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Monday, February 04, 2013

Seven Sharp - a blunt review

After watching Seven Sharp, the TVNZ Kiwi had a stroke.

RaboDirect were the last minute sponsors of Seven Sharp, which is fitting I suppose. A virtual bank for virtual news.

So we finally get to see TVNZs answer to current affairs at 7pm tonight. Oh Lord. Mark Sainsbury, I am forever sorry for all those mean attacks on Close Up.

Seven Sharp makes Close Up's 20 part series on the welfare of Happy Feet the penguin look Pulitzer prize winning.

Tonight's news? Joke polls about Titewhai Harawira, a propaganda piece for the NZ military about post traumatic syndrome and international star Josh Groban. Who is pacing this? Quentin Tarantino on a bender?

This is 23 minutes of my life I am never getting back.

Seven Sharp - it's like 7 Days minus all the laughing and witty comments.

Imagine for a second if the show was hosted by Wallace Chapman, Pebbles Hooper and Jose Barbosa, now that would be Seven Bloody Sharp. Sigh. What a wasted opportunity.

The msm cultural pundits have been defensive beyond belief for Seven Sharp. It shows the power 7pm PR buys you to gain such sympathetic media foreplay. Paul Little (who seems to become more of a right wing arsehole the more he writes for the NZ Herald) was singing its praises, Colin Espiner (don't worry, I hadn't heard of him either) was cheerleading for stuff.co.nz, while Scott Kara was supposed to keep a straight face as Jesse Mulligan told him he wanted to be NZs Jon Stewart.

If Kara had really cared he would have called the column 'The awful things we do to pay for a mortgage in Arch Hill' and set up a bank account for donations to the Mulligan family. Don't get me wrong, this isn't an attack on the people involved. Ali is a poster child for the LGBT community and along with Pakeha guilt, Jesse Mulligan is one of the best things to ever come out of the middle classes. My heart does go out however to poor Greg Boyed whose career is the greatest loser from this ill spiced news jambalaya.

For all of the msm cultural pundits best intentions however, Seven Sharp is a howling dog.

The only thing sharp about Seven Sharp is the syringe full of heroin owned by whatever muppet in management was responsible for allowing the marketing department to skull pound the current affairs department 7pm weeknights.

Yes. I said skull pound.

At a time when we have 270 000 kids in poverty, 7.3% unemployment and the highest level of inequality ever recorded, one would hope TVNZs 7pm current affairs serving would hold the powerful to account, demand answers from the rich and challenge society's sacred cows. Instead we get this weak, flaccid worship at the alter of lite entertainment.

The only winners here are John Campbell and the National Party. We are downgrading our critical media from the pathetic lows we currently have right when social injustice is at it's highest level.

No matter how 'funny' Seven Sharp is, the real joke is on all of us.



At 4/2/13 8:39 pm, Blogger davey gravy said...

Holy shit. Great review.
Laughed my ass off... at your blog, not at Seven Sharp. Mulligan's a twat, you got him good.

At 4/2/13 9:21 pm, Blogger Joey Station said...

It was like Infotainment without any information or entertainment

At 4/2/13 9:22 pm, Blogger Joey Station said...

It was like Infotainment, only without any information or entertainment

At 4/2/13 9:48 pm, Blogger Tim said...

Thank Christ for Rain Fade. I caught the first and part of the second little gems.

There's this incremental creep of the solacious and the puff such that when you put something like this against a TVNZ7 current affairs piece - its stark.
But for Boyeds and Maus and otherwise competent journalists, this kind of self-indulgent shit doesn't seem so bad to them.

This kind of crap makes "journalists" (once members of a 4th Estate) now have to be "entertainers'.

Funnily enough, there's just been a week of Holmes worshipping - commanding more air time than Ed Hillary. Towards the end, he (Holmes) seemed to get it - (he puts his strides on in just the same way as BlanketMan did).

