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Category — Junior Masterchef

Reality TV Shows Nominated (or not nominated!) for the 2012 Logies

The nominations for the 54th Annual Logie Awards were announced this afternoon, with many Aussie reality shows not making the cut into the small five-contender field of Most Popular Reality Program.

In the running is the award’s reigning champion and two-time winner, MasterChef Australia (Network Ten). But it’s not the only cooking show in the mix, with Channel Seven’s rival program My Kitchen Rules is also vying for the title.

Seven has the most nominees in field, with Beauty and the Geek Australia and The X Factor Australia also making the cut. And in the final slot to round off the nominees is The Block from the Nine Network.

If I had to predict the winner out of this bunch, my money would definitely be on either MasterChef or My Kitchen Rules! Seeing the popular of MKR at the moment does make me question what faith I have in Ten’s cooking series, but I will back Matt, George and Gary just for another year! Sure, the quality of the show has declined since the brilliant first season, but I still think it has the upperhand over MKR for the loyal fan base that it has.

But I do wonder how many votes were pulled away in favour for Junior MasterChef, even if the kids version of the show failed to make the top 5 list. In the end, I think people would have voted for MC because it really got the reality genre back where it belonged: at the top! However, MKR likely to take the crown in next year’s race. The show keeps getting better and better.

Now, back to the other nominees. I haven’t seen much of Beauty and The Geek Australia and The Block last year, but I don’t think neither have the support to win.

Same goes for The X Factor Australia, which I did watch religiously last year! It was too good to say no with Mel B and Natalie Bassingthwaighte rounding off an amazing panel of judges. It’s a singing show, so the mentors should be performers and not radio hosts! Though I must admit, in order to watch it, I had to give up on The Renovators. I would’ve stuck with Ten’s design show otherwise, but it was getting to a point that things weren’t moving quick enough. And surely, despite realityravings readers voting it the number one reality show in a recent poll, it failed in the ratings and hasn’t landed any Logie nominations. I don’t think there was much support by Ten in the Logie contenders submissions stage to begin with. No presenter from the show was put forward for Most Popular Television Presenter.

So it’s the five nominees for the category are: Beauty and the Geek AustraliaThe BlockMasterChef AustraliaMy Kitchen Rules and The X Factor Australia. I’m really not surprised by this list, but I must say this category is definitely one of the most competitive. We’re currently in a television landscape that sees reality shows doing generally better than Aussie dramas.

Two programs that have been consistently nominated in the last few years but dropped out of the field this year are The Biggest Loser and Dancing with the Stars. As a big supporter of last season’s families edition of Loser, I am upset that it hasn’t been included. It’s actually the show that I voted for! (Didn’t go for MasterChef because I knew it would have enough votes). On the other hand, I don’t watch Dancing with the Stars and it’s popularity has slightly dwindled over the last few years. It still rates considerably well, but struggles to receive the same buzz that it use to.

The good news for Loser fans is that trainer Tiffiny Hall is up for Most Popular New Female Talent! She’s unlikely to win being up against Underbelly‘s Anna McGahan and Chelsie Preston Crayford, Melissa Bergland from Winners & Losers and Demi Harman from Home and Away. But it’s lovely to see her nominated as she brought a different air to the program and livened it up! Realityraver seems to disagree with me about Tiffiny, so maybe she could chime in in the comments?

Realityraver’s Logie pick, The Amazing Race Australia also failed to land a nomination.

Also, not appearing this year is The Farmer Wants A Wife, hosted by Natalie Gruzlewski, who actually shared hosting duties with Bondi Vet‘s Chris Brown at the Logies nominations party in Sydney this afternoon. I’ll only consider voting for the dating show if we start seeing some gay farmers.

From the Nine shows, it was clear The Block would come out as their strongest contender. But some may be disappointed at the omission of The Celebrity Apprentice Australia, which exceeded expectations and really delivered the goods by the end, with comedienne Julia Morris taking about the winning title. You can catch Julia as a presenter at the Logies when the awards special airs on April 15.

