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    Melbourne dial stuck in neutral

    29/08/2019 - Author: admin


    If anyone in Melbourne radio was looking for an excuse to break out the champagne yesterday, they didn’t find it in the latest ratings – across the board, the survey threw up a steady-as-she-goes set of numbers that equally provided no reason for the drowning of sorrows. And though they were preparing for a party at DMG Radio, that was to mark the first anniversary of its newest on-air venture, smoothfm.The vital numbers from survey three for 2013

    At the top of the radio pile, the figures suggest dials were stuck in position across the city for the April survey period. At the top, the usual suspects: 3AW, with 12.7 per cent of the total audience, up 0.1 on the previous month, with 774 ABC in second, unchanged on 11.4 per cent. In the mornings head-to-head between Neil Mitchell and Jon Faine, no bragging rights, with a dead-heat of 13.3 per cent; this was a rise for Mitchell, who lost the previous survey to Faine (13.2 per cent to 12.9 per cent) after a significant audience drop.

    There was a correction at breakfast, with long-time leaders Ross and John at 3AW reclaiming the full-point drop they recorded last time.

    In the FM battleground, Fox remains on top (9.6 per cent, up from 9.2 per cent) with Gold, Triple M, Nova, Mix and smoothfm next in line. The Eddie McGuire-led Triple M crew crept past Nova (Triple M up from 7.6 per cent to 8.3 per cent, Nova slipping from 8 per cent to 7.3 per cent). This was a good survey for Gold, which held on to its significant leap from the last survey – happy days for breakfast team Brigitte Duclos and Anthony ”Lehmo” Lehmann, who were punted from Australian Radio Network sister station Mix early last year to take the Gold breakfast slot from veterans Grubby and Dee Dee. The move has worked: after a big 1.6 per cent lift last survey, Duclos and Lehmann crept up again in April, pipping Nova’s Dave Hughes and Kate Langbroek.

    On the very day of the latest survey release smoothfm turned one year old, and recorded some numbers worth celebrating. Under the banner of ”soft adult-contemporary rock”, the station has been growing steadily with its celebrity-heavy list of announcers (ranging from Michael Buble, pictured, to Richard Wilkins). And it hasn’t been afraid to experiment, even getting Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott in to guest host and play some favourite tracks.

    And finally a couple of radio notes from up north, where 2Day FM shrugged off the royal prank scandal of late last year to reclaim the FM ratings crown in Sydney, with WSFM’s brief hold on the title surrendered to the traditional victors. None of this was thanks to 2Day’s notorious breakfast team, with Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O actually recording an audience decline, though they remained the FM leaders in the timeslot.

    Also in Sydney, ABC veteran Adam Spencer chose ratings day to announce he will end his 14-year stint at the broadcaster in December – a surprising, significant loss for Aunty, and one that leaves the coveted breakfast slot at 702 open for the first time since Spencer (pictured) took over in February 2006. ”It’s been an absolute thrill … and a privilege to host the 702 breakfast show,” he told listeners. ”You’re always going to miss it when it is gone but now feels right. I look forward to kicking back with Alex Ferguson, Barbara Walters and Ricky Ponting on a beach somewhere. I’ll be the one holding their towels!”

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    House plans go awry

    - Author: admin

    One thing that makes perfect sense about House Rules, the faltering new reality television renovation show from Channel Seven, is that the network has signed on Panadol as a sponsor. If the show fails to improve on its current state, which is to play as a predictable and manufactured competition, then it’s going to be an enormous headache for a broadcaster suddenly on the back foot.

    In a bold move, Seven put the show’s launch episode (last Tuesday, May 14) up against Channel Nine’s daunting ratings combination of The Block Sky High and The Voice. House Rules drew a metropolitan capital city audience of about 800,000 viewers, while the Nine duo, which House Rules’ running time overlapped with, scored viewing figures of 1.3 million and 1.6 million respectively. By episode two (Wednesday, May 15) it was 784,000 for House Rules, then a worrying slide to 687,000 by Thursday (May 16). The first three nights of the following week delivered better audiences of 1.036 million, 954,000 and 900,000 respectively.

