Ep 147: Directing Live Television with Ray Punjer and Wilbur Wilde

This week we are lucky enough to have Ray Punjer, director of live television including In Melbourne Tonight, The Panel, World Series Cricket, Bob Dyer’s Pick-A-Box, The Don Lane Show, and World Championship Wrestling amongst so many other credits. He’s a trailblazer in the industry and he brings his expertise to our little show.

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  1. Listening to the show with Ray, there were so many questions that I didn’t think of at the time or get a chance to ask.

    I’m sure it’ll be the same for some listeners so I’m putting the call out now. If you have any questions for Ray when we next speak to him, stick them in a comment here and we’ll take them into the studio when he returns – as long as we can get a word in between he and Pete Smith.

  2. As good as it was to hear Ray go on about the ‘Golden Years’ of wrasslin’ at Festival Hall (aka ‘the House of Stoush’), but some seriously freaky timing – Walter “Killer” Kowalski passed away from a heart attack on Sunday night, US time, at the age of 81…

    Possibly the worlds scariest vegetarian (suck it, PETA), Kowalski had remained involved in the sport right up to this day, and his wrestling school is responsible for training up Chyna, HHH and RVD amongst many many others. From the NY Times obit:

    ?I was leaping off the rope, and Yukon Eric, who had a cauliflower ear, moved at the last second,? Kowalski told The Chicago Tribune in 1989. ?I thought I missed, but all of a sudden, something went rolling across the ring. It was his ear.?

    Yukon Eric was taken to a hospital, and the promoter asked Kowalski to visit him and apologize for severing his ear. Reporters were listening to their chat from a corridor.

    ?There was this 6-foot-5, 280-pound guy, his head wrapped like a mummy, dwarfing his bed,? Kowalski said. ?I looked at him and grinned. He grinned back. I laughed, and he laughed back. Then I laughed harder and left.

    ?The next day the headlines read, ?Kowalski Visits Yukon in the Hospital and Laughs.? And when I climbed into the ring that night, the crowd called out, ?You animal, you killer.? And the name stuck.?

    Kowalski came to incur the wrath of the fans. As he told Esquire magazine in 2007: ?Someone once threw a pig?s ear at me. A woman once came up to me after a match and said, ?I?m glad you didn?t get hurt.? Then she stabbed me in the back with a knife.

    Crazy, crazy business… but such fun!

  3. If you get Ray back in, I would be interested to hear about how different it was making TV when the network wasn’t looking at ratings the next day.

  4. Daniel D Boxcutter says:

    Ray Punjer is a dead-set legend. Wonderful work Boxcutters.

  5. A tangent if I may although Ray was a great guest, a big Hooray for Channel 10 (well actually 10HD) for starting its American Football coverage today. This week 10HD will be showing 4 games of American Football (“Gridiron”) LIVE, with games varing between 3am and 9-10am starts.

    I just say, please Channel 10, please keep attempting to drag the sporting monopoly away from Foxtel.

  6. catbrain says:


    C HO = new name for Navy Sea Boat?

  7. catbrain: LOLZ – I had the same initial thought during the recording, hearing it as Sea-Ho before doing my mental translation to C-Ho and then City Homicide

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