Talk of the Times, episode 17, 2020: Christmas in Canberra | The Canberra Times


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This week on Talk of the Times, it’s all about Christmas. In this week’s episode of Talk of the Times, hosts Alex Crowe and Steve Evans offer some options for things to do and see over the holidays in Canberra. Music, food, exhibitions – all in The Canberra Times’ chatty podcast. Join the conversation this week on Talk of the Times through Spotify. For faster access to the latest Canberra news, download The Canberra Times app for iOS and Android.

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Bloody Idiot of the Week — Episode 19: Gold standard edition


Rolled gold standards abound in our final idiot edition for 2020.

And in a jam-packed final rolled gold idiot tournament, contenders include NSW “gold standard” Premier Gladys Berejiklian, One Nation’s Pauline Hanson, soon-to-be-ex-POTUS Donald Trump complete with members of his entourage, such as his personal legal eagle Rudy Giuliani and star witness Melissa Carone, and last but not least, gold standard trendsetter Prime Minister for NSW Scott Morrison.,

Enjoy this instalment — and don’t forget to LIKE the video, SHARE it and subscribe to the IA YouTube channel.

Written and presented by David Donovan. Produced by Dan JensenYou can follow, on Twitter, IA founder Dave Donovan @davrosz and digital editor Dan Jensen @danjensenmovies.

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Why that ABC Four Corners episode was excellent journalism


The ABC’s Four Corners episode exposing misogyny in Parliament was not biased against the Liberal Party, writes Chris Haviland.

THE ABC’s Four Corners program “Inside the Canberra Bubble”, an expose of inappropriate behaviour within the Morrison Government’s Cabinet ranks, certainly caused a stir within the Government and its cheerleaders in the News Corp media.

The program made allegations against Ministers Christian Porter and Alan Tudge, much of which was based on interviews with former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and former Liberal staffer Rachelle Miller, who had an affair with Tudge, her boss.

This Government has been at war with the ABC ever since its election in 2013. It has cut the ABC’s funding by nearly $1 billion since then, despite a pathetic attempt at denial by the latest Communications Minister, Paul Fletcher.

I was Labor’s candidate against Paul Fletcher in his safe seat of Bradfield in 2019. Despite being a safe Liberal seat, the locals love their ABC. I campaigned against the Government’s savage cuts to the ABC budget, as well as on climate change. We achieved a 4.5% swing against the Government, despite Labor’s overall election loss.

Yet Fletcher was then announced as the new Communications Minister, in charge of the ABC. And in no time, the Australian Federal Police had carried out that infamous raid on the ABC’s Ultimo headquarters, all because Four Corners has exposed some atrocities by Australian SAS personnel in Afghanistan. 

Now, Paul Fletcher has written to ABC Chair Ita Buttrose, demanding the answers to 15 questions about another excellent Four Corners program.  

This article does not seek to cover all 15 questions, simply the predictable, yet lame accusations of ABC bias against the Liberal Party.

At Question 11, Fletcher asks:

‘Does the board consider that it is consistent with the duty of impartiality that the program deals with allegations solely against Liberal MPs? Does the board say that there are no such relationships involving Labor, Green or independent politicians?’

Then at Question 14, he asks:

‘Why should an objective observer not conclude that the program evidenced clear bias against the Liberal Party.’

There are three reasons which clearly show that the self-serving and predictable claim of anti-Liberal Party bias does not withstand critical analysis.

First, the Liberals are in Government (with the Nationals). Labor, the Greens and Independents are not. Basically, the allegations raised in the program were about ministerial standards and the Ministerial Code of Conduct, including, but not limited to, Malcolm Turnbull’s “bonk ban” relating to ministers and their staff.

Toxic masculinity: How 'these things happen in Australia'

If you’re not in government, you have no ministers. Of course MPs from the other parties were not scrutinised for this particular program. That should be easy enough for even the most partisan or dim-witted conservative to understand.

Second, Labor and the Greens, by their very nature, have a stronger sense of equality for women. That is not to say they are perfect. Far from it. But a social conscience helps.

One could simply assert that parties of the left or centre-left are less likely to discriminate against women or behave badly towards them, just because of their ideology. However that would be far too simplistic.

