Cover: Jo Beth Taylor (Australia’s Funniest Home Video Show), David Faustino (Married With Children), Lisa Hensley (Law Of The Land)
The division of Labor
A new five-part documentary is set to unveil the bitterness and antagonism between former Prime Minister Bob Hawke and his successor Paul Keating. ABC series Labor In Power features interviews with the former and current leader and details the struggles between them that date back to 1980. Series creator Philip Chubb recalls that the dispute between the pair almost threatened Australia’s economy during the height of the ’90s recession. “Episode five demonstrates that the budget was the last thing on anyone’s minds in the government. The leadership question had so consumed the government at that stage that good government utterly stopped,” he told TV Week. “Many senior people in the government say on camera that they stopped governing during that period. It’s bad enough for a government to be consumed by passions at any time, but particularly during a recession.”
Hostage horror is no act!
Law Of The Land star Frances O’Connor admits that she felt genuinely afraid during scenes where her character is taken hostage by Tiger Burraston (Harold Hopkins). “Harold is such a lovely guy in real life, but when we were doing the takes for the hostage scenes, he was very scary,” she told TV Week. “What it brought home to me when Harold was pointing that gun to me was, what could you do in that situation? Admittedly, the chances of that happening are slim, but women are more vulnerable these days because their roles have changed and will continue to change.”
A bit of sport!
HG Nelson, one half of the presenting team on ABC‘s This Sporting Life, has hit out at opposition shows, describing them as jokes. “We own up to the fact we are just two boofheads sitting at the end of a darkened room, but the viewers love us,” HG (Greig Pickhaver) told TV Week. “Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for other programs, which are complete jokes. Let’s face it, current affairs is just chock-a-block with mirth these days. I can hardly turn on A Current Affair, Real Life, The 7.30 Report or Hinch without rolling around the floor laughing. Even on our own network, the ABC — you’ve got TVTV, very funny; the news, obviously a scream; The 7.30 Report, a riot. And isn’t that Stuart Littlemore one of Australia’s leading comics? So by the time you’ve finished with Stuey, you want to see something that is basically down-to-earth and giving you information after all those surface jokes.”
- Former E Street star Alyssa-Jane Cook has begun filming a guest role in A Country Practice. She will play the part of Tess Ormond, a nursing assistant who has a fling with Hugo (Gavin Harrison).
- Sale Of The Century host Glenn Ridge (pictured) recalls an accident while taking part in the recent Targa Tasmania Rally. Travelling at 90 kph, the vehicle lost traction in gravel and attempts by co-driver John Schaap to steer back into control were unsuccessful. “I could feel the car going sideways,” he said. “When we stopped we were upside down in the car. I remember the sound of the roof sliding across the bitumen. Because your helmet is so close to the road, the noise echoes inside your helmet.”
- Dr Caroline West, from ABC‘s Everybody series, has been in discussion with 60 Minutes producer John Westacott about the possibility of presenting “occasional, one-off medical stories.”
- Only weeks after his much-publicised “breakdown” during production of The Norman Gunston Show, causing its abrupt cancellation, the word is that actor Garry McDonald is ready to begin work on the next series of Mother And Son. But any chance of Gunston returning to TV appears to be non-existent.
Lawrie Masterson: The View From Here
“While the Australian television industry might provide plenty of cause for complaint, all too frequently, just lately it has turned out some extraordinary documentary programs — television which is genuinely off the top shelf. The ABC‘s Wolves Of The Sea and Baseclimb are two Australian-made programs, and both are the equal of anything you will see anywhere in the world. Now comes Labor In Power, a series of five one-hour programs which — apart from being expertly crafted for television — also will lift the lid on some of the most momentous events of the past decade of Australian politics.”
Program Highlights (Melbourne, June 6-12):
Sunday: AFL State Of Origin features Tasmania versus Queensland, live from Bellerive Oval, Hobart (1.30pm, Seven), followed by the Shell Australian Touring Car Championship from Eastern Creek, Sydney (4.30pm, Seven). Sunday night movies are Switch (Seven) and Flirting (Ten), up against Day Four of The Ashes — England versus Australia — live from England (8.30pm, Nine).
Monday: Midday With Ray Martin (12pm, Nine) is presented this week from Warner Bros Movie World on the Gold Coast. In A Country Practice (7.30pm, Seven), Terence’s (Shane Porteous) ex-wife Alex Fraser (Diane Smith) returns to Wandin Valley, and Esme (Joyce Jacobs) and Bernice (Judith McGrath) join forces when Pearl McKeever (Mitch Mathews) moves into the Hudson farm. The one-hour final episode of comedy The Cosby Show (7.30pm, Nine) goes to air almost twelve months after screening in the US.
Tuesday: The first part of documentary series Labor In Power (9.30pm, ABC).
Wednesday: In Hey Dad! (7.30pm, Seven), Arthur (Matthew Krok) wants to become an architect so he spends a week on work experience in Martin’s (Robert Hughes) office. Ray Martin Presents (8.30pm, Nine) features an interview with actor Michael Douglas, in Cannes to promote his latest film, Falling Down.
Thursday: In the series return of Police Rescue (8.30pm, ABC), Adams (John Clayton) becomes a little girl’s lifeline until help arrives.
Friday: Burke’s Backyard‘s (7.30pm, Nine) celebrity gardener is author Bryce Courteney. In The Great Outdoors (7.30pm, Seven), Andrew Ettinghausen visits a Rolls Royce aficionado; Sofie Formica tries wood chopping; Frankie J Holden visits Old Melbourne Jail; and Penny Cook continues her tour of Launceston.
Saturday: In Beyond 2000 (7.30pm, Seven), Tracey Curro reports on the South American trade in garbage that feeds the poor and eliminates traffic jams; Amanda Keller experiences the thrill of a skateboard with a four-wheel-drive attitude; and Dr John D’Arcy discovers tropical prawns being raised in the North Island of New Zealand.
Source: TV Week (Melbourne edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 5 June 1993. Southdown Press.