Great Debate (won’t) tackle MasterChef finale

Anyone who wants to be voted in as Prime Minister at the coming election needs to show they are in touch with the public.

So whose idea was it to propose a Great Debate between Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott this Sunday night?

The thing is expected to go up against the MasterChef finale!


AAP says it is likely to be the first and only leaders’ debate of the 2010 election despite a call from Mr Abbott for three debates.

Julia Gillard told ABC, “I can understand the fascination with cooking and eating, so I know many Australians will watch that show, but I think Australians still pay some regard to the debate and to the election campaign and what’s said in it.”

Not when we have the biggest TV show of the year we won’t.

If it airs on Nine and / or ABC it will be good news for them, against the reality juggernaut.

Presuming this event is over by 9pm, it shouldn’t impact majorly on MasterChef’s figures. TEN has coded the show into two titles, with The Winner Announced to air from 9pm – 9:30pm, which is where it will attract its whopping figures. Even Kylie should have finished singing on Seven by then too.

But maybe Gillard and Abbott should square off on either side of a hotplate, with Matt Preston and a Mystery Box in between them. It would get more people watching than this idea.

Update: Ben Fordham on NineMSN says: “The backroom boys of the ALP have ruled out 7:30pm Sunday night. It may be printed in the TV guide, but it’s not going to happen. They’re trying to move the debate forward to 6:30pm, but even that doesn’t solve the problem because it’s supposed to run 90 minutes. Another option is Monday night. They’re trying to sort it out right now.”

The Debate will now air at 6:30 Sunday for one hour with David Speers as adjudicator.


  1. Can’t vote on your poll as I will be watching both the Debate and MasterChef … because as you have updated they are on at different times!!

  2. Secret Squïrrel

    @pete: The election campaign is not being “put on hold”, they have just decided to have a debate earlier than initially scheduled – a sensible and responsible thing to do if they wish to maximise their audience.

    As for this sort thing happening “only in Australia”, it was only six months ago that President Obama chose to hold his State of the Union address on 26 January instead of 2 February, so as to avoid clashing with the final of Lost. Robert Gibbs’ (press secretary) exact words were “I don’t foresee a scenario in which millions of people who hope to finally get some conclusion with Lost are preempted by the president”. (He obviously hadn’t seen the final otherwise he would have said “…get some confusion…”).

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