Follow TV Tropes


Series / Good News Week

Go To

"Do you ever get the feeling that we're doing, like, a curiosity show on acid?"

Good News Week is an Australian Panel Show focused on analysing and mocking current events and those weird little stories. It's hosted by Paul McDermott, and had Mikey Robins and Julie McCrossin as regular team captains. It ran from 1996 to 2000 every Friday, in addition to a spin-off, Good News Weekend on Saturdays, including sketches from the Sandman, Flacco and Keith the Moravian Swear Bear.

In 2008, it was revived, with Claire Hooper replacing Julie McCrossin, and ran in this form until early 2011. After a conspicuously long absence, it returned in September in the form of Good News World, a show fairly accurately self-described as a cross between The Daily Show and Saturday Night Live.

This series provides examples of:

  • A Good Name for a Rock Band - "Dinosaur Vagina". As Tom Gleeson pointed out, however, if they were popular, people would call them "D-Vag", which sounds like a sizing.
    • Don't forget "The Munch Factor".
  • Actually a Good Idea: Paul McDermott, in reference to the Australian Government discussing the possibility of sending the army in to deal with a dock strike:
    "No, no, no. You send the navy to deal with a dock strike. You send the army in for a coal miners' strike, and you send the air force in for a pilots' strike. Otherwise the navy, army and air force get into a big demarcation dispute and go out on strike, and the government has to send in the wharfies to defend us against invasion. Which isn't a bad idea — when those wharfies cover the coastline, nothing gets ashore!
  • Aside Glance - Paul often throws these after he's said something odd.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other - Paul & Mikey. All the proof you need takes place during this clip, as well as a completely gratuitous Maggie Tabberer impression.
  • Berserk Button - Several, but most prominently is one for Paul when members of the audience answer questions without prompting or otherwise interrupt the show by talking.
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed - Subverted.
    Tom Gleeson: I gotta say, it's weird hearing an American complain that something is too big.
    Michael Kosta:' I've always had that problem, Tom.
  • Black Comedy - Runs on it. Especially in the case of Mikey, and especially when Akmal Saleh is on.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer - Claire and Mikey come off as this. Despite their various idiosyncrasies, they both know a fair bit about current affairs.
    • Mikey proved his competence in the game Political Mastermind, which actually had serious questions about Australian political history. He celebrated getting the first question (on the Melbourne Agreement) correct by dancing while using his fingers to make it look like his nipples were sticking out.
  • Buttmonkey - Paul usually gets the short end of the stick.
    • Some of the regular guests tend to cop it a fair bit, especially Fiona O'Loughlin, Josh Thomas (for being a member of Generation Y), and Akmal Saleh.
      Paul, to Akmal: Are you still here?
    • At one point Josh, representing Generation Y, was put in the bin. Mikey gave him a hug.
  • The Cast Showoff - Paul McDermott can sing. This frequently comes up.
    • And even though Paul's singing kicks ass, every panelist seems to hate it.
      Mikey: I love every show where you don't sing.
    • Every episode has a member of each team singing a popular song as a clue for a game. Sometimes you have John Farnham, sometimes you have Colin Lane (though he does give it a good go).
  • Catchphrase: Paul has several, though the most common is usually 'They do have it, ladies and gentlemen!'
    • Another he uses quite often is some variation of "you're close" when referring to contestants incorrect answers, even if they're ludicrously bad.
  • Channel Hop - Originally ran on The ABC from 1996 to 1998, then moved to Network Ten in 1999.
  • Cloudcuckoolander - Claire has a bizarre sense of logic. She once drew a connection between the fact that a person farts 15 times a day and the fact that the average person laughs 14 times a day.
  • The Cover Changes the Meaning - During the 2008 season finale, Paul performed a cover of "I Kissed A Girl" by Katy Perry, changing the tone and making it completely AWESOME! It can be found here.
