Last night was a big night for Television. Not only was it the worl premiere of Shaun Micallef's new quiz show Talkin 'bout Your Generation', but it was also Episode 2 of Season 5 of Australia’s Next Top Model.
I'd forgotten all about Talkin 'bout Your Cumbersome Title until I noticed @marcfennell, @triplejtvdoctor, & @danilic Tweeting 'bout Talkin 'bout Your Generation. If this were an article for the Sydney Morning Herald I guess I could just copy and paste their Tweets and call it a day. [Zing!] But this is a blog so instead I'll go on and on until the only person still reading is Roie. [zing :(]
I know it’s unfashionable to defend the institution of 'fair scoring' when it comes to this genre of wacky lon-linear game shows, but surely Generation X is alway going to win just by virtue of being born in the middle, and why is Tom Gleisner even there on Thank God You're Here?
And Gen Y doesn’t exactly have the retentive skills for a quiz format. I only know stuff after looking it up on Wikipedia, and then after the next time I look it up on Wikipedia because it just refuses to sink in.
The whole thing reminded me of that bit in 30 Rock when Kenneth develops his dream TV show, a cross between Deal or No Deal and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, only for it to fail spectuacularly, as suitcases full of 1 million dollars in gold are kind of heaps heavy.
In this bizarro context, Shaun Micallef is akin to Simon Amstell on Never Mind The Buzzcocks- both are the best thing about the show. I have nothing nice to say about special quests George Negus or Ruby Rose so I won’t say anything at all.
As it turns out, Amanda Keller is really off-putting in a quiz setting. I've always thought she was funny, she probably always thought she was funny too, but her quiz-schtick is mainly just to blow raspberries at Shaun and make whip-smart comebacks like “oh shut up!!!!” and “oh stuff you!!!!!”. I feel like the tone of the show could sharply and suddenly change, and Amanda Keller would cry and scream at all of us. Oh and Arj Barker, Charlie Pickering and Josh Thomas. They were also people on this show.
Don't have anything nice to say about the graphics either but will say something anyway because Nina likes us to use this blog as a platform to 'talk fonts'. I can't quite get my head around this huge market surge for disgusting 70's bubble writing. The titles for this show look like inside of my year 7 folder.
I guess at the end of the days like this, I just don’t really care about quizzes. It feels like a lazy realisation of the potentially interesting concept of Generational Gaps. And as someone who rarely admits to being in a Law Revue, I know that when you can’t think of a sketch you simply co-opt any theme in to the game show format: Religious Figures of the Century!!! Arts Student Family Fued!!!1 John Howard v. Kim Beazley on the Einstein Factor lol!!!1
Later in the evening I went to my friend’s sister's house to exploit her Foxtel subscription and watch Australia's Next Top Model. Driving to watch crap TV feels like going to the supermarket specifically to buy dark chocolate. You hope the effort will circumvent the urge, and yet.
I usually only watch Models in 7 part increments on YouseTube, so last night had a nice sense of occasion. It was fun to be part of the strange little world that is Foxtel. There were these nonsensical little skits about Gossip Girl played between the shows, and lots of blue. There is a lot of blue on Foxtel.
AuNTM seems pretty good so far. My initial impressions are that Lola, though beautiful, looks old enough to be on America’s Next Top Model. And Adele looks enough like Alice to make this season seem relevant.
It's a pretty high-fash affair this year, they do photo shoots with thick eyebrows and everything. The girls even wear high-waisted denim and predominately Mink Pink.
Because being/having been in line for a media empire is in the selection criteria for the job, Sarah Murdoch has become the show's new host after the controversial exit of Jodhi Meares. [Jodi Gordon, generally appealing babe and girlfriend of Ryan Stokes is probably already waiting in the wings- at least that way it'll become 'Jodi Mail' yet again. Can't quite get used to the sound of 'Sarah Mail'. It's not a thing.]
Sarah is about a trillion times more natural and relaxed than Jodhi, but also realllllly boring and not as warm. Sorta miss Jodhi’s sxc necklines too. Sarah’s memorable outfits thus far include a navy singlet top with white anchors and a grey suit dress.
This week the Challenge was something about wearing krazie ice-cream coloured leotards. Pretty sure they were shooting a catalogue for the new American Apparel range. I found it particularly helpful that they distinguished Frankie, The Black Model, by dressing her in the only bronze leotard.
Then the models arrived at Cockatoo Island, gasping and cooing as though they were about to attend a boutique festival. In fact, they were there to take part in a totally high-fash photo shoot! You could tell it was high-fash because they wore voluminous skirts and pointed their elbows.
The central plot of this weeks' episode involved on of the models, Cassie, being just THE WEIRDEST. There’s already been quite a bit of press about her antics and each week shows her spiralling further out of control.
The girl clearly has serious issues and the executive producers of the show (Sarah Murdoch) clearly have no qualms about exposing them. But what's weird is the arbitrary line they seem to draw between what constitutes a trashy bogan and what makes a fine young woman. Not sure how Cassie differs from the girl named Mikarla, or Tahnee [whose job is listed as ‘school leaver’], or Madison, the Queenslander with a force field for a haircut. Only time will tell.
As I hope Cassie will prove (and Kate Moss and Nicole Trunfio before her), as long as you stop talking and conceal your teeth, you can always be high-fash. Besides which, fashion has the capacity to transcend class! I believe it was just the other day I saw a homeless man in Hyde park wearing Romance Was Born....