However, both Labor and the Greens are demonstrably more equal in their Parliamentary representation. Labor has all but met its affirmative action target of 40% of MPs being women and are well placed to reach 45% by 2025, the target set at the ALP’s 2015 National Conference.

The Greens have smaller numbers, but often have more women than men in their parliamentary ranks.

Christian Porter avoids question over alleged staff relationship

More women in parliament means a better culture and has largely overcome the “boys club” atmosphere that still clearly besets the conservative parties.

That of course still doesn’t guarantee that problems won’t arise from time to time. But if they do, it is most likely that they are dealt with “in house” as colleagues would not be impressed by any sexist or misogynistic behaviour within their ranks.

Third, Fletcher asks whether MPs private lives are anyone’s business, or whether publicly exposing them is in the public interest. In most cases, people’s private lives should be just that: private and none of our business.

However, there is a clear exception to this: when an MP’s behaviour conflicts directly with his or her stated positions on issues, especially moral issues.

Both of the Ministers named in the program have been very quick to position themselves as being for “traditional family values” and “traditional marriage”. Both advocated for the no case on marriage equality. However, their behaviour as revealed on the program conveyed a hypocrisy, which makes their private behaviour fair game for public interest journalism.

As Malcolm Turnbull said so succinctly on the program, often the proponents of family values and “traditional marriage” are also well-practised in “traditional adultery”.

Barnaby, Turnbull and #BonkBan: Parliament is now officially a joke

Former Labor PM Bob Hawke was said to be a “serial womaniser” However, I am not aware that he ever had an affair with a staffer, either his own or someone else’s.

Furthermore, Hawke never moralised about the sort of issues that would leave him open to a charge of hypocrisy and he never disrespected women.

It was the Hawke Government, in fact, under Minister Susan Ryan, that introduced a raft of legislation including the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 and various pieces of legislation around workplace sexual harassment in both the public and private sectors.

In my day job then, I was responsible for implementing these major cultural changes in the workplace in a large Government agency. It was ground-breaking stuff and really did change workplace culture, for the benefit of women but also the workforce as a whole.

The Liberal Party has some catching up to do.

Chris Haviland is a former Federal MP. He was the Labor candidate for Bradfield in the 2019 Federal Election. Chris is also a committee member of the Northern Sydney Friends of the ABC.

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The Curowan fire a year on: Talk of the Times, episode 15, 2020 | The Canberra Times


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This week on Talk of the Times, host Steve Evans spoke with The Canberra Times reporter Doug Dingwall, who revisited the Currowan fire victims he was with last year as they fought to save their homes and lives. The pair are joined by fellow Times reporter Katie Burgess who covered The Royal Commission into National Natural Disaster Arrangements. It’s another week of good conversation from The Canberra Times. Find out by listening to The Talk of the Times. You can subscribe to Talk of the Times through Spotify. Tune in every Friday as Alex, Steve and their guests discuss the big issues and the not so big issues. For faster access to the latest Canberra news, download The Canberra Times app for iOS and Android.

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The Block 2020 episode 50 finale recap: Who is the young woman who bought Jimmy and Tam’s winning house at auction


A serial auction mega-buyer and a mysterious young cyber security expert joined forces to make this finale of The Block the richest in the show’s history.

IT entrepreneur and previous Block house buyer Danny Wallis was at it again with mathematically annoying bids that left even seasoned auctioneers doing quick sums to add up his offers, which at one point included 66 cents.

RELATED: Notorious Block buyer drops nearly $12m on three homes

Block winners’ blown away by record-breaking windfall

He ended up spending just under $12 million for three houses, though he missed out on the one he seemed to want most of all.

His first bid on Jimmy and Tam’s winning house was almost $1 million over its reserve which gave them $910,000 in profit in the space of two bids.

Jimmy and Tam with their buyer, the mysterious cyber security expert Emese Fajk.


Despite that bold opening gambit, he lost the joint to cyber security expert Emese Fajk, who started watching the show after she moved to Melbourne from New York last year.

Looking more like a Block production assistant than someone who could drop $4 million on a house, the diminutive blonde set Twitter alight with show fans demanding she get her own spin-off series.

She paid $4,256,000 for the 1950s Palm Springs abode, giving Jimmy and Tam a final profit of $966,000, plus $100,000 for the win, sending them home with an astronomical and life-changing $1,066,000.

