Live TV Taping Live Blog (Not Quite)


There is a new (ish) show on TV in New Zealand – “Would I Lie to You?
The concept of the show is pretty simple, two teams of three “compete” in telling stories and guessing if they are the truth or lies. Basically it is designed to have funny people tell interesting and amusing stories – the guessing, the points, they aren't even vaguely relevant to anything.
Essentially it is 7-days (another show on TV3), but not about news. Oh, and not as good.


Now, I am not necessarily saying the show is bad – I am just saying that when compared to a similar show it isn’t as good.  But, maybe that isn’t fair, as 7-days is a really good show – but at the same time, isn’t it totally fair because the show is a direct copy?


Either way, I know what the problem is - the people on 7-days are comedians!


See, the point of both shows is to be funny, and the best people to be funny are comedians (or idiots I guess, but that is maybe a different story). So, the fact '7-days' consists of people who for the most part are professional comedians, while 'Would I Lie to You?' consists of, ah, random B-listers, is a very key reason 7-days instantly feels like a better show.


But, rather than just judge either show on the 30 minutes you see on TV each week, I decided to take it a step further and go and watch both shows get taped live, and as it turns out seeing a show like this live makes them significantly better.
So, here is my take on a live taping of 'Would I Lie to You' ('7-Days' to come a little later)


Would I Lie to You?
Background:
I had only seen one episode of this show previously, and though I didn't think it was bad, I wasn't convinced I would be tuning in every week (since then, I haven't watch any episodes, but I am considering catching up on demand). There were a few laughs, but no one seemed to have enough personality to carry any part of the show themselves when things got dull. In fairness, this was the first episode of the show ever - so things can only go up. 


The Taping:
Due to being an incredibly on to it person (not really) I was going to see this show get taped at 10am on a Saturday morning - not exactly a perfect time to enjoy a show like this (read: chances are an audience isn't going to have many drinks at 10 in the morning, which means they will only laugh when things are actually funny). 

9:45 am - We arrived at the studio, and wanting to make the most of the show (and be a good audience member) my first stop is the bar. The email I received said it was a cash bar and I figured it would be rude not to get in the right frame of mind for the show. 

9:46 am - The guy standing behind the bar, next to the fridge full of beer, just informed me that they are not allowed to server alcohol. Apparently they are only licensed for Thursdays (when they tape 7-Days), and as today is a Saturday I am out of luck.

9:55 am - After standing there for a few minutes staring at the bar guy, really confused about what he had just told me and trying to figure out if it was a joke my friends pull me away - apparently this is a sober affair, that does not really bode well for my review of the show. 

10:05 am - We are almost ready to go into the studio, yet I haven't stopped bitching to the people I am with about how ridiculous this situation is. I am really confused, it doesn't make sense. I am seriously considering shooting to a bar that is nearby and having drinks by myself. 

10:10 am - We are in and seated. We have been told to turn off our phones, so at this point I am basically just going from memory of the event - which is really good because I am sober. However, it is also not good, because nothing that memorable happened.
The warm up guy was on the bus with us. I have seen him before (in the same situation), and weirdly he is telling the exact same jokes as the first time I saw a live show.
There is nothing wrong with the jokes, they are mostly alright, it is just weird to be seeing them again. 

10:15 am - The host and two panels have come in - they are all drinking. This starts me complaining to my friends once more, they seem to have stopped caring - they may have never cared. 

10:17 am - The host asks the audience if any of us have drinks, or have had drinks yet this morning. The audience doesn't make any noise. He seems highly disappointed, but then continues his own drink and all seems right to him.
Meanwhile I am wildly gesturing to my friends in frustration - how is this fair, he specifically expects us to be drinking, and now thinks less of us because we aren't, and it is all because we are not allowed. I am probably getting too worked up at this point, but I can't stop myself. 

Up until 11:16 am - Not a lot seemed to happen in the first half of the show, but I did laugh quite a bit, and it must have been actually funny because of the alcohol issue I am not bringing up.
Looking at the teams there are two people I have never heard of before - one of them, Matt Heath, is actually really funny. He is totally winning in my book (and after searching for him now it turns out I had heard of him and did already like him). 

11:17 am - It is the half time interval - normally this would involve everyone pushing to get outside so they can pee, but because no one has had a drink for the first half we all just kind of walk out of the studio and stand around. It is awkward.
Just in case I go and check the bar again, maybe I will get lucky. 

11:18 am - I win! He has decided he is allowed to serve beers, I buy four and walk back to my group - no one else really wanted a beer, I tell them it isn't a problem as I hadn't ordered them any. 

11:22 am - We are heading back into the studio, no one else in the whole audience had even considered going to the bar, even after seeing me do so (and the bartender announcing they are now actually open). I have decided I am the best person in the audience. 

11:25 am - One of the panellists agrees that I am awesome, she is also drinking beers, but because she is on camera she has to keep pouring it into a mug.
That is an important message for all viewers - all of these people are drinking heavily as you watch them, and they are doing it first thing in the morning. The reality is shattered for me, so it must be shattered for you too. 

Up to 1:13pm - The second half raced by. I don't really remember it being great, and not because of the drinking. It was funny though, I did laugh - but it just isn't a show that translates into me repeating something from it and you laughing along. It isn't really jokes so much.


Overall I had a good time and think the show, live, is quite good. The problem clearly seems to be a lack of comedians on the panels, as the couple of people who are professional funny people were, not surprisingly funny. If you get a chance, I would go along to a live show (not that I will share how you get this chance). Also, I think they probably should get better at it over time with more shows taped - I will check back and see.


Tune in next time for 7-Days Live (and for that one I didn't turn off my phone, so get a much better feel for it)