It has been a season of highs, high drama, lows and low bank accounts for The Block 2017 and it’s contestants as the past 12 weeks have seen the five couples completely transform old, dilapidated houses into modern and spacious luxury family homes in the Melbourne suburb of Elsternwick.
With the homes transformed and the annual “open for inspection” done and dusted, there’s only two things left – auction order and the Block Auction which takes place this Saturday before airing Sunday night on channel 9 in what is expected to bring in major viewers for the network.
While the season has seen teams consisting of Josh and Elyse and Ronnie and Georgia virtually clean sweep the weekly room wins, who will win the Block auction isn’t going to be as crystal clear with viewers backing almost every team.
Jason and Sarah, who came scarily close to being booted off the show for poor fund management and failing to deliver their master suite on time have suddenly found themselves being touted as the ‘dark horse’ of the series with their end product featuring a massive wide open entry hallway, low maintenance and family friendly yard and winning stellar kitchen.
But that’s not to say the other teams consisting of first time renovators Clint and Hannah or best mates Sticks and Wombat don’t have the chance to take the win either with both teams also claiming some wins and fans along the way.
How important will the auction order be in determining who could take the win and will the decision be made drama free? Most are expecting Ronnie and Georgia to put up a strong fight for their auction placement preference with the experienced team being very vocal about their understanding of The Block being a ‘competition to win and not make friends’ and as seen in last years series which (as per the norm) saw the teams unable to compromise and determine their own auction order, host Scott Cam had to step in with a suggestion for fiery couple Julia and Sasha to take up the first auction only for them to blatantly refuse because their agent recommended going second.
The team that eventually went first – Will and Karlie were also the team to take out the win for that series.
The Block goes to auction in the series finale this Sunday from 7pm on Channel 9
In an aimless attempt to tap into the “Real Housewives of…” market, Channel 7 has incredulously decided to drag viewing audiences to their network with their own unscripted version titled “Yummy Mummies” premiering Sunday night at 9pm.
Yummy Mummies assaults viewers with their bland and tedious lives of four soon-to-be-mums who live their days through their “MelbourneYumMums” Instagram page, drinking mocktails at lunch and doing a lot of shopping for designer maternity wear while contemplating how “everyday pregnant women let themselves go during pregnancy”.
At first glimpse, there’s not much substance to the three Melbourne based nearly mums. While they seem like a lot of fun, there’s no talk of maternity leave or any sign these women have some form of a career outside of going to lunch and when it comes to finances, there’s no shame shown when talking about how the hubby will happily pay for a $99,000 “push present” aka a rare diamond ring.
Yummy Mummy number one is Lorinska, an AFL WAG, married to former Carlton player Andrew Merrington and is a behemoth of a woman who towers above the other two nearly mums. At 33 weeks pregnant, Lorinska has a very valid fear of breastfeeding her soon to be off-spring after a humiliating and traumatic cow-teet-to-the-face moment in her childhood. Lorinska is also the only “yummy mummy” not afraid to look a little more casual during some of her cut screen commentaries.
Yummy Mummy number two is Rachel, a…..well not much is offered on Rachel except she’s a) heavily pregnant, b) gives great Carrie Bradshaw face, c) is the only “yummy mummy” who doesn’t look like a chupa chup who swallowed it’s chupa chup and d) likes to scare breast feeding phobic nearly mums with tales of alien-esque post birth scenarios.
Yummy Mummy number three is Jane, a model who’s married to South Yarra hairdresser Joey Scandizzo and is the only “yummy mummy” to actually be on her second pregnancy. It’s hard to hate on Jane because she’s very pretty, rocks a posh yet bogan twang and reminds me way to much of Karen Smith from Mean Girls.
While we are being introduced to the Melbourne gang, we are also invited to meet “Yummy Mummy” Maria from Adelaide along with her mum Patsy Stone Margherita (this show’s true and not-so-secret secret star) and her younger sister Bianca who seems like Kendall Jenner before Kendall Jenner became Kendall Jenner.
Maria is many months pregnant (I can’t for the life of me remember how far along she is or if it’s even mentioned – actually I don’t really care) and has already mapped out her unborn daughters life up-to the age where she’ll be resented for the rest of her life. From Burberry to Versace, as long as it’s branded and cost more than my annual wage, then Maria has bought it for her unborn child.
