“You don’t have to be sick to get a new garden on my show,” Jamie Durie said of The Outdoor Room.
It was a comment directed at Nine’s Domestic Blitz, which had a special on Lauren Huxley and her family, in the publicity lead up to his own launch. It was probably a throw away line, but it’s enough to have drawn a retort from Nine’s Scott Cam, who worked with Durie for years on Backyard Blitz.
Cam told 2UE’s Steve Price that Durie’s comments were “very misguided and frankly offensive. What I think he’s forgetting is Lauren Huxley wasn’t sick.
“She was a beautiful young girl, walking down the street and attacked by a monster and left to die.
“For him to say you don’t have to be sick to get on his show offended a lot of people. I certainly was disappointed in that situation.”
But hang on a minute….. aren’t both comments something of a moot point? Both shows thrive on the same premise: finding ‘worthy’ subjects upon which to bestow a makeover and depart as heroes?
Even if Domestic Blitz has had ‘ill’ subjects, The Outdoor Room is equally as ‘guilty’ of digging up warm-hearted candidates too. On Sunday it was an elderly couple approaching their 50th anniversary. Another episode has a young couple with twin babies. In all of these shows, it’s always virtuous subjects. When was the last time we saw anyone single, non-Anglo Saxon, or gay? What about a divorced father, a used car salesman, a parking inspector, or -heaven forbid- somebody who actually lives in rural Australia getting a guernsey on these shows? They’re like hen’s teeth….
I just don’t get how these blokes can be splitting straws over who is the more deserving to get a makeover.
And while we’re at it, it’s never clearly conveyed in the story telling of this genre how people are chosen in the first place. The Outdoor Room does have an application form on its website. Domestic Blitz doesn’t.
If you’ve ever put your hand up for one of these shows, TV Tonight would be very interested to know if you ever heard anything back.