It’s not often this blog writes a vale for a Chaser show that’s largely positive, so strap yourselves in… Radio Chaser, which has been airing on Triple M Sydney for the past 12 weeks and ended on Friday, has actually been pretty good. We’re not talking “set the world on fire” – this is a show on Triple M, after all – but it’s been fun to listen to the highlights podcasts none-the-less.
Featuring a revolving door of Chaser members, associates and guests – Charles Firth, Dom Knight, Andrew Hansen, Rhys Muldoon, Mark Humphries, Chris Taylor, Chas Licciardello, Kirsten Drysdale, Wil Anderson, Kevin Rudd and many more – and impressive number of topical (and quickly written and produced) sketches, this has been a step up from the traditional Triple M fare.
Not since Get This, The Sweetest Plum, or, to go back even further into the commercial radio comedy archives, Martin/Molloy and The D-Generation, have commercial radio listeners been able to listen to a show which re-works but also sends up the conventions of the genre.
End-of-show awards given to idiots in the news? Radio Chaser did them, although in a much funnier way than your bog-standard breakfast crew. Ditto the show’s Cat’s Pyjamas or Cat’s Piss segment, which cunningly cast a Hot or Not-type eye on the day’s news and was always amusing.
If you’re a regular listener to the Ms, you’ll be aware of the network’s Music Check Up campaign, where the public’s being asked for its views on their playlist, i.e. do you like “classic” Triple M or do you want to hear newer music too? Cue a Radio Chaser phone-in where listeners are asked to identify the classic song: “Is it Mozart, Haydn or AC/DC?”. The answer was Mozart. Get it? Classic Triple M… It was much funnier when they did it. Although not quite as funny as the number of people who called in to give their answers. (Maybe Triple M should consider playing the actual classics?)
A couple of years ago, the Game Changers: Radio podcast spoke to Mick Molloy and Tony Martin (separately) and wondered why their incredibly successful 90’s radio show hasn’t been replicated. The conclusion was, roughly speaking, that to produce a daily show featuring original comedy sketches and amusing chat required too many resources. Yet, it’s a format that keeps popping up every couple of years and resulting in good shows, so shouldn’t there be more of this kind of program?
There have been suggestions that Radio Chaser will return, although not in the 11am-1pm time slot it’s occupied for the last 12 weeks. Let’s hope so, it’s been a good listen.