tvweek_310793Cover: Shannen Doherty (Beverly Hills 90210)

Olivia’s idea of paradise
Olivia Newton-John is set to host her own show. The secret project is described as being focused on the environment. “Olivia is very passionate about the environment, children and animals, and this show embraces all of that,” producer Scott Young told TV Week. Young is working on the project in association with Beyond International, producers of Beyond 2000.

Let’s not talk about sex
Sophie Lee became famous on television for putting a sexy slant on The Bugs Bunny Show and hosting the controversial lifestyle program Sex. But the 24-year-old now has a new outlook on life and wants to combat the sexual stereotyping of women on television — something she admits she may have contributed to with her previous TV roles. “I was more innocent and naive than I am now,” she told TV Week. “I got pushed into a lot of things but, of course, I didn’t have the knowledge I have now. It was wonderful to work on Sex and to inform people, but acting is my first love.” Having just completed work on New Zealand mini-series Typhon’s People, Lee is looking at other ventures. “Perhaps some writing, maybe a one-woman show.”

Chubb in power
The 7.30 Report is about to get a revamp to boost ratings. Philip Chubb, creator of documentary series Labor In Power, has been appointed national editor. Chubb replaces Murray Travis who will be executive producer of a new business current affairs program. “The fall in the show’s ratings is of great concern to the ABC,” Chubb told TV Week. “My job is to try and understand why that slide has occurred and to reverse it.” The 7.30 Report currently rates between 11 and 14 in capital city markets and Chubb wants to boost this average to around 20. Although the program will maintain its current state-based format, Chubb said he aims to improve the program by making better use of the show’s various state-based production teams in covering national stories on a more regular basis.


  • lyndalmarksAustralian TV journalist Lyndal Marks (pictured) might not be a household name here but she has worked her way up to become the only female journalist on national American television. Marks was a producer for 60 Minutes in Australia before taking on the role of London correspondent for the American version of 60 Minutes. She was then offered a job for rival Fox Network‘s A Current Affair, initially based in its London bureau but has since transferred to New York. As a reporter for A Current Affair, Marks is watched by about 35 million Americans every week.
  • brianmannixFormer Uncanny X-Men frontman Brian Mannix (pictured) has signed up for an eight-week guest stint in Neighbours. He will play the part of jockey Connor Cleary, a romantic interest for Lauren (Sarah Vandenbergh).
  • Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum has scored a world exclusive interview with Madonna on the eve of her world tour. The interview, recorded recently in Los Angeles, will be broadcast on Nine this week and features Madonna discussing her upcoming first Australian tour.

Lawrie Masterson: The View From Here

“The adage about sex selling has never rung more true than in recent times and — Paul Keating‘s misgiving about 8.30 movies and Bruce Gyngell‘s directives notwithstanding — TV has never had so much flesh on display. So it really is time that the ABC took a far more academic view of all of this, which is what it does in The Opposite Sex, which will screen over four weeks. The Opposite Sex opens by questioning whether the sexes are actually as opposite as most of us think. How do we form our ideas about being male and female? What if it’s more than our upbringing? What if it’s bigger than biology? All are part of that most ancient and teasing question of all: what is the real difference between men and women? Whether The Opposite Sex goes very far towards providing the answer I can’t really say, because I previewed only the first of the four hours. But certainly that first part did make me question some long-held beliefs — perhaps myths — about the differences between the sexes.”

Program Highlights (Melbourne, August 1-7):
Sunday:  The World Cup Qualifier — Australia versus Canada — is broadcast live from Alberta, Canada (6.15am, SBS). Sunday night movies are Rain Man (Seven), Tango & Cash (Nine) and Death In Brunswick (Ten).

jimmybarnesMonday: John Mangos and Sharon Dale host new mid-morning magazine program At Home (9.30am, Seven).  In A Country Practice (7.30pm, Seven), Hugo (Gavin Harrison) finds a runaway girl hiding out on his land; and Anna (Anne Looby) is appalled when a dog dies through the negligence of a well-respected vet. Jimmy Barnes (pictured) and his family are guests on Healthy Wealthy And Wise (7.30pm, Ten).

Tuesday:  In All Together Now (8pm, Nine), Thomas (Steven Jacobs) is scared he will lose his mother again, this time permanently, when she takes up motorbike riding.

Wednesday: In Hey Dad! (7.30pm, Seven), Jenny (Angela Keep) makes copies of her homework to sell to her friends. In Hard Copy (8.30pm, Ten), Renee Brack reports on the untold story of the Cowra machete murders.

kimberleydavies_0002Thursday: In Neighbours (6.30pm, Ten), Annalise (Kimberley Davies, pictured right) shocks Gaby (Rachel Blakely) with her plans for the coffee shop. In Police Rescue (8.30pm, ABC), an earth tremor hits the city, trapping Nipper (Steve Bisley, pictured) and others inside a high-rise building’s damaged lift. The Ashes Fifth Test kicks off five nights of coverage from England (8.30pm, Nine).

Friday: In The Great Outdoors (7.30pm, Seven), former A Country Practice star Lorrae Desmond visits her favourite places around the Hawkesbury River; Sofie Formica meets a couple who have spent two years horse-riding along the Bicentennial National Trail; and Penny Cook visits a remarkable hotel in central Australia.

Saturday: In Eggshells (8pm, ABC), Frank (Garry McDonald) worries about Zoe (Rebecca Smart) stealing Jill’s (Susan Lyons) earrings and Jake (Justin Rosniak) starts a lawn mowing business.  Beyond 2000 appears to be bumped out of the 7.30pm Saturday timeslot, replaced this week by a rerun of the 1988 special Oz TV’s Greatest Commercials (7.30pm, Seven).

Source: TV Week (Melbourne edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 31 July 1993.  Southdown Press.

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