1. It's won awards from prestigious judges. "This is an (Australian Film Institute)-award winning comedy made by the winner of the Tropfest short film festival," she said. Speaking as an American, I derive comfort in knowing we are not alone. It's not just our film critics who have no taste.
2. It's in the right time slot. "We know that it will not be to everyone's tastes, but it's in the appropriate timeslot, with the appropriate rating and comes with the appropriate warnings." This woman should enter politics. It isn't -- and she knows it isn't -- an appropriate timeslot. Rather, it's the least inappropriate timeslot. And even with appropriate ratings and warnings, a display of artistic feces remains artistic feces.
3. This is about Australian patriotism. "We want to tell Australian stories with an Australian voice. We want to encourage local talent." This came in response to several Aussies who complained that it's cheaper for their local TV executives to pick up the smutty American sitcom "Two and a Half Men," but then the sex jokes come with a different accent.
4. It's a bargain for taxpayers. "The money that has been invested by the state and federal government bodies is in no way outlandish. 'Wilfred' would cost far less to make than your average drama." At least that part sounds correct. How much money would it cost to sit in a living room in a dog suit, smoke a joint and swear your face off?
A TV critic offered one more predictably lame point:
5. "Thankfully Screen Australia recognizes that not everybody wants their comedy safe and predictable."
That line often emerges from critics who really are looking for shock comedy, for plot twists that inspire gasps and, hopefully, indigestion and nausea. That's certainly true of their Australian SBS network that told the "Wilfred' makers to "Go as far as you like -- the more bent, the better." The "artists" in charge found that opinion to be "a great relief and really helped us flex our muscles as writers."
If that sounds a lot like Hollywood, it is. The show's manufacturer, Renegade Films, is currently in negotiations to sell the format of this doggy-comedy for an American version.
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