ABC1 2014: Drama, drama, drama.

Photo by Matt NettheimDrama dominates ABC1’s slate in 2014 with new dramas Anzac Girls, The Code, Old School, The Broken Shore, Parer’s War, Carlotta, The Gods of Wheat Street, Janet King, more Rake, The Time of Our Lives, The Doctor Blake Mysteries and Jack Irish.

ABC announced its 2014 slate last night in Sydney at an event at Simmer on the Bay. In attendance were Mark Scott, Brendan Dahill, Stuart Menzies, plus commissioning editors, producers and loads of ABC talent. The evening was hosted by go-to guy Lawrence Mooney, with the new Spicks and Specks team, host Josh Earl and team captains Ella Hooper and Adam Richard playing three rounds of the show.

Carlotta herself performed while new ABC2 act the Bondi Hipsters showed their irreverence.

20utoAmongst the other titles, the Working Dog team has its new satire Utopia, Chris Lilley returns with Jonah and there’s more Upper Middle Bogan, The Moodys, Mad as Hell,  and new offerings from Adam Zwar (The Agony of Modern Manners) , Judith Lucy (Judith Lucy is All Woman), and a new series from Hannah Gadsby (Hannah Gadsby’s Oz), The Chaser team has a new project,  We’ll Have to Leave it There. 

Interestingly Adam Hills is only named in conjunction with UK series Adam Hills: The Last Leg.

Director of Television Richard Finlayson spoke again about the iview revamp in December, and promised a major commissioned series will be offered in its entirety as an iview binge opportunity.

13spicksStephanie Brantz and Lawrence Mooney will host the iconic New Year’s Eve Fireworks, live from Sydney Harbour with guests including The Chaser team, Richard Roxburgh, The Moodys and Craig McLachlan. The broadcast will include both the 9pm and midnight firework displays, and music performances by Pete Murray, IOTA and Stonefield.

9oldschProgramming highlights include great new dramas such as Anzac Girls, which tells the story of extraordinary young women who witness the brutality of war; The Code, a tale stretching from Australia’s outback to the cool corridors of power in Canberra; and Old School, starring Bryan Brown and Sam Neill.

Chris Lilley will bring back Jonah Takalua in a new series that sees him in the midst of island life but still experiencing the familiar frustrations of a bored teenage delinquent.

The Working Dog team returns to ABC TV with Utopia, a satirical comedy about the absurdity of government-sponsored schemes; The Chaser team brings us We’ll Have To Leave It There

Highlights from our documentary, factual and arts slates for 2014 include Afghanistan: The Australian War; Brilliant Creatures profiles four Aussies who shook the world; The Flying Miners, the story of a unique Australian work lifestyle; and, filmed in front of a live studio audience, Save Your Life Tonight! puts Australia’s health under the spotlight.

ABC iview continues to be the most popular catch-up service in Australia, and in 2014 the platform will be taken to the next level. To reflect our younger audience’s growing hunger for binge viewing, ABC TV will premiere the entire run of a major new Australian series on iview coinciding with the launch of the first episode on television.

For the first time, iview will premiere two programs created especially for the online service: Fresh Blood, a sketch comedy initiative which will uncover Australia’s brightest young talent, and Wastelander Panda, an epic story of loyalty and betrayal in an environment where no-one can survive alone.

In late 2014, viewers who love watching current programs for free on iview will also be able to revisit their favourite ABC programs from the past with a new pay-to-view on-demand service. In collaboration with ABC Commercial, the ABC library will be opened up to allow viewers instant access to recent and archival programs.

