Hey Hey It’s Saturday host Daryl Somers (pictured) was awarded the Gold Logie for the Most Popular Personality on Australian Television at the 28th annual TV Week Logie Awards, presented at Sydney’s historic State Theatre on Friday, 18 April 1986.
It was the first time the Awards were held in Sydney since 1981.
Current affairs host Mike Willesee was Master of Ceremonies of the night’s presentation which was broadcast via the Nine Network. The awards ceremony paid tribute to 30 years of Australian television.
The Gold Logie was Somers’ second, having also won the premier award at the 25th Anniversary TV Week Logie Awards in 1983. His second Gold Logie followed a year which saw the prime-time Hey Hey It’s Saturday shift to the earlier 6.30pm timeslot, and his hosting of Nine’s afternoon game show Blankety Blanks. On a personal front, it was also a year he married long-time partner Julie Da Costa.
Somers also collected a second award on the night, for Most Popular Male Personality in Victoria.
In winning the Gold, Somers had beaten fellow nominees Greg Evans (Perfect Match), Ray Martin (Midday With Ray Martin) and Anne Tenney (A Country Practice). The year had been significant for all three fellow nominees. As well as hosting Perfect Match, Evans (pictured) had also hosted the previous year’s TV Week Logie Awards and a new talent quest series, Star Search, for Network Ten. Nine’s Ray Martin had made the risky move from 60 Minutes to host the new Midday program, taking over from the long-running The Mike Walsh Show which had moved into prime-time. And Tenney had made her farewell from A Country Practice with the emotional departure of character Molly Jones. She also featured in the ABC mini-series Flight Into Hell, scoring a nomination for Most Popular Actress In A Single Drama Or Mini-Series.
The Nine Network mini-series Anzacs won three Logies, including individual Logies for actor Andrew Clarke and actress Megan Williams. The ten-hour mini-series was the most ambitious television drama production ever undertaken in Australia, costing more than $8 million and was six years in the making. The series also featured Paul Hogan in his first dramatic role, and popular young actor Jon Blake.
Seven’s long-running A Country Practice took away four Logies, including Most Popular Drama and Silver Logies for Grant Dodwell and Anne Tenney (pictured). Tenney also won a Logie for Most Popular Female Personality in New South Wales.
Network Ten series Neighbours, which had only recently made the move from Seven, scored its first ever Logies. Actor Peter O’Brien was awarded Most Popular New Talent, while Neighbours won the award for Most Popular Program in Victoria.
Network Ten’s afternoon game show Perfect Match won Most Popular Light Entertainment Program, following a year which saw co-host Debbie Newsome replaced by newcomer Tiffany Lamb.
The Nine Network won the award for Outstanding Sports Coverage for its coverage of the first Australian Formula One Grand Prix in Adelaide, beamed around the world to an estimated 700 million viewers and which won high praise from the Formula One participating nations.
60 Minutes won the Logie for Most Popular Public Affairs Program and one of its reporters, Ian Leslie (pictured), was awarded Reporter Of The Year. Nine’s Sunday program won the award for Best Public Affairs Report for Jennifer Byrne’s coverage of the 1985 Tax Summit.
Brisbane-based TVQ0’s Eyewitness News won Best News Report for its report of the Eagle Farm siege, when a deranged man threatened to fire a shotgun and ignite a tankerload of fuel at Brisbane Airport.
As well as hosting the Logies presentation, Mike Willesee (pictured) also scored an award for Most Popular Documentary Series for his series of specials for the Nine Network. One of the most talked-about programs from the Willesee series during the year was Tommy Doesn’t Exist Any More, a sympathetic look at the lives of three transsexuals. Another program, Sink Or Swim, looked at the life of one of Australia’s leading underwater naturalists, Neville Coleman. And before the age of Big Brother, Willesee presented More Than A Game – a two-hour special which observed the behaviour of 15 people from different walks of life who were taken to a remote rural location where they had to form their own new society.
Teenage actress Nadine Garner from the Network Ten series The Henderson Kids won the Logie for Best Performance by a Juvenile; and long-running children’s program Simon Townsend’s Wonder World was awarded Most Popular Children’s Program.
National broadcaster ABC won two awards. The comedy series The Gillies Report – featuring Max Gillies in various guises including then prime minister Bob Hawke (pictured) – won Best Light Entertainment Series, and documentary series Sweat Of The Sun, Tears Of The Moon – featuring Jack Pizzey’s travels through South America – was awarded Best Documentary.
Mini-series producers Kennedy-Miller were presented a Logie for Sustained Excellence – having produced landmark series The Dismissal, The Cowra Breakout and Bodyline.
The local newscast, Newshour, from Bendigo channel BCV8 won the Logie for Outstanding Contribution by Regional Television. One of the news bulletin’s highlights from the year was its coverage of the Murray River tour of HRH Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
News cameraman Neil Davis (pictured) was posthumously inducted into the TV Week Logie Awards’ Hall Of Fame. A war correspondent for over 20 years, Davis had been gunned down in September 1985 while covering a coup attempt in Thailand.
Among the overseas guest stars at the Logies were Hill Street Blues star Veronica Hamel, actress and comedienne Phyllis Diller and singer John Denver.
Gold Logie: Daryl Somers (Hey Hey It’s Saturday, Blankety Blanks)
Silver Logie – Most Popular Actor: Grant Dodwell (A Country Practice)
Silver Logie – Most Popular Actress: Anne Tenney (A Country Practice)
Most Popular Drama Series: A Country Practice (Seven)
Most Popular Single Drama or Mini-Series: Anzacs (Nine Network)
Most Popular Actor In A Single Drama Or Mini-Series: Andrew Clarke (Anzacs)
Most Popular Actress In A Single Drama Or Mini-Series: Megan Williams (Anzacs)
Most Popular Light Entertainment Program: Perfect Match (Network Ten)
Most Popular Public Affairs Program: 60 Minutes (Nine Network)
Most Popular Documentary Series: Willesee Documentaries (Nine Network)
Most Popular Music Video: What You Need (INXS)
Most Popular Children’s Program: Simon Townsend’s Wonder World (Network Ten)
Most Popular New Talent: Peter O’Brien (Neighbours)
Best News Report: Eagle Farm Siege, Eyewitness News (TVQ0, Brisbane)
Best Public Affairs Report: Tax Summit (Jennifer Byrne, Sunday, Nine Network)
Reporter Of The Year: Ian Leslie (60 Minutes)
Best Performance By A Juvenile: Nadine Garner (The Henderson Kids)
Outstanding Sports Coverage: Australian Grand Prix (Nine Network)
Best Documentary: Sweat Of The Sun, Tears Of The Moon (ABC)
Best Light Entertainment Special: Cliff Richard – The Rock Connection (Nine Network)
Best Light Entertainment Series: The Gillies Report (ABC)
Special Award For Sustained Excellence: The Kennedy-Miller Organisation
Outstanding Contribution By Regional Television: Newshour (BCV8, Bendigo)
TV Week Logie Awards’ Hall of Fame: Neil Davis (journalist) – awarded posthumously.
State-based Categories (Most Popular Male Personality, Most Popular Female Personality, Most Popular Program):
NSW: Ray Martin, Anne Tenney, A Country Practice
VIC: Daryl Somers, Delvene Delaney, Neighbours
QLD: Glenn Taylor, Jacki MacDonald, State Affair
SA: Keith Conlon, Anne Wills, State Affair
WA: Rick Ardon, Susannah Carr, State Affair
TAS: Tom Payne, Jenny Roberts, Midweek
Source: TV Week, 19 April 1986. TV Week, 26 April 1986