EDDIE: And now we come to the slice of comedy that most successfully stunk up the place in 2010. It's an award that means a lot to us, and to you too, because these are the shows that don't just pop up in the schedules to surprise and disappoint - these are supposedly the funny cream of Australia's comedy crop, the shows that the media (and all too often, our misguided family and workmates) tell us time and time again that we should be laughing with. In the face of such pressure, it's often all too easy to wonder why you're not laughing: this is the award that tells you you're right, they're wrong, and Dave Hughes is as funny as a small dark spot on your arm that seems to be getting bigger every time you look at it.
20 episodes. What other Australian show in this day and age gets a 20 episode commitment up front? And yet Daryl Somers managed it for a format that was past pension age a decade ago featuring a cast whose funny bones had calcium spurs and a firm, constantly vocalised commitment to not change a single thing on what was - according to the host - a show closer to a national treasure than something human beings were meant to find remotely entertaining. Sure, there was entertainment to be found there - would this particular nonsensical statement from Ossie be the one that simply trailed off into thin air instead of eventually stumbling onto a punchline - but it wasn't the kind of entertainment a sane person would sit through for over two full hours week after week. If we had any skill at all with editing software, we'd be working on a mash-up of Hey Hey clips and footage from Titanic to suggest that Daryl was one captain totally committed to going down with his all-too-sinkable ship.
Just when you thought it wasn't physically possible for Dave Hughes to be less funny, The 7PM Project transforms into a shoddy Today Tonight knock-off and suddenly the once-"lovable" Hughsie is a dead ringer for Andrew Bolt. "How can the government justify taking away this valuable resource" he whines nasally in a current promo to the horror of all. Remember when his getting "angriiii" was a comedy bit directed at pissweak problems, not something we were expected to take seriously as the voice of the common man? Who knew those would end up as "the good old days"?
Depending on how badly you last hit your head, Gruen Nation was either a savage look at the way politics work in this country, or yet another bullshit "behind-the-scenes" suck-up to advertising based entirely around fat sods and moral bankrupts patting each other on the back. No wonder Australians vote "No Workable Government" every chance they get if this in an example of the bastards keeping themselves honest.
BERT: There's no doubt about it, Eddie, there aren't many entertainment programmes that have equalled Hey Hey It's Saturday.
EDDIE: That's right Bert, and here's some clips that explain why.
CUT TO FOOTAGE OF THE BLACKFACE SKIT, FOLLOWED BY DARYL SOMERS PLAYING THE DRUMS, FOLLOWED BY PLUCKA DUCK HUMPING A MEMBER OF THE HEY HEY AUDIENCE. WHAT, YOU THINK WE'RE LABOURING THIS POINT? WELL, TIME TO LEAVE NOW BECAUSE WE'RE NOT EVEN HALFWAY THROUGH...