Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Brits' Etiquette a Bit Hard to Digest

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Brits' Etiquette a Bit Hard to Digest

Article excerpt

I NORMALLY detest reality TV shows but I do admit to a great liking for Come Dine With Me. It's on the Lifestyle channel and I apologise if you haven't seen it and will have no idea what I'm on about.

Here's the premise. Five strangers are brought together, each to host a dinner party over the course of a week where they are expected to show off their much boasted culinary skills.

Each night one of the group hosts while the others eat, drink, argue and judge.

At the end of the night the guests, driving home in the back of a taxi, offer boozy criticisms of their host and then award points on taste and presentation.

After all five have had their turn at hosting, the one with the most points wins a money prize.

The five strangers are a carefully chosen mix of opposites, certain to ignite controversy, arguments and, if we're lucky, a punch up. Of course it's contrived and slightly fake Co but oh, how I like it.

I watched the English version last year with much glee.

The guests were breathtakingly rude, snooping around in the host's bedroom between courses, dancing drunkenly around the table and generally being as obnoxious as they could.

But it was the witty wisecracking of the narrator (actor Dave Lamb, fabulously catty) that made the show so successful and had our own television executives rushing to copy the idea for an Aussie version.

So now I'm into Come Dine With Me Australia and instead of stepping inside narrow English hallways and pokey dining rooms, I'm going inside fabulous Sydney penthouse apartments and big houses in leafy suburbs.

The Australian narrator, while good, is no match for the bitchy Dave Lamb.

He's just too nice.

And too nice also are our dinner guests, which is disappointing, despite them being carefully mismatched to create chaos.

You'd think putting a Bible-reading homophobic woman alongside a lesbian lawyer with an artificially inseminated pregnant partner would make for feisty television, but no. …

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