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Monday, July 26, 2004

Nibbling Satire 

"Biting Satire" heralds Eating Media Lunch's New North Rd billboard.

While I would definitely label the show's first season, 2003, as flesh-tearingly humorous I felt the impact of its second season could be likened more to the pressure of an octanarian's toothless gums salivating on your forearm.     

Week-after-week my flatmates and I have sat through tedious, long-winded and frequently unfunny epsiodes of this much anticipated second season.

The show is supposed to "reveal the best and worst of the media from broadcast to broadsheet". 

In one of the less interesting episodes this season the show visited a West Coast community paper where the local reporter was doing vox pops.

This was conveyed to viewers as something extraordinary, as if the local readership was getting unprecedented coverage; as if similar vox pops don't feature in countless other publications throughout New Zealand.

I missed the point of that story and wonder why it was even covered?  

Similarly mundane were the show's interviews with journalism students and its Fieldays coverage.   

It also seems to me that the show's host, Jeremy Wells - Newsboy - is a little too aloof to do consistently interesting interviews.

His off-the-cuff interview questions - infamously, he once asked one of the Lord of the Rings cast members what they thought of New Zealand pussy - have become somewhat predicable.

I finally sat down last Tuesday night with pen and paper ready to do an in-depth review on an episode and was mildly annoyed.... it was bloody funny.   

It was this season's final and Newsboy did a classic pisstake on the SuperSize Me  - McDonalds doco  - and solely ate Middle Eastern kebabs for a month and gradually turned into a Koran-toting terrorist, however his cholesterol levels and overall health had improved considerably.       

But i think a Simpson's episode last week might sum up a little of how i feel about Eating Media Lunch.

In it Krusty the Clown's ratings are plummeting - due to the failings of the Itchy and Scratchy cartoon - and ratings showed three quarters of watchers would change the channel when the cartoon appeared.

I wouldn't be surprised if Eating Media Lunch's cartoon, Media Dog, had the same effect.

Its reliance upon crass humour - weekly scenes of Media Dog masturbating, or eating the ass of another character all while pretending to muse intelligently - has become tedious and the mutt seems to keep trying harder to be more "shocking" so as to get a laugh.

Boring not biting satire.

I thought Well's conclusion in its 2004's series illustrated the show is resting on its' laurels.

In its first season the show concluded with a sensationally funny pisstake on presenter Paul Holmes' national television apology - Holmes had labelled the head of the United Nations Kofi Annan a "cheeky darkie".

The apology was mimicked sincerely by Wells' word-for-word until the final word when instead of saying sorry Wells let out, what was by anyone's standards, an excellent burp. 

In 2004 Well's just finished with an seemingly unrelated fart.
(I acknowledge I could be compromised here, I once applied for a researcher's job at Eating Media lunch and although I was told they'd be in contact asap they never did.

I don't know if acknowledging a potential bias is even still required in the media: "The Opinion" newspaper gets by, by saying "always an honest opinion", and doesn't mention its contributor's are all right-wing politicians/spokepeople/lunatics)


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