Maria is all about style over substance, she’s branded her partner with her name in ink and believes breast feeding in public is or should be illegal and is not a fan of counter-fake (yes, her words) handbags.
Maria is also the reason why the Melbourne based “Yummy Mummies” end up in Radeliade – to attend her uber tacky and garishly over the top Burberry-come-Versace themed baby shower as Maria, it seems has no friends and needs to invite three total strangers to this event in an attempt to show off and feel good about her vapid life.
Bridezilla’s are a thing of the past with Mumzilla Maria throwing tantrum after tantrum in regards to planning her most glamorous ever baby shower. From the size of the event room to ordering a big enough balloon arch, the theme of the baby shower to present table size, nothing is off limits in tantrum town.
There is one saving grace in this abhorrent show however – event planner Jess –
Jess is literally the ‘everyday person’s hero’ as she keeps composure through the stream of outrageous demands Maria vomits up in a single meeting. There’s not a single raised eyebrow and no glaringly forced smile as Jess has a reasonable solution for every demand.
Yummy Mummies really is truly terrible television. There’s no beating around the bush – it’s shit – but, it’s shit television that makes for twitter and social commentary gold and the fact that we still don’t make it to an actual baby shower by the end of this first episode will keep many shocked eyes on the following episode.
Yummy Mummies begins, Sunday night on Channel 7 at 9pm right after the House Rules finale…..
Successful and good quiz shows featuring celebrity panelists comes down to three defining factors. 1: A smart yet funny quiz show offering up great questions. 2: A great selection of celebs that not only get into the game but are also good sports. 3: A good host that can interact well with those celebs appearing on said show. The Big Music Quiz hits two of those three points and without the third, it painfully shows.
The premise is pretty simple, two teams of semi well known faces show off their music knowledge over six rounds of questions….all of which are of course musical based with the loosing team forced into humiliation by ending out the show with a dance off.
The selection of celebrities in the shows first outing range from Screaming Jets front man Dave Gleeson to model Kris Smith to Winners and Losers star Melanie Vallejo and over the coming episodes includes Rebel Wilson, Ada Nicodemou and Kate Ceberano.
The big miss with The Big Music Quiz is in host Darren McMullen – he of former The Voice Australia host and House Husbands actor – does not mesh well with either the celebrity guests or the show in general. I hate to say it as I like McMullen but the quick wit required to host these type of shows is missed completely by him as he manages to miss any and all opportunities for zingy comebacks…even when presented to him on a silver platter.
For example, in the first round of the first episode, contestants are given a short 20 seconds to identify the artist of a well known song, model Kris Smith says “I remember 20 seconds being a lot longer than that!” McMullen laughs and moves right onto a score check. Heck, even guest Laurence Mooney (probably ascertaining the lack of hosting ability) attempts to have a decent crack at poking some tongue in cheek comments.
It’s a hosting gig perfect for someone like Paul McDermott or even say Hamish Blake who have a proven track record with this kind of thing.
The big Music Quiz is just that…a big music based quiz show, a flashier version of Spicks and Specks and of the first episode available for preview, it’s without the witty banter between host and celebrities that make those shows even more watchable. Good news is that The Big Music Quiz is not a lost cause thanks to its host. The mix of fun rounds, easy to moderately tough questions and great selection of celeb guests pick up the slack.
If there is anything 7 could take away from The Big Music Quiz it’d be to cast a wider net when looking for a host and look into viewer interaction via an app or website. A show like this would work perfectly with at home viewers so they can watch and play along at the same time on a second screen device.
The Big Music Quiz starts soon on Channel 7 (possibly Sunday August 28th)
If you’re like me, your’e dreading the impending barrage of Rio Olympics television coverage and what it will do to the other free-to-air networks. Seven have already announced all of their FTA and digital channels will be non stop Olympics, Channel nine will probably opt for Big Bang Theory repeats and Network Ten…well they’ll do want they want and continue with their standard schedule.