The Block winning team photo. Picture: Supplied

Winners Jimmy and Tam with the new owner of their house Emese Fajk, host Scott Cam and their McGrath agents. Picture: Picture: Supplied


In a bio for her 2018 TED Talk, Fajk describes herself as an “adrenaline junkie” who believes in “winging it” outside of work — buying a Block house in a new city seems to fit that MO.

The “losing” couple was Daniel and Jade, who took home $460,000 of Danny Wallis’ money when he bought their home for $3,800,000. Given Daniel said they’d be happy with anything over $20,000, they presumably went home very happy indeed.

Action shots from The Block auction. Picture: Supplied

If this is what the losers look like, wait till you see the winners.


In second place was Sarah and George, thanks to Wallis spending $4,000,002 million on their place, giving them a profit of $652,002.

Luke and Jasmin took home $506,000 after selling their house for $3,856,000 in the first auction of the night, prompting Jasmin to screech “I told you it’s a beautiful house” in the exact same tone that Sophie Lee screamed “But I’m beautiful!” in Muriel’s Wedding.

Their house was snatched up by bidders on Zoom, believed to be Brighton locals.

Harry and Tash ended up with $650,000 when their home sold for $4 million, again, to Danny Wallis.

Action shots from The Block auction. Picture: Supplied

Multiple auction winner Danny Wallis’ orgy of spending ended on a warm note. He’s donating Daniel and Jade’s house the My Room Children’s Cancer Charity.


But while the orgy of spending might have seemed somewhat distasteful in a town dragging itself out of a COVID lockdown nightmare, it was later revealed Danny Wallis is donating Daniel and Jade’s house to the My Room Children’s Cancer Charity, for use by families who need to travel from regional Victoria to access Melbourne medical services.

It was particularly fitting that Daniel and Jade’s home be donated because their daughter Isla has serious health issues. They left their drought-stricken South Australian outback farm to try and win enough money to work less and spend more time with their children.

It was the best possible result for all the couples, particularly Jimmy and Tam, who seemed genuinely agonised by having to decide the auction order (their prize for coming first in overall points).

“My stomach is twisted. I feel physically sick,” Jimmy said. “The pressure of having everyone’s auction order is hard. We want everyone to do well.”

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA, November 21: George and Sara Block auction at on November 21, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Fiona Hamilton/Fiona Hamilton)

Sarah and George run into the arms of Luke after their auction.


The pair broke down crying after announcing their decision, knowing that at least some of the contestants would feel dudded by their spot in the order.

And they were right. Harry and Tash were gutted to be given the final auction slot and they certainly weren’t celebrating as hard as the other contestants as each couple came back with hundreds of thousands of dollars in winnings, fearing that by the time their house was on the block the bidders would have run out of cash.

Luckily, in this extraordinary year there were plenty of deep pockets to go around, and all was forgiven.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA, November 21: Daniel and Jade Block 2020 auction at on November 21, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Fiona Hamilton/Fiona Hamilton)

There’s definitely less than 1.5m between these Block stars.


What wasn’t forgiven by many viewers, was the apparent blatant disregard for social distancing going on.

While the auctions were run scrupulously, with white dots for the bidders to stand on, and a maximum of seven bidders (and three camera operators) in each auction area, behind the scenes the contestants looked like they were at a Pete Evans COVID-19 denial convention there was so much hugging and high-fiving going on, and barely a mask to be seen.

Still, if they get fined, at least every contestant now has more than enough cash to pay up.

How this year’s Block couples finished up at auction:

5th place – Daniel and Jade, $460,000 profit.

4th place – Luke and Jasmin, $506,000

3rd place – Harry and Tash, $650,000

2nd place – Sarah and George, $650,002

1st place – Jimmy and Tam, $966,000 + $100,000 prize money = $1,066,000

MISSED AN EPISODE?

