Sunday, 31 October 2010

Rob Kelvin calls it a day

robkelvin Adelaide newsreader Rob Kelvin has announced that he will be retiring from the Nine News desk at the end of the year.

His retirement comes after taking several months’ leave this year – “a fair sort of dress rehearsal for retirement,” he told AdelaideNow.

Kelvin had worked in radio in the 1970s, including radio station 4AY Townsville, 3SH Swan Hill, 7HT Hobart and Adelaide's 5KA and 5AD, before joining NWS9 in Adelaide in 1979 as a sports presenter.

He moved into newsreading in 1983.  And it was in 1987 that he was paired up with Adelaide newsreading veteran Kevin Crease.  It was a partnership that continued for twenty years before Kelvin had to deliver the news that his long-time colleague had died from cancer in 2007.

News director Tony Agars says that despite retirement, Kelvin may still have a presence at NWS9:

"Rob now reads through until the end of the year.  After that it's not the end for us. Rob is quite keen and I'm certainly very keen to have Rob with us for a while yet. We're talking about some projects now that Rob can get his teeth into and certainly I reckon you'll see Rob reading news as we've got holidays and things like that coming up."

As well as reading the news, Kelvin has reported from the Commonwealth Games for the Nine Network, in Brisbane in 1982 and Auckland in 1990.  He also hosted NWS9’s 25th anniversary celebration event in 1984.

Kelvin now looks forward to spending more time with wife Anna and son Jesse and not having a life dictated by deadlines:

"No deadlines, that's the amazing thing about retirement.  Once upon a time, I had a wrist watch that had six alarms on it and they were different things that I would have to do at different times during the day and it would go off for all these different things. And I haven't missed a deadline that I'm aware of in 32 years."

Kelvin will present his last Nine News bulletin on New Year’s Eve and Kate Collins and Michael Smyth, who both read the news over Kelvin’s recent absence, will front Nine News in Adelaide from 3 January.

Source: AdelaideNow, NWS9

1990: November 3-9

tvweek_031190 The year of living famously!
Former The Flying Doctors star Rebecca Gibney (pictured) reflects on a hectic year since leaving the popular Nine Network drama.  She starred earlier this year in the ABC mini-series Come In Spinner – a role which won her an AFI award recently – and has recently appeared in Nine’s mini-series Ring Of Scorpio.  Gibney has also completed a special for World Vision and is starring opposite Jon English in an upcoming series, with the working title Rhythm And Blues, which is set to debut in the new year.  “I have to keep reminding myself how fortunate I am,” Gibney tells TV Week.  “Some people tend to get caught up in the hype of the business and think they’re indispensible, but they’re not, nobody is.  I’ve been very lucky.”

Julie spins into new sitcom!
The Seven Network and Gary Reilly Productions are trying to keep it under wraps, but Hey Dad! actress Julie McGregor is set to star in a spin-off to the popular sitcom.  A pilot for a new sitcom, Hampton House, was taped at Seven’s Sydney studios recently.  The new series is set around a group of young people who have left home to move into a share house.  Former Home And Away star Adam Willits is believed to also be a contender for a role in the series should it get the green light.

joansydney E Street goes for the matron
Former A Country Practice star Joan Sydney (pictured), who recently declined an offer to return to the popular series, is believed to be joining the cast of E Street.  The popular actress is set to play the role of Mary Patchett, a British cousin of Aunty Vi (Bunney Brooke).  But producer Forrest Redlich, a former producer for A Country Practice, is stopping short of confirming Sydney for the role.  “I have enormous respect for Joan,” he told TV Week.  “If she appeared in this new role it would be for quite a long run.”  Sydney joining the show would also reunite her with former A Country Practice cast members Penny Cook and Kate Raison.

Network Ten
racecaller Dan Mielicki, 21, is set to call this year’s Melbourne Cup for the network after making history last year as the youngest to have ever called the famous race.

Hey Dad! star Robert Hughes and former Family And Friends star Ross Newton are guest stars in this week’s episode of GP.  Hughes, currently on a four-month break from Hey Dad!, plays the husband of a woman stricken by multiple sclerosis (MS).  The episode is scheduled to coincide with national MS week.

tonilamond Some of the great names in showbusiness – including Mike Walsh, Gwen Plumb, John Ewart, Ron Shand, Jeanne Little, Nancye Hayes and Elaine Lee – gathered in Sydney recently for the launch of showbiz veteran Toni Lamond’s autobiography, First Half.  Lamond (pictured, with former TV Week Gold Logie winner Hazel Phillips), a veteran of early variety shows including In Melbourne Tonight, is currently starring in the Sydney production of 42nd Street and recently starred in the ABC telemovie How Wonderful.

Seven Network host Derryn Hinch has predicted his exit from radio station 3AW.  The station’s former top-rating morning presenter currently presents a daily ten-minute commentary piece as well as a weekly interview program, Hinch The Other Side.  But Hinch says that the station is headed for a cost-cutting purge and that his $100,000 a year price tag (plus $25,000 for a landline to his home) will be too much for the station to afford.  “I’d like to be here,” he told station presenter Neil Mitchell.  “But I betcha I won’t be.  They can’t afford me.”

garyrice Lawrie Masterson’s Sound Off
”I remember vividly the first time I met the man who now has the toughest and most unenviable job in Australian television – chief executive of Network Ten.  It was, ahem, years ago and I was working for a once great Melbourne newspaper and Gary Rice was manager of BTV6 in Ballarat.  I was dispatched to Ballarat to compile a story on a locally-produced tonight show, which had been running for yonks.  Rice turned out to be not only a most obliging station manager, but was also the saxophonist in the tonight show’s resident band.  Between numbers he would down his sax, leap out of the band set and operate a boom mike!  Versatile and not afraid of hard work… he’s going to need an abundance of those qualities and more now as he wrestles with a network which doesn’t just have mind-boggling debts.  Ten also has a huge problem with public image, or lack of it.  Ten’s comedies are struggling and its old faithfuls – notably Neighbours – are showing signs of wear and tear.  Ten does have rights to some new product which has been successful in the US – such as Twin Peaks and The Simpsons – but experience with shows such as Roseanne and Thirtysomething is proof enough that what Americans love doesn’t necessarily grab Australians.”

Program Highlights (November 3-9):
Saturday:  ATV10
’s coverage of the Melbourne Cup Carnival starts with Derby Day with coverage starting at 12pm and continuing through to 5.30pm.  Then the channel’s Saturday night movie is Archer, starring Brett Climo, Robert Coleby and Nicole Kidman, telling the story of the first ever Melbourne Cup winner when the race was first run in 1861.