So then we find ourselves aimlessly channel surfing trying to find something to watch in between episodes of The Bachelor Australia hoping to find a gem we’ve not yet seen. This is where the following list of recommended shows to binge during the Rio Olympics will hopefully come in handy.
Schitt’s Creek / Seasons 1 and 2 / Comedy / 2015 –
Now currently on hiatus after two seasons (season three is currently filming) Schitt’s Creek has a familiar premise of the fish out of water scenario where the fish is the ultra wealthy Rose family and the water being an unscrupulous business manager that left them with nothing but a small middle of nowhere town (and the Roses new home) named Schitts Creek that Rose patriarch Johnny (Eugene Levy) purchased as a gag gift for his son David (Daniel Levy). Forced to forgo all their luxuries, the Rose’s must endure life as they never knew it until Johnny is able to sell the town to nab back some much needed dollars.
Why you should binge: Comedy legends Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara back on screen together for starters! Plus it’s funny, heart warming and very ship-worthy, you’ll fall in love with “is he or isn’t he” David and his spoiled sister Alexis (Annie Murphy) will either make you uber jealous or scratch your head in wonderment.
The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst / Season 1 / Documentary / 2015
With the popularity of Making a Murder being so overwhelming, many people might be looking for something just as absurd and something just as intriguing. The Jinx delves into the mystery surrounding the 1982 disappearance of Durst’s first wife Kathy along with the murder of his best friend Susan Berman and neighbor Morris Black. The six part documentary series is told from Durst’s point of view and you’ll be left gobsmacked when things start to unravel and truth’s start to come out.
Why you should binge: It’s like the opposite of Making a Murderer where we all (for the most part) assume Steven Avery’s innocence but are left fuming at the US justice system but here, Dursts’ guilt is obvious right from the go but the police can’t seem to nab him. it’s an incredibly powerful look into how power, money and influence can keep things hidden.
Fuller House / Season 1 / Comedy / 2016 –
Sure there’s some nostalgia that surrounds this updated version of 80’s sitcom Full House that those not yet to watch may think be corny, but in fact, Fuller House is such an easy show to watch, you’ll make your way through all 13 episodes in a breeze. DJ Tanner (Candice Cameron) is back along with younger sister Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin) and best friend Kimmy Gibbler (Andrea Barber) who all join together to live in the house they grew up in. If Carly Rae Jepsen’s updated theme song doesn’t get you, then seeing the return of the old Tanner family (minus the Olsen twins as Michelle) will.
Why you should binge: It’s a very easy show to settle into, doesn’t take itself serious and throws uber shade at the missing Olsen twins plus who didn’t love Full House?! It was staple viewing growing up in the 80’s!
Looking / Seasons 1 and 2 + finale movie / Drama / 2015-2016
I’ll be very blunt, the first season of gay themed drama Looking killed me. It frustrated me with its slowness and un-eventfulness but Looking’s slow paced look at the lives of three gay men living in San Francisco is worthy of a binge session. Patrick (Jonathan Groff) has a stable work life but can’t get his romantic life on track, Dom (Murray Bartlett) is trying to clasp onto his youth with younger men and casual work while Augustin (Frankie J Alvarez) is a struggling artist with a drug addiction that’s spiraling out of control.
Why you should binge: It’s probably one of the more honest looks at the daily lives of gay men than we’ve ever seen to date and the acting by the leads – especially Groff – is understated and genuine. Once you move onto season two, the pace picks up nicely from season one and finishes off with the recent Looking: The Movie.
Playing House / Seasons 1 and 2 / Comedy / 2014 –
Maggie (Lennon Parham) is heavily pregnant, had just thrown her husband out for cheating and best friend Emma (Jessica St. Clair) ditches her job in Hong Kong to move in and support her. This hilarious look at what best friends will and can do for each other is honest and real and funny. As best friends off screen, Parham and St. Clair bounce off one another with such ease one could be forgiven for forgetting this was a scripted comedy.
Why you should binge: Filled with laughter and outrageous moments, Playing House is just fun to watch. Pure and simple, plus Maggie and Emma’s friendship offers up some major feels that will keep you moving onto the next episode.