    House Rules stems from the team that put together My Kitchen Rules for Seven, and it appears designed to duplicate the highly successful format of the latter’s initial episodes even as the focus switches from cooking to home renovation. The six teams travel the country, visiting each respective house in turn where the five visiting teams will renovate their host’s distressed property while the owners have the week off.

    The tension that makes My Kitchen Rules work is based on the social friction of having people into your house to judge the meal you make for them, but House Rules can’t duplicate that. Aside from the stock-standard inserts where they worry about what they will find upon their return the host team is absent, and any sense of ownership is literally obliterated as walls are demolished and floors are removed.

    Even though the action is focused on location, beginning with West Australian couple Jemma and Ben’s ramshackle property, House Rules boasts the ”House Base”, which appears to be nothing more than a tick on the box duplicating My Kitchen Rules elements such as Kitchen HQ. Short of having Manu Feildel pop in to test the newly installed kitchens by putting together a favoured dish, the crossover couldn’t be any more obvious.

    What’s left, unfortunately, resembles The Block – dashboard cameras in sponsors’ cars documenting conversations on the way to sponsors’ outlets; the welter of tradesmen doing work in the background while the contestants give interviews about how they don’t have enough time; decisions about tiles and exhausted-looking people painting second coats in the middle of the night.

    There are not that many practical ways to make a reality show about renovating houses, but House Rules just feels overtly familiar. And it’s one thing to resemble The Block when it’s in recess (My Kitchen Rules, after all, originally began to satisfy pining MasterChef devotees), but quite another to be trying it on when The Block is only a few weeks into a season and sharing airtime with the newcomer.

    By placing five teams in one home, House Rules is obviously hoping for on-screen friction, but the first week didn’t allow for much more than some blunt disagreements and sundry loud voices. A notable early crisis was manufactured from the possibility of missing out on buying a spray tan tent, while the first tweet flashed up declared that the on-site building expert, Chester Drife, was ”dreamy”. The word ”lightweight” comes to mind.

    You would hope that House Rules finds a groove and picks up, but some of the decisions are fundamentally flawed. Casting Queensland couple Amy and Sean, who have no renovation experience, is supposed to make for a triumph against the odds, but for now it’s just a procession of scenes where Amy feels insignificant or errs and bursts into tears. Three nights a week for three months? Not pleasant.

    House Rules may chug along, as happened with Nine’s similar homeMADE in 2009, or implode as Ten’s The Renovators infamously did in 2011. Certainly the portents are not good. The biggest storyline in the first week was the discovery that sections of the initial house had no concrete foundation beneath the floorboards, just a sandy mix. Nothing could be built on that so cement had to be hurriedly trucked in.

    But on the basis of last week’s turnaround, the show has found an audience.

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    Green Guide letters

    - Author: admin

    LETTER OF THE WEEKEuro finale good value – on the net

    Another fantastically and weirdly entertaining Eurovision Song Contest final! A man in a glass box, a gay singer, the tallest man in the US, a lady vying for the longest train in the world and the most incredible pyrotechnics. It had it all! But why, oh why, does SBS persist with pathetic Julia Zemiro, who tells us the bleedin’ obvious? Thank goodness for live streaming on the internet. It’s live, no Zemiro, no adverts.

    Les Mumford, Bittern

    Talk about good viewing

    Adam Hills’ engaging ABC interview with Michael Parkinson should be compulsory viewing for all would-be media interviewers, especially for TV. It was laced with well-thought-out questions, relevant ”advice” and humour. Particularly refreshing these days when so many interviews fawn over their interviewees and take themselves so seriously. How about a one-on-one interview program with Adam Hills, who, with his London program, The Last Leg, could be destined to follow in the Parkinson tradition?

    Stan Marks, Caulfield

    Heaven, it must be there

    I was an atheist until on The Project last week Carrie Bickmore said she would see us ”on the other side”. Now, that would have to be HEAVEN, so I went straight out and found religion.

