Australia Behind Bars

Melissa Doyle is to host this ITV produced look at the impact of Covid-19 on NSW prisons for Nine, according to The Australian. Sarah Abo and Prisoner actress Val Lehman were understood to have also been in the running to host but “the temptation for Nine to rub Seven’s nose in it” appears to have been too great.

This news has brightened my mood.

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Great idea. Glad to see Mel utilised.

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Wow, what a get! Sarah Abo is a rising star via 10 and SBS News. Val would have been a good nod at a Prisoner connection.

Fantastic fantastic fantastic!

Sarah has been with 60 minutes for a few years now.

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Great for Mel of course but it would be even greater for her to land a permanent gig, not just being used as a pawn in the seven vs nine game.

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Yes, @Nicholas. She would have been the easier option for them as she is already on the Nine payroll.

I’d say Mel would be happy with any freelancing roles, also reckon she’d be tied to the production company rather than broadcaster.

Good to see her fronting something on FTA though.

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Yeah, decisions shouldn’t be made on the basis of [Network A] wanting to rub [Network B’s] nose in it under any circumstances. If that was the basis for Nine selecting Mel to front the program, that’s very poor on their behalf

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I don’t disagree but TV networks have been doing this sort of thing for years. At the same time, Mel should not be denied the opportunity to work at Nine just on the basis that she previously worked at Seven. If she is now a freelancer then she can be offered work from anywhere. If Seven don’t want her popping up at the opposition then they should have held onto her.

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That’s what happens in a competitive marketplace. Good luck to her.

Exactly, talent used to be warehoused for this very reason.

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Nine has confirmed to The Daily Telegraph that Mel is hosting the show, but not joining the network as a full-time employee.

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I’m not saying Mel shouldn’t be able to front a Nine program or indeed work for them - she’s entitled to do that as a freelancer. My point is she (or indeed anyone else who’ve left a network) should get a position because she’s/they’re the ‘best’/‘most ideal’ person for it, not due to petty network rivalry BS.

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Agreed.

It’s not hard to imagine people who’ve been loyal to Nine for decades such as Liz Hayes and Tara Brown being particularly annoyed that they were passed over for this position in favour of an ex-Seven Network presenter.

Firstly, that is not known outside idle speculation for which we’ll never truthfully know the answer. Secondly, it doesn’t tangibly matter when it comes to her level as talent, either she wants the job or she doesn’t.

That’s just crap, Hayes has her own show now and Brown is fairly ordinary. If there was a better option, they would’ve gone for it.

This is being produced externally, not surprised they also looked outside the network for a presenter. Mel’s a great get regardless.

I get it, Mel appearing on 9 is big news but some of the speculation is so mindless.

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Let’s remember, Mel is just narrating this series. She’s not visiting the prisons to interview inmates. This move to nine will not define her career. So let’s just keep it in perspective.

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This relies on television being a meritocracy, so it’ll never happen.

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In the UK many of the network stars are almost interchangeable between the main channels. For example, ITVs Holly Willoughby and Bradley Walsh are hosting Take Off (filmed pre-pandemic) on BBC.

The difference though is the Australian TV industry isn’t as mature as the UK’s is when it comes to talent appearing on rival networks

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