My friend Natascha Moy, who lives in Sydney Australia, tells us which TV program Australians prefer.
Natascha Moy is a journalist who grew up in South Africa and now resides in Sydney Australia. She produces a radio show where she interviews remarkable people and food personalities.
The battle for TV ratings in Australia’s reality shows is cut throat and real. What makes MKR the Australian ratings winner.
The battle of the kitchen knives is an Australian obsession. We are a nation driven to eat. After all we are currently the second most obese nation in the world. Something we seem to be very proud of. We love to eat and we love to watch people cooking. So the reality cooking show is our weekly lust-have-it item.
My Kitchen Rules or MKR as it is known is by far the most watched and loved reality show in Australia. Sadly not because of the food. MKR manages to cast a group of perfect ‘bogans*, in each series. Basically amateurs with massive personality flaws. We don’t watch the food we watch the human drama unfold and in Australia nothing makes us feel better than a few reality TV stars that we feel superior to. The judges Manu Feildel and Peter Evans are the quintessential nice guys. I have interviewed Manu and I can honestly say he is as dynamic and attractive in real life as he is on TV. Peter Evans on the other hand who I have met many times is controversial with his Paleo ethos and slightly too orange pallor. The ratings on this show averaged 1.193 million viewers across the five capital cities. But currently the more ‘*bogan’ show Married at First Sight is nipping at its heels.
MasterChef produces the largest number of real cooks because it truly is dedicated to food and technique. While it lacks the personal drama of MKR it does engage you on an emotional level. We all have our favourites, our winners and our losers and the challenges set by the producers are real and dramatic. Many of the contestants are now successful restaurateurs, food producers and TV hosts. This show is all class with beautiful sets, clever tasks and well thought out challenges. The cook-off between the 2016 challengers was watched by an average of 1.711 million viewers. I watched with my son who is 11 and it was nail biting and emotional. It also supports the Australian food industry by bringing in many of our loved chefs and cooks, introducing new products and challenging the home cook to ‘give it a go’, a very Australian attitude. MasterChef is responsible for produce selling out of grocery stores and for a nation (good or bad) that is now aware of what good food should look like. It has also turned our nation into a group of food critics, which can be problematic for restaurants that really do know their stuff.
All in all I doubt Australia will stop producing great food shows. I have friends who write recipes for both shows and who are behind the scenes and it’s big money and big business. We love our food, we love drama so long live the cooking show.
(*Bogan is described as an uncouth or unsophisticated person regarded as being of low social status.”some bogans yelled at us from their cars”)