Embarrassing difference in US, Oz coverage
Australia doesn't get much right and that's what makes our televised election coverage so good.
Over in the US, they know how to bring the razzle dazzle with slick sets and showmanship - rolling ticker banners and flashing numbers and maps that light up. Who knows if any of it makes sense but it looks important and that's all that matters because if you do anything with confidence people will believe you. Just like Donald Trump.
But flawless broadcasts are not fun to watch. And that's where Australia really comes into its own.
We've got years of experience when it comes to doing terrible broadcasts. There's only one place you could see US popstar Pink driving a John Deere ride-on mower onto a stage while singing and that's at the ARIA Awards.
And only at the Logies would you ever witness awkward cutaways to Kenny The Plumber roving through the audience while having stilted back-and-forth exchanges with Home And Away cast members.
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Our election coverage is of a similar standard and that's what makes it interesting. Zero slickness. Failed attempts at showmanship. And accidental high drama.
During Channel 9's federal election coverage last year, former foreign minister Julie Bishop's iconic red stilettos were turned into a giant computer-generated hologram machine that was used to kick a 3D animation of Tony Abbott's head into outer space.
We watched her operate the cartoon shoe robot with glee. Fox News or CNN can borrow this idea next time. Maybe get a giant CGI of Melania's head to eat people.
Last year as Prime Minister Scott Morrison's car arrived at Liberal HQ, we crossed to the scene live and saw his terrified driver kangaroo-hopping down the spiral ramp of a Wilson carpark while 2GB host Ben Fordham led a media pack charging behind it.
Flurries of action! High profile people in uncomfortable situations!
And what's an election without notorious style vixen Allan Jones serving up hot takes and even hotter fashion?
CNN and Fox News and CBS all sounded the same even when they said different things. They needed a point of difference. An X-factor. That certain … je ne sais quoi.
Obviously Australia had to step in and show them how it's done.
Over at the Ultimo studios of the Australian Broadcasting Association, Ellen Fanning and Stan Grant helmed coverage on a news set that happened to have a skylight above it. Glam, right?
Ellen had to pull an Allan Jones and serve up some la-di-da high fashion with a pair of sunnies just to block out the glare to read the damn teleprompter.
Because in Australia, even when we get it wrong, we get it right.
Originally published as Embarrassing difference in US, Oz coverage