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The Sydney Morning Herald

TV Previews

Author: Matt Buchanan
Date: 03/09/2001
Words: 736
          Publication: Sydney Morning Herald
Section: The Guide
Page: 10
The Monday Dump with Roy and H.G.

Seven, 10.30pm

UP The good news is that Roy and H.G. are back from their pre-Winter Olympics fact-finding mission in Salt Lake City and are now ensconced in Brisbane for a couple of weeks to cover the mighty cash safari that is the Goodwill Games. (The even better news is that we can enjoy them without the distracting background hum of our VCRs taping The Sopranos.)

However, those expecting a reprise of The Dream, during which visiting athletes visited the boys to exchange tributes, may need reminding that Nine, not Seven, has the rights to the whole overcooked affair. The wholesale sharing of talent by the networks, while not impossible, is about as likely as Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat taking Brian Henderson's place on the 6pm news.

What should we expect from the new series? I'm not totally sure but Roy is on record (see page 2) as saying he'd like to see the re-emergence of the mystic art of ``channelling" and with it further ventilations from that garrulous ancient god ``Ramtha", who doubtless has had a lot to think about since the phone stopped ringing in the late '80s.

Life Support

SBS, 9pm

UP I've only seen tonight's episode, but by halfway it was plain that, in script and ideas alone, Life Support is one of the best new Australian comedies in a very long time.

As with the best comedy, there's a uniqueness to the humour suggestive of a pack attitude among the show's writers. The very idea for the show is a cracker. It's a lampoon of all the lifestyle programs that clog early evening schedules like Spakfilla.

A team of four presenters each one a glorious fool condescend to show us ingenious life solutions. Todd the Handyman, for example, demonstrates how to turn a hardback copy of Love in the Time of Cholera into a commodious home for your video copy of Police Academy V.

Generic network blonde Sigourney advises us on how to use crochet-knit ``playcovers" to conceal those everyday things that offend the eye, such as a toilet cistern or an unsightly Siamese twin. And a little later she demonstrates how any girl can make sure she gets the flattering effects of candlelight at her boyfriend's house simply by sabotaging the nearest electricity substation.

Then there's caring new-age Penne (pronounced Penny), who interviews the vocalist of ``melancholy trio" Chamber Mouth, a chap so very depressed he sings and converses with a sawn-off shotgun in his mouth. ``I even liked him in the early days," says one fan, ``when he used to sing with just sleeping pills in his mouth."

Home and Away: UK

Seven, 7pm

UP Over the past 13 years, Home and Away has built an estimated daily audience of 60 million in 48 countries from Belgium to Botswana. But nowhere is it more popular than among the whey-faced Brits who used to broadcast its appealing surf-happy visions twice a day even as far back as the time of Lance, Morag and whoever it was that Alex Papps once pretended to be.

If Home and Away remains anything like as enmeshed in Britain's waking thoughts as it was 10 years ago, there's a good chance the actors will be refused the right to leave and forced to stay on in character.

Anyway, this episode finds Donald Fisher at the Tate Modern flogging his new book, Letter to Byron, a work inspired by the death of his young son. While nattering to the publicist about the Booker and whatnot, who should appear but Marilyn, the mother of said Byron, who scarpered to London a year before, unable to cope.

Bob the Builder

ABC, 4.15pm

UP I wish I was Bob the Builder, the chirpy, hard-hatted, little fix-it man who makes a welcome return in an all-new series this afternoon.

The colour scheme in his town is highly exuberant, the bulldozers talk, there are zero sharemarket jitters, zero Norwegian container ships and zero speed-techno. But mostly it's because he has a really cool tool belt.

Today he is putting the Bob belt to good use fixing a gable when that irrepressible and utterly thick pooch, Scruffty, gets trapped in a rabbit warren.

It's a tough situation. Can they fix him? (I mean, ``it"?)

What do you think?

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