Of course, you might not be able to catch it live if you’re watching Dancing with the Stars or MasterChef instead! Seven, Nine and Ten are going all out to win ratings on the Sunday night. If last year’s ratings is any indication, MC has the upper hand in the TV battle, as it averaged 1.569 million viewers to the 1.363 million the Logies pulled. Though, Nine did have the highest overall share for the night (Source:

On another note, I know not many people watch The Family on SBS, but it was really interesting viewing for me to watch the Cardamones in their suburban family life in Melbourne over a few months time. It definitely got me wanting to see Big Brother on air again. It’s a shame the fly-on-the-wall program isn’t being recognised anywhere. It could have been nominated for Most Outstanding Light Entertainment Program (peer-voted as opposed to viewer-voted), but the Logie judging panels obviously don’t agree with my praise for the SBS show.

Speaking of Big Brother, maybe we’ll see it nominated next year in Most Popular Reality Program? That’s only if it doesn’t flop and Nine’s willing to put it up for submission, which is something Network Ten didn’t do for the last series. Since it was axed, they just didn’t bother. I was very upset when the show was missing from the initial voting ballot in early 2009 (for the 2008 television year).

And lastly, if you’re wondering why Australia’s Got Talent hasn’t had a mention in this category, it’s because Seven has been submitting the show in another field: Most Popular Light Entertainment Program. It’s definitely an easier category to break into, when you’re going up against shows like Sunrise, and in previous years, Deal or No Deal. Though I really don’t understand why Seven would qualify the program as light entertainment when it’s a talent quest just like The X Factor Australia. The season that saw young singer Jack Vidgen win the competition, is also nominated for Most Outstanding Light Entertainment Program.

A full list of nominees can be found here.

You can see who wins on The 54th Annual Logie Awards, airing Sunday April 15 on Channel Nine.

March 18, 2012   9 Comments

Looks Like The Renovators and Junior Masterchef Are Gone

Network Ten’s new Chief Executive James Warbuton started this week, and it looks like he will axe reality shows The Renovators and Junior Masterchef.

He thinks the Network relies too heavily on the big name reality shows for ratings.

In an article in the Daily Telegraph he gave his view about these matters.

As he entered his new office for the first time yesterday, Mr Warburton said Ten’s dependence on the reality programs that take up much of its schedule had to be reduced.

“We’ve got to do more than that, and have more of a connection with the viewer on multiple fronts throughout the course of a week,” he said.

Other sources close to Ten indicated Junior MasterChef and The Renovators were set to be two of the first programs to get the chop under the Warburton regime, as Ten sought a greater range of programming to win viewers.

He also talked a little bit about his strategy to bring the viewers back to Network Ten.

Part of that rebuilding will be developing a broader consistency in programming outside the network’s big reality franchises, boosted by a $50 million injection of funds into programming in 2012.

“We now have a number of new franchises such as Young Talent Time, which add a layer of depth and consistency to our schedule,” he said.

“We need to have more depth for the viewer and we need to ensure as many viewers as possible have an appointment to view programs consistently throughout the week.”

 Well Junior Masterchef had had its day, and it appeared only readers of this blog watched and liked The Renovators, which I thought the few people who were watching it got a lot out of it. There have been rumours for years there will be a Professional Masterchef series like they have in the UK, however I am hoping it will be more like Top Chef in challenges and also with talented unknown chefs battling it out for the prize.

January 3, 2012   13 Comments

Junior Masterchef – And The Winner Is…

Greta who has been a front runner from the start on Junior Masterchef tonight beat Jack in the final.

There were two challenges in the very long two hour finale. First they went head to head in an invention test involving fruit.

Jack made deconstructed strawberries and cream, and Greta made a Deconstructed Citrus Tart with Tropical Mousse on Macadamia Nuts with Fresh Fruit.

For the cooking amateurs out there “deconstructed” is a term you use in cooking when you want to make a mundane dish sound posh, or you stuff up dish and need to smear it over the plate.

They then had to make special guest judge Tetsuya’s dish of Steamed Tian of Queensland Spanner Crab with Bean Curd, Water Chestnuts and Junsai.

