The delivery of Tony Abbott's "blog"

It always struck me as strange why the Good News Week team saw fit to mess with what had been recently a successful franchise. I’m all for a return of sketch comedy to our television screens. Good Australian sketch comedy hasn’t been seen in a long time on telly… and with the first episode of Good News World we aren’t seeing any just yet.

To be clear: there were lots of very funny moments throughout episode one. Sammy J & Randy’s carbon tax piece was pithy and got their point across very well. The interview of Akmal’s Gadaffi by host Paul McDermott had it’s moments of LOLs. Randy (the puppet) pretending to be Chris Bowen in his interview with Paul brought a layer of ludicrosity that meant that sketch was mostly funny, as opposed to a blatant Clarke/Dawes rip-off.

The moments against, however, weigh too heavily against the show. While I enjoy Paul McDermott as a singer, his Abbott song was contrived in delivery. Sammy J & Randy’s entertainment report was funny in spots, however it felt too laboured. The lines that many of the cast had to deliver at times left the performer with very little to hit as far as the gag goes. Paul delivering gags to camera from behind that big desk on a lonely set didn’t really string anything together. The comparisons to a Saturday Night Live or to Jon Stewart are too obvious, and sadly the comparsion’s aren’t in GNW’s favour.

Social media networks tipped more towards the “against” than “for” argument. Lots of people were confused by the change, unaware the show would be different. Others didn’t graps any cohesiveness in the links between sketches. Others dislike cast members. Some are unabashed fans. It’s hard to get a fair read on any show just from things like Twitter and Facebook, especially as for new shows it tends to be a race for some to predict how long the show will last. 3 weeks? A month? That’s well out of our hands. For now.

Importantly this is only the first episode of this newly reinvented series. There is opportunity to improve. Lord knows they have some wonderful comedic talent working on the show in people like Mikey Robbins, Cal Wilson, & Tom Gleeson, let alone those slaving away in the writer’s room. It wasn’t a great start, but has massive capacity to improve. Like all comedy shows taped on a weekly basis, it needs to be given a chance to breathe, to grow, to find it’s comedic voice. Is it all political satire or is it all brazillian or dick gags? The coming episodes will reveal the intent of the team – and the intent of the producers as to how they respond to support, criticism and ratings.

Overall – a C minus. Not entirely horrible, but Must. Do. Better.

Good News World – Mon 9:30pm, Ch10.