He’s as Australian as fish & chip on a beach of pebbles, he’s got a comedic resume longer than something really long, and credibility up the wazoo, and yet Ben Elton polarizes people like salt & pepper. His new show for Channel 9 is being heavily promoted (and it has a great lead in from Top Gear UK) so we should expect big things. Those that attended the launch of Ch9’s 2011 catalogue said Elton delivered a killer 10min stand up set as a part of introducing the show… which is great and all, but unless he’s going to deliver the same kind of killer stand up set each week, this has ‘trouble’ written all over it. I want it to succeed – Australia has a history of some great TV comedy. It also has a very full box of TV comedy failures. The press release reads:

Ben Elton Live From Planet Earth, Channel Nine’s brand new, 100 per cent hilarious, canny and exhilirating comedy, premieres Tuesday, February 8, at 9.30pm.

Written and fronted by world-renowned comic, writer and director Ben Elton, this fresh and intelligent comedy with attitude will feature guest stars, top comedians, new faces and “out there” performers. And they’ll all need plenty of nerve because the show is live, filmed in front of a studio audience.

Elton will be supported by an ensemble cast of comedy performers including AFI Award winner Paul McCarthy (Comedy Inc., Totally Full Frontal) and Genevieve Morris (Comedy Inc., City Homicide) as well as a host of fresh new faces. They will perform character monologues and sketches throughout this live television event.

Ben’s quirky brand of humour will flatter the audience’s intelligence and maybe even leave them a little better informed about current affairs and pop culture as the performers fly by the seat of their pants. Throughout each hour-long program nobody will know what’s coming up next, from stars to stand-up and side-splitting skits. What unfolds over the series will be a mystery to everyone, including Elton.

Elton says: “People keep asking what’s it going to be like. I say I’ll tell you when we’ve done it. If I knew exactly what was coming there wouldn’t be any point going through the trouser-clenching, exhilirating business of doing it live.

“One thing I do know is that I Iove working with my brilliant ensemble cast who are really bringing the characters to life, adding something special of their own to each one. Our humble aim is to bring something fresh and exciting to the great Australian comedy landscape.”

The passion, excitement and upredictability of Ben Elton Live From Planet Earth will remind Australians why they like to watch no-holds-barred live television .


Ben Elton Live From Planet Earth – 9:30pm Tue ,Ch9