It’s fashionable in certain types of blogs to be snarky about Australian television’s night of nights, the Logie Awards. Mr Trivia’s Tract will do nothing to reverse this trend. However in the interests of full disclosure, I must admit, that I only occasionally flicked over to last night’s awards show. It just wasn’t that compelling.
If you don’t watch something from end to end, then it is quite possible that the bits you missed were brilliant, funny, witty and truly entertaining. If switching over is a matter of timing and accuracy similar to throwing darts, let’s just say I didn’t get near the bullseye all night.
The red carpet was brought to us by cosmetic giant Maybelline. Austereo Network’s Jackie O was out-there ‘interviewing’ with a bold look that might be described as ‘exploded Barbie’. Channel 9’s Jules Lund, whom I’ve been very snarky about on occasion, was quite good. He seemed to understand the gig wasn’t too serious. When he interviewed Network 7’s Sonia Kruger about her silver frock, she pointed out the dangling bits of glass at the back, rather like shards of chandelier. “I could poke someone’s eye out with these if I need to,” she said demonstrating graphically by poking one towards Lund.
Michael Weatherly who plays DiNozzo on American crime series NCIS was also out on the carpet. He seemed to be going through that cognitive shift that many visiting US artists have during an event such as this; cameras are going off, there are cheering fans, interviewers with mics, but the visitor doesn’t recognise any of the other celebrities. Weatherly tried to penetrate the interviewer’s accent and answer politely. He was tall, handsome and didn’t outright insult our nation. This was all that was required of him.
Eventually, I returned to see Adam Hills do the hosting gig. I’ve seen Hillsy at the helm of ABCTV’s SPICKS AND SPECKS. He’s good at what he does, but if you’ve seen him doing stand-up in the last 18 months, then you already knew most of his ‘bits’. It was a greatest hits gig that included ‘Australian’s have a rising inflection’ and ‘I have an artificial foot’ getting a look in. He also did ‘Steve Irwin’ which was extra weird because Irwin’s widow, Terri, and their child, Bindi, were in the room. Hillsy went over big, though, and if he saw this as his opportunity to blitz the largest commercial Australian audience he is ever likely to have, then he took the ball and ran with it.
If you wanted comedy with a bit more bite, ROVE’s Dave Hughes was in slammin’ form. He never says anything really brilliant, but he is funny. Everyone copped it from the homeless to Austereo’s Kyle Sandilands, whom Hughesy described as ‘a dickhead’. This got quite a big laugh and Hughesy had another go which I missed because I was laughing so hard. TV viewers know Kyle through his appearances as a judge on AUSTRALIAN IDOL. He is not up to much in the looks department and wears his suit like he picked it off the Internet, yet seems to feel quite happy earning money by dissing the appearance and fashion choices of teenage female Idol contestants. He absolutely hated being insulted by Dave Hughes and had a boiled angry look as he sullenly applauded the gags.
Triple Ms Fifi Box, who can be entertaining, did a terrible job interviewing three of the actors from the upcoming superhero flick THE FANTASTIC FOUR ARE BORED WITLESS BY THE SILVER SURFER. That might be the working title. Michael Chiklis, Jessica Alba and Ioan Gruffud were all going through some kind of cognitive shift and seemed to be answering questions as if underwater. Or maybe that’s how it feels to be a big fish in a little pond. Not sure.
Gruffud felt confident enough to diss Alba when she fluffed her autocue line. He followed this up by faultlessly reading his lines. I was as though he was saying, “RADA training versus acting on US TV - take that.” No wonder the Americans hate the English, even when they’re Welsh.
Actual gongs were handed out eventually. I missed almost all of these, but I did catch part of what seemed like a very long thank you speech from Daryl Somers for whatever Logie DANCING WITH THE STARS won. Sonia Kruger was up there with him and understood that keeping it brief was a requirement. Daryl seemed set to do the full three hours of his old HEY HEY gig. As was said by someone else in the room where I was watching, “He really needs Dicky Knee to pop up and cut it short about now.”
The last bit I saw was ROVE’s Hamish and Andy on the couch with NCIS’s Michael Weatherly who seemed more relaxed now. Much more relaxed. He flicked his mic backwards and forwards and played with the little foam bit on top. His NCIS character is meant to be a cut up and for a moment there was that fear, that he was about to ramble endlessly in search of a punchline that would never come. These fears were allayed when Weatherly started commenting about the sponsors’ backdrop. He mentioned Maybelline twice and out of context before answering any of Hamish or Andy’s questions.
They asked him whether playing a cop on television meant he was ever tempted to take the law into his own hands. He explained that he had no superpowers, just a badge, a plastic gun and scripted dialogue, which he says whenever he hits a green tape, mark on the floor. He also explained that he says his dialogue as written unless he forgets and then he makes it up. An American actor taking the piss out of himself. So far so good. Weatherly coughed and mentioned Maybelline again. Hamish said he’d get thirty dollars more for that.
Then Hamish and Andy asked what was probably the worst question they could have come up with. It went something like this: “You used to date the beautiful Jessica Alba who is of course here tonight, how unlucky is it to travel halfway across the world to bump into your ex-girlfriend.” Weatherly who was in the country with his current girlfriend said, “Am I awake?” which was a reasonable response to this surreal turn of events. Then said, “You know that Jessica is an exquisite creature, I bumped into her earlier and it was fine. She gave me a black eye which I then covered up with Maybelline.” Suddenly Weatherly was bucking for Ronn Moss status. It was a very good answer to a crappy and awkward question.
Oh yes, and actor Kate Richie won the Gold Logie pretty much for playing the part of Sally in HOME AND AWAY for twenty years. And why not? Give her three more I say.
Elevate the Insignificant,