ABC News Breakfast
Art + Soul 2
Asia Pacific Focus
At The Movies
Australian Story
Behind The News
Business Today
Family Confidential – Series 3
Foreign Correspondent
Four Corners
Gardening Australia
Gruen Planet
Jennifer Byrne Presents…
Julia Zemiro’s Home Delivery – Series 2
Kitchen Cabinet – Series 5 (Tbc)
The Business
Media Watch
National Press Club
Shaun Micallef’s Mad As Hell – Series 3
The Book Club
The Checkout – Series 2
Who’s Been Sleeping In My House? – Series 3

Adam Hills: The Last Leg
Call The Midwife – Series 3
Death In Paradise – Series 3
Doc Martin – Series 6
Doctor Who –Season 8
Father Brown – Series 2
Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond
Flying Monsters
Foyle’s War – Series 8
Grand Designs – Series 11
Kevin Mccloud’s Beach Hut
Keys To The Museum With David Attenborough
Last Tango In Halifax – Series 2
Line Of Duty
Midsomer Murders –Season 16
Micromonsters With David Attenborough
Poirot (Final Series)
Qi – Series 12
Rise Of The Animals With David Attenborough
Silent Witness – Series 17
Silk – Series 3
The Accused – Series 2
The Wrong Mans

NB: ABC2, ABC3 and ABC News 24 content will be published separately.


  1. Don’t worry JimboJones Please Like Me has been renewed for a second series. Look you couldn’t pay me to watch it but it rated well for ABC2 and got some good reviews in the U.S. Some people really like it and I have no problem with those people doing so. I’m quite impressed by the announcements. There’s a number of things I’m interested in and it’s much more impressive than the commercial networks. I really think Adam Richard was a mistake but we’ll see.

  2. The Other Adam

    Is Jonah the “other” Chris Lilley series in the works? It’s so disappointing its another series about one character. I was really really looking forward to some new characters after Ja’mie

  3. I’m looking forward to the new season of Rake. Also to Janet King. I am just a handful who enjoyed Crownies, but hopefully this spin-off is better.

    I also cant see Spicks and Specks doing that well. I hope to be proven wrong though.

  4. I;m also interested in the fate of the Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries – have they been killed off. You can’t get much worse in the acting, plots and scripting, but that’s what makes them so much fun!!

  5. I am with you Carine I hope that Serangoon Road gets another series. I think it is great & I would hope that ABC repeat it over summer to give the audience another chance to experience it.
    It would be great to other series come from the HBO Asia/ABC partnership. These shows could be shown not only on HBO Asia & ABC but Australia Network also.

  6. Maev....Sydney

    Thanks DK…a lot a great viewing for next year…for me…
    @ victor….I like The Book Club and The Movie Show…also looking forward to Old School…
    I would suggest if you dont like…dont watch..lots of other channels….and there are always documentaries all over the channels…not just up to the ABC,

  7. How is this “Bigger and Bolder”? It’s the same old faces flogging the same old product. Unfunny comedies (OK, apart from Utopia, which has to be good because it’s from Working Dog), soap-opera dramas, reboots, rehashes, and ripoffs of UK shows.

    Hang on, do my eyes deceive me? There’s no show featuring Josh Thomas. I was under the impression that the ABC Charter had been amended so that Josh had to appear in every single ABC show. Or maybe he’s going to be a guest on all those other shows?

    Prediction: Spicks and Specks will fail to capture the vibe of the original. I think there’s a limit to the amount of Adam Richard the average viewer can withstand in one sitting.

  8. Excellent. I am looking forward to Janet King, Rake, Doctor Blake mysteries, Doc Martin S6, Who’s been sleeping in my house S3, The Moody’s, Upper Middle Boga, Kitchen Cabinet, Grand Designs and many other documentaries. Thanks ABC 🙂 and Thanks for reporting David!

  9. Some interesting looking shows there, but will they be enough to drag viewers away from whichever talent competitions/reality show juggernauts that the commercial networks are planning to inflict upon their audiences?
    Let’s hope so.

  10. Interesting to see these shows after Richard Finlayson’s comments earlier this week that ABC would be going bigger and bolder. He has inherited most of this. It is with the odd exception very middle of the road and business as usual. The documentary slate is very sparse and uninspiring. And do we really want to see Bryan Brown and Sam Neill in Old School which looks like an antipodean copy of New Tricks? I think Richard will really need to shake the ABC if he wants it to rise to the level it should be at.
    PS. I love reading but is there a duller show than The Book Club? A radical, lateral format would be worth exploring. Ditto for The Movie Show…well past its prime.

  11. I’m hoping to hear Miss Fisher gets renewed soon and some word on Serangoon Road. Maybe HBO Asia will be interested in doing a season 2 enough so that ABC1 continues on.

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