tvweek_100994Cover: Heather Locklear (Melrose Place)

‘It’s time to jump off the cliff again!’
A guest role in this week’s episode of GP has given actor Garry McDonald a chance to stretch his boundaries. “I felt a while ago that I was always working with the same people, that I needed certain people for a safety net,” he told TV Week. “I thought I should start jumping off the cliff again.” Playing the part of radio announcer ‘Gazza’ is also testing McDonald’s coping mechanisms since starting treatment for an anxiety disorder which saw him suffer a nervous breakdown during production of The Norman Gunston Show last year. “I’m never pleased with what I’m doing. I just have to go with the moment. I know that when this show goes to air my anxiety level is going to be very high, so I am going to have to confront this, and sit down and watch it.” In the meantime he has also been working to educate people about anxiety disorders. “I want people who have an anxiety disorder to know there is a way out.”

juliemullins_0001Did she fall… or was she pushed?
A murder mystery weekend of fun on Neighbours ends in tragedy when a real body is found. Julie Martin (Julie Mullins) is found dead at the base of a hotel tower, leaving everyone asking, “did she fall, did she jump… or was she pushed?” The dramatic storyline marks Mullins’ departure from the series after two years. “It’s been wonderful, but the challenge is gone,” she told TV Week. “I’ve noticed over the past few couple of months that the edge has been taken off my approach to the part, and I don’t like doing something I can’t commit to 100 per cent.” Mullins plans to complete another unit for an arts degree she is doing part-time and will be going to the United Kingdom in November for a role in the stage production Babes In The Woods.

Burke’s birthday bash!
To celebrate Burke’s Backyard‘s seventh birthday, host and producer Don Burke has thrown a party at his north Sydney home for the show’s cast and crew. Burke tells TV Week that the show has turned around the public perception of gardening. “Prior to doing this thing on television, gardening was perceived to be hideously boring,” he said. “When we first started, nowhere in the world had there been an infotainment program, and I think people didn’t know what to call us. It was a lifestyle program with a huge bent on entertainment and lifestyle. It took about five years before people came to terms with that new concept.”


  • Former champion swimmer Johanna Griggs (pictured with Bruce McAvaney) says that commentating rather than competing at the World Swimming Championships will make her feel nostalgic (she won a silver medal at the 1990 event) but says she doesn’t miss swimming. “I won’t be wishing I was in the pool, but I will feel very close to the swimmers, knowing the emotions that I went through as I was standing behind the blocks,” she told TV Week.
  • Former Sale Of The Century and Jeopardy host Tony Barber is making a return to TV — as an actor. Barber will be playing the part of talk show host Tony Johnson in five episodes of Seven‘s new sitcom Wedlocked. Meanwhile, Barber’s former Sale co-host Alyce Platt is soon to make a guest appearance in Ten‘s A Country Practice, playing the part of breast cancer patient Sarah Wilks.
  • Former Fast Forward star Michael Veitch is tipped to appear in one of the upcoming series of Halifax fp telemovies. Also signed up for Halifax fp is Bernard Curry, last seen on TV series Snowy.
  • Former Home And Away star Nicolle Dickson has made a surprise move into amateur theatre. The actress, once rumoured to be earning $250,000 a year for the part of Bobby in Home And Away, has decided it’s time to “pay her dues” and to prove her skills as an actor. “There is a belief that if you work on a soap, you really can’t act. So I want to prove myself on stage and maybe achieve some credibility in the process,” she told TV Week.

TV’s Top 20 (Week Commencing August 21):

Rank Program Network Day(s) Viewers
1 World’s Greatest TV Commercials Seven Sun 2127000
2 Home Improvement Seven Sun 2086000
3 Australia’s Funniest Home Videos Nine Tues 1796000
4 A Current Affair Nine M-F 1877000
5 Funniest Commercials You’ll Ever See Nine Tues 1796000
6 National Nine News Nine M-F 1717000
7 60 Minutes Nine Sun 1713000
8 National Nine News Nine Sun 1668000
9 Home Improvement Seven Wed 1644000
10 Our House Nine Wed 1641000
11 Sale Of The Century Nine M-F 1587000
12 Baywatch Ten Sun 1581000
13 Eyewitness News Ten Sun 1553000
14 Eyewitness News Ten Sat 1534000
15 Movie: The Last Boy Scout Nine Sun 1499000
16 Married With Children Nine Tues 1494000
17 Looking Good Nine Wed 1463000
18 Seven Nightly News Seven M-F 1455000
19 Blue Heelers Seven Tues 1434000
20 Seven Nightly News Seven Sun 1435000