    Bob Graham, Yarragon

    Show some respect, Brian

    When umpire Ray Chamberlain was interviewed on one of the Fox Footy talk shows during Umpire Appreciation Week, he clearly stated he absolutely hated the nickname ”Razor” that some people have applied to him. Since then I have not heard any commentator use that nickname, with the exception of Brian Taylor from the Fox stable of commentators, ironically. I wish someone at Fox would pull BT into line about this. Show some respect, man!

    Walter J. Valles, Clayton South

    Nine, pick up your act

    I am an avid watcher of Top Gear and once again Channel Nine treats us as outcasts. The new series had one more episode to run last Thursday and was replaced by The Block. When I rang Nine and asked when it will be shown I was told, ”I don’t know”. Apart from showing Top Gear out of sync now we have to miss episodes. Hopefully it will end up back on SBS.

    John Taverna, Tocumwal

    Con has many talents

    Our hirsute presenter Con of the ABC’s Gardening Australia is obviously capable of cultivating more than vegies and exotics … one wonders, though, how he copes with spaghetti!

    Pete Williams, Metung

    Mad for some movies

    Would someone please explain why both ABC and SBS have stopped showing good movies? Given Margaret and David on The Movie Show each week recommend some excellent old films that are mostly easy and cheap to hire, why not show them on ABC2 later in the week?

    Goldie Alexander, Middle Park

    Listen up! Get to the point

    Most annoyingly, talkback radio now includes a large percentage of sycophantic callers who begin with inane comments such as ”Love your program”, ”Thanks for taking my call”, and, often used on SEN, ”Long-time listener, first-time caller”. Please, just get to the point.

    George Norrish, Essendon

    What about the music?

    Where oh where can I find a classical music radio station in the morning that plays just that – classical music? No chat or exhorting listeners to email, SMS or Facebook. I don’t want to know that Aunty Edith has a birthday or that George is in South America. 3MBS used to be a viable alternative but even it has resorted to listener input and chat. Please give me a peaceful musical start to my day!

    Faye Pattinson, Malvern East

    Antisocial behaviour

    The creeping blight of social media is spreading quickly through ABC Classic FM. It’s everywhere. However, the worst offender is Emma Ayres, whose obsession with twitty tweets and mindless SMSs quite overwhelms her entire program. Careless mistakes show she is more interested in her computer screen than she is in her job.

    Jeanne James, Seaford

    Midwife deserves praise

    Call the Midwife has been one of the best shows out of Britain for ages. Sure the plots are facile and there’s always a happy ending, but the great actors and the realistic locales are just fine.

    Lesley Black, Frankston

    Another repetitive voice

    Nearly every ”artist” on The Voice is going to be a Frank Sinatra or an Edith Piaf. Come on, judges! You cannot be serious.

    Kevin Rugg, Black Rock

    Love the sight of Murder

    I enjoyed Mr & Mrs Murder for its cleverly executed plots and the romantic byplay that developed among the main characters. It was a delight to see inner-suburban Melbourne realised on screen, and I enjoyed trying to identify the filming locations. If Channel Ten commissions a second series, it would be something to look forward to.

    Colin Bishop, Queenscliff

    Keenan, on your bike

    Scott McGrory needs to take over the commentary from Matt Keenan for SBS cycling. Matt’s analysis is poor and too biased in favour of British riders. I wonder if Keenan would be so forgiving of Wiggins’ poor availability to the media if Keenan’s editor had required him to get a comment from Wiggins. Commentators should not excuse sports people, who are paid a lot of money, from fronting the media.

    Peter D’Castro, Cremorne

    It’s time to address things

    TV programmers should be sacked for publishing their ”fictitious” program times. Programs now run anything up to 20 minutes late. Perhaps the programs could all be listed as TBA, you guess!

    Keith Murley, Blairgowrie

    Increasingly frustrated

    There is a verb pronounced inCREASE and a noun pronounced INcrease. If the newsreaders and reporters could learn the difference, I’d be very happy.

