Might we see a return of Hey Hey It’s Saturday on our screens?
For those outside Australia, Hey Hey It’s Saturday was a long running variety television programme. It ran for 27 years, debuting on the Nine Network in October 1971 and broadcasting its last episode in November 1999. Its host throughout its entire run was Daryl Somers, who is now the host of the Australian version of Dancing with the Stars on the Seven Network.
There is now talk of reviving Hey Hey It’s Saturday. This article from News.com.au tells us that the Seven Network is looking at bringing back some of the team that made the show a ratings success over so many years.
Apparently they’ve approved funding for a pilot for a new prime-time Saturday night show.
I met Daryl briefly back in May 1994. I had been the MC for around 24 hours of a 30 hour record breaking cycling attempt at Perth’s Superdrome. Ultra-Marathon cyclist, Rod Evans, had broken a couple of world records in the lead up to his 30 hour event and broke a few more over the 30 hour period.
Daryl Somers turned up to take over as MC for the final moments of the event. His presence ensured a good showing on television for Rod Evans and his accomplishments.
All the officials and TV people let Daryl know what was going on. Just before Daryl did his bit I approached him and asked if he was about to use the radio mike which I’d been using. He didn’t know who I was but he told me he would be using the mic. I let him know that it sometimes had the annoying habit of cutting out. “If it does”, I told him, “just thump it”. By the look on his face I could tell that he thought it was strange that some guy he didn’t know should want to give him advice about a microphone and especially that I should suggest thumping it.
In the excitement of the final minutes the microphone suddenly went silent.
Daryl stood there for a second or two then gave the microphone a good hard thump before carrying on. He looked over his shoulder and gave me a smile then called the final record breaking moments.
If Hey Hey is to make a return it’d need some major upgrading and updating but it could be a lot of fun.
Posted by Rodney Olsen
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