The Staircase / Season 1 / Documentary / 2004
Another true crime documentary that falls into the Making a Murderer and the above mentioned The Jinx category where you can’t stop at just one episode. Offering up two main themes – The investigation into a very complicated murder and the defense and prosecution teams who are trying to construct winning cases, The Staircase is told from the viewpoint of worried widow/cold blooded killer Michael Peterson, and details the case around his late wife who was found at the bottom of their family home staircase in a pool of blood.
Why you should binge: While this 8 part series ends rather abruptly, this case of a woman dead at the bottom of a staircase isn’t as clear cut as it first seems. The family secrets and compelling connections that are revealed as time goes on will only leave you questioning your own mind on Peterson’s guilt or innocence.
Broad City / Seasons 1 to 3 / Comedy / 2014 –
Abbi Abrams (Abbi Jacobson) and Ilana Wexler (Ilana Glazer) are best friends in their 20’s living the high life in NYC. Abbi works in a gym as a cleaner but has hopes of making her way up to personal trainer, Ilana works….well we never really find out what she does but it involves lots of sleeping in the toilet and spinning on her chair. With meaningless jobs, a very short supply of cash and virtually no shame, their day to day experiences lead them down some bizarre and unexpected paths.
Why you should binge: It’s like Girls but funnier, and you don’t want to cause physical harm to any of the characters. Broad City is wildly outrageous, crude and shocking in it’s approach to 20-something life in New York and the friendship between Abbi and Ilana will make you wish you had something similar, but with a more stable love life, professional life and cash flow.
So I have to admit, I have never watched a single episode of The Bachelor Australia. Like never ever. None of the US versions when they aired here and none of the three previous seasons of our very own locally made series either. It’s not like the show has never been on my radar…The whole Blake Garvey fiasco and “Dirty Street Pies” flooded my social media timelines when they were taking place but truth be told, I have never been that interested.
That was until however I began watching the very awesome UnReal (currently streaming on STAN) which offers a rather gloomy and depressing look at the goings on behind the scenes of a show very much like The Bachelor and it got me wondering how having watched a show like UnReal would affect how I would watch a show such as The Bachelor. And luck be it, a brand new season of The Bachelor began last night.
The Bachelor himself, Richie Strahan, an orphan from the first series of The Bachelorette, is stupidly handsome and utterly charming enough for anyone to ever remember Bachelorette Sam Frost deemed other men more worthy to marry than him. Anyways, it seems as though much like myself watching for the very first time, he had no idea what was in store as leggy lady after leggy lady disembarked from their black limousine to be introduced to Richie.
It’s here I began to devise a drinking game to go with watching The Bachelor.
*Take a shot anytime Richie’s eyes dart somewhere south when talking to a potential match.
This goes along with the following…
*Take a shot anytime the camera zooms in on cleavage or side-boob.
*Take a shot anytime Eliza sings her self penned song – either to Richie, to the other women or to herself.
*Take a shot anytime a woman is seen clutching at her hip slit dress in an attempt to keep her vah-yayyay covered.
*Take a shot anytime the camera pans to Osher Gunsberg and you find yourself yelling “YOUR NAME IS ANDY G!”
*Take a shot anytime one of the girls rolls their eyes or offer up a killer resting bitch face.
*Take a shot anytime the ‘token brunette’ demands she’s different from the other girls here.
*Take a shot anytime Olena comes on screen and you begin to question your sexuality.
You get the drift but basically, anyone playing this game, i’m assuming should be hammered by about the 20 minute mark of each and every episode.
So this brings me back to UnReal. Throughout this first episode, all I could think was “God save the poor soul tasked with handling Keira”, “Is Alex, Faith or Megan the ‘wifey’ this season?”, “Is Janey the unstable one?” and other such questions that make UnReal so darned perfect to watch. As the first episode dragged on however, I actually stopped thinking about the UnReal version and what could be going on behind the scenes and found myself, much like Richie, drowning in what what going on in front of me. This sort of tag team system that was taking place as each girl goes to spend one on one time with Richie while the others watch on offering ‘if looks could kill’ glances at each other all while hoping to be the lucky recipient of not only a red rose (that according to Russian import Sasha is quite yummo to nibble on) by the end of the night but the exclusive and awe inspiring white rose.
