Q& A

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Eguide Television - WITH SHAUN MI­CALLEF TALKIN’ ’ BOUT YOUR GEN­ER­A­TION, TDT, Wed­nes­day, 8pm

More than your av­er­age trivia game show host, Shaun Mi­callef drives the laughs and risk- tak­ing on Talkin’ ’ Bout Your

Gen­er­a­tion. A for­mer lawyer, this su­per­s­mart co­me­dian ‘‘ hates’’ pop cul­ture, for­mula TV and thinks Tonight shows are dead. But later this year he’ll rein­vent his own for the ABC, writes Holy Byrnes

Q. The dy­namic be­tween you and the three cap­tains – Amanda Keller, Char­lie Pick­er­ing and Josh Thomas – is key. Is that well- re­hearsed? A. It’s not re­hearsed at all. It’s an or­ganic re­la­tion­ship, like a fam­ily. We recorded our first show of the year last week. If that’s any­thing to go by, there’s go­ing to be a lot more teas­ing. Q. What’s the ex­tent of your in­put in the show? A. Hav­ing to throw to breaks and in­tro­duc­ing games can be bland, so I re­write that sort of stuff to suit me. Then over the years that has per­me­ated into the games and the show has ended up quite odd. Q. The show is driven largely by pop cul­ture. Is that an in­ter­est of yours? A. I hate it. It is a launch point. But if that was the be all and end all of the con­tent, I think it would be dull. I use it as a touch­stone then try to move it on to more in­ter­est­ing things than just talk­ing about Kim Kar­dashian. Q. Do you think the au­di­ence re­sponds to your risk- tak­ing be­cause we’re served so much for­mu­laic pro­gram­ming? A. I think that’s right. I can’t stand watch­ing those for­mat shows that have been beaten into shape be­fore they come over here. You do get a sense that some pro­ducer from the US is look­ing over the shoul­der of the mak­ers say­ing, ‘‘ Put the mu­sic here, you need this now, you need that sort of char­ac­ter’’. Ev­ery se­ries is the same. Q. What can you tell us about your new ABC show, Shaun Mi­callef is Mad As Hell? A. It’s prob­a­bly a bit of a stab at the sort of pro­gram you get when you watch Jon Ste­wart or Stephen Col­bert. I re­ally love those shows. To be hon­est, I think Tonight shows are dead. But those two shows rep­re­sent what that type of show has turned into and the way to go.

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