Episode 49: Judges slam Harry and Tash’s dumb decision

Episodes 46/47: ‘It would be unfair if you were in contention’

Episode 45: ‘I worked my a..e off, for what?’ Jasmin’s tough run in with plasterer

Episode 44: Luke’s stupid decision floors judges

More from news

Quirky QLD home is Australia’s hottest property
Chef Pete Evans sells North Bondi investment apartment in just three days

Episodes 42/43 recap: Jimmy’s rage at Harry’s ‘easy’ sledge

Episode 41: Shady deal splits Block besties

Episode 40: Nightmare week makes Tash crack

Episodes 38/39: ‘It’s a f..king joke’: Sarah fires up over slur

Episode 37: ‘Thievery’: Daniel’s temper tantrum over timber

Episode 36: ‘We should have won’: win splits Block besties

Episodes 34/35: Why Mark and Mitch aren’t impressed by Harry and Tash

Episode 33: Plasterer’s tirade reduces Sarah to tears

Episode 32: The Block’s most heartwarming moment

Episode 30/31: Daniel’s foul-mouthed tirade at Dan

Episode 29: Why Harry and Tash didn’t deserve their win

Episode 28: Jimmy and Tam’s ‘complete fail

Episode 26/27: Harry storms off The Block

Episode 25: ‘Say it to our face’: Luke & Jasmin hit back

Episode 24: Did Luke and Jasmin copy again?

Episode 23: ‘It’s not in the spirit of the game’: Scott Cam slams copying


Episode 22: ‘They won with somebody elses idea’

Episode 21: Why Dan’s tradies walked off the job

Episode 20: Why winning room looks eerily familiar

Episode 18/19: Queue jumping Jasmin earns Jade’s wrath

Episode 17: ‘It’s shifty’: why the contestants are dirty on Harry

Episode 16: The most jaw-dropping bathrooms The Block has seen

Episodes 14, 15 recap: ‘D*** move’: Tensions rise as team dobs on another

Episode 13 recap: ‘Blockhead’s potty antics disgust Keith’

Episode 10-11 recap: The new Block rule that could ruin the season

Episode 9 recap: Favouritism allegations hit The Block

Episode 8 recap: Judges pull no punches on grieving Daniel and Jade

Episode 6-7 recap: Sack your builder: Keith slams ‘pathetic’ work

Episode 4 recap: Luke and Jasmin’s big stuff up

Episode 3 recap: “So two years ago”. Team’s boring room slammed

Episode 2 recap: Disappointment as Block houses are handed out

Episode 1 recap: Block 2020 tears start flowing early





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The Mandalorian season 2 episode 4 recap: Baby Yoda and Mando reunite with old buddies


Greef Carga, Cara Dune and Mando get shooty, while Mythrol cowers.


Lucasfilm

The Mandalorian season 2 took a nostalgic turn Friday, as episode 4 hit Disney Plus and brought us back to the live action Star Wars show’s roots. Where last week’s episode was a major treat for fans of The Clone Wars, this one paid homage to George Lucas’ Original Trilogy in delightful style.

Episode 3, entitled Siege, was directed by Carl Weathers, who also plays charming bounty hunter boss Greef Carga. Written by series creator Jon Favreau, it sees Mando (Pedro Pascal) stopping for repairs as he tries to bring Baby Yoda (aka The Child) to find former Jedi Ahsoka Tano.

Let’s get into SPOILER town.

spoilers-starwars

Baby Yoda’s midi-chlorians

In the Imperial Remnant base, our heroes are horrified at the sight of some twisted creatures in test tubes — beings that look like the Snoke clones seen in Emperor Palpatine’s lab on Exegol in The Rise of Skywalker.

A holographic message from Dr. Pershing (Omid Abtahi) to Moff Gideon reveals exactly why they want Baby Yoda. They tried to use the blood harvested from the Force-strong little guy to replicate his powers in others, but apparently it didn’t go so well.

“There were promising results for an entire fortnight, but sadly the body rejected the blood,” Pershing says. “I highly doubt we’ll find a donor with a higher M-count though.”

screenshot-2020-11-20-at-09-26-30.png

The twisted test subjects look quite like Supreme Leader Snoke.


Lucasfilm/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

He’s referring to Baby Yoda’s midi-chlorian count, a concept introduced in The Phantom Menace that makes many Star Wars fans grit their teeth because it brought a scientific element to the previously mythical Force Midi-chlorians are microscopic life forms in the cells of living beings — an individual’s midi-chlorian count determines their ability to use the Force, and can be determined through a blood test.