  • Couch Gag - Photographs from the recent news with humourous headlines are shown during the opening sequence.
    • The 7 Days in 7 Seconds explanation from Paul with each of the pictures obscuring his face in some strange way, forcing him to move around as he talks. The panelists sometimes comment on this as well.
    Mikey: It looks like you're wearing a news burqa.
  • Deadpan Snarker - Paul. There is always one guest who'll turn out to be one of these, with the most unexpected being Dr Chris Brown of Bondi Vet fame.
    • Don't forget ex-Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.
      • Ex-ex Prime Minister?
  • Death as Comedy - The premise of the Buzzers Of Death segment.
  • Dirty Old Man - Despite not being that old, Mikey Robins is definitely this.
    Mikey: Did we have to cut to me after that story?
    • Subverted when he threw Lady Gaga into the bin for not wearing pants and for having the most famous cameltoe in music.
      Claire: You are the last person I would expect to complain about a lady not wearing pants!
    • Subverted again when Mikey was the only one to totally miss what the phrase 'bench fat' means, thinking it meant when a fat chef lets his belly rest on the bench. It means when a chef gets an erection from standing too close to the bench.
  • The Ditz - Claire frequently subverts this with a clever remark, between bouts of actual ditziness.
  • Do Wrong, Right - In an episode that aired the week after ex-Prime Minister John Howard had a shoe thrown at him on live television, Mikey talked about the event, saying that after the event had occurred, he had never been so ashamed of being an Australian... because it was the worst bloody shot he'd ever seen!
  • invokedDude, Not Funny!: Paul had this reaction to himself when he almost did an impression of Stephen Hawking.
  • Enforced Plug - Much cross-promotion for Channel 10 shows, including guest appearances by Jensen Ackles and Susan Flannery in the first two episodes. The former was lampshaded by Craig Reucassel who walked off the stage declaring that he didn't want to be part of this Channel 10 cross-promotion.
  • Even Paul Has Standards: In one game of Hot Spot:
    Mikey: *walks onto the spot* Paul, say it again?
    Paul: If a groupie said she'd do anything for you, what would you ask her to do?
    Mikey: My wife.
    Paul: Get off the yellow dot!
  • Favors for the Sexy - Female guests can sometimes score extra points or peeks at Paul's answer card by flirting with him. Some guests learnt to exploit this, especially Amanda Palmer.
  • Foreshadowing - The 2010 finale involved Mikey paying out Paul's musical performance of Fleetwood Mac's "Tusk" because all it had was a guy playing the piano when the film clip had a marching band. Cue a marching band appearing on stage for the second performance.
  • From Special to Series - Sort of. Ten originally planned a one-off reunion special in 2008, only to have it turn into a full series as a result of the Writer's Union of America strike.
  • Fun with Acronyms
    Mikey: Her Majesty's Space Agency - Hamspa. I like it.
  • Hurricane of Puns - Paul McDermott's main shtick.
    Paul: A brothel next to McDonald's, I'm loving it. Finally, you'll be able to have a Happy Meal with a happy ending. And think of the impression you'll make when you walk in with your Quarter Pounder in your hands. (standing ovation from Colin Lane)
  • Hypocritical Humour - Mikey always mocks someone for looking ridiculous while wearing one of his hats.
    • Paul chastised Jeff Green for making a dirty joke early in one episode. Five minutes later he said that a gentlemen should never wipe his dick on the curtain. Mikey called him on it.
    • Paul's infamous rant against Sol Trujillo was one of these. Honest.
    Paul: Former Telstra boss Sol Trujillo has lashed out at Australia, calling us 'racist' and 'backward.' *Beat* At least, I think that's what he said. I couldn't tell with that outrageous accent.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun
    Mikey: Osama Bin Liners: You can never find them!
  • In the Style of - Songs as Strange But True clues will sometimes be this. Andrew O'Neill did a cover of "Highway to Hell" as a steampunk song.
  • Lady Drunk - Fiona O'Loughlin. Subverted as she is now (if you believe her) Off the Wagon. Gets brought up every time she appears on the show. Especially by Tom Gleeson.
    • Well, it's either her being an alcoholic or her being Catholic. One or the other, doesn't matter which.