Sunday:  GTV9 crosses to Adelaide for the Australian Formula One Grand Prix, starting at 11am, hosted by Ken Sutcliffe with commentators Alan Jones, Jackie Stewart, Murray Walker, James Hunt, Darrell Eastlake and Barry Sheene.  ABC’s Sunday Afternoon features a guest appearance by Helen Wellings.  Sunday night movies are Jekyll And Hyde (HSV7), Beetlejuice (GTV9) and Dominick And Eugene (ATV10).

Tuesday:  ATV10 crosses to Flemington for ‘the race that stops a nation’ – the Melbourne Cup.  The telecast, hosted by Tim Webster with racecaller Dan Mielicki, starts at 9.30am and continues through to 5.30pm.  Also featuring on Ten’s coverage are John Letts, Graeme Kelly, Peter Donegan, Gai Waterhouse and Bob Maumill, and morning ‘Til Ten host Joan McInnes presenting the fashion interviews.

Wednesday:  Former E Street star Marcus Graham is guest star in GTV9’s The Flying Doctors.

Thursday:  Another day of horse racing from Flemington with ATV10’s coverage of Oaks Day, starting at 12pm and continuing through to 5.30pm.

Friday:  The three commercial channels – HSV7, GTV9 and ATV10 – all participate in a simultaneous broadcast, Cartoon Allstars To The Rescue, which helps young children understand the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse.  The half-hour special, which attracted more than 33 million viewers when it aired in the US, features cartoon characters from rival companies.  The Australian screening of the program will be introduced by Prime Minister Bob Hawke.

Source: TV Week (Victoria edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 3 November 1990. Southdown Press.

Saturday, 30 October 2010

1990: October 27-November 2

tvweek_271090 ‘I cried and cried…’
The Flying DoctorsTammy McIntosh (pictured) fights back tears as she talks to TV Week about the episode of the Nine Network drama to go to air this week.  In this episode, Sister Annie Rogers (McIntosh) befriends abandoned 14-year-old Alex (Brendan Peel).  She helps him find his grandmother, who dies days later, leaving him alone.  Rogers fights to take responsibility for the teenager, but the Coopers Crossing doctors arrange for him to join a local family instead, leaving her shattered.  McIntosh spent her childhood in a series of foster homes, making it easy to relate to the boy’s situation.  “I didn’t consciously think about the story being too close to home, but I can see that now,” she told TV Week.  “The scene where we had to say goodbye, I cried and cried.  I just lost it.  It was real for me.”

richardhugget E Street’s bad boy moves to Ramsay Street!
Richard Huggett
, the E Street star whose character Sonny Bennett made a sudden exit from the series following the car bomb explosion, has signed up to Network Ten’s other soap, Neighbours.  Huggett (pictured) enters the long-running series as a mystery man who turns up claiming to be the long-lost son of Jim Robinson (Alan Dale). “I’ve been a bad boy for a long time,” Huggett told TV Week.  “So it will be an advantage to do something different.  I’m looking forward to playing a character who won’t be quite so dark as Sonny.”

BBC snaps up Aussie show
A new Australian children’s series which premieres on Nine this week has been bought by BBC for a record price.  The Girl From Tomorrow, a sci-fi series produced by Film Australia, stars Andrew Clarke, Katharine Cullen and Melissa Marshall, with guest appearances by Grant Dodwell, Miles Buchanan and John Howard.  Bruce Moir, managing director of Film Australia, declined to disclose the sum paid by BBC for the series, but confirms that it is a record.  “It was a major decision for Film Australia to branch into children’s drama and we are thrilled at having negotiated this highly-successful sale,” he told TV Week.  Moir says a sequel for the series is already in planning and that negotiations are taking place to sell the first series to countries other than the United Kingdom.

Singer-actress Kaarin Fairfax has taken on a surprise career move with the announcement that she has agreed to present a new science program, Catalyst, for ABC.  The six-part series is being shown in a daytime timeslot to capture the schools audience, and also features Fast Forward’s Mandy Salomon and Let The Blood Run Free’s Peter Rowsthorn.

rebeccagibney ABC mini-series Come In Spinner has won a number of awards at the recent Australian Film Industry Awards presentation.  Actress Rebecca Gibney (pictured) won the award for best actress in a mini-series, while the series also won for Best Direction and Best Mini-series.  Frankie J Holden won the Best Actor award for his role in the ABC mini-series Police Crop.

Artists’ Services, the company which produces Fast Forward and Tonight Live With Steve Vizard, has signed a five-year development deal with the Seven Network.  The company, headed by Steve Vizard and Andrew Knight, is already planning a 13-part drama series and other projects include a sitcom.

John Laws says…
”Hosting an awards ceremony must be among the most difficult tasks any performer can be handed.  The fact is, it takes a special kind of showbiz skill to tread the line between keeping viewers interested and the TV professionals satisfied.  It’s to his credit, then, that Andrew Denton so ably managed the hosting of a major slice of the Australian Film Institute awards ceremony which screened on ABC.  Denton resisted any desire to score cheap points with “industry” jokes and, as a result, the awards night was able to flow along freely.”

Program Highlights (October 27-November 2):
Saturday:  GTV9
crosses to the Gabba, Brisbane, for the final of the FAI Insurance Cup cricket.  ABC’s Saturday afternoon sport includes English soccer and American NFL and NBA.  SBS presents a the first two hours of the repeat presentation of drama series Always Afternoon.

ringofscorpio Sunday:  Alison Drower and Rob Duckworth host the two-hour National Rock Eisteddfod (GTV9), with judges Glenn A Baker and Angry Anderson.  ATV10 presents Remember When, featuring a look back at the pre-television years when Australians saw their news from movie newsreels.  Sunday night movies are Good Morning Vietnam (HSV7) and Mississippi Burning (ATV10).  GTV9 presents the premiere of mini-series Ring Of Scorpio, starring Catherine Oxenberg, Linda Cropper and Caroline Goodall (pictured).

Monday: In the comedy series Col’n Carpenter (ATV10), Colin (Kim Gyngell) wins a Queensland holiday for two.  Housemates Julie (Vikki Blanche) and Michael (Stig Wemyss) want to go with him.  GTV9 presents the conclusion to Ring Of Scorpio.

