Radiation by Fiona Rae

Game freakin' on

Big, warm, squishy thank yous to everyone who emailed, there are far too many for just one post. We have lots to talk about. Game freakin’ on guys.

Actually, “game freakin’ on” is what Entertainment Weekly said about Survivor: Allstars. They were very excited about it, and it’s huge in the US, but Simon Aimer prefers to read about it on Television Without Pity, which has great, if rather lengthy, blow-by-blows. Nic Igusa also recommended TWoP.

But before I get to more mail, what do we think of Christopher Eccleston being the new Dr Who? He didn’t seem quite right at first, he’s such a serious actor don’t you know, but I’m warming to the idea and he was fantastic in Clocking Off. He’s got the requisite weirdness and doesn’t mind a bit a ass-baring (Elizabeth), but I hope the BBC doesn’t try to turn him into too much of an action hero. Serious consideration should also be given to using the Blam Blam Blam version of the Dr Who theme. This interview in The Guardian shows him to be not as dour as we’ve been led to believe. Flesh and Blood has been screening on the Rialto channel, if you’ve got Sky.

Like Lindsay Vette, I can’t stand reality shows. I mean, who cares?

Our preference is for just about anything but reality TV (and Coronation St). Apparently this doesn't sell enough Persil or carpet or whatever, so after about six episodes, it seems to be canned or reshuffled out of prime time to 11pm or later.

Examples: Sea Change, The Secret Life of Us, Keen Eddie.

Maybe we should just accept our lot, have the lobotomy and start watching Paradise Hotel and Survivor. As it is we seem to have a huge stock of recorded programmes that we now need to take a week’s leave to watch.

Yes, the great god of ratings, Tangata Mita, rules over all the television in the land. Maori Television has a carving in the foyer. The latest series of The Secret Life of Us has been on at 11pm all along – I love it, such attractive characters, but it’s a little bit like that song that goes “Heaven is a place where nothing ever happens …” I can tell you that only 13 eps of Keen Eddie were made, but I don’t know if TV3 played all of them.

Quite a few of you complained about time shifts – we hate the networks playing fast and loose with series. Michael Wynd was also watching Joan of Arcadia, but it’s been pulled in favour of the “old and very, very tired” Charmed. He also had things to say about Paul Homes interview with Kevin Barry: “Did Holmes feel any sense that it was unbalanced and frankly gave Barry a venue to make dubious allegations against his former client?” You may also see that Russell Brown has plenty to say about Holmes’ interview with Nick Smith on Wednesday night.

Peter McLennan loves the bogan heaven of Monster Garage on Prime. Actually, so do my boy children. It’s kinda nice that they didn’t think it was that unusual that there were girls in the chop shop last week, wielding welding gear and getting tattoos. Kung Faux on C4 gets the nod from Peter as well.

Ian Parkes is really pissed off about Sunday Theatre, the new promos are “just bloody movies and other recycled tosh.” Although I don’t think you can blame Ralston, Ian, he’s strictly news and current affairs.

I spent three years in Singapore -- the land of the three-letter acronym -- and they had the most godawful TV on the planet. At least I hope it was. What it lacked most was a healthy weekly injection of QBD -- quality British drama. It was one of the things I remembered most fondly about NZ. And now I come back, not only to find that Prime has sold out and now offers only fragments of its formerly stunning programming but to see that Sunday Theatre, the holy of holies is being sodded about with as well. It's an outrage, etc.

There has been some wailing and gnashing of teeth in Britain about the state of drama, it’s not as abundant as it used to be and for a while there it all starred Michelle Collins. According to TVNZ, the new ST season also includes Prime Suspect VI, which got really good reviews in Britain, the Jimmy McGovern-penned Sunday, which is about Bloody Sunday and stars Dr Who, sorry, Christopher Eccleston, and something called Suspicion, which is … oh god, another murder mystery.

I did think Murphy’s Law was really bloody good btw. The opening sequences were brilliantly edited.

Radiation also welcomes Mark Everton, an actual TV producer-type person, who sent his best wishes:

Careful, considered, informed and passionate debate is what we need -- from people who actually do care and have some positive thoughts to share.

Gemma Gracewood would like to see a twice-yearly critique of Shortland Street, which I’m sure is possible – you can write it, hon. Btw, could someone please slap Nelson? But maybe after he takes his shirt off again.

Lastly, Dave Chowdhury says his solution is to not watch TV. I’m sorry, Dave, but that just doesn’t count.