  • Lame Comeback
    Mikey: Oh, stick your head up a... fuck off.
    Ross Noble: Stick your head up a fuck off? It's like Oscar Wilde was in the room.
  • The Magazine Rule: An occasional round was 'Magazine Mastermind', where two celebrities would be given a obscure magazine to study and then be quizzed on its contents. A particular favourite was Bacon Busters, a magazine for people who go bow hunting for feral pigs.
  • No OSHA Compliance: How the fuck does this show get away with all the shit they pull?
  • "Not Making This Up" Disclaimer - Often, Paul needs to point out that they aren't joking about a particular aspect of a story.
  • Off the Rails - The poster child. Paul never manages to keep control of the game. Tangents, Running Gags, and severe Black Comedy always end up derailing games.
    Mikey: You've lost control of the show!
    • This is often acknowledged by Paul, to the point that when a question is answered straight away, he gets annoyed.
    • A quick example: Paul once tried to make a joke based upon the chant, "Aussie Aussie Aussie! Oi oi oi!" and the audience point-blank refused to let him just get on with the joke, joining in the chant whenever he tried to make it. He was quite frustrated.
    • Another was the episode when Ross Noble got hold of the cigarette hat during Strange But True, frequently making smoke come out from under the desk, his nose, his pants; the whole episode dragged on about half-an-hour past broadcast time because of his antics.
      Paul: Supernatural's not on tonight, kiddies!
      • Ross Noble, again, and his foam cannon during the 2010 premiere. He was having so much fun spraying foam all over the set and most of the other panellists that he made the show run over time, something he repeatedly asked Paul not to do as his own show was scheduled for 10:00 on-the-dot.
      • Good luck keeping the show on track if you put Ross Noble and Akmal Saleh together.
    • During an episode where they were in Melbourne during the Comedy Festival, Fiona O'Loughlin had been chasing Josh Thomas (they were on opposing teams) for some stupid comment he had made, so they were running around the stage, accompanied by chasing music. You think that was it right? Tom Gleeson does the exact same thing later, except chasing Josh through the pathway into the audience, across the rails and up on the balcony. Subsequently, Paul gave them both 100 points for that fantastically hilarious display. Makes me wonder if Paul had given up at that point. (The whole saga is viewable here.)
      Paul: I tell you what, it's certainly fucked the show.
  • Only Sane Man - Mikey often comes off as this, surprisingly.
  • Panel Show
  • Precision F-Strike - In one episode during the Hot Spot round, Paul asked the question 'What's the best thing about being soft and weak?'
    Josh Thomas: *walks up to the dot*
    Jimeoin *calling out*: It's not sticking into your back!
    Josh: *walks off, audience laughs, walks back* I'd just like to say that-
    Audience: *laughs*
    Josh: I'd just like to say that, when you asked 'What's the best thing about being soft and weak?', I saw a lot of people's eyes turn towards me. *audience laughs* Fuck you!
  • Promoted Fangirl - Claire was a huge fan of the show during its first run. Now she's a team captain!
    • Hamish and Andy indicated that they were fans of the show when they were guests.
  • The Points Mean Nothing - While the show does keep track of the points, they can be handed out like candy or taken away like... candy. On one occasion, Paul won.
    • Paul won an episode back in '97. I'm certain that the audience came close to winning a couple of times as well.
    • Some of the games don't even have points given or taken away, like a game in which the cast simply talk about whatever news story is annoying them that week, in which they metaphorically put the story in the bin.
  • Rapid-Fire Comedy - Get one or two performers going, and the whole lot will jump on it.
  • Real Song Theme Tune - Hedgehoppers Anonymous' "It's Good News Week".
  • Running Gag: "That used to be your drag name!"
    • Mikey in the ridiculous costumes, up to and including a keg of beer that spouted foam, a hot water bottle that gave off steam, and an aeroplane that had propellers that spun.
    • Several jokes tend to get thrown at regular guests: Paul's height, Josh Thomas and his wimpiness, Tom Gleeson's baldness and red hair, Akmal Saleh's inability to focus or stop talking, Fiona O'Loughlin's Catholicism and former alcoholism, etc.