Tuesday:  In Beyond 2000 (HSV7), reporter Simon Reeve takes a ride in a flying boat, while Andrew Carroll meets a man who has predicted a major earthquake.

Wednesday:  In E Street (ATV10), the aftermath of the car bomb explosion that claimed the lives of Chris (Paul Kelman), Megan (Lisbeth Kennelly) and Abby (Chelsea Brown), has Dr Elly Fielding (Penny Cook) fighting for her life.

Source: TV Week (Victoria edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 27 October 1990. Southdown Press.

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Rex Heading

rexheading Rex Heading, the man who created Humphrey B. Bear in the 1960s, has died from cancer at the age of 81.

Heading was working at Adelaide radio station 5KA when he became one of the first staff appointed by the city’s first television station, NWS9 Rupert Murdoch’s first television station – when it was preparing to launch in 1959. He was the new station’s first program and production manager, overseeing early programs including Adelaide Tonight, The Country And Western Hour and the channel’s big-budget Christmas pantomimes.

When NWS9’s resident children’s character Bobo the Clown moved across to rival channel SAS10 in 1965, Heading needed a new character to take his place:

“I believed what we wanted was some form of three-dimensional cartoon character. I had spent time years earlier drawing cartoons for some not very discerning magazines, and so I sat down with a pad and started to draw. After a lot of sketching based around a human outline, the result was Humphrey B. Bear.”

humphreybbear Humphrey made his debut on NWS9’s The Channel Niners and was so successful he was soon given his own show, Here’s Humphrey. The new program was screened nationally across the Nine Network and many regional stations, creating an iconic children’s brand that has lasted generations and would run on Nine almost continuously for over forty years.

In the 1970s, Heading created a breakfast show featuring Cheryl Mills and characters Winky Dink and Hot Dog – and the success of Here’s Humphrey also led to a spin-off, The Curiosity Show. Heading’s contribution to children’s television led to him being made a foundation member of the Australian Broadcasting Tribunal's children's program committee, as well as to the committee that founded the Australian Children's Television Foundation.

His success in production at NWS9 led to him being promoted to general manager and then managing director. He was involved in the establishment of regional television stations in Kalgoorlie, WA, and the Riverland district in South Australia, and spent three years working for the Ten Network. He also worked for Crawford Productions and radio 3AW.

In 1996, Heading co-wrote the book Miracle on Tynte Street: The Channel 9 Story and in 2006 was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for his service to the television industry as a producer and director.

The death of Rex Heading comes only a few months after the passing of Tedd Dunn, the creator of another children’s TV character, Fredd Bear, in 1964.

Source: WA Today, TV Tonight, ABC, Miracle On Tynte Street: The Channel 9 Story.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Kerry Armstrong on Talking Heads

kerryarmstrong_0002 Coming up next month in ABC’s weekly interview series Talking Heads, host Peter Thompson talks to one of Australia’s most well known actresses, Kerry Armstrong.

Armstrong was still a schoolgirl when she got her first break in TV in an ABC series, Marion, in 1974, followed by a stint as a weather presenter for GTV9, Melbourne.  Her acting career then took off in 1979 with the key role of wrongfully-jailed inmate Lynn Warner (pictured) in the popular series Prisoner.

Her early acting career also included roles in The Sullivans and Skyways followed by another stint as a TV presenter, co-hosting a magazine program, Together Tonight, with Greg Evans for Melbourne’s ATV10 in 1981.  Armstrong then went to the US, where she made a guest appearance in Murder She Wrote and landed a role in the mega-soap Dynasty.

Returning to Australia in the late 1980s after the death of her grandmother, Armstrong featured in the telemovie A Long Way From Home and ABC dramas Police Rescue and Come In Spinner, and joined the cast of comedy series All Together Now.

For three years she played the role of Heather Jelly in ABC’s top-rating Seachange and is currently working on a third series of Bed Of Roses.

kerryarmstrong_0001After thirty years in a career that has also included movie roles and winning AFI and TV Week Logie awards, Armstrong concedes that she is re-thinking her future as an actor.  “It feels like I’m almost all done,” she says.

Talking Heads with guest Kerry Armstrong.  Monday 15 November, 6.30pm. ABC1

Source: IMDB, Wikipedia

Monday, 25 October 2010

1990: October 20-26

tvweek_201090 Cover: Alyce Platt (Sale Of The Century)

Mann gets pregnant
In the wake of the axing of Seven’s police drama Skirts, actress Tracy Mann has bounced back with a role in an upcoming telemovie. In How Wonderful, Mann plays Kerry Shanahan, a career woman about to be a mother. “It was one of those rare jobs tailor-made for you,” Mann told TV Week. The telemovie, screening this week on ABC, follows Kerry on her journey including tortuous exercise classes and junk food binges. When asked why Skirts didn’t succeed, Mann feels that it came down to scheduling. “The show should never have gone to 7.30, for a start. The timeslot meant the writers had to come up with happy endings and all the bull which never happens in the real world. The 8.30 timeslot, after A Country Practice, would have been ideal. I just feel it hasn’t been given a fair go.”

estreet_0003 Baptism of fire!
E Street feels the full brunt of Sonny Bennett’s (Richard Huggett) revenge this week as he unleashes a bomb on the innocent residents of Westside on the day of the christening of Chris (Paul Kelman) and Megan’s (Lisbeth Kennelly) baby. Four characters make a dramatic exit and one is left seriously wounded after the explosion of a bomb fixed under Reverend Bob’s (Tony Martin) car. In what is, perhaps, the most expensive piece of Australian continuing drama ever filmed, explosive experts, stunt actors and professional weapon handlers were called in to film the show’s climax for the year. “It’s impressive,” says executive producer Forrest Redlich. “I’ve been involved in more than 800 hours of television and this is the most expensive couple of hours I’ve ever put together.” As to the identity of Bennett’s intended victims? “You don’t know who is going to get hit when the bomb goes off because half of Westside are riding in the car that day,” Redlich teased.

annetenney Old ACP favourites meet in Street
Upcoming episodes of Network Ten’s E Street will reunite two former residents of A Country Practice’s Wandin Valley. Anne Tenney (pictured), who played the colourful Molly Jones in A Country Practice, comes into E Street as a medico friend of Dr Elly Fielding, played by Penny Cook who played Vicky Bowen in ACP. “It was wonderful working with Penny again,” Tenney told TV Week. “It’s always great when you get the opportunity to work with someone you know – particularly someone you get along with. And Penny and I were together for a long time on A Country Practice.”

