Behind the scenes with a bunch of D-Generates

The D-Generation in 1986 and ABC Props Maker Jeff Smart.

Exclusive to ChampagneComedy.com – If you ever wanted to know how The D-Generation ABC TV series from 1986-1987 operated behind the scenes, we have received a treasured archive of photos from a former staff member of the show.

Jeff Smart is an ex special props-maker for the ABC D-Generation TV series. The following are his words. The following is an excerpt from a published page here (see below).

In 1986 I got a job as a special effects prop-maker with ABC TV in Melbourne, and the very first thing I got to work on was a new pilot comedy sketch show, creating all manner of special effects props including a very tacky Thunderbirds model!

It was called The D-Generation!

Luckily I continued working on the show when it went to series, and even had some small involvement when they jumped ship later on to Channel 7. The shows afforded me many opportunities to do some fun, creative and interesting work for some really nice people.

As I was based at the ABC production facility workshops in Highett, I wasn’t on set all that often at the main studios in Ripponlea. But occasionally I would be unshackled and allowed to venture down to operate one of special props I had made, taking my camera along to take pics of my work.

Main Cast poses for the camera for a publicity pic I think.
SOURCE: JEFF SMART
Here we can see the real angle of the wall on the Batman and Robin “Fear of latent homosexuality” skit! (…no they didn’t really scale a ver†ical wall!). 
SOURCE: JEFF SMART
The cast casually go through script ideas (this was taken at the channel 7 studios a few weeks before the D-Gen Goes Commercial show).
SOURCE: JEFF SMART
SOURCE: JEFF SMART

If you want to see more images and read more behind the scenes, click on the top menu “Who The Hell Is Jeff Smart” or click here.

Santo Cilauro, 1994 Frontline interview

25 years ago, Santo Cilauro was interviewed on Triple J show Hard Coffee about the hit satirical show Frontline, then in its first season. Champagne Comedy recently unearthed an audio recording of this at the bottom of a cupboard, recorded towards the end of the season.

Santo not only played the weatherman Geoff on Frontline, but he filmed a lot of the action using his Handycam (“Because I’m Italian, I’m the person who filmed the family baptisms and first Holy Communions, so I had the Super 8 camera,” he says.)

From discussing Rob’s overlooked acting skills, getting rid of the date on his video camera, and whether the D-Gen is still the D-Gen, Santo is in pure Santo form!

HYBPA, Martin, Molloy and Kennedy in 2019 Logie Awards Highlights

Now the hype has died down a little, the 61st Annual TV Week Logie Awards were held on Sunday June 30 at The Star Gold Coast. If you’re a D-Generation / Working Dog fan, it was a fun night.

To begin with, Tony Martin was invited back to be the announcer of the awards, after the success of the 2018 presentation. But more on that later…

The Working Dog team had two entries for the one award – Most Popular Comedy Program – which Have You Been Paying Attention? and Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures were up against each other. When the winner was announced, HYBPA? became victorious, and Tom Gleisner picked up the prize.

Later on, Mick Molloy and Jane Kennedy presented Best Lifestyle Program, but not before some sparkling rep-ar-tee… with Tony making reference to Bargearse, and Mick and Jane giving themselves gentle ribbings over Frontline and The Mick Molloy Show.

Even further into the night, Have You Been Paying Attention? took away the Logie for Most Outstanding Entertainment Program.

Finally, we here at Champagne Comedy watched all 3 & 1/2 hours of mayhem to give you the best bits of the night – the Tony Martin supercut.

PS: No champagne and pingers this year.

Congratulations everyone involved!

HYBPA? and Russell Coight in 2019 Logie Nominations

Congratulations is in order to Working Dog with three nominations for the 61st Logie Awards to be held June 30, 2019 at The Star Gold Coast and screened on Channel 9.

First off the ranks – Have You Been Paying Attention? which returned this year for its 7th season, is up for Most Outstanding Entertainment Program.

Second – Have You Been Paying Attention? is up against Working Dog’s other production: Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures for Most Popular Comedy Program.

A big congratulations to the team all round! Fingers crossed Tony Martin returns as the announcer – here’s out supercut from last year as a refresher.

Returning: Have You Been Paying Attention?

Clear out your Monday evenings as Ed Kavalee, Sam Pang and Tom Gleisner return for a new season of the Logie award winning comedy quiz show Have You Been Paying Attention? for 2019.

Along with the rotating chair system of various guests, HYBPA? comes back to Channel 10 Monday May 13, in the same time slot of 8:30pm (or 8:40 / 8:50 / 8:57pm – depending on how much a pre-recorded reality show runs over).

Undiscovered Masterpieces: D-Generation Blooper Reel

We all need a good laugh, but how often do the people who give us that ‘laugh’, end up laughing themselves?

While bloopers were common on The Late Show, their earlier sketch series The D-Generation in 1986 – 1987 were … quality… produced sketches which had little to none errors in them before they went to air.