  • Satire/Parody/Pastiche - Definite satire. The name of the Dirty Sexy Fast Money game was changed to Kevin Rudd's Fast Money in 'honour' of the good PM's stimulus package.
  • Seinfeldian Conversation - Common. One episode had the cast discussing technique in shaking hands.
  • Serial Escalation: Mark Watson called Ricky Ponting a cunt, which was about the only time a word got censored on Good News Week. That's right, they censored a word on Good News Week.
    • Mikey and Wil Andersen, both men with incredibly filthy mouths, pointed out how bad the language was... before conceding that Mark was right.
      • Made all the funnier when an audience member asked Paul what it meant, and he very bluntly replied that it was a vagina.
  • Shoot the Television: Sammy J did it in a sketch on World. After installing a digital TV and discovering the programs are just as crap as regular television, he shoots the set (in a callback to an earlier joke about Elvis Presley) to demonstrate the only power the average viewer has over television.
  • Sophisticated as Hell
    Mikey: A visual expert. Or as we call it: A bloke who knows stuff about looking at shit.
    • There was another example with Corinne Grant, who was acting the part of Julia Gillard, while Peter Berner was playing Tony Abbott.
    Corinne: With all due respect, Mr Abbott, you're a dickhead.
  • Sound Proof Booth - Cheerfully parodied. Despite the insisting of Paul McDermott and the elaborate fanfare, the sound-proof booths used in the show are anything but.
    Josh Thomas: I don't know why you think yelling 'it's a soundproof booth' will help me if I can't hear you.
  • Spiritual Successor - After its first cancellation, a show called The Glass House with a suspiciously familiar format showed up on the ABC...
    • It's also a successor to The Sideshow With Paul McDermott.
  • Strip Poker - Sammy J finds himself on the losing end of a game he started in an attempt to find out who was inside a Wilderness Society possum suit on a Good News World sketch. (It Makes Sense in Context. Kinda.)
  • Take That! - Usually followed by Paul saying "Oh, you can't say that!" Inevitably, he's the one to make the comment.
  • A Tankard of Moose Urine - See Tastes Like Feet below.
  • Tastes Like Feet - In one episode, Paul commented that Fosters tastes like "watered down horse piss", and then found himself wondering how he knew that.
  • Toyota Tripwire - Magda Szubanski stirred up a hornet's nest by suggesting that drivers should deliberately do this to cyclists.
  • Trash the Set - The 2010 season premiere featured a brand new light feature on the main stage, which apparently cost a fair amount of money and the producers didn't want it to get messy. It was subsequently trashed by Ross Noble and the aforementioned foam cannon.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds - Paul and Mikey continually make jabs at each other, all the while bordering on With Friends Like These....
    Mikey, seconds before the Ho Yay moment mentioned on the YMMV page: Touch me again and I'll kill you.
  • Writer on Board - Paul will usually throw in a political statement regarding a story. He once lampshaded it when everyone else was dissecting a story politically:
    Paul: You people must be so much fun at parties. Imagine playing Monopoly - "This wouldn't happen in a socialist country!"
  • Un-Cancelled - Axed by Channel 10 in 2000 (and finished off with a grand finale), but brought back in 2008 after the aforementioned writers' strike forced many of the network's imported programs out of production. Then it was Recancelled in 2012, likely due to being associated with the poorly rated spin-off Good News World, where it was sent off with another Grand Finale.
  • You Bastard! - Paul will chastise the audience for laughing at the wronger jokes made. Incidentally, he has written and sang a song called 'I Fuck Dogs'. Just so you know.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Good News World


GNW - Stick your head up a...

"It's as if Oscar Wilde was in the room."
One of Good News Week's segments involved the teams getting three clues linked to an obscure news story. This always results in Mikey Robbins wearing a ridiculous headpiece. LANGUAGE WARNING

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / LameComeback

Media sources: