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Seven’s first outing as Logies host since 1995 was a ratings success, with an average of 877,000 people in the five metro capital cities tuned in at any point across its near-five-hour telecast.
That made it the second most watched show of Sunday night, behind the same network’s news broadcast (991,000) and ahead of its red carpet coverage (846,000).
Patrick Brammall and Harriet Dyer were also big winners at the 63rd TV Week Logie Awards, with their show Colin from Accounts.Credit: Hanna Lassen/Getty Images
The result was roughly in line with last year, when Nine’s telecast drew an average 885,000 viewers, with 826,000 watching the red carpet arrivals.
That, in turn, was up on the 2019 result, when 799,000 watched the arrivals and 866,000 watched the ceremony. Due to COVID, the Logie Awards were not staged in 2020 or 2021.
In regional markets, another 352,000 people tuned in to Sunday night’s awards ceremony, which was hosted by Sam Pang. That was the first time the broadcast had had a single host since 2011, when Shane Bourne anchored proceedings.
By and large, the return to the master of ceremonies format worked well, with Pang combining cleverly scripted set pieces – including one in which he shared the screen with a roll call of former Logies hosts, including Steve Vizard and Rove McManus (riding exercise bikes in a gym, whose membership was supposedly limited to former Logies hosts who had also hosted their own late-night variety show), Andrew Denton (driving a ride-share vehicle), Shaun Micallef and Wendy Harmer – and off-the-cuff improvisations.
Some of it fell flat, but to his credit, Pang rolled with the punches, making great comedic mileage out of even the failures by repurposing them later in the show.
The same could not be said for Daryl Somers. The triple Gold Logie winner and six-time host of the ceremony took to the stage around 11.30pm, when the show was already at the four-and-a-half-hour mark, for what ought to have been the climax of proceedings, the presentation of the award for most popular personality on Australian television.
Instead, the 71-year-old Dancing With the Stars host attempted to stage a mock auction for the Gold Logie, with close to no buy-in from the seven nominees. At one point the camera caught Tom Gleeson – the upset winner of the Gold in 2019 after the stunt to end all Logies stunts – mouthing words to the effect of “is this supposed to be funny?”
Taking to the stage to accept the Gold Logie, Kruger – who appears on three shows on Seven and had been relentlessly spruiked throughout the broadcast, while voting lines were still open, as a fan favourite – delivered an acceptance speech dripping in hubris.
Noting that she and last year’s winner Hamish Blake, who was again among the nominees in 2023, shared the same agent, she claimed she had asked him (the agent) for whom he had voted. “And he said, ‘Well, Sonia, I think people are a little over Hamish’. I said, ‘No, surely not, he is the odds-on to win’. And he said, ‘No, frankly I am hoping that he will leave the agency so I can concentrate all of my efforts on you, Sonia’.”
As the camera panned to a stunned-looking Blake, she said, “Obviously, I am paraphrasing Mark’s words, he didn’t say that”.
A little later she referenced a mural backstage. “It says hosting is not about what you do, it is about how you make other people feel. And I thought, that is so true. And tonight, you guys, all your support, you have made me feel so good, thank you.”
It was a strangely misjudged finale to a ceremony that had, despite running way too long as usual, largely delivered, in no small part due to Pang’s efforts.
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