A low-budget Seven Network telemovie, Harbour Beat, has been purchased by Paramount Pictures for worldwide video and television distribution. The telemovie, which stars Steve Vidler, Gary Day, Emily Simpson and Scottish actor John Hannah, could potentially spin-off into an ongoing series. “Paramount and Zenith Productions in England are committed,” says Vidler. “We are just waiting on Seven here. The problems with going into receivership are delaying things a bit.” The telemovie screens on Seven this week.

Two-time TV Week Gold Logie winner Gerard Kennedy makes a guest appearance in A Country Practice. Kennedy plays Theo Kouros, father of Dr Cris Kouros (Michael Muntz), who is finding it hard to cope with the fact that his wife is dying. Kennedy’s appearance in A Country Practice comes after his performance as an AIDS victim in The Flying Doctors.

matronconnivingbitch Let The Blood Run Free’s Matron Dorothy Conniving Bitch (pictured, played by Lynda Gibson) has a few words to say about the portrayal of medical drama on other TV series. “I liked (A Country Practice’s) Matron Sloan,” she says. “This new matron (Ann Brennan, played by Mary Regan) is not a matron’s bum. They need Matron Conniving Bitch to work with Shane Porteous. And The Flying Doctors need me to fly around in the plane, and I should be running that little surgery with Penny Cook in E Street. Those other shows, they’ve no idea about the nursing or the medicining or the hospitalising!”

A Country Practice stars Georgie Parker, Matt Day and John Tarrant have formed a band – and have sought inspiration from their financially-troubled former boss, Christopher Skase. The new band is called Chris And The Receivers and a performance at a recent telethon gathered rave reviews, something that has shocked Parker. “We didn’t want the audience think we are kidding ourselves about getting record offers,” she says. “It was only a bit of fun.”

tracymann_0001 Lawrie Masterson’s Sound Off:
”Two locally-produced telemovies are among the most entertaining fare you’ll find in the schedule this week. What is unfortunate is where you’ll find them in the schedule! In one of the most cruel programming twists of the year, How Wonderful (starring Tracy Mann, pictured, with Jim Holt, Sheila Kennelly, Toni Lamond and Max Phipps) and Harbour Beat – two Australian productions with heaps to recommend them – will go to air at 8.30pm on October 24. What can I say? Watch one, tape the other? Fine, if you have a VCR. A lot of people don’t.”

Program Highlights (October 20-26):
Saturday: GTV9
crosses to the Gabba in Brisbane for the FAI Insurance Cup: First Semi-Final, with coverage headed by Richie Benaud. In celebration of ten years of SBS, the network screens a re-run of the foreign movie The Mahabharata – a five-hour epic that first aired a year ago. SBS screens the first two-and-a-half hours this afternoon with the remainder to screen Sunday. In the evening, SBS presents the conclusion of its the re-run of award-winning mini-series, Women Of The Sun, starring Justine Saunders.

Sunday: More cricket coverage from GTV9 with the FAI Cup Semi-Final, though the telecast takes a two-hour break in the afternoon for live coverage of the Japanese Grand Prix. Sunday night movies are A Fish Called Wanda (HSV7), Fatal Attraction (GTV9) and Robocop (ATV10).

Monday: SBS’ tenth anniversary celebration continues with the repeat screening of drama series In Between – screening each afternoon through to Thursday. The four-part series, set in an inner Melbourne suburb, follows the story of four teenagers caught between two cultures and between adolescence and adulthood.

Tuesday: Genevieve Lemon guest stars in ABC’s GP as a woman who has been trying for ten years to get pregnant and seeks the help of friend Julie Winters (Denise Roberts) after suffering her fourth miscarriage.

sbs_1985 Wednesday: SBS presents a one-hour special, Retro – Ten Years Of SBS Television, recounting the launch and first decade of Australia’s multicultural television service. Featuring in the program are former prime minister Malcolm Fraser, whose government formed SBS, TV pioneer Bruce Gyngell, who launched the new channel, current SBS chief executive Brian Johns and Minister for Communications, Kim Beazley. And a rare ratings battle between ABC and HSV7 with Australian-made telemovies, How Wonderful and Harbour Beat, both screening in the same timeslot.

Friday: SBS presents a 90-minute special, The Best Of The World Cup – Italia ‘90, focusing on the highlights of the year’s premier soccer event. Later on, SBS presents a special, Kids First, focusing on the first-ever world summit for children at the United Nations in New York. Peter Ustinov, actor and UNICEF Ambassador for children, and George Negus are co-presenters of the one-hour special.

Source: TV Week (Victoria edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide. 20 October 1990. Southdown Press.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

30 years of SBS Television

sbs_1980 SBS Television is thirty years old this weekend.

An initiative of the Fraser Government, the Special Broadcasting Service was established in the mid-1970s to operate the new multi-lingual radio service that had commenced in Sydney (2EA) and Melbourne (3EA).  By the end of the 1970s, the organisation was given the responsibility of operating Australia’s first multi-cultural television station – although there had been plenty of discussion and debate as to whether Australia actually wanted, or needed, such a service.  It’s a discussion that probably continues to this day but it should be noted that prior to SBS’ introduction, multicultural or even indigenous representation on Australian television was all but non-existent in a sea of American, British and white Australian culture.  There were a few exceptions, though.  The 0-10 Network presented weekly programs aimed at the Italian and Greek communities as well as presenting an educational program, You Say The Word, which was devised to improve the English language skills of a growing migrant population.  The popular drama series Number 96 also provided a glimpse of a multicultural society in Australia, often featuring characters or actors of mixed racial or cultural origin.  It might not have presented these characters in the most appropriate light, but it was a representation nonetheless.

SBS made its first television appearance with a series of test transmissions broadcast on ABC in Sydney and Melbourne on Sunday mornings in 1979.  This video (taken from SBS’s 20th anniversary special, 20/20 Vision, in 2000) recounts those early test transmissions and the formation of the new channel:

brucegyngell_1 Then on United Nations Day – 24 October 1980 – the chief executive of the Special Broadcasting Service, Bruce Gyngell (pictured), presented the launch of the new Channel 0/28, which was officially opened by prime minister Malcolm Fraser.

Channel 0/28 started broadcasting from very modest facilities, occupying a few floors of an office building in the Sydney suburb of Milson’s Point.  In 1991, both radio and television branches of SBS moved to more modern facilities in the suburb of Artarmon.

