TV

How They Could Make Big Brother Australia Even Better In 2021

As we approach tonight’s finale of Big Brother Australia, I thought it would be a good time to discuss some changes that could be made next year. Don’t get me wrong, unlike the majority I’ve loved the refreshed format. They’ve taken the best bits of the North American format and mixed it with some things we’d usually see in the UK / former Australian show and made a new BB fit for a new era. That’s not to say there hasn’t been some issues along the way, which I want to get into. 

 

First of all, the first episode was promoted as fast paced and exciting. It was so fast that it kicked off with an eviction. I get why they did it. They wanted to show the audience up front that this would be something new. It was night 3 for the housemates, but we had only been watching them for ninety minutes. Instead of kicking off the action straight away, I’d love to see at least the first episode, maybe even the second episode too, with no nomination comp and no one going home. That would give time for everyone to get an intro package and for us to see some human interaction. More time getting to know the HMs would mean how people nominate and vote further in the game would make more sense. And the intro packages don’t have to be drawn out like the old BB. I’d suggest watching how they get it done in America. Every person gets a very short package, but enough to learn a few quick things about them. In this year’s show only Kieran, Dan, Marissa, Allan, and Angela got intro packages while meeting Sonia, and a few got them featured later on. I’d say most of the evictions in the first half of the game, I wasn’t emotionally invested because I didn’t know them at all.

 

Another change that could make the game even more strategic would be introducing the Power of Veto, that is featured in the North American Big Brother. It would work pretty similar to the advantage that Sarah found this season. Either the show can have the nomination comp winner put three people up and the POV winner would be forced to remove one, or each week two people would be nominated and the POV winner would then have the choice to use the advantage or not. Of course like the North American version, if the POV is used there will be a replacement nominee. By adding in an extra comp in the first half of the game that would mean someone would only go home every second episode. For example in the Sunday episode there would be a nomination comp and the nominees revealed. Then in the following episode the audience would see the POV then the eviction. This would be another change that would also give more time to see the cast interaction, outside of the game play. 

 

This season we saw at times when the person would win the challenge they’d head straight to Big Brother and lock in who they’d nominate. If they were given at least 30 minutes to talk with people they could confer with their alliance, and they people who feel are in danger could plead their case and try to sway the nomination away from them. 

 

My last point on the comps would be that they need to be changed up. I’m glad to already hear Sonia has stated in an interview that they’ve taken that feedback on board, but I was shocked how many times this season we saw a comp that took strength and endurance to win. Even when we finally got a comp with a puzzle, they had half their body weight attracted to them. So we need to see comps next season that can be won by using your mind. Two that I’d suggest from BBUS is the facemash comp where three faces are put together and the fastest to get them all right wins, and the comp that’s been featured in recent seasons where colours flash up on the screen and then a question like “what was the middle colour shown” or “what colour came before blue” would be asked. Then there are comps that really can just be random chance. Sometimes simple is still exciting. Like whoever gets the hockey puck closest to the object. Is it exciting TV? No. But the exciting TV could come if someone random like Kieran would win. 

 

Okay enough about the comps, the last two things that need to improve would be editing in more fun moments. If this can’t happen in the main show, then give us a side show with the best moments we missed. It could be put on 7Two on a Friday night, or 7Plus would work just as well. Whatever it would take to see them having some more fun. Looking at the cast it’s clear we need a more diverse group. The show promoted that things would be the most diverse cast yet, and while they did a good job, I think they can push themselves to improve. It doesn’t mean just looking at age and race, but really digging in and finding people that are really from different worlds of life. If you have a large group on your season, called the “Alphas” then your cast wasn’t too diverse in the first place. 

 

Lastly let’s not have the players play in a game and vote each other out, but let the country decide who wins it all. If they are playing the game, either have a jury of the last seven or nine people voted out come together and decide who wins. They’d need to be shown the comps and footage from the eviction room, but it will mean the group has the final say, not the nation who doesn’t know everything that has happened. 

 

In saying all that, I’ve loved having the show back this year. It needed a change, but at the end of the day it’s still Big Brother. A group of people enter a house and we watch their every move.

Survivor Kaoh Rong: What could go wrong?

So there is a chance I might be the worst Survivor fan out. Okay, so maybe not the worst fan, but maybe the worst fan blogger. Looking back over my highly unsuccessful blog I realised that I never even put my thoughts out on the internet about the ending of last season, Survivor Cambodia (not that anyone was reading anyways). So here I am sitting down to post about the pre merge portion of this season, only to make a quick pitstop a couple of months back.

