- TV in Australia (Once More)
Unlike Japan, there are a lot of American and British programs on TV in Australia.
Of course, they show movies but also other genres of programs like drama series, reality TV programs, and quiz shows.
There are quite a lot fewer TV stars in Australia as a proportion of the population, which I guess might make it harder to produce variety shows and the like. Australians seem to prefer programs where unknown individuals test their cooking skills, and reality TV shows with names that include “Bachelor” or “Survivor.”
While audience ratings in Japan are highest during “Golden Time,” between 7 and about 10 pm, Australians tend to rise early and there are fewer people still awake by 10, so the popular shows end at about 8:30 or 9 pm at the latest.
And there is another big difference to Australia. In Japan it’s the popular drama series that get the highest audience ratings, but the shows that account for the top ratings in Australia are just about all sports shows, with the highest ratings going to grand final matches in the Australian Football League (AFL) or the National Rugby League (NRL), as well as the Australian Open [tennis] and cricket matches. Sometimes contest shows, where unknown individuals compete using their cooking or singing skills, break into the top ratings, but a drama series has never once taken the highest spot.
And now, the commercials.
In Japan it’s popular stars and TV personalities who represent the face of a company and appear in their commercials, but in Australia, it’s someone without a particularly high profile, like a model or individual from a TV personality agency, who appears in the TV commercials. You do get famous sportspeople and TV personalities appearing in commercials, but conversely, commercials like that are quite rare.
Plus, something you almost never get in Japan, there are a lot of bookmaker commercials in Australia about gambling on horse races and sports matches. Recently the problem has emerged of there being too many commercials like that, and the government has come to restrict the length of those commercials and when they can be aired.
Some commercials have quite amusing, quirky content, including one of my favorites.
“A family are about to head off from home on a leisure-time trip, but the mum and dad drive off by themselves, having forgotten to make sure their son is in the back seat. Left behind, the son watches the car drive off with a look of confusion on his face. After a while, sitting in the passenger seat, the mother looks as though she has realized they have left him behind and lets out an ‘Oh! Goodness!’
But then she says just this,
‘It’s mum’s birthday!’
Then she orders flowers online.”
The aim is to make you interject, “You didn’t mean that did you?”
But this commercial for a florist finishes off properly with the parents going back and picking up their son. LOL
Sometimes you see a commercial for a local business with an original theme song and the employees and the boss themselves making an appearance. Australia still has the sort of commercials that used to be made in Japan quite a while ago, ones that use a song unchanged from the 1980s.
So, you can see there are very distinct differences between Japan and Australia in terms of the genres of the popular programs and the amount of money spent on commercials.
Lately more and more people have been tuning out from TV, so I’m not sure if the TV industry will continue to do very well, but if any shows with completely different ideas to Japan emerge, I would like to write about them here.