Lawrie Masterson: The View From Here

“A high-powered advertising executive with a penchant for the opposite sex, a beautiful but naive girl exposed for the first time to the big city, a handsome doctor who falls for a lovable but lovelorn homosexual, a lawyer-turned-waiter-and-womaniser… It sounds like a character breakdown for a new Aaron Spelling series but, fortunately for us all, it is not. It is, rather, just a brief sample of the characters who populate Armistead Maupin‘s Tales Of The City, screening on ABC over five Sunday nights. The difference between them and the population of, say, Melrose Place, is that Maupin’s characters are at once warm, funny, sad, frustrating, enigmatic and, above all, credible.”

Program Highlights (Melbourne, September 10-16):
Saturday: Afternoon sport includes the VFA First Semi-Final (2pm, ABC) and the Winfield Cup Minor Semi-Final (2.50pm, Nine, with highlights at 6pm, ABC). In A Country Practice (5.30pm, Ten), Danny (Vince Colosimo) and Claire (Claudia Black) recognise their growing interest in each other. The World Swimming Championships (10.30pm, Seven) continue through to Monday night.

Sunday: Football finals continue with VFA Second Semi-Final (2pm, ABC), Winfield Cup Major Semi-Final (2.50pm, Nine, and highlights 6pm, ABC) and AFL Qualifying Finals matches from Perth (live 4.20pm, Seven) and Melbourne (replay 7.30pm, Seven). Sunday night movies are Kuffs (Seven), Universal Soldier (Nine) and A Place For Annie (Ten).

Monday: In Home And Away (7pm, Seven), Jack (Daniel Amalm) is having the time of his life playing the field with three girlfriends. In Healthy Wealthy And Wise (7.30pm, Ten), Jim Brown visits Adelaide Hills to meet a local who makes steam engines designed to generate electricity; Peter Wherrett looks at back problems and a new lumber support for car seats; and Ronnie Burns looks at lighting a room and how it can change the whole atmosphere.

garrymcdonald_0001Tuesday: In Neighbours (6.30pm, Ten), Danni (Eliza Szonert) has a surprise birthday present for herself when she gets the top of her ear pierced. In Blue Heelers (7.30pm, Seven), the police find it difficult to help a woman who won’t press charges against her husband for brutally beating her. Steven Jacobs and Sofie Formica host the new hidden camera series Just Kidding (8pm, Nine). In GP (8.30pm, ABC), Ian (Tony Llewellyn-Jones) treats Rachel (Melissa Bell), the neglected daughter of a wise-cracking radio announcer, “Gazza” (Garry McDonald, pictured)

Wednesday: In Home And Away (7pm, Seven), old resentments surface between Angel (Melissa George) and Frankie (Lenka Kripac). The Movie Show (7.30pm, SBS) presents a special edition from the Venice Film Festival. Paul Clitheroe is back with another series of Money (8pm, Nine). The Seventies theatrical and performing group The Pram Factory, based in Melbourne, is profiled in a one-hour special (9.30pm, ABC).

Thursday: In Neighbours (6.30pm, Ten), Pam (Sue Jones) and Doug (Terence Donovan) are bound for Darwin. Neville Bonner, the first indigenous member of federal parliament, is featured in Australian Biography (7.30pm, SBS). In Janus (8.30pm, ABC), Kirsty Nichols (Belinda McClory) turns her back on boyfriend Steve Henessey (Leon Teague) and becomes a police informer. Sketch comedy show Full Frontal (8.30pm, Seven) returns for a new series. Neil Mitchell hosts AFL: Talking 1999 (8.30pm, Nine), a forum to discuss the future of the Australian Football League and the five-year plan.

Friday: In Rex Hunt’s The Great Outdoors (7.30pm, Seven), guest reporter Melissa Bell visits the Kooralbyn Resort in southern Queensland where she gets a lesson on skydiving; and Bridget Adams shows a rescue beacon that could be a lifesaver for people lost outdoors.

Source: TV Week (Melbourne edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 10 September 1994. Southdown Press




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