Bad enough that Breakfast has transformed an otherwise reasonable journalist (Rawdon Christie) into a wannabe self-indulgent celeb, and Peter Williams to have to slum it - we're now on to the next stage - and it's called 7.30 Sharp.

When we do finally get PSB back, my fear is that we'll have to start importing journalists - all the home grown will have either sold out to being spin doctors, or to a TVNZ commercial agenda. None can really expect to be taken seriously after several months of "4th Estate, Limited". I mean we already see some of the competent/decent ones floundering - trying out alternatives (Alistair W for e.g ditching 3, flipping to Skoi - sometimes one can actually see them squirm)

By the way - what ever happened to that promise of ads/compression being reviewed.

and a 2nd btw Bomber - in response to your justified pillorying of MfCH and Kordia - as incompetents flogging off last available frequencies.

Since elsewhere in the world (have a chat with Peter Thomson about the levying of pay TV in support of LOCAL/INDIGENOUS/PSB as payment for their priviledged position),,, ABSOLUTELY NO REASON why SKY TV could not be ordered to DE-encrypt anything that originates in an unencrypted form. TV1,2,3,4,PRIME,ParlyArmint, TAB/Trackside....PLUS the unencrypted stuff on C-Band that's rebroadcast.

For them - its money for jam but quite obviously the intent of the originator is an equivalent free-to-air format.

Whilst Kordia and Freeview and MfCH have totally fucked up - actually all is not at all lost.
If SKY chose to say - awe well we won't carry it - all the better.
More satellite space. If they chose to not to fill it, or to fill it with duplicates, there'd be a damn good case to show what they were about. ANyway - an alternative gubbamint would simply legislate if they had any balls and concern.
A truly "FREEVIEW" audience could have a variety of channels.
After that's been settled, one hopes that when a new gubbamint comes to pass, they'll seek compensation from the SKY monopoly for the likes of Kidzone/Heartland et all. Whilst a mate suggests that intellectual property resides with production companies - and that is true.... Truly neo-lib accounting procedures would dictate an opportunity cost - whereby the existence of such material would not have occured were it not for a PSB broadcaster (at the time with a PSB charter and remit).
Well -as you can imagine.....such costs.....the universe is the limit - indeed such independent production houses may well not have even been able to exist were it not for the publicly owned broadcaster either signing a broadcast agreement or commissioning the material.

I bet Nact would LUV to flog off Kordia and TVNZ.
If and when there's a change of gubbamint - probably the very very easiest of returns to public ownership would have to be in the broadcasting arena. Actually, one just has to do it - it's the ether - no different from the air we breathe as humans.

At 5/2/13 12:12 am, Blogger Frank said...

I watched the opening intro - gawd help me - and then the vid ended. Tried to click on any link that looked like the main show - and got a message "The video you are trying to watch is currently unavailable. Please check back soon."

Yeah right because my life revolves around TV and I can wait till TVNZ's website fixes what bug has stuffed it up. (Was it set up by Talent2?)

Going by the opening few minutes, it was stomach-turning tripe. I half expected Mulligan to start tap-dancing on the desk.

This was a dark day for journalism in NZ - and a fantastic opportunity for TV3. Expect viewing numbers for "Campbell Live" to rise, along with TV3's advertising rack-rate.

This is what we get when we mix the free market with the Fourth Estate...

At 5/2/13 10:30 am, Blogger countryboy said...

' Idiocracy ' .


You have to be careful what you wish for .

Still yourself for a moment and ponder this .

' Seven Sharp ' is what research suggests the Masses will swallow , hook , line and advertising .

You and I may mock and heap scorn but has anybody asked the masses what they think of 'Seven Sharp '?
While we live in our arrogant brain bubbles ... Let me ask you this ?
Have YOU been to a shopping mall lately ?
Have YOU watched non stop TV for one whole week ?
Have YOU eavesdropped on the conversations of bus passengers ?
Have YOU been in retail in a shop at the very coal face of several poorer neighbourhoods in full melt-down ? A melt down of human spirit that'd make Chernobyl AND Fukushima look like something you'd step around while they fizzed on the foot path .