Gideon is seemingly trying to create Force-strong beings with Baby Yoda’s blood, but it’s unclear if he’s doing this for his own ends, knowingly working the reborn Palpatine or unknowingly doing Palpatine’s bidding. My money’s on option 3 — we know from The Rise of Skywalker novelization that Palpatine was having difficulty making Force-strong clones for his consciousness to live in.

It’s likely these experiments Gideon is overseeing will result in the creation of Supreme Leader Snoke, the twisted, Force-strong being who’ll lead the First Order — which is basically the Empire — as Palpatine’s surrogate.

This article will be updated shortly.



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The Block 2020 episode 49 recap: The judges slam Harry and Tash’s ‘dumbest’ decision


This final pre-auction episode features George discovering why a pool isn’t a necessity in a Melbourne house, Jasmin discovering that if you leave brand new furniture by the side of the road you shouldn’t expect it to still be there when you get back, and Keith and Harry getting in one final argument.

RELATED: How this year’s Block’s inspections will work

Controversy as Block identity sells her Hampton house to the show

George has to get a custom timber bench into the pool cabana area, and the only way to do it is via the pool. As he wades in waist-deep water, before the pool heater is turned on, the Queenslander gets his first taste of actual cold.

“Now I know how the guys on the Titanic felt,” he says.

George finds out what it’s like to swim in balmy Melbourne.


Jasmin, meanwhile, has turned up at Freedom to collect an outdoor coffee table and chairs, only to discover her husband Luke has left a pallet of tiles in the back of her ute.

She and the Freedom dude tie the items up on top of the tiles as best they can, but don’t reckon on the tiles shifting as she drives home, and as she builds up some speed on the freeway the coffee table goes flying off the back of her ute.

By some miracle it doesn’t take out another driver, and she manages to collect it before making the insane decision to leave the furniture on a random footpath while she goes to get the tiles unloaded.

Jasmin watches in horror as her coffee table flies off the back of her ute and on to the freeway.

Jasmin watches in horror as her coffee table flies off the back of her ute and on to the freeway.


Luke, along with every Block viewer, is incredulous. He unloads the tiles quickly but Jasmin then gets stuck in the carpark behind a soil delivery van for about half an hour. By the time she returns to the street where she left her furniture, it’s gone, in a blow to Melbourne’s reputation.

She discovers her wares neatly stacked inside the front gate of a nearby house, and the occupant has the absolute cheek to ask to see a receipt for the items before he agrees to let her take them back. I can’t decide if that’s another blot on Melbourne’s rep, or an admirable piece of chutzpah.

At Harry and Tash’s place, Harry is having his final dust up with Keith. Keith and Dan have found out Harry is planning to finish a few jobs on the house next week, despite the fact the deadline for completion for all the contestants is that Sunday. We’ve already seen Harry take advantage of being a Melburnian when he sneaked on to site to do some measuring during lockdown, but he’s not going to get away with it again.

“No-one can come back next week,” Dan says.

“All the shifty stuff has to stop,” Keith agrees.

Harry rolls his eyes and pledges to get the job done, thus bringing an end to his “shifty stuff” two days out from the final.

And so it’s on to the judging.

Harry and Tash were so cash strapped this week they can’t do much more than pave their sideyard and chuck some plants here and there, but they still manage to waste money on building a wall behind the front door, separating the front and back yards. They do this for privacy and security reasons, despite the fact there is a high front brick wall, which would stop anyone seeing into the back yard anyway.

Harry and Tash's sideyard, and that offending wall, dividing front from back.

Harry and Tash’s sideyard, and that offending wall, dividing front from back.


“Why would you do that?” Shaynna Blaze asks, pointing out they’ve lost the advantage of being the only house with a garden that wraps right around the building.

“It’s just so wrong,” Neale Whitaker says. “On every level it’s wrong. It’s got to go. I feel like doing it myself now.”

They’ve also run out of cash to dress their poolside cabana area.

“It does feel unfinished and undercooked,” Neale says.

“It’s begging for a day bed,” Darren Palmer agrees.

Sarah and George, on the other hand, haven’t undercooked a thing.

Sarah and George's poolside area.

Sarah and George’s poolside area.


