept getting thrown around all night, without anybody even challenging the veracity of the statement.

    Personally, I found the whole thing incredibly boring. I wish I had’ve known that Channel 9 were actually using the worm – I would have watched that for the added entertainment.

    The whole debate was dominated by pointless crap that the parties hardly differ on – interest rates, unemployent, the economy, the economy, interest rates, interest rates, the economy and interest rates.

    Would be nice if they talked about some issues that there was some difference on, and social issues that actually affect us and the future of our country.

    The economy is such a cop-out, because it is mostly beyond the control of the government – we rise and fall on the tides of a larger global economy, small local changes aren’t going to affect that much.

  7. FYI

    Viva Laughlin cancelled after two episodes!

  8. ActualChad says:

    I wasn’t going to vote for Howard, but I’m gonna have to now that Daniel Mifsud’s gone…

  9. BBC. Shambles. Cut news. Fund Radio 6 on digital only with two people listening. Shambles.

    I couldn’t agree more. In the pursuit of a magical future with flying cars and telepathic sex, they’re leaving behind what made the BBC important in the first place.

    They also want to sell the White City building and relocate. Nice idea but I hate to think of the moving costs, not to mention putting out everyone who’s worked there for 40 years and lives in the area and/or on the Central line.

  10. @Nigel:

    Is it just me or was everyone asleep when Howard was talking (I actually pulled out my gameboy when he spoke).

    He did an awful lot of sledging and not much else. At the end he had a big chance to assert his platform, but instead he banged on about teaching history in schools. Yeah there’s a vision. Fuxake.

    I thought Speers was reasonably balanced (although it’s horribly clear why Howard wanted a Sky News editor to host it). Not that he needed to show any bias, what with Howard having control over every tiny aspect of the whole night. Yes the economy came up loads, but considering it was the big policy of the week it’s not surprising. It says loads that Rudd ‘won’ the debate despite all this.

    I’m reeeeeeally glad the worm d?bacle gained saturation coverage in the press. Not saying any more about Howard because I’ll get angry again.

  11. guys, kudos – funniest episode in weeks. really really good cast.

  12. Rob Boxcutter says:

    RE: British TV

    By dismissing UK television outright you’re missing out on some real gems. The outstanding show of the moment is 55 Degrees North. OK, it’s a couple of years old and the ABC is running repeats, but hey, at least it’s on free-to-air right now. I liked Life on Mars (I’m a sucker for time travel ? I even like Journeyman) but I did get a little annoyed at how the mystery element was drip-fed through the episodes, at times being almost irrelevant to the story. This was forgivable because, at heart, it was really a cop show. Mostly I liked it because of the great characters, like Gene Hunt and his crew. And that’s the strength of 55 Degrees North: there are so many engaging characters. Not just ones we love to love, but also ones we love to hate and ones we love to feel ambivalent about. I have a very short attention span and get bored very easily by TV (ie bad TV), but this show just pulls me in and holds me in its thrall all the way through. I urge everyone to tune in to it (ABC, Mondays, aroundabout midnight). It’s only 2 eps into the 1st series, and it’s easy to pick up the thread.

  13. This may be the last time I post. I seem to incite WWIII every time at the moment.

    David, I do know Brett personally but not nearly well enough to vouch for his political allegiances. I just thought his comments in this particular episode made him sound like a lefty.

    I do, however, know David Speers – much better than I know Brett as it happens – and I’ll vouch for his capacity for balance any day of the week and twice on Sundays. He’s going to be one of the greats of Australian political reporting.

    The phrase “fair and balanced” stuck out like dogs’ balls to we media watchers, but I’m sure it wasn’t meant that way. It’s a pity the actual meaning of the words has been overtaken by its misuse by those particular Americans.

    It’s right to say the Liberal Party dictated the terms of the debate and got exactly what it wanted. The benefits of incumbency. But I don’t think their selection of Speers indicates that he’s a raving Tory. I’m positive it was motivated more by a desire not to offend Seven or Nine by selecting a moderator from one of those networks. Those arrangements would have been made at a level well above Speers, and I thought he did a great job.

    But it raises another interesting issue which the TV pundits seem to have missed in all this. I stood in a studio at TCN9 and watched the last debate between Howard and Latham with Laurie Oakes hosting. A mere three years ago it would have been unthinkable to entertain any other arrangement. How the mighty have fallen.

  14. Yes, I thought Speers was fair and did a good job. He seemed a little nervous to me, but it’s a big job.

    Plus I would have thought Brett’s political leaning would have been fairly apparent many times in the 107 ep back catalogue.

  15. And we forgot to discuss the grammar issue on the show – THE LEADERS DEBATE or should it have been THE LEADER’S DEBATE?

    Are they debating or is it their debate?

  16. Shit, Ross. You screwed that one up and now it will be nothing but comments about your apostrophe. It should, of course be either THE LEADERS’ DEBATE or THE LEADERS DEBATE.

    The ambiguity comes from the word “debate”. If it was ‘The Leaders Pontificate’ we wouldn’t have this conversation.

    And we shouldn’t anyway.

  17. Re: British TV. I am with Deirdre on the British thing. You guys do seem to dismiss it a little too easliy. There are some first rate British shows out there that you don’t seem to look at. I dunno perhaps its because I am English I seem to “get it” more.

    Re: Worm. Good on nine for actually using it. Sure it was interesting, and although people have suggested it was rigged due to the Rudd v Howard starting point for the worm, I actually wonder if thats an acumilative worm (which would be why it seemed to start so high for Rudd and So low for Howard).