Friday 24 October 1980:
threeseawolves6.30pm Opening Special: Bruce Gyngell presents the official opening and a preview of upcoming shows on the new Channel 0/28.
7pm Who Are We? Peter Luck presents a documentary on the people who make up Australia.
8pm Giochiamo Al Variete.  Italian variety program.
9pm Movie: Three Sea Wolves (pictured).  Australian production starring Chantal Contouri, presented in Greek and English.
10.30 Movie: Don’t Lean Out.  Yugoslav movie about a young man returning from Germany to his homeland.

Saturday 25 October:
Cartoons: from Italy, Hungary and Russia
5.30 La Sonrisa de un Nino.  Children’s musical program in Spanish.
6.30 Special: The Chinese Acrobatic Troupe
7.30 Montreaux Comedy Festival.  Includes To Norway, Home Of The Giants – featuring John Cleese taking a lighthearted look at his ancestry, Slim Sala Bim from the Netherlands, and Nonstop Nonsens from Germany.
9pm Movie: Hotel Pacific.  Polish film depicting life in a large Warsaw Hotel of the 1930s.
10.30 Movie: Varinka.  True story of a Russian girl who unwittingly smothers her boyfriend in bed.  French movie set in the 19th century.

Sunday 26 October:
Soccer: Live coverage of Australia’s National Youth Team versus Johnny Warren’s All-Stars
2pm Soccer: Philips Soccer League Grand Final.  Live coverage from Canberra
5pm Buona Sera con Rita al Circo.  Italian children’s program
5.30 Hunt For Janne.  Swedish children’s series.
6pm Das Vorstadtkrokodile. German story of a paraplegic boy who joins a children’s club.
7.30 Studio 80.  Italian variety program
8.30 Movie: Elvira Madigan.  Swedish film depicting the intense and happy love affair of two people ready to die rather than live apart. 
10.30 Soccer: Highlights of the Philips Soccer League Grand Final

georgedonikian_0001 George Donikian (pictured) presented Channel 0/28’s first news bulletin on Monday 27 October 1980.  World News initially screened at 9.30pm weeknights but by March it had moved to the earlier 7.30pm timeslot.  The main bulletin would later move to 7.00pm before taking up its current 6.30pm timeslot by the late 1980s.  Weekend bulletins started a few years after SBS’ introduction, as did a mid-evening 9.00pm bulletin which has since moved to 9.30pm. 

But not everything associated with the fledgling channel went smoothly.  Gyngell had commissioned a talent quest series, Cabaret, from the Grundy Organisation and Willard King Productions.  The first episode, hosted by Graham Kennedy and including a panel of judges, was taped in advance and featured entrants representing various ethnic groups.  However, just days before the show was to go to air, Gyngell made a last-minute decision to change the show’s format from a talent quest to a general variety show, feeling that it unwise to involve a competitive element between multicultural communities.  The first episode was hurriedly re-taped in the new format, and Lebanese-born actor Joe Hasham, best known from the popular Number 96, took over hosting the series from that point.

lesmurray On a more positive note, 0/28 did earn early applause for its adoption of soccer coverage, giving the sport a higher priority and profile than any of the other networks had done.  And soccer would continue to feature prominently on the channel, with regular programs and coverage of various leagues and the premier event, the FIFA World Cup, being broadcast on the network every four years since 1990.  Les Murray (pictured), who fronts the network’s soccer coverage, has been with the network since it launched.

Channel 0/28 broadcast initially in Sydney and Melbourne only.  In 1983 it expanded to Canberra and nearby regional centres Goulburn and Cooma – coinciding with the channel’s name change to Network 0/28.  Adelaide, Brisbane, Newcastle, Wollongong and the Gold Coast joined the network after it had changed its name on-air to SBS in 1985.  Perth and Hobart followed in 1986, and Darwin in 1994.  SBS became Australia’s first sole UHF network with the VHF Channel 0 broadcasts in Sydney and Melbourne terminated in January 1986.

sbs_1983As well as World News, current affairs programming, often taking a different perspective to its commercial rivals, has also featured over thirty years – with programs including SCOOP, Vox Populi, ICAM, Issues, First In Line, Insight, Living Black and the long-running Dateline, which has been running in various formats since 1984.

One of SBS’ first drama productions, the mini-series Women Of The Sun, won acclaim for its portrayal of Australian history through the eyes of Aboriginal women.  Other Australian-made dramas have included City West, The Girl From Steel City, Five Times Dizzy, In Between, House Gang, Going Home, RAN (Remote Area Nurse), The Circuit, Kick and East West 101.

rockwiz Since 1983, SBS has broadcast the Eurovision Song Contest – with the event gaining a following in Australia that leaves Europeans mystified.  Another European TV tradition – the comedy sketch Dinner For One – has featured on SBS every New Year’s Eve since 1989.  The Japanese game show Iron Chef created an appetite for food-inspired competition years before anyone had thought of MasterChef.  The boundaries of comedy have been tested with shows like Pizza, Life Support and Wilfred – and a US series, South Park, became a hit.  RockWiz (pictured), ADbc, The Squiz, Hot Spell! and Letters And Numbers are among those have represented the quiz and game show genre.

In 1986, movie presenter David Stratton was joined by Margaret Pomeranz to host a weekly review program, The Movie Show.  The pair fronted the show for almost twenty years before they moved across to ABC to host a similar program, At The Movies

marykostakidis Mary Kostakidis (pictured) was part of the subtitling and management teams when Channel 0/28 launched in 1980.  She later took over from George Donikian as presenter of World News, a role she maintained for almost twenty years.  Her sudden departure from the broadcaster in 2007 was the culmination of a certain period of unrest, brought about by changes to a more populist style of news coverage and the appointment of an additional newsreader, Stan Grant.  Other news presenters over the years have included Karina Kelly, Christina Koutsoukos, Patrice Newell, Silvio Rivier (who was part of the original Channel 0/28 and  now hosts the Global Village documentary series), Indira Naidoo, Ben Fajzullin, Amrita Cheema and current day newsreaders Anton Enus, Janice Peterson, Lee Lin Chin, Rena Sarumpaet and Ricardo Goncalves.

The sensitive topic of commercials on SBS was first touched on by the network for its coverage of the FIFA World Cup in 1990, and from 1991 SBS was permitted to play five minutes of commercials each hour to supplement its taxpayer-funded income, but commercials would only appear in between programs.  In 2006, the network took a controversial step to introduce commercial breaks within programs.  It’s a change that continues to attract mixed reaction.