    Mary Dearing, Essendon

    Nothing elegant about this

    I’m glad my 8¢ found someone who thought The Elegant Gentleman’s Guide to Knife Fighting was funny. I watched the first three episodes thinking, ”The themes are funny; eventually they will work out how to make the sketches funny”. A holier than thou Prius driver could be hilarious, but not a Prius-driving thug. Carrier pigeon tweets. Here comes the punchline. Must have blinked and missed it.

    Don Hampshire, Sunbury

    HAVE YOUR SAY Email letters, including your name, address and daytime phone number, to [email protected]苏州美甲美睫培训.au. Letters must be 75 words or fewer and may be edited. Letters can also be mailed to GPO Box 257, Melbourne, 3001.

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    Funds must be assured

    - Author: admin

    The Checkout has attracted more viewers than many network ‘hits’.Last week’s federal budget would have buffered at least some of the chill wind that is blowing around the ABC and SBS four months out from a likely change of government.

    Despite the encouraging words of the potential new communications minister, Malcolm Turnbull, the austerity measures of the Howard years and the debacle of the Jonathan Shier era are remembered grimly.

    The budget delivered an additional $89.4 million over the next three years to the ABC, on top of $2.5 billion in the next triennium. SBS scored an extra $20 million over three years.

    For many years, one of the principal justifications for funding public broadcasting has been to fill the gaps in the market left by the commercial networks. Paradoxically, the ”market failure” case gets turned on its head whenever the ABC manages to out-rate commercial networks, which baulk at having their market share reduced by an organisation funded by taxpayers.

    From the unlikely source material of the launch of a fashion magazine in the 1970s, the ABC’s Paper Giants, whose sequel starts next week, remains one of the most popular TV dramas of recent times. So far this year, an irreverent ABC factual series debunking the lies of supermarkets and vitamin supplements alike has attracted more viewers than many network ”hits”.

    What prevented channels Seven, Nine or Ten making The Checkout? Or Paper Giants? Or last year’s terrific Jack Irish tele-features? Nothing.

    Ever-active lobby group Friends of the ABC contends that, despite the budget windfall, operational revenue has decreased by 23 per cent a year in real terms since 1985-86. ”Governments must do more to ensure the public broadcaster can thrive as a vital source of culture, independent information and ideas,” the group says.

    Looking at the recent record of the ABC and SBS, it’s hard not to concur. It’s time public broadcasters stopped being hobbled by fatuous arguments about their existence and left to make the shows audiences so clearly want to watch.

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    Pay TV show of the week: Bates Motel

    - Author: admin

    Freddie Highmore as Norman and Vera Farmiga as Norma in Bates Motel.Sunday, Fox8, 8.30pm

    How did the young and innocent Norman Bates become the monster of Psycho? This present-day prequel sets about explaining in intriguing fashion. The story doesn’t come from Robert Bloch, who wrote Psycho in 1959 and died in 1994, but from folks who have kept viewers spellbound on such shows as Lost and Friday Night Lights.

    This teenage Norman is played by Freddie Highmore (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Finding Neverland), and we first see him freaking out after discovering his father dead in their garage. Did Norman’s mother (Vera Farmiga) kill him? We don’t know, but she seems suspiciously casual about it.

    Next thing we see, Norman and mum Norma – yep, her name is Norma – are moving into a spooky old house that looms above a dilapidated old motel on the Oregon coast. All the pieces are in place but it’s hard to see how the sweet and well-adjusted Norman is going to turn into a horror-movie slasher. Sure, Norma is clearly not quite right, but it’s not as if Norman is some kind of mummy’s-boy loner – the local hotties take an immediate interest in him and he’s understandably interested in getting to know them better.

    The most menacing figure is local drunk Keith (Deadwood’s W. Earl Brown), whose family lost the motel to the bank. But then a shocking event binds mother and son closer together, and a chance discovery of Norman’s suggests there might be a bit of Twin Peaks weirdness about their new locale.

    All this is happening in the present but there is an agreeable ’50s aesthetic about the sets and wardrobe. It might turn out to be American Horror Story-lite but you should check it out to be safe.

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