The new SBS series The Back Side Of Television takes an interesting look at our television past.
It takes a much different approach to the usual clip shows and flashbacks. Presenter Mitch McTaggart — who previously hosted The Last Year Of Television specials for C31 and SBS — takes off the rose-tinted glasses that may colour some of our memories and throws a few truth bombs about what has really been behind some of our TV shows of the past.
The first episode, aired last week and available on SBS On Demand, took a look at Australian Idol, Australia’s Most Wanted and television’s obsession with true crime which goes to the point where the genre is literally consuming itself in the quest for ratings and content.
It wraps up with a real-life gotcha moment that you couldn’t feasibly script for fear of it being too unbelievable.
Episode two, airing on SBS Viceland tonight (Monday) at 9.20pm, looks at conspiracy theories and how they’ve evolved on TV, whiteness in drama, and how often do networks rip each other off.
There are only three half-hour episodes in this series and it seems cruelly short for a subject matter that would be a rich mine of content. Despite the awkward timeslot it has been given, hopefully SBS will give this series an opportunity to come back and explore our televisual history further.
The Back Side Of Television. Monday 22/29 November 2021, 9.20pm, SBS Viceland and later on SBS On Demand.