SBS commenced digital transmission in 2001 and, in 2002, launched a new channel, World News Channel, presenting continuous broadcasts of news bulletins from other countries in languages other than English.  Last year, World News Channel was replaced by SBS2, still presenting international news bulletins but now including more general programming such as documentaries, dramas and movies as well as some time-shifted programming from the main SBS channel (now SBS1) and extensions of the network’s coverage of sporting events such as the Tour de France.

sbs_2008 SBS is now at a stage where its role in the media landscape is again under question.  Its move away from traditional multicultural programming, particularly on the primary SBS1 channel, has attracted criticism that it is abandoning the very reason it was created in the first place.  Its increasing reliance on commercial sponsorship and adopting populist programs such as Top Gear (a program that has since been picked up by Nine) have also attracted criticism as being in conflict with what should be the core values of SBS.  Now with the commercial networks hungry for content to fill their multiple digital channels, this is putting up the cost of certain English-language programming that SBS in the past might have been the only buyer.  SBS might be wise to rediscover the niche market of multicultural programming and tap into the vast sources of television programming produced in languages other than English instead of trying to be another ABC or another commercial network.

To commemorate its 30th anniversary, SBS’ weekly program Dateline will present a special report of highlights from its many years in covering international current affairs.

SBS have also published a website for the occasion of its 30th anniversary – including an interactive timeline and links to videos of certain milestones.

Dateline, Sunday 24 October, 8.30pm. SBS1 (Repeated Monday 1.30pm on SBS1 and Wednesday 7.30pm on SBS2)

Source: The Age, 27 October 1980; The Age, 13 November 1980; TelevisionAU: SBS

Friday, 22 October 2010

Will Ten’s axe swing again?

Tenhdlin It is almost twenty years ago – 26 November 1990 – since the Ten Network made headlines (pictured) as new chief executive Gary Rice announced some dramatic cost-cutting measures to save the ailing network.

Mr Rice, a former Nine Network executive called in to rescue Ten from a lengthy period of poor ratings and financial instability, had sacked 300 staff from across Ten’s Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane stations – but it was the network’s news and current affairs portfolio that suffered the most severe cutbacks with the axing of the 10.30am bulletin, the axing of weekly program The Walsh Report, the reduction of the Melbourne-based Ten Evening News from one-hour to 30 minutes and the axing of local current affairs programs Sydney With Mike Gibson and Brisbane With Anna McMahon.  Almost half of the 300 sacked workers were from the news and current affairs department alone.

The morning program Good Morning Australia was left hanging by a thread – with hosts Kerri-Anne Kennerley and Terry Willesee greeting viewers at the start of the two-hour program, not knowing if they would still have a job at the end of the show.  The show was ultimately maintained, though with a tighter budget.

ten1989 Other savings were anticipated to come from the sale of Ten’s Nunawading studios and the relocation to smaller facilities. 

The radical cutbacks, expected to save Ten from losing $2 million a week, came a year after Ten sacked 350 staff and two months after the network was placed in receivership and 15 executives were sacked.

"This action gives us no pleasure,” Mr Rice said.  “But it is one of several responsible decisions… to revive the network and to provide the basis for its financial recovery and future growth.  The network will be slimmer… but its quality will be maintained and ultimately enhanced.”

There were also suggestions of trimming back the network’s schedule to cease broadcasting during off-peak periods such as mornings and overnights, and replacing each state’s 6.00pm news bulletin with a single national bulletin based in Melbourne.  Another radical proposal was for Ten to merge with the Seven Network, also in receivership, thus reducing the number of commercial networks from three to two.  Thankfully, none of these extreme measures were implemented.

ten1991 Local dramas Neighbours and E Street were left relatively unscathed in the 1990 cutbacks and would form the basis for Ten’s new focus on the advertiser-friendly youth market which was to start in 1991 – heralded by the launch of a new logo (pictured) and a new tagline – “The Entertainment Network”.

Twenty years on, Ten is in a much better financial position.  The network has just announced a full-year profit of $150 million, up from a $89.4 million loss in the previous year.  Not a bad turnaround for an entertainment medium that is often thought to be in decline.

But while Ten’s balance sheet is a lot healthier, there is suddenly a large unknown on the network’s horizon. 

James Packer.

James, the youngest generation of Packer moguls after his father Kerry and grandfather Sir Frank, has stunned the industry by making a bold investment in the Ten Network – around $288 million worth, representing around 18 per cent of the company.   And there is a chance he could still buy up more.

It is a surprising move given that only two years ago, Packer sold most of his family’s long-held interest in the Nine Network, apparently to focus on more lucrative foreign and gambling ventures.  He does, however, maintain a financial interest in Foxtel.

The motives for Packer’s move into Ten are unknown, and although he will only have a minority interest in the network, he is set to gain a place on the Ten board – something which has led to a lot of speculation in the media about Ten’s future.

ten_2008 Some have suggested that Packer simply wants to cash in on a slice of Ten’s profit – helped along by the success of Masterchef Australia – while others have suggested that Packer is hoping to get a piece of the AFL and NRL broadcast rights which are up for renewal.  And if Ten is a successful bidder for the rights then its digital sports channel One HD could be well positioned to take advantage, depending on the government review of the anti-siphoning legislation.  Packer could also use his ties to Foxtel to form an alliance with Ten and One HD in securing future rights to AFL or NRL.

At the other end of the spectrum, some are speculating that Packer’s motives are a little more sinister.  Some have suggested that he will use his influence on the Ten board to tear down the One HD channel, a natural rival to his interests in pay-TV channel Fox Sports, or even jeopardise the network’s proposed and costly expansion of its news department.

Ten announced back in August that it is set to expand its news coverage in 2011 with the launch of a national 6.00pm news program, hosted by George Negus, followed by local news bulletins in each capital city at 6.30pm.  The expanded news coverage is expected to cost an expected $20 million a year, including the hiring of additional staff.  It is a strategy that James’ father Kerry might have approved of, but it is not known what the younger Packer thinks of the plan.

11_hello Meanwhile, Ten maintains it is business as usual for its plans moving forward – with the launch of youth-focused entertainment channel 11 in the new year coinciding with the launch of the expanded news portfolio and a broader demographic focus for the main Ten channel.  And the network insists that One HD continues to have a valued place in the company’s multi-channel strategy.

Whatever happens, it could be interesting times ahead.