As a first time viewer, it’s all quite bizarre and funny to watch a group of women henpeck each other over the attention of a goofy yet handsome man that may or may not profess his love to one of them but not before romancing and pashing all the ones he likes.
It’s those reasons mentioned above though that also make me understand why it’s so delicious to watch and why it get’s everyone talking.
My hot tip – Olena, Faith and Megan for the final three!
The Bachelor Australia airs Wednesdays and Thursdays 7:30pm on Network Ten.
Two sassy country town cousins versus the super confident pommie best friends. It’s an MKR final that no one could have picked when asked after the two instant restaurant rounds had been completed. Cousins Jac and Shaz and best friends Will and Steve have – for the most part – had a breezy run in the uber long cooking competition.
The Mount Isa cooks have actually had the easiest of runs into the final, nabbing multiple challenges off due to winning the coveted ‘peoples choice’ on two challenges. Will and Steve however have found themselves in a sudden death cook-off only to finish the final instant restaurant round on top of the leader board.
So who will win the title of My Kitchen Rules 2015 champions?
While Camilla and Ash were my top picks, Jac and Shaz’s easy going nature and fantastic home-style cooking have earned them a legion of fans with myself included. Will and Steve too have a well earned following thanks to their British pub inspired recipes and are the first all-male team to make the MKR finals.
#jacandshaz deserve the win. Shaz never freaks out under pressure. And they can cook. #mkr
We’re almost at that time where I get to plant myself in front of the TV, watching wannabe models battle for top spot, with a large glass of moscato in hand and an over sized plate of various cheeses and crackers in my lap – seriously, it’s my guilty pleasure!
April 30th will see Cycle 9 of Australia’s Next Top Model begin on FOX8 and this year, there are changes aplenty that not only shake up the competition but also makes me question just how personal the judges will be in their critiques of the models with some new-found power.
The first of the major changes is a new point system brought in to ‘fairly’ rank the models from best to worst on a week to week basis. The girls will each earn points out of 10 for their mini challenge and their maxi challenge (photo shoot), with the model on the lowest amount of points sent packing. As of writing, the three episodes I have seen to date, judge Alex Perry is the final judge to offer up his score, thus determining which model stays and which one goes.
So, a word of advice to the models – don’t piss off Alex Perry!
And while we’re on the topic of Alex Perry, he seems rather pissed off this season. That familiar facial growl looks more darker than normal…I know he’s happy with the final 12 (he says it’s the best to date)..perhaps he’s trying to bring some sharp edged fork tongue to the panel but so far, 3 episodes in, Perry is yet to look like he’s enjoying his experience with the show.
Fresh off beating Naomi Campbell on The Face Australia, the ridiculously stunning Cheyenne Tozzi joins the show as a mentor along side regular Didier Cohen. I don’t know if her time spent with Campbell on The Face gave Tozzi some coping skills but we see her calmly deal with models having anxiety attacks back stage at a catwalk challenge and erratic bitch fit tantrums over ill-fitting shoes at a photo shoot all-the-while offering words of wisdom and friendly critiques. Didier Cohen is still the same however…not that that’s a bad thing. The girls fawn, I fawn, he smiles, the girls smile, I smile…it’s a win win.
With the sudden death of my favorite judge Charlotte Dawson, a judges chair has been left wide open, so Cycle 9 sees an injection of international faces on the judging panel (none of whom can match Dawson’s biting wit) with Victoria’s Secret angel Alessandra Ambrosio, TV personality Kelly Osbourne, fashion designer icon Jean-Paul Gaultier, Kim Kardashian (via video) and Tyra Banks among other names, all set for appearances.
So let’s talk those with their ‘smize‘ on the prize for cycle 9. There’s your typical fare of gorgeous blondes and brunettes (Jessica, Phoebe, Lucy, Tanahya etc) and the one who’s stunning but Alex Perry finds too short (Alex), there’s your sweet girls with legs up-to their ears (Kaitlyn, Jordan, Lauren, Jess), your token bogan-turned-model (Brittany), the girl who knows shes fabulous but can’t walk in heels (Ayieda) and finally the if-she-were-anymore-laid-back-she’d-be-dead girl (Jess). To be honest though, there’s no real surprises with the top 12 here, but then again, it’s a modelling competition so as long as the girls look good and can squeal with delight over famous folk, then there off to a good start.
