Pilot Week 2: It’s not about comedy anymore

10’s Pilot Week 2018 was a bold experiment in broadcasting, where eight budding comedies were pitted against each other in a battle to the death to see which programs featuring white men would make it to our screens.

And having copped a fair bit of flack for having a white men-heavy line up last year, 10 has taken the trouble to include lots of shows featuring women and people of colour this year. Except…and oh man does this tell us a lot about the people who run 10…none of them are comedies. Okay, one comes close, but that’s not really good enough. Is it? It’s basically saying “women and ethnics aren’t funny so here’s some other light nonsense featuring them instead”.

From the press release:

Part Time Privates

Two mothers at a local primary school decide to start a home-based private investigation business so they can enjoy flexible working hours. As their business unexpectedly thrives, they find themselves thrown deep into the world of working ‘undercover’; moving between school pick-ups, dance group and lunch orders, to threesomes, insurance fraud and failed relationships. Starring Heidi Arena and Nicola Parry.

Produced by CJZ. CJZ Executive Producers Toni Malone and Nick Murray. Network 10 Executive Producer Paul Leadon.

This at least sounds like it could be a comedy. Or maybe just a local reworking of Rosemary & Thyme. Great.

Sydney’s Crazy Rich Asians

Money, shopping, cars, events and glamour. Sydney’s Crazy Rich Asians follows the opulent lives of six very ‘extra’ characters and their local fixer who waits on their every want and need…no matter the cost.

Produced by Screentime, a Banijay Group company. Screentime Executive Producer Johnny Lowry. Network 10 Executive Producer Paul Leadon.

We’re assuming this is a reality documentary and not a new Chris Lilley series.

I Am…Roxy!

Roxy Jacenko

No publicity is bad publicity. Delve head first into the daily madness of PR guru, publicist, talent manager, reality star, author and mum-of-two, Roxy Jacenko. This entertaining and comedic access-all-areas pilot pries into Roxy’s everyday life behind her world of high glamour and outrageous excess.

Produced by Matchbox Pictures and Two Scoops Media. Matchbox Pictures Executive Producer Debbie Byrne. Two Scoops Media Executive Producer Michael Wipfli. Network 10 Executive Producer Ciaran Flannery.

This will definitely be a reality documentary…or will it? Jacenko is notorious for being a tough boss but is that really how she’ll be portrayed here?

Catfish Australia

Beloved pop idol Casey Donovan joins Walkley-nominated documentarian Patrick Abboud on the quest to uncover the truth about online relationships. Coming to the aid of every day Aussies who have suspicions about their internet beau, Casey and Patrick will join forces to uncover the real identities behind the hot online profiles.

Produced by Eureka Productions. Eureka Productions Executive Producer Tom Richardson. Network 10 Executive Producer Ciaran Flannery.

My 80 Year Old Flatmate

It’s reality TV with heart, as older Aussies offer cheap rent to hard-up millennials in exchange for company and help around the house. Creating surprising friendships and mutually-beneficial relationships, it’s a look into what can happen when you take the leap across the generation gap.

Produced by Screentime, a Banijay Group company. Screentime Executive Producer Johnny Lowry. Network 10 Executive Producer Paul Leadon.

We’ll put these two in the category of “issues millennials face” and set our dials to “ignore”.

Sigh. What a crappy line-up.

Pilot Week should be about putting to air some shows that are promising but need to be tested in front of an audience to assure that network that there are people out there who will watch them. So, what assurance does 10 need that there’s an audience for reality documentaries about rich people and showbiz? And programs about hot-button issues like catfishing and housing poverty? How over-anxious are there?

The only slightly dangerous show in this quintet is Part Time Privates, and that’s because it contains a script and stars two women who may occasionally attempt to be funny.

We bet you $50 it never makes it past the pilot stage, no matter how good it is, while all the others do.

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