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Last updated on August 5th, 2017 at 08:12 am
The SMH’s Michael Dwyer previews a series based around the attractive theme of home invasions by bossy pod-people:
What if our planet was under siege by some omnipotent celestial foe but television stations were unable to acquire footage compelling enough to galvanise the required response? That appears to be the inconvenient truth confronting green TV shows.
Our foe is celestial? It seems Dwyer buys into the solar theory of global warming. Good for him!
This year we’ve already seen two well-intentioned environmental awareness shows come and go – or rather we haven’t, judging by the ratings for Eco House Challenge (SBS) and Channel Ten’s Cool Aid: the National Carbon Test.
Now the ABC braves the precarious balance between worthy and watchable with a six-part domestic challenge series titled – with an admirable lunge for some of that hot sci-fi, CSI intrigue – Carbon Cops.
Run for your lives, carbon scum!
Our real-life Mulder and Scully are scientists Sean Fitzgerald and Lish Fejer, two passionate believers in the unseen perils of climate change, dedicated to enlightening a sceptical and passive populace.
This can’t possibly fail.
Each week they don their orange monogrammed shirts to cordon off the toxic home of an Australian family. They arrive with energy-auditing gadgetry, sobering statistics and lips and eyebrows curled in withering admonishment. They rate these people, shame them, then challenge them to do better.
Well, first they could smash all Sean and Lish’s television cameras and sound equipment. That’d cut carbon outputs by heaps, I bet.
“One of the things I loved was when you tell them the audit result,” says Carbon Constable Fitzgerald, whose daytime cover is head of the science department at Geelong’s Oberon High School. “Most of them were expecting to come off pretty well but they were all genuinely, absolutely floored. They can’t believe it. It’s a great moment.”
I’d love them to audit Live Earth.
How do you think the Barries rate in episode one? Let’s just say that between their squillion perma-blazing light bulbs, Dad’s overseas business travel, their swimming pool and boat, their shame is acute.
Scroll to UPDATE XXXVI; business travel is exempt! These people don’t even know the rules.
Taken together, the case studies are not about individual scapegoats as much as an indictment of Western affluence, negligence and self-obsession.
How will we tell it apart from usual ABC programming?