    Best two lines of the night were Rudd calling Johnny “Mr. Coward” then correcting himself. And Howard saying if it makes sense he would follow sound economic planing as he did with Hawke / Keating, and then in the same sentence accuse Rudd of a cheat for copying him.

    re: Debate Aftermath. On Sky they had the Body language expert in to highlight the positives and negatives in how the leaders presented themselves. Line of the week was suggesting the Howard always drops his bottom lip when he gets annoyed, but people read it as “You Stole my icecream”

  18. AFI Nominations

    As I have declared here before, All Saints is my secret TV shame. It was great to see that Mark Priestly received an AFI best supporting actor nomination for his role in the show.

    Also nominated are:
    Mark Priestley ? All Saints (Seven Network)
    Justin Smith ? Bastard Boys (ABC)
    Jack Thompson ? Bastard Boys (ABC)
    David Ngoombujarra ? The Circuit (SBS)

    I know he won’t win as I am sure that the AFI voters are constitutionally unable to vote for a All Saints actor against Jack Thompson (who was awful in Bastard Boys) or someone from SBS, however I think it is great to see him acknowledged in this way. He really does a great job on that show.
    To further my point into a rant, I believe that the AFI awards tend to champion losers – that the least popular/good show will always win over something that has had some popular support.

    Also, glad to see the return of what Deirdre says.

  19. Rob Boxcutter says:

    Re: Grrrrrammar

    The ABC’s online program schedule lists it as

    Federal Election 2007 – Australia Votes 2007
    The Leader’s Debate
    7:30pm Sunday, 21 Oct 2007

    which is not ambiguous, just plain wrong. Unless it is the ABC showing that left-wing bias, using the apostrophe like one of Kerry O’Brien’s sarcastically raised eyebrows, pointing out Howard’s calling of the shots.

  20. Rob Boxcutter says:

    While I enjoy the broad-ranging discussion in the comments section of each episode’s blog entry, it would be great to be able to carry themes over from week-to-week and also to be able to view all the discussion across particular themes.

    Is it time for a Boxcutters discussion forum (phpbb version 3 is just around the corner)? Or perhaps there’s a plug-in that let’s you ‘tag’ comments.

    This way we wouldn’t have to subject everyone to pedantic grammatical discussions.

  21. David Boxcutter says:

    It is the “Leader’s Debate” – it’s Howard’s toy, or at least he wants it to be.

  22. Interesting Chaser postscript – Last Friday both major Metropolitan papers used their Reader?s Polls (a barometer of truth if ever there was one) to ask whether the Chaser went too far with The Eulogy Song.

    The Age result was 23% Yes, 77% No, while in the Herald Sun the result was 59.9% Yes to 40.1% No.

    Surely this says something about something.

  23. Rosco, just what were the actual number of people answering those polls?
    Who the hell actually clicks, or ticks, or err spiks, with pollsters; “I mean, really”.
    I did statistics and probability at Uni, ‘lo those many years ago. It’s said that with a appropriate sample you can estimate the views of an entire population. I was dubious then, and am flat out hostile now. Much like Iraqi WMDs, and ‘the inherent nobility of man’, it’s pretty much just a con job.
    Besides – you can prove that million-to-one chances come off nine-times-out-of-ten. They do it in movies all the time…

    @Jimbo, don’t mistake “a free and frank exchange of ideas and information” with anger… It is possible to disagree vehemently without malice intended. For example, consider our to-do from a week or two back – where we ended was “what’s the difference between reporters, journalists, and presenters?!”
    Then this week you tee off on Glen Milne… “’nuff said.” At least he’s a lot more subtle than say, Greg Sheridan. But where do you draw the line – and why do they all get to hide behind journalistic ‘privilege’?

    @Deirdra says: it’s hardly just British shows that get ignored by Boxcutters – Josh has said on numerous epidodes he’s not as interested in reviewing comedies as compared to drama, for example.
    (though anyone who’s read the *ahem* “official” GAT list could confirm that). Likewise – sci fi get short shrift vs cop-shows, interview shows get reviewed not-at-all, and sitcoms get an automatic 3-star penalty. Australian shows get an automatic four-star bonus.
    Meh – it’s their podcast, and they can do as they like with it. If we weren’t prepared to put up with their eccentricities, we wouldn’t listen. nd likewise, if we could deal with criticism, we wouldn’t actively post on the board…

  24. Err “couldn’t” deal with criticism.
    Couldn’t, dammit!

    *slaps forehead*

  25. Jimbo, don’t stop the posting, or the phone calls in or the in-studio appearances. 😉

  26. I agree. It’s nice to have a professional point of view to counter all the opinions.

  27. Yeah, but how boring is the blog when we all get along?


  28. I say we have a listener “I don’t buy it”. I can think of two at the moment that I am just not buying at all. Both for the same reason really. First up the Yellow Pagesad. Here you have someone wanting some work done. She calls for a service using the yellow pages and they turn up. No sooner has she gone than he trips over the dog and his an electical box (which for some reason is outside the house for no real reason I can understand). He calls an electrical tech guy to come out. They look at the damage for a bit and then prods the roof saying you “will have to replace it” out pops a wasp nest to which the electical guy says “whats that” with a rather stupid look on his face. They then run in the house and call a wasp guy who comes out and fumigates the nest but the wasps move off to attack the dog (which for some reason has been left outside). They then call a Vet who is, you guessed it. The original woman who is just getting home. The problem is, everyone in the ad is an idiot. A moron. The very essence of “Mr. Dodgey”. The ad reads like “If you want Crap service, use yellow pages” and frankly I am not buying it.

    The second one is a dodegy Indiana Carsales man. But I might hold off on that if this Listener “I don’t buy it” comes to pass.

    The origianl Nigel, Nibo or fourthof5 who ever I am.

  29. Rob Boxcutter says:

    Bugger. I forgot to send in a quiz entry this week …

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