Greta won with a total score of 92/100 to Jack’s 84/100.

Greta won $15,000 and Jack $10,000.

If you are a fan of the show you are going to be disappointed as it is highly unlikely it will be returning next year.

November 23, 2011   17 Comments

Junior Masterchef – Contestants Are Helped Alot

It has been revealed today that Junior Masterchef contestants in the Herald Sun are told what the challenges are in advance so they can practice to ensure the dishes they turn out are good and the viewers will then be amazed at these kids skills.

The father of a contestant turned whistleblower told the paper:

The young chefs know in advance what they will be cooking and can perfect dishes at home, it has been claimed.

Some contestants have crammed in professional cooking and acting lessons before the show started.

And dishes can sit on benches for two hours before being tasted and then judged, it is claimed.

The father of one contestant has admitted to hiring a private chef for three days a week over six weeks to teach his child, who was in the top 50, the recipe to success.

Production company Shine, also the brainchild of reality cooking juggernaut MasterChef, said contestants did “get some information about the challenges in advance” but not recipes.

But the father, who cannot be identified because he signed a confidentiality agreement, said while the contestants were talented, their skills were groomed prior to the food being cooked.

“The kids act all surprised but they have had the recipes for weeks.

“While everything looks spontaneous, the reality is these kids have cooked the dishes 50 times.

“It’s not reality it’s all staged.”

The contestant’s mother said parents also complained their children were feeling flattened after a gruelling day and a psychologist was brought in to “pump up” morale.

The Shine spokeswoman admitted that in certain challenges not all dishes were tasted because of time and that not all dishes were hot when judged.

“The judges allow for this when making their decisions,” she said.

It comes as figures show Junior MasterChef is off the menu, with its ratings sliding to a record low.

The second season began three weeks ago with ratings of 1.129 million viewers.

On Monday night it dropped to an audience of 741,000.

It appeared to be obvious the kids got a heads up on what the challenges were in advance, however I am surprised that they found out so far in advance and get the opportunity to practice them over and over.

Last year there were pictures (pics now removed but they were there I promise) taken where they had recipes stored underneath the bench tops to refer to. This was in a blog post titled Junior Masterchef how much smoke and mirrors should there be.

I don’t think anyone expects 10 year olds to be able to razzle out a perfect dish from a mystery box, or remember a recipe off the top of their head, however if they are getting weeks to practice a dish that is another thing entirely.

What do you think? What is the fair preparation time these kids should get?

The other issue of note is how the contestant’s mother complained about the gruelling nature of the shoot. To be fair to Shine Australia they do outline in their contract (see previous blog post here) that they are able to exploit your child. However this is the first complaint from a parent from either season about how draining shooting the show is.

Another point that needs to be raised is if they are not tasting all the dishes does that mean the judges are just tasting favourites so they have a better chance of winning points and being up the top of the leader board?

The complaint about the judges not tasting the dishes immediately is what occurs on proper Masterchef, I think they taste the dishes whilst they are cooking. I don’t have a problem with that.

I also suspect the child of these parents has been eliminated from the show…..


October 19, 2011   37 Comments

First Eliminations From The Top 20 Tonight on Junior Masterchef

Tonight the children were killing lobsters and I did wonder if by the end of the series these mini chefs would have to kill a sheep and butcher it.

It was an elimination challenge tonight with eight of the top 20 in a cook off for Junior Masterchef survival.

The first challenge was for the kids to cook the perfect roast in one hour which is not much time considering the prep they had to do as well.

Alysha and Tom were judged to have done the best in that round and were safe. Both had cooked a version of roast chicken.

The second challenge was to cook guest judge’s Lobster Risotto with chanterelles and truffles. Interesting that the kids had to pick the lobsters off the ice and shove them into boiling water. It did surprise me.

Zac even though he poured all his stock onto the rice at once was judged to have a top two dish, as was Marcus. They were both safe.

Therefore Aya, Caroline, Hannah and Jade were eliminated.

October 16, 2011   5 Comments