How do I join the Illuminati? Do fish feel pain? When can I make a citizen’s arrest? Are other animals ticklish? Is social media addictive? Should we be worried about ancient viruses being unlocked from melting permafrost? Is there a new show on the ABC in 2023 that lets the audience ask questions like this? Is there a new show that will go and find the answers to these questions in an entertaining and thought provoking fashion? There is! Does this show have a name? Not yet, let’s move on. Who’s on it? Chas Licciardello, Kirsten Drysdale, Lawrence Leung, Alex Lee, Cameron James and Louise Wall.
A Mercury Scout production for the ABC. Executive Producers Chas Licciardello and Martin Robertson. Directors Stef Smith and Steve Kirkby. ABC Executive Producer Frances O’Riordan.
The show will now be called WTFAQ?, ABC’s acting director entertainment and specialist Jennifer Collins tells TV Tonight.
Described as a hybrid format with both location and studio elements, this sees the team answer questions submitted by the audience.
“So it might be, ‘Is my Smart TV listening to me?’ for example. The team will go off and research that. There might be trivial questions, but they might be deeply serious questions, interrogated in an entertaining way.”
WTFAQ is on a mission to answer your questions this August.
You ask. We answer.
The new 8-part entertaining and enlightening series WTFAQ (pronounced What The FAQ) answers burning viewer questions from Wednesday 30th August at 9pm on ABC TV and ABC iview.
WTFAQ’s crack team of presenters – Chas Licciardello, Alex Lee, Lawrence Leung, Lou Wall, Cameron James and Kirsten Drysdale – hit the sweet spot where comedy meets inquisition to answer the questions that have sparked curiosity in the minds of our audience for far too long.
They perform scientific experiments and demonstrations, talk to experts, put their bodies on the line and even answer the odd question with a full-blown musical sequence. They’ll go to whatever lengths it takes to find the answers to questions including:
Is it really dangerous to use my phone on the plane?
Do dogs really love their owners?
Is Centrelink’s hold music deliberately annoying?
Are gas stoves bad for your health?
Who comes up with the names for paint colours and why are they so weird?
Why is yawning contagious?
What would a truly representative Federal parliament look like?
Are there any names you legally cannot call your children?
Each episode features 6-7 viewer questions with the WTFAQ presenters going on a journey of discovery to answer each question in an entertaining and engaging way.
TV’s been dumbing down society long enough – it’s time TV became part of the solution.
If you have a question for the team to answer, submit it here
Production credits: A Mercury Scout production for the ABC. Executive Producers Chas Licciardello and Martin Robertson. Directors Stef Smith and Steve Kirkby. ABC Executive Producer Mark Sutton. ABC Head of Entertainment Nick Hayden. ABC Commercial is managing world-wide distribution.
WTFAQ answers the questions you asked us. During episode 1, Chas Licciardello ﬁnds out if it’s really dangerous to use your phone on the plane, or at a petrol bowser; the team do an experiment to see if we really need to keep our tomato sauce in the fridge; and an experiment is set up to discover if Lawrence Leung can perform a superhuman feat of lifting a car to save his baby.
All questions answered in this episode are:
Does feeling cold make you more likely to catch a cold?
What came ﬁrst, the chicken or the egg?
Should you keep your tomato sauce in the fridge?
Is it really dangerous to use my phone on the plane?
Does eating celery burn more calories than you gain from eating it?
Can I lift a car to save my baby?
And another thing… are phones dangerous to use at petrol bowsers?
During episode two, Chas Licciardello crunches the numbers to work out what a truly representative federal Australian parliament would look like; Lou Wall investigates the commonly held belief that tech companies are listening to us through our phones; and Cameron James finds out if his dog really loves him.
During episode three, Alex Lee conducts an experiment to discover if indoor plants really do purify the air, Cameron James tucks into some truly horrific dishes on his quest to find the least edible food you can still eat, and Kirsten Drysdale raps up the debate about gas stoves being bad for our health.
During episode four, Chas Licciardello takes a bath in custard to see if Centerlink’s hold music is deliberately annoying, Alex Lee finds out who makes up the weird names for paint colours and Lawrence Leung goes to great heights to discover why birds can sit safely on powerlines.
If the ABC wants to save money then why don’t they cut these wannabe comedians that seem to pollute our airwaves forever whilst actual talents like Mark Humphries leaves due to budget cuts? They should’ve given him his own show instead of recycling talents like Alex Lee and Chas Licciardello.
During tonight’s episode, Kirsten Drysdale asks if there are any names you cannot legally call your children, Lou Wall and Cameron James get to the bottom of the Toobs conspiracy and guest reporter Mitch McTaggart (from the Back Side of Television) finds out where Summer Bay really is.
Questions in this episode are:
• Are there any names you legally cannot call your children?
• Do sharks sneeze?
• Why is yawning contagious? And can I spread it like a virus to everyone?
• If recorded sound predates motion pictures, why were there silent movies for decades?
• Where is Summer Bay supposed to be?
• How deep can you dig a hole before it gets too deep?
• Are Toobs different from what they used to be … or am I going crazy?
Tonight, Lou Wall gets schooled on the rights and wrongs of the Sovereign Citizens movement, Chas LIcciardello learns first-hand how butterflies remember being caterpillars, and Cam James finds out if holding a gun sideways like they do in the movies affects the trajectory of the bullet.