' Seven Sharp ' is precisely what the the Hoi Palloi will watch wide eyed and russet of cheek like the hollowed out husks they've become .

Show 'em anything so long as it's followed by a commercial .
A dead , tortured person . A child in pieces . A group charged with raping a woman to death perhaps , then sell 'em something while we have their attention . The average Doris or Roger isn't suddenly going to shout , as they spit out their sausages and beer , ' Awww fuck man ! Whadaloadafuckin'shit as they turn off the tele then turn to their library for something historical are they ?

It's my view that Tumeke and it's erudite followers are barking up the converted here .
Tumeke should , yes SHOULD pay close attention to ' Seven Sharp ' and watch and learn . See how it's so easily done . Now , imagine if Tumeke had such a following ? And such funding . And such powerful allies .
Know your enemy . Keep your friends close and your enemies closer . I love cliches almost as much as metaphors .

Tumeke ? For Gods sake have some T shirts printed and consult a marketing manager to organize a Tumeke Brand , a logo . You desperately need a publicist too . Make yourselves impossible to ignore .
A forest fire starts from a tiny spark ! Tumeke needs to do this for the sake of us all and you clearly have potentially staunch support if what I'm seeing of the lead-in to Waitangi Day is anything to go by . Carpe Diem ! Tumeke ! Dead Poets Society ; http://youtu.be/qQtmGcdSDAI

At 5/2/13 1:11 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Didn’t watch it at seven but eight on TV One + 1 merely out of curiosity, verdict - absolutely awful, I can honestly say that will be the first and last time I’ll be watching that.

Watching repeats of The Simpsons on Four is a lot more worthwhile. The older episodes especially can outclass Seven Sharp in wit and intelligence.

I don’t know what it is with the elderly and TV One, as they seem drawn to it like moths to a light. But you know this show must be bad if your elderly mother says turn it over half-way through. If she’s a standard to assess the elderly by, then it looks as if TV One is potentially removing a loyal segment of their audience.

Decades ago TV One used to have a decent balance of programming, remember Assignment which was the successor of a similar current affairs programme from the early 90’s Foreign Correspondent? That was eliminated from its Thursday night time slot and now Sunday is reduced to a half hour.

Remember the educational programming that used to air prior to Breakfast filling the time slot, or the documentaries that used to be shown on weekend mornings. Now Saturday is predominantly filled with rubbishy cooking programmes.

Regardless of our opinions of the late Paul Holmes, Holmes was light years ahead in comparison to Seven Sharp. Even Sainsbury and Close Up seem heavyweight in comparison.

One News has become incredibly shallow and there’s obviously no commitment to provide decent news coverage as they’ve axed their 4:30 bulletin. I can remember a little while back their headline story was the Lance Armstrong interview, while at least 3 News had something more important – coverage of floods I believe. 3 News certainly didn’t cover the Armstrong interview as much as One News did. One News appears to have descended to tabloid news in content.

Frankly, there’s nothing worthwhile to watch on TV One and given their commitment to downgrading informative or half-decent programming there’s all the more reason to boycott it.

At 6/2/13 10:07 am, Blogger Fern said...

@Procrastinator: there is one programme on TV One worth watching and that's David Attenborough's new series on Africa, Tuesdays 8.30pm. Three episodes down, three to go. The camera work is staggering.

At 6/2/13 10:28 am, Blogger Phil said...

Free to air TV is totally stuffed. I have seen some quality material from the Campbell Live team. TVNZ is a total train wreck. I wonder how many others have just switched off TV completely, as I have. Country Boy, I enjoy your writing and style. I get better information off the internet. But there is a paucity of quality NZ stuff. Never getting SKY. The internet will win
against Sky. Its only time. That's what Kim Dot Com is all about. Its a huge game, with huge consequences.


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