“The more you like a show, the less likely it is to start on time.”

By David Knox on April 5, 2012 / Filed Under News 18

Today’s Green Guide in The Age has an excellent list of “The rules of TV in 2012.”

Writers Daniel Burt, Paul Kalina, Elmo Keep, Craig Mathieson and Andrew Murfett have come up with some pearlers that apply to our televisions -both in what we see on screen and the way networks handle them.

I’ve listed their rules here but you should read the article in full for more detail:
In every reality show, there must be a hero and villain.

There must be a recap at the beginning and end of every segment in every Australian reality franchise.

If you are Channel Nine and your big reality franchise fails, put on Big Bang Theory.

Soap operas after dark.

Zooey Deschanel proves that dorks can be hot but it helps if you’re also hot.

If you promise to solve a mystery in one season, don’t end the series on a cliff-hanger.

Great Australia drama is produced all the time but it screens only on pay TV.

Telemovies aren’t going away any time soon.

The more you like a show, the less likely it is to start on time.

When in doubt, bring back Andrew Denton.

Two shows don’t go into a single timeslot.

Networks ignore the internet at their peril.

Satellite interviews should always end awkwardly as we wait for both parties to say goodbye.

Actors interviewed on talk shows must always be uncertain of what clip we are about to see.

Success in the US doesn’t guarantee success in Australia.

Australia frequently makes better incarnations of overseas reality franchises.

We don’t want to wait.

We’d rather be anywhere but here right now.

The woman on a panel must laugh at a man’s joke, even if it’s not funny.

TV viewers on a Friday or Saturday night don’t necessarily want to watch men kicking a ball or improving a house.

Every week, television will be the source of a new outrage.

Morning weather presenters have no shame.

Summer TV is crap because the networks presume we are outside (which we are because summer TV is crap).

Full list is here.

What other ones have they left out?


  1. CRob April 7, 2012 at 2:00 pm -

    I read this article when it came out on Thursday and thought it hit the nail on the head. It pains me that the TV execs aren’t intelligent enough to sit down and read the Green Guide and this site. They seem to reply Heavily on ratings and their own twisted opinion on what the public want. Another rule:

    They must screen a movie on the major network then 2 weeks later, screen it on the digital channel. There should be stricter rules on repetition and changing the schedule at the last minute.

  2. Brekkie April 6, 2012 at 10:14 pm -

    As an outsider it amazes me you have such strict rules in place for things like multi-channeling, sport and drama on pay TV – but channels are regularly allowed to run their schedules ridiculously late, tear them up with no notice and premiere shows with less than a weeks notice.

  3. dan April 6, 2012 at 7:35 pm -

    Show promos for a new tv show so many times for months before it starts and people will get the shits and not watch the show and it will be a expensive flop

    This is you channel nine with the voice I am so sick of seeing promos for this that I hope it flops

  4. DanielW April 6, 2012 at 5:00 pm -

    Let me delve through my list…

    A watermark should not cover half my TV screen otherwise I consider it unnecessary graphics.

    Can (Insert Crime show) solve the unthinkable. Almost half a crime show season suggests this.

    A Current Affair. That should mean a current story, not something I have seen three times last year!

    Fast-Tracking. Gets a show sooner rather than later, but fails to get it as soon as it shows in US.

    You asked and we listened. It is really We asked and you ignored us. Prada is one we asked to fire!

    Oh well… As Bart Simpson says
    “I wish I was an Adult, so I could break all the rules”.

  5. harrypotter1994 April 6, 2012 at 1:26 am -

    This episode will be followed by a “bonus episode” which 9 times out of 10 is a repeat anyway…Yay this is such a bonus…not

  6. peter April 5, 2012 at 11:00 pm -

    One you mention on this site David some time ago “If it’s 6:57pm and you are watching ACA or TT and the host said “coming up next” the story is been advertised for the next night.

  7. Goonies April 5, 2012 at 7:37 pm -

    Kyle and his kiss of death partner will, inexplicably, be forced upon the viewers on a yearly basis – sometimes more

  8. Jennome April 5, 2012 at 2:01 pm -

    Dump a whole night’s viewing to show a 20-year old movie for the millionth time.

    This is what 10 did last Saturday, dumped the whole lot, including Graham Norton, and ran Mrs Doubtfire instead.

    Why do they do this??? Did somebody belatedly realise it was school holidays, ergo no ratings, ergo treat audience like crap, Again.

  9. nik c April 5, 2012 at 1:51 pm -

    @ Craig and JB I agree completely.

    I relunctantly start watching a new show. Recent disappointing examples include:
    White Collar (ch10) An abysmal display of programming for Season 1 and yet Season 2 was never finished in Qld and then they started airing season 3 and yanked it, to be never seen again!
    Canal Road (ch9) no faith in Aussie dramas, by relegating to a late timeslot after 2 weeks.
    Any show on 7 airs late due to crap TT and poor editting of reality shows that recap. Even the adverts are repetitive and I know what happenes without watching the show!!

  10. Nathan April 5, 2012 at 12:29 pm -

    In every reality TV Show there must be a Hero and a Villain. That one should be amended villain status can be changed at anytime to suit ratings.

  11. roaringdave April 5, 2012 at 11:57 am -

    Yep, I agree with charlie…”Talkin Bout Your Generation this week at the special time of 7.30 Thursday”…who are they kidding??? And what about a ‘movie-length episode’?

  12. Jake S April 5, 2012 at 11:30 am -

    That is a great list! All so, so painfully true

  13. geebs33 April 5, 2012 at 10:04 am -

    “Channel 10 must screen Devil Wears Prada at least four times a year”

  14. charlie April 5, 2012 at 10:02 am -

    Ooh, ooh and another. When changing the timeslot of a show, soften the blow by advertising it with “at the new special time of….”.

    Apparently this is meant to make viewers feel better. What it actually does is make networks even more condescending…

  15. charlie April 5, 2012 at 9:13 am -

    They forgot one. No matter how good a movie is or how well it did at the box office always promote it with one of three tags (or a combination thereof);
    “action block buster”
    “box office smash
    “movie event of the year”

    Mind you we are hearing this less and less as most movies have been repeated 47 times (that’s about a 12 month period for channel ten).

  16. JB April 5, 2012 at 8:10 am -

    “There must be a recap at the beginning and end of every segment in every Australian reality franchise.”

    I hate that. After every bloody ad there’s 2 mins of them saying the same stuff we had just seen. If they edited these out, shows would start on time.

    Which leads onto that very topic. Shows not starting on time pisses me off, and it’s the main reason I abandoned FTA. Seven fasttracked The Amazing Race but after the first 2 eps started 20 mins late I stopped watching it on Seven.

    I feel sorry for those watching Revenge too. 8.30 start means 8.45, then moved to 9pm the next week, then back to 8.30.

    I make no apologies for not using FTA to source my tv shows because networks just treat viewers like crap now and know they can get away with it.

    Which leads into the other point of the article…”Networks ignore the internet at their peril.”

  17. sjp April 5, 2012 at 7:37 am -

    “The woman on a panel must laugh at a man’s joke, even if it’s not funny.”

    That reminds me of the awful Julie McCrossin who used to laugh at her own jokes which were almost always just awful.

  18. Craig April 5, 2012 at 7:20 am -

    ‘Don’t get attached to a new show, as it’s likely to be bumped in a few weeks…’

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