Last but not least is host and judge Jennifer Hawkins. With a full season now under her tiny belt, Hawkins now seems very at ease with her hosting duties and interactions with the models. The awkward and uncomfortable banter from season 8 is gone, replaced with a more confident host who seems to have found her stride in getting the job done.
Thursdays first episode opens with ‘Top Model’ herself Tyra Banks praising our local version of the show, noting the numerous success stories that have come from the model search and touchingly, adds a beautiful message and tribute to our dearly departed Charlotte Dawson.
There’s no messing around this season as we jump straight into a final 12 selection who are thrown right into a catwalk in-front of 400 fashionistas. Yes…there are tears and also a moment where you’ll be uttering the words “It’s like watching Bambii learn how to walk”. Who will be the first model sent packing? Who will win? When will Georges Antoni turn up to grace my screen take stunning photos of the models? Will Jean-Paul Gaultier whisk one of the models away to France? How much cheese will I have to buy to see me through the entire season? It all begins Thursday April 30th, 7:30pm on FOX8
As an avid The Voice Australia watcher, I was nothing short of surprised to hear that Big Brother Australia host Sonia Kruger is coming onto The Voice Australia for a co-hosting gig.
Now, can someone please explain to me why The Voice Australia needs a second host? Nothing against Kruges’…the woman does a brilliant job hosting BBAU (though I will put my hand up and say I do miss the Gretel Killeen days) but as for The Voice host Darren McMullen needing a helping hand….he seems to be doing fine with the workload involved with the job.
The news have offered up some mixed reviews from viewers, some even suggesting this hammers in the final nail in BBAU’s coffin for any chance of a return to our screens this year..
Kruges’ joining The Voice AU is just another step in shake-ups for the show with Kylie Minogue and Will.I.Am stepping down from the big red chairs, replaced with Jessie J, the return of Delta Goodrem and the addition of Joel Madden’s twin brother Benji.
The Voice AU returns later this year on Channel 9.
Well in no surprising news, it’s bye bye to Kylie Minogue and Will.I.Am for the 2015 season of The Voice Australia, replaced with one new face, one returning face and one addition to an existing team.
It’s not so confusing once it’s all spelled out.
Ricky Martin is back on board along with fellow judge Joel Madden who this year, will be joined by brother Benji (as one coach), Jessie J (It’s not about the money money..we don’t need the money money…) is this years newest face and the returning coach? Well, it’s none other than our favorite Aussie songstress, Delta ‘Delts’ Goodrem!
We all knew when Kylie announced her Kiss Me Once Tour for 2015 that she’d be a no show…Will.I.Am? Perhaps it came down to a work clash as he’s just started season three of The Voice UK (and not the utterly horrible decision he made by getting involved in 2014 winner Anja Nissen’s winners single – god awful by the way).
The addition of Benji Madden was a no brainer. The two are hugely popular here, have a great following and their work together on The Voice Kids made for great viewing. Jessie J’s addition too was predictable but wise. J has a strong following here offering up a string of hit singles plus her double season stint on The Voice UK gives her plenty of knowledge and ammo to come into our version with.
Ricky. We all love Ricky Martin. Nuff’ said.
Delts. Must admit, I was very surprised by her addition (or re-addition) to this years coaches. Bumped for Kylie last year and relegated to The Voice Kids, Delts is back on board for the 2015 season.
The Block’s most beloved couple, Deanne and Darren Jolly, are set to return to the show that made them household names and fan favorites. Ok, well, only some of that is true. Pretty easy to work out which parts were made up right?
The couple who garnered a love/hate relationship with the Australian public (minus the love) during last seasons The Block: Glasshouse and who only walked away with $10,000 for their efforts have been confirmed to return to the show along with actual favorites Bec and George Douros and Matt Di Costa and Kim Owen from The Block: Sky High.
The next series titled The Block: Triple Threat will also see six new teams battle it out in a series of challenges all aiming to be the top three teams to join the familiar faces in renovating an apartment block in Melbourne’s South Yarra.
The Block: Triple Threat will air in 2015 along with a second outing later on in the year.