Their side courtyard has an enormous built in planter with a Japanese maple, which will serve to block the view from the neighbours’ stairway as it grows.

The backyard has a built-in table which looks cantilevered, a mature olive tree and a graphic of Brighton Beach boxes and a hanging chair in their cabana.

“My mind is blown,” Darren says.

Sarah and George's backyard area.

Sarah and George’s backyard area left Darren Palmer’s mind blown.


Daniel and Jade’s courtyard leaves a good first impression, but quickly reveals itself to be underdone. There’s a couch and two chairs and a planter box with olive trees but no thought has been given to creating a screen between the courtyard and their neighbours’ stairway.

“It’s not a comfortable place to sit,” Neale notes. “It’s pleasant but I can see myself waiting to sit here very long.”

Daniel and Jade's backyard area.

Daniel and Jade’s backyard area. Not shown: outdoor dirt shower.


Their backyard is more successful with armchairs, outdoor rug, fan and outdoor shower. That is until Shaynna notices that in order to use it you have to stand in the dirt straddling a plant. They also lose points for their pool area, which has a nice daybed facing two enormous bare walls.

“There is no atmosphere in here at all,” Neale notes. “I’m looking at one black wall and a concrete wall.”

Daniel and Jade lost points for a pool area that featured bare walls.

Daniel and Jade’s pool area was half resort, half prison yard.


Luke and Jasmin threw everything at their outdoor area this week, scrimping, begging and saving to come up with a custom wave daybed and a water feature which drowns out any street noise for their courtyard, but they too are let down by not considering privacy.

But their backyard gets huge raps.

Luke and Jasmin's courtyard area with custom made day bed.

Luke and Jasmin’s courtyard area with custom made day bed.


“We have never seen anything delivered to this level on The Block.” Neale says of their space, which includes a table built around a structure pole with curved built in seating, fire pit and pizza oven. They lose a few points by not having a built-in barbecue or covered area.

Luke and Jasmin's backyard featured more curves.

Luke and Jasmin’s backyard featured their signature curves. If only they had built in their barbie.


Jimmy and Tam win the battle of the courtyards for their Besser brick feature wall painted coral with planter box of bamboo which will create a fast-growing screen between them and their neighbours.

In the backyard their artfully created “zones”, built-in barbecue and candy striped sun loungers win them plaudits, but they make a major error with their strange little cabana with sliding glass doors.

Jimmy and Tam's courtyard had a coral coloured besser

Jimmy and Tam’s courtyard had a coral coloured feature wall and bamboo which will provide an excellent privacy screen.


The doors are completely unnecessary and make the space look like a “bus stop” according to Shaynna.

“They’ve given us a changing room with glass doors,” she says.

And so to the scores. Fan faves Sarah and George come out on top for the third week in a row, finishing strong with three perfect tens after a wobby start on the show. They steal the win by just half a point from Luke and Jasmin, but at least Jimmy and Tam didn’t win again.

That was beginning to get boring.

Jimmy and Tam's poolside area scored high for the mosaic tile feature wall, but failed for the bus stop-like cabana.

Jimmy and Tam’s poolside area scored high for the mosaic tile feature wall, but failed for the bus stop-like cabana.


FINAL SCORES

1 Sarah and George 30

2 Luke and Jasmin 29.5

3 Jimmy and Tam 27.5

4 Daniel and Jade 24

5 Harry and Tash 22.5

MISSED AN EPISODE?

Episodes 46/47: ‘It would be unfair if you were in contention’

More from news

Melbourne: Should I sell my home now or wait until 2021?
Cairns real estate: Investing while prices are on the rise

Episode 45: ‘I worked my a..e off, for what?’ Jasmin’s tough run in with plasterer

Episode 44: Luke’s stupid decision floors judges

Episodes 42/43 recap: Jimmy’s rage at Harry’s ‘easy’ sledge

Episode 41: Shady deal splits Block besties

Episode 40: Nightmare week makes Tash crack

Episodes 38/39: ‘It’s a f..king joke’: Sarah fires up over slur

Episode 37: ‘Thievery’: Daniel’s temper tantrum over timber

Episode 36: ‘We should have won’: win splits Block besties

Episodes 34/35: Why Mark and Mitch aren’t impressed by Harry and Tash

Episode 33: Plasterer’s tirade reduces Sarah to tears

Episode 32: The Block’s most heartwarming moment

Episode 30/31: Daniel’s foul-mouthed tirade at Dan

Episode 29: Why Harry and Tash didn’t deserve their win

Episode 28: Jimmy and Tam’s ‘complete fail

Episode 26/27: Harry storms off The Block

Episode 25: ‘Say it to our face’: Luke & Jasmin hit back

Episode 24: Did Luke and Jasmin copy again?

