Bluelist Australia is a travel guide put together by Lonely Planet, who asked Australians to nominate their favourite and best-kept secrets.
Hosted by actor Samuel Johnson, this half hour show isn’t as traditional as the popular commercial offerings. For starters they’re only travelling around Oz, so the budget feels decidely more modest. And the presenters aren’t as Colgate perfect (and that’s a good thing) as we’re used to.
They’ve managed to throw in HG Nelson, Susie Porter, Jesse Martin, Marieke Hardy and Robbie Buck.
It also doesn’t feel like there’s quite so much product placement going on. You know that trick, “here we are from some tropical locale which just happens to be a destination of one of our show’s sponsors.”
So it’s all fairly unassuming, and that’s also a good thing.
Lonely Planet had thousands of Aussies logging on to its website to nominate their favourite travel experiences in Oz.
So I must admit I was a little disappointed to see what made the final cut.
The Yarra Valley? Kakadu? Margaret River? Kangaroo Island? Sure they’re all perfectly lovely. But I was hoping for some undiscovered gem. At least HG Nelson in Mildura managed to entertain me.
And the MCG? Sydney Harbour. Yawn. C’mon guys, surprise me.
Marieke Hardy’s urban tour of Canberra also missed its two biggest exports: Politics and Porn.
Don’t get me wrong. Bluelist Australia is a diverting, colloquial, upbeat slice of Australiana.
If we’d had a few more of the closing videos sent in by viewers this would be a more interesting itinerary of hidden secrets.
Bluelist Australia premieres 8:00pm Wed June 6 on SBS.