What can I say about Survivor’s third full returnee season? Anti climatic? Is that fair? Yeah, I guess it is. Season 31 started out strong and kind of fell apart when we decided to “invent” voting blocks. Look I’m the biggest Jeremy fan. His blindside in San Juan Del Sur was traumatic to say the least, but we were promised a great returnee season. Instead it felt like a repeat of Blood vs Water where the winner literally walked their way to the million. Seriously many parallels between Jeremy and Tyson could be made, but I really don’t have the time or energy to fall down a rabbit hole, that would make me look like I don’t support or appreciate their game prowess, when it’s quite the opposite.

Okay I’m going to move on. Cambodia was cool, but things could of been taken to the next level if the underdogs came through the the final six.

Now I’m finally going to move on to this season, I think we’re in for a wild ride. These first six episodes have been solid, but the editors are really setting up a few castaways for the fall. Scot, Kyle Jason, Nick, and Debbie all think they have the game in the palm of their hands. Peter would of been grouped in with these guys if he had made the merge, but just like with Obama’s term as president, all good things should come to an end. 

So with that in mind I believe their is only five players left that could actually win, but thanks to the equal editing, in my eyes they all have as good of a chance as the next. The five people I can see winning are Aubry, Neal, Julia, Michele, and Cydney. Any of these I’d be extremely happy with, but for now not much is clear. Hell, I could be wrong and the winner of the season could be Scot Pollard. That would show for once and for all that nothing can be certain on Survivor after 15 years. 


Big Brother 17 ~ Thoughts Part 1

As an Australian, watching the American Big Brother format has taken some getting used to. For me Big Brother involved watching people sit around all day, and us voting out the boring ones. Oh and there could never be any talk of nominations. I start watching what I would now regard as the superior format of the show, and all of a sudden I’m learning all these new terms like Head of Household, getting backdoored, Power of Veto, and Battle of the Block. And everyone is also talking about Dan’s funeral which is funny because I though the French Survivor was the only reality tv show to have someone die while filming.

So I had some catching up to do. Over the past month or so I have been learning as I go along with the season (thankfully I didn’t start watching last year or I wouldn’t of learnt much) and hear are some of my thoughts.

First off I’m so glad the game is at where it is now. Can you imagine if James didn’t win HoH and if Shelli had sent home James or Jackie. The Sixth Sense alliance would still be strong and might of continued their power through to this week.

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How The Walking Dead finished their worst season with its finest hour

A major criticism with The Walking Dead’s second season that there was to much time spent on the farm doing nothing, which isn’t wrong of anyone to say. The first half of the season is spent with Hershel and family looking for Sophia, and just as you think Rick’s group will be able to move forward to Fort Benning (a place they never get to by the way), they spend the second block on the episode on the farm deciding on what to do with Randall.

So I can see why fans were disappointed after the fast paced first season. On rewatch the season runs much smoother, but week to week this would of been a pain. The major reason for being stationary for so long was to flesh out individual characters. Whatever the writers were trying to do, it didn’t have the same effect as the character development seen in season four with Scott M. Gimple at the helm.

Looking back I can see what was created in this season working so much better condensed into eight episodes. You would still have major moments with Carl being shot, Shane killing Otis, Sophia emerging turned from the barn, and the decision on what to do with Randall. For the most part the events of season one were lifted from the comic series’ first volume (six issue arcs), so I don’t know why they thought the comics second arc would be suitable to stretch out.

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Emmy 2015 Predictions

Outstanding Drama Series

Better Call Saul (AMC)
Downton Abbey (PBS)
Game of Thrones (HBO)
Homeland (Showtime)
House of Cards (Netflix)
Mad Men (AMC)
Orange Is the New Black (Netflix)

Homeland regained critical acclaim after a post season one slump, the sophomore seasons for the Netflix dramas are seen as the best for both shows, yet it looks like Mad Men will win the award for the fifth and final time, making it a record in the category (Mad Men currently shares the title for most wins with Hill Street Blues, L.A. Law, and The West Wing).

Outstanding Comedy Series

Louie (FX)
Modern Family (ABC)
Parks and Recreation (NBC)
Silicon Valley (HBO)
Transparent (Amazon)
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix)
Veep (HBO)

I’m a big Modern Family fan but please can they stop winning this award. While the show is still a good watch, it is nowhere near the early years when it also took out Outstanding Comedy. I think it could be Kimmy Schmidt, but I could easily be wrong. There are so many strong contenders here. Veep and Transparent are contenders, and I would love for Parks to win, but the chances are slim.

Lead Actor in a Drama – Jon Hamm (Mad Men)
Lead Actress in a Drama – Viola Davis (How to Get Away with Murder)
Supporting Actor in a Drama – Jonathan Banks (Better Call Saul)
Supporting Actress in a Drama – Uzo Aduba (Orange Is the New Black)

Lead Actor in a Comedy – Jeffery Tambor (Transparent)
Lead Actress in a Comedy – Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep)
Supporting Actor in a Comedy – Tituss Burgess (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt)
Supporting Actress in a Comedy – Jan Krakowski (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt)

My 2015-16 TV Schedule

Bit of a fantasy schedule if I was living in the US and had all the time in the world to watch TV.

MONDAY
08.00 – Gotham (FOX)
09.00 – Arrow (THE CW DVR)
10.00 – The Flash (THE CW DVR)

Nothing much for me on Monday nights, but by watching the week’s before episodes of Arrow and The Flash, and air them after that nights Gotham, it would make a bit of a DC superhero night.

TUESDAY
08.00 – The Muppets (ABC)
08.30 – Fresh Off The Boat (ABC)
09.00 Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D (ABC)
10.00 – Best Time Ever with NPH (NBC)

The Muppets is one of the shows I am most looking forward to this Fall. Pair it with Fresh Off The Boat (which I still haven’t started watching, but plan to soon) and it is a good comedy hour, something that is hard to come across at the moment. In the Winter I plan to watch The Real O’Neals (it looks great) and Agent Carter.

Wednesday
08.00 – Survivor (CBS)
09.00 – Modern Family (ABC)
09.30 – The Goldbergs (ABC DVR)

Survivor is my all time favourite reality TV show, and I try not to ever miss it. Modern Family isn’t what it used to be, but some of the new episodes are still A plus material. The Goldbergs has been a recent favourite, as it’s so relatable while being set decades ago.

THURSDAY
08.00 – Grey’s Anatomy (ABC)
09.00 – Scandal (ABC)
10.00 – How To Get Away With Murder (ABC)

Currently do not watch any of these shows, while I am a fan of Grey’s. How could I pass ABC’S “Thank God It’s Thursdays” though?

How To Kill A TV Show

It looks as though Channel Seven is trying to get one of it’s US drama’s to fail and die a slow death. Maybe they want Viola Davis to come out here and solve the mystery, although there isn’t much to figure out.

A recurring problem is that they refuse to fast track an American show. A majority of the shows we air here from overseas will start in September, but due to that being the season ratings are low in Australia, the networks will hold off on shows and air them in February “after the Tennis”.

This worked fine and well in the pre-internet days. Although over the past ten years people have got smarter. The internet allows us to communicate with the rest of the world, and when people started to realise we were getting the raw end of the deal, piracy started to rise.

Now there is stupid and incredibly stupid. Most times the networks are stupid. Every year they will advertise the hell out of the biggest shows they acquired from the states. Anyone remember that summer where every time you would turn on Channel Seven, they would be showing a ad for Revenge with Coldplay’s “Paradise” blasting through the speaker. Me too.

By the time February rolled around everyone was watching was watching Revenge. When Seven went to air season two the following year, there had been a massive ratings drop. Reason being many of the die hard Revenge fans would of been watching it on their laptops hours after the US in September the year before.

So that was being stupid, now Seven have taken it to a new level, in a bid to be what I’m calling “incredibly stupid”. This years big show Seven wanted everyone to know about was Shona Rhimes’ How To Get Away With Murder. Like always Seven decided it would be a good idea to wait until “after the Tennis”.

After a good four months of ad’s for the show, they finally got around to putting it on February 10th in a 9PM time slot. 9PM isn’t terrible, but 8.30PM is much better, due to a super sized MKR every night that wasn’t going to happen. The 8.30PM vs 9PM is a whole other story, so I’ll get back on track.

Even though the first episode was five months old by that point it still got decent ratings in Australia. Jump forward to around April and the show is put on hold for a month due to Easter. Every year they make the same mistake of stoping the flow of shows for two weeks, due to Easter being a non-ratings period. Can we scrap that idea?

This past week HTGAWM came back on our screens. The first season of Murder was a short on with only fifteen episodes, so by this time the whole first season has finished and is ready to be downloaded for your binge watching pleasures. The 10th episode (out of 15) aired this week at 9.45PM. An even latter start time will not help its case, and since it’s had a month off, many people have forgotten about it, and the ratings were nowhere in comparison to what it managed at the start of the year.

Seven has now decided to make the problem worse. The show is back off again for two weeks, will be replaced by Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares. It will return Monday the 1st of June, starting at 10.40PM. What a joke. If you felt not enough viewers tuned in at 9.45PM, why will they sit up an hour latter.

By the time the season final airs in Australia, it will be 18 weeks since it aired in the United States.

This is a constant problem with Australian television. If you are able to find a show that you like that isn’t about building, cooking, weight loss or dating, it’s more than likely that the show will either a) be moved from night to night constantly or b) have a terribly start time.

Okay so I think I just explained how to kill a TV show, was I also able to convince you why illegal downloading is so high in the land down under too?

Logies 2015 Predictions

Gold Logie
Should Win: Carrie Bickmore // Will Win: Asher Keddie
Look I may be totally wrong, as this vote could go anywhere, but this will be Asher’s last chance to win for Offspring ( we assume the show won’t be coming back), and the channel Ten drama has a loyal and vocal fan base. That being said, I hope it can be Carrie to win. This is her fourth time nominated, so if the “lads” at channel Nine don’t get in her way, maybe she will have a shot at it.

Most Popular Actor
Should Win: Luke Arnold // Will Win: Chris Lilley
There is one actor here who is head and shoulders ahead of the pack, and that is Luke Arnold. His portrayal of INXS frontman Michael Hutchence was simply amazing. Unfortunately this award will be decided by the readers of TV Week, meaning we could see a repeat of last year. The undeserving Chris Lilly may take it home again.

Most Popular Actress
Should Win & Will Win: Asher Keddie
While Jessica Marais and Mandy McElhinney would both be deserving to win this one for their work on Love Child (Marais also recognised for Carlotta), Asher has a dedicated fan base and has won this award the last four years. This ones a safe bet.

Spoiler Alert: Are we losing grip what what a spoiler really means?

Furious 7 has now became the fifth highest grossing film of all time. Only James Cameron’s Titanic and Avatar, Marvel’s The Avengers, and the final Harry Potter film stand in its way. So a lot of people have gone to see Paul Walker’s final movie. I have also seen the action film, but took a long time to do so.

In the three weeks between the films release and getting to see it, I was on social media constantly, and if anyone had mentioned parts of the film, well that’s my own darn fault for one, not seeing the film soon enough, and two, being stupid enough to go on sites that may reveal things about the plot when I hadn’t seen it yet. Luckily I wasn’t spoiled, and I was able to enjoy the film for what it was, but recent events have got me thinking: have we lost track of what a spoiler really means?

To me a spoiler is when something is revealed about a television show or movie ahead of it’s release date. I’ll use my beloved reality show Survivor as an example (yes, Survivor is still on TV. Fifteen years strong!). Survivor films it’s seasons well in advance, sometimes taking up to eight months to air after the events actually happened in some deserted South Pacific island. In the past the order of when people are voted out have been released before the season even starts. That is a spoiler! When I see tweets about the episode after it has aired in Australia, that is not a spoiler, as I can’t expect the world to stop for me. Even though it does suck when I have been stupid enough to go on Twitter straight after the episode aired on the East Coast of the United States, it’s nobodies fault but mine.

The incident much like the second example I explained happened to my sister when she posted about the most recent episode of Grey’s Anatomy on Instagram, a good 48 hours after the episode had aired. Half a dozen people screamed “spoiler” and that she “ruined it”, but what was she meant to do? Wait a week? A month? A year? That’s ridiculous!

As I said, stay away from social media if you actually care about seeing something before you hear it from someone else. It’s called social media for a reason. People are always going to be talking. So if you don’t want to spoil shows for yourself, and you don’t see it straight away, it might be best to stay offline.

This is who is up for the Gold Logie? (And who I would of picked)

Last week the nominees for this years TV Week Logies awards were announced, and like always they were one hot mess.

First of all they were very same old, same old. The five out of the six were nominated for last years Gold. All we did this year was sub in Hamish Blake for Essie Davis.

Looking at the six nominated we have two actors/actress’ (Steve Peacocke and Asher Keddie) and four presenters (Carrie Bickmore, Scott Cam, Hamish Blake, and Andy Lee). I’m all for the top award being a mix of the two but this just felt a bit lop sided. Looking at the nominees for Most Popular Actor and Most Popular Actress, there are so many people that deserve to be recognised for the biggest award.

A major annoyance about the six nominees for Gold is that two of them, Hamish and Scoot, aren’t even nominated for Silver as Most Popular Presenter. How is that so. I always feel that the nominees for Gold should be picked from the fifteen nominees between Presenter, Actor and Actress.

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