The “summer series/best of” for 60 Minutes is highlight was has been a great year for this Sunday night staple. 2010 has seen the Ch7 offering Sunday Night gain more traction that previously, with 60 Minutes ending the year as second fiddle (somewhat surprisingly). The King is dead; long live the king? Not yet, given the calibre of these stories from this and previous years. Clare Oliver’s story is heartbreaking & sobering in unison, and a reminder of the dangers of suntans and tanning salons. This week’s line-up includes:

Damien’s War
We’re always hearing about the desperate plight of Africa’s wildlife, especially the elephants and rhinos that are so cruelly hunted down for their tusks and horns. All most of us do is sound concerned and maybe hand over a few coins to a wildlife charity, but recently Liam Bartlett met an Aussie guy who’s actually out there making a difference. Damien Mander has been called a conservation Rambo, a former commando who’s using his expertise to save Zimbabwe’s big animals. Now it’s the poachers who are finding out what it feels like to be hunted.

Reporter: Liam Bartlett
Producer: Nick Greenaway
Original airdate: 3 October, 2010

Dying for a Tan
In all her time with 60 Minutes, Liz Hayes hasn’t come across anyone braver than Clare Oliver. Clare was just 26 years old when Liz met her. She was in the final stages of skin cancer with only a few days left to live, but she was determined to make those days count. Her final wish was to warn other young people about the dangers of tanning. It’s a message worth repeating.

Reporter: Liz Hayes
Producers: Hugh Nailon, Julia Timms
Original airdate: 2 September, 2007

Freaking Out
Well we can truly say, we’ve seen it all. And when you get a good look at the Lizard Man, the Stalking Cat and the Horned Man in action, you’ll understand why. They call it extreme body modification. But that doesn’t begin to cover it. It’s more a total transformation. These guys aren’t satisfied with a few tattoos, spiky hair and an earring, they sport real cat-like whiskers, real horns, even a real forked tongue. They claim it’s living art – the ultimate in self-expression. Or maybe, it’s the ultimate 21st century freak show.

Reporter: Peter Overton
Producers: Hugh Nailon, Garry McNab
Original airdate: 9 March, 2008

Nowadays when we go to a rock concert, we expect a spectacle. But in the early nineties, the towering scaffolding, multiple stages and technical whiz-bangery that accompanied U2’s world tour was something quite new and extraordinary. Those were the days when U2 was the world’s biggest band and its lead singer, Bono, was probably the coolest dude on the planet. So tootling around Dublin with the man himself was quite a treat for Tracey Curro, until she realised that, as a driver, Bono made a terrific pop star.

Reporter: Tracey Curro
Producer: Stephen Taylor
Original airdate: 7 November, 1993


BEST OF 60 MINUTES – Sunday 5/12 7.30pm, Ch9