While we survive off the compilations that were released on VHS / DVD / iTunes, we never really saw any behind-the-scenes of the series. But thanks to the internet and YouTuber ‘A Wells’, they uploaded a goof reel compilation from the ABC. These goof reels were common back in the day and are usually shown internally, way before anything like the internet was around. So whenever you stumble across these tapes, they may be very politically incorrect in hindsight.

One of the videos ‘A Wells’ uploaded was a 1 hour length goof reel which contained just over 1 minute worth of footage of The D-Generation. In the blooper, Magda Szubanski is meant to be interviewing Marg Downey and continuously fluffing her lines. In the other blooper, there is a bucks party that’s in place with Rob Sitch, Santo Cilauro, Michael Veitch and John Harrison. They get so far in to it, only for Harrison to fluff it, annoying Sitch in the process.

For the full goof tape (with the D-Generation snippet at 9m 06s), just click here.

How The F*ck You Can Get Into Radio

In the early 1980s and before he was a member of The D-Generation, Tony Martin moved all the way from New Zealand and settled in Queensland to work in radio as a copywriter for FM104, now known as Triple M Brisbane.

The internet didn’t exist, and there were limited ways on promoting the station, especially when it came to recruitment and clients. So there was this fancy little booklet that was printed to illustrate the ins and outs of FM104. From within, in lies Martin doing his actual job as a copywriter.

To accompany said booklet, a ‘state-of-the-art’ video was produced, just to illustrate the personalities and the internal structure. Within said video, a very young Martin, playing the piece-to-camera and copywriter.

Be aware, the contents of this time capsule is quite dated and there’s a language warning if you’re at work.

And for the ladies, here’s a pin-up just for you.

Public Vote for 61st Logie Awards open

It’s that time of the year again – the 61st Annual Logie Awards public vote is now open!

Up for consideration (aka your vote) is:

  • Have You Been Paying Attention? for Most Popular Comedy Program,
  • Tom Gleisner for Most Popular Presenter for Have You Been Paying Attention?,
  • Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures for Most Popular Comedy Program as well

TV Week have released the online voting form here: https://survey.confirmit.com.au/wix/8/p2975148.aspx

Yes, you will need to register at the end of the form to make your vote count. As much as I know you don’t want to hand over your details, here is a compelling reason why…

If you confirm your nomination for Tom Gleisner for Most Popular Presenter, it will help give him a potential run for the Gold Logie for Most Popular Personality on Australian TV. You can choose from the previous selection or a drop-down menu, like so:

Reward the team through Gleisner and earn him that nomination for Gold! They deserve it after decades of making you laugh.

REMEMBER: You can choose Tom via the bluish button from the previous selection from where you nominated him for Most Popular Presenter, or choose him from the drop-down menu and select him that way, if you ended up choosing *someone else*…

Join us for #GleisnerGold – he has enough Burmagui Bronzes in the poolroom to last a lifetime.

The 90s: what a time to be alive

Genuine 90s pencil tin with pictures of Keanu, The Simpsons, stress – and The Late Show, of course.

Were you obsessed with The Late Show in the 90s? Depending on how old you were, you either stayed up and watched it, or watched it before you went out on a Saturday night. I was old enough for its M rating, but still in high school. So, when I wasn’t re-watching the tapes throughout the week I spent most of the time adorning my folder, ruler and pencil tins with photos of The Late Show crew (and Keanu Reeves), and collecting TV Week and TV Hits articles about the D-Gen — right until I finished my HSC.

It was about a year ago when I got the chance to finally meet Mick Molloy and Jane Kennedy at their Triple M Long Lunch – where we brought along some of this memorabilia, which I think they found amusing!

The Late Show photos adorning my year 11 folder. Photocopied from the precious originals, of course!
25 years later, our obsession still remains.

Now if only I can find out where my Late Show shirt is… most likely moth-eaten and scrunched up underneath some negatives from the 1993 trip to the Warrumbungles.

Tony Martin’s SIZZLETOWN returning Feb 7

Birds are dumb.

Or so The Pikelet Man believes.

The highly popular late night call in podcast Tony Martin’s SIZZLETOWN is returning to our earbuds February 7, 2019.

Hosted by Tony Martin and under the button-pushing of Matt “Pots N Pans” Dower, SIZZLETOWN takes phone calls from various forms of life, with Martin trying to decipher each call, while Dower supplies the vast library of sound effects (three) and dealing with the dolphin black market.

The thinly veiled satire of Tony’s background in radio will guarantee to give you a decent laugh – whether it is the mysterious bees that appear out of nowhere when a certain word is mentioned, or the mis-adventures of Dion who is an ‘ideas man’, or what sexist stand-up is happening at The Busted Nut comedy store, and random celebrity guests, SIZZLETOWN will definitely have you entertained for 30 minutes of your life every fortnight.

Subscribe to SIZZLETOWN now through the following:

iTunes
Podbean
Spotify

So… what’s it gonna beeeee?

Other links:

PS: If you like what you hear from Season One, do yourself a favour and show the love by voting for them in the Australian Podcast Awards.