Source: Herald Sun, Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian, Herald Sun 27 November 1990.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Digital channel update: SA, Broken Hill, Darwin

go_channel Some developments today in the rollout of digital television services in some of the smaller markets.

Darwin’s Nine Network station, NTD,  has today officially switched on local relays of digital channels GO! and GEM – hence completing the rollout of both channels to all capital cities either via Nine or WIN.  The new channels can be found in Darwin on digital channel 99 and 90 respectively, with GEM broadcasting in high-definition format only.

Meanwhile, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has announced that it has assigned extra digital channel capacity for the local broadcaster covering the Spencer Gulf region in South Australia, and Broken Hill, NSW.

southerncrosstv Southern Cross Media, which currently provides Southern Cross Television (Seven Network affiliate) and Southern Cross Ten, has been allowed extra capacity to provide additional digital channels to the local regions.  Southern Cross’ existing digital frequency currently has room only for the primary channels – Southern Cross, Southern Cross Ten and the soon-to-launch local relay of the Nine Network – meaning that local viewers have not had access to any of the new digital channels that have been launched by the capital city networks.

The decision as to which channels will be broadcast on the new frequency lies with Southern Cross Media.

The Regional South Australian markets, including Spencer Gulf and Broken Hill, will lose all existing analogue signals on 15 December 2010.

Source: ACMA

Saturday, 16 October 2010

The Games were run… but, for Ten, not won!

commonwealthgames_2010 The XIX Commonwealth Games have come to a close – and while India will be congratulating itself for a successful 11 days of competition, back in Australia the Ten Network might be quietly licking a few wounds.

Not that Ten’s effort in broadcasting the Games was of any inferior nature – in fact, the network has avoided receiving scorn like that encountered by the Seven Network with its heavily-delayed coverage of the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing – but rather that the network was rewarded with fairly lack lustre ratings figures for a competition that usually commands much greater figures.

In some instances, Ten was struggling to stay above ABC in the popularity stakes whereas, at the very least, they might have expected some gold medal ratings figures over the two weeks. Essentially, Ten only won victory on one night of Games competition:






Mon 4






Tue 5






Wed 6






Thu 7






Fri 8






Sat 9






Sun 10






Mon 11






Tue 12






Wed 13






Thu 14






* Includes premiere episode of Keeping Up With The Joneses.
Source: OZTAM: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth. 6pm-12am. Network shares include multi-channels.

But in Ten’s defence, their coverage has been up against some significant odds. This year’s Commonwealth Games appear to have been met with varying levels of indifference by Australians, possibly not helped by the negative publicity surrounding the final lead-up to the competition.

The free-to-air TV environment has also changed dramatically since the last Commonwealth Games (Melbourne, 2006) and even Olympic Games (Beijing, 2008) in that then there were only five free-to-air networks – presenting only limited alternative viewing options. This time around, there are up to a dozen other free-to-air channels on offer – with two channels, GEM and 7mate, launched only weeks ago.

OneHD Also impacting Ten’s performance is the somewhat limiting anti-siphoning legislation – meaning that even though Ten has a secondary channel with One HD, combined they could only really offer a single-channel approach to coverage – something which is often at odds with such a large competition where there are multiple events occurring at the same time – while up against rival networks offering 2, 3 or 4 viewing alternatives. Ten might have helped stop the flow of viewers to other networks if it had launched its new entertainment channel, 11, with its own alternative to Games coverage, but instead the channel is scheduled to launch early in 2011.

And adding to Ten’s competition was Foxtel – with its six channels of Commonwealth Games coverage which, in itself, is nothing new (they had a similar multi-channel offering in 2006) but the difference this time is that Foxtel was offering these channels to existing subscribers at no extra charge.

Despite the challenges, Ten will be pleased with the increase in viewing on One HD where it received some of its best ever ratings.

ten_2008 With the obvious pre-Games expectation of the saturation coverage delivering a ratings dividend leading into the last six weeks of ratings competition for the year, it now appears that Ten will be needing to offer some promises to make good to advertisers wanting more bang for their sponsorship dollars and, with shows like The 7PM Project, Neighbours, Undercover Boss, Talkin’ ‘Bout Your Generation, Junior Masterchef, Modern Family, The Simpsons, Rush and Offspring having been out of circulation for two weeks, now has to work hard to drag viewers back to the network as it heads into the home straight of the ratings survey year. And with daylight saving now part of the equation, that makes the task of attracting viewers’ attention in the early evening even more of a struggle.

Network Ten have the rights to televise the Commonwealth Games when they head to Glasgow, Scotland, in 2014.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Kerry O’Brien to host Four Corners

kerryobrien Three weeks ago, Kerry O’Brien announced he was to leave his position as host of ABC’s The 7.30 Report at the end of this year – with plans to return to the national broadcaster in a part-time role in 2011.

It has now been announced that O’Brien will be taking on the role of host of current affairs program Four Corners as it enters its fiftieth year on air. 

Although Four Corners has traditionally had a host leading the show – with names including TV Week Gold Logie winner Michael Charlton, Mike Willesee, Caroline Jones, Andrew Olle and Liz Jackson over the years – it has been some years since the weekly program has had a host up front.

ABC news director Kate Torney welcomed the announcement of O’Brien’s new role:

“Kerry worked for Four Corners as a reporter in the 1970s and again in the 1980s, before presenting Lateline and then The 7.30 Report.  This is a great way for Four Corners to mark such a major milestone in Australian journalism of 50 years on air.”

O’Brien will finish up on The 7.30 Report in December and will begin on Four Corners in February.

4corners Meanwhile, as Four Corners prepares to celebrate its 50th anniversary next year, viewers are asked to have their vote to determine how exactly the occasion should be celebrated.  A poll on the Four Corners website presents the following options:

  • 'Best of Four Corners' Re-runs of your favourite programs
  • Special program on 50 Years of Four Corners
  • 'Where are they now?' Revisiting past stories
  • Interviews with the people behind the programs

Suggestions or feedback can also be left on the Four Corners guestbook or Facebook page.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

For Sale! One TV studio

The offices and studios for the Adelaide branch of the Seven Network are about to go to auction.
sas7_0001 sas7_0002
sas7_0003 sas7_0004

The premises, situated on the corner of Adam Street and Port Road in the suburb of Hindmarsh, are to be auctioned on 27 October.

Seven have only occupied the building since 2007 – having moved from their former premises in the suburb of Gilberton where the station had been based since it was launched as SAS10 in 1965 – and buyers are promised a secure 15-year lease to the network.

The studios on site are home to local editions of Seven News and Today Tonight.

The building claims a floor area of 1,887 square metres and is only a light-rail trip from the Adelaide CBD.

The current rent on the property is approximately $643,000 per annum.

Source: Real Commercial, Burgess Rawson

Monday, 11 October 2010

1990: October 13-19

tvweek_131090 Cover: Nicolle Dickson (Home And Away)

Reyne forecast for Coopers Crossing
Actor David Reyne is to join the cast of Nine’s The Flying Doctors.  The 31-year-old star of series including Sweet And Sour, Possession, Flair, Bony and Golden Fiddles joins The Flying Doctors in the role of Dr Guy Reid, a brilliant young man from a wealthy family.  Dr Reid’s arrival into Coopers Crossing has the locals questioning his motives – why would an independently-wealthy man choose to live in a small town, particularly when he makes no secret of the fact that life in a small town is not for him.  Reyne has started work on the series this month and will be seen on-air from early next year.

Comedy of errors!
The Comedy Company’s return after a six-month break was a mistake, according to one of the show’s original stars, Glenn Robbins.  Robbins, now working on the Seven Network’s Tonight Live With Steve Vizard, told TV Week that he feels the show, which has struggled up against 60 Minutes in the ratings since its return, would have been better to come back as something entirely new instead of keeping the old name.  “When you come back with a show such as The Comedy Company, there’s a preconceived image of what it’s all about.  They created a pretty tough job for themselves.  Maybe it might have been better to call it something else,” he says.

sbs_1985 A decade of bringing he world back home
To celebrate its tenth anniversary, Australia’s multicultural network SBS is planning to screen a raft of special programming as well as revisiting some of the significant programs that have aired over its first decade.  As well as new documentaries Kids First, with George Negus and Peter Ustinov, and Boy Soldiers, SBS will be screening a special featuring ‘60s tribute group The Fabulous Singlettes  and the adults-only dance spectacular Dreams Of Monochrome Men, featuring DV8.  SBS will also repeat its early 1980s mini-series Women Of The Sun, a production that won a United Nations Peace Prize in 1982, starring Justine Saunders

peterwhitford When James became Jane…
Peter Whitford has played many characters over the years – but his latest role has been the most challenging.  The actor is playing the part of a transsexual, James Kennedy, in an upcoming episode of GP.  For many years, James has been harbouring the secret of wanting to be a woman and has been secretly wearing women’s clothes.  When his secret is discovered, he decides to come out of the closet and, as Jane (pictured), decides to have a sex-change operation.  “Margaret Kelly’s script was so well-written, I was completely intrigued,” Whitford told TV Week.  “For the role of James/Jane I spoke with many transsexuals – not to be confused with transvestites, who get their kicks out of cross-dressing.  Transsexuals feel they should have been born the opposite sex.  It has nothing to do with homosexuality either.”

TV producer and former Number 96 star Harry Michaels is working on a drama series which he hopes to sell to a commercial network.  The proposed 13-part series is set in a real estate agency and follows the professional and personal lives of the girls who work there.  “It’s part comedy and part drama and will be a mixture of Nine To Five and Number 96,” Michaels told TV Week.  “I’m making it with my own money and assistance from the Hoyts company.”  Michaels is already an established producer, with his Aerobics Oz Style series now showing nationally on the Ten Network and regional stations.

adrianlee Former Family And Friends actor Adrian Lee (pictured) and former A Country Practice star Kate Raison have joined the cast of E Street, just as the series is about to farewell five cast members – Paul Kelman, Lisbeth Kennelly, Chelsea Brown, Richard Huggett, Rebecca Saunders and Madison Doyle.

Actress Janet Andrewartha, currently appearing in ABC’s Embassy, reluctantly admits to being a singer earlier in her adult life.  “I don’t usually admit to this – but I was a folk singer,” she told TV Week.  “You know, guitar on your back, and doing the rounds.  I sang traditional and contemporary folk music.  There were so many venues in those days, you could actually make a decent living from it.” 

ABC’s Backchat host Tim Bowden’s two-month visit to Antarctica forms the basis for his six-part radio documentary series, Australians In Antarctica, currently airing on ABC Radio National.

andreastretton John Laws says…
Andrea Stretton (The Book Show), incidentally, must be one of TV’s unsung personalities.  She has a lovely, sunny smile, projects a warm personality and asks intelligent questions.  SBS should make much more use of her and once the commercial channels get some money in the piggy banks it wouldn’t surprise if they started to take a long look at her, too.”

Program Highlights (October 13-19):
  Aussie Rules football goes international with the Fosters International Cup, featuring West Coast Eagles versus Melbourne, live from Portland, Oregon, on HSV7 this afternoon.  SBS covers cycling with the Commonwealth Bank Classic, a 1000km event from the Gold Coast to Wollongong.  The event will be broadcast on SBS for an hour each afternoon for the duration.

Sunday:  With the football now over, it’s cricket’s turn – the FAI Cup begins on GTV9 with NSW versus Queensland, live from Brisbane, followed by Western Australia versus Victoria, live from Perth.  Actor Max Gillies is the special guest on ABC’s arts program, Sunday Afternoon With Peter Ross.  Sunday night movies are Perry Mason: The Case Of The Lethal Lesson (HSV7), Empire Of The Sun (GTV9) and Predator (ATV10).  After the movie, HSV7 crosses to the US for Collingwood versus Essendon in the Fosters International Cup.

jeankittson Monday: Comedy series Let The Blood Run Free celebrates the wedding of Dr Ray Good (Brian Nankervis) and Nurse Pam Sandwich (Jean Kittson, pictured) – with the reception being held in… the hospital reception.

Tuesday:  In Beyond 2000 (HSV7), reporter Amanda Keller looks at alternative herbal medicines used by the Mapuche Indians of southern Chile for centuries, and Bryan Smith visits a major city that is sinking 80cm a year because of poor water management.

Thursday:  HSV7 presents a repeat screening of the D-Generation comedy special, The D-Generation Goes Commercial.

Friday: As part of its celebration of ten years of broadcasting, SBS presents the first episode of mini-series Women Of The Sun, which first appeared on the network in 1982.  The series traces the impact European settlement has had on Aboriginal people, and their struggle to retain their individuality.

Source: TV Week (Victoria edition), incorporating TV Times and TV Guide.  13 October 1990.  Southdown Press.