Episode 23: ‘It’s not in the spirit of the game’: Scott Cam slams copying


Episode 22: ‘They won with somebody elses idea’

Episode 21: Why Dan’s tradies walked off the job

Episode 20: Why winning room looks eerily familiar

Episode 18/19: Queue jumping Jasmin earns Jade’s wrath

Episode 17: ‘It’s shifty’: why the contestants are dirty on Harry

Episode 16: The most jaw-dropping bathrooms The Block has seen

Episodes 14, 15 recap: ‘D*** move’: Tensions rise as team dobs on another

Episode 13 recap: ‘Blockhead’s potty antics disgust Keith’

Episode 10-11 recap: The new Block rule that could ruin the season

Episode 9 recap: Favouritism allegations hit The Block

Episode 8 recap: Judges pull no punches on grieving Daniel and Jade

Episode 6-7 recap: Sack your builder: Keith slams ‘pathetic’ work

Episode 4 recap: Luke and Jasmin’s big stuff up

Episode 3 recap: “So two years ago”. Team’s boring room slammed

Episode 2 recap: Disappointment as Block houses are handed out

Episode 1 recap: Block 2020 tears start flowing early



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Bloody Idiot of the Week — Episode 18: Bloody Idiot Elections Special


Wherever there are elections, idiots abound and this election packed episode is no exception.

Vying for Election Idiot of the Week are one-seat One Nation’s Pauline Hanson, her one adviser James Ashby and the soon-to-be-ex-POTUS Donald Trump accompanied by members of his theatrical entourage, including personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani and official presidential spiritual advisor (no, really) Paula White, plus a couple of infamous surprise cameos. 

Enjoy this instalment — and don’t forget to LIKE the video, SHARE it and subscribe to the IA YouTube channel.

Presented by David Donovan. Written by David Donovan. Produced by Dan Jensen.

You can follow, on Twitter, IA founder Dave Donovan @davrosz and digital editor Dan Jensen @danjensenmovies.

Support independent journalism Subscribe to IA.

 





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The Block 2020 episode 44 recap: Luke’s stupid decision leaves judges incredulous


In Cup Week, The Block became a two-horse race between roughies, Sarah and George, and the cashed-up favourites Jimmy and Tam.

As foreshadowed all week, those couples became the only teams in the running for the weekly $10,00 prize when it became apparent nobody else would finish their studios and garages by the deadline.

RELATED: ‘F..king devastating’: Jimmy cracks it at Harry over ‘easy’ diss

Shelley Craft quietly buys new beachfront property

Block identity causes controversy by selling her house to the show

These aren’t the faces you pull when you like what you see.


Judges Shaynna Blaze, Darren Palmer and Neale Whitaker were impressed by the efforts of both the topscoring couples to not only complete their huge spaces but to make them multifunctional.

Unlike Luke and Jasmin, Daniel and Jade, and Harry and Tash, who had all created basic garages with (unfinished) upstairs areas akin to serviced apartments, the two top teams had managed to think outside the square.

Jimmy and Tam's studio apartment.

Jimmy and Tam’s studio apartment is an office with a sofa bed and galley kitchen.


Jimmy and Tam, whose house is the only one without an office, decided to make their loft apartment a place where their buyer could work from home with a galley-style kitchen, double-seated desk space and fold-out couch.

The self-confessed fitness fanatics were also inspired by life in COVID-19 lockdown to use some of their garage space (and healthy bank balance) to build a home gym.

Darren, who looks like he loves to work out, was quivering with excitement at the sight of the kettle bell weights and exercise bike.

Shaynna, too, could see how a home gym would be a drawcard in the current climate saying: “Wow! That is thinking of the new world. A lot of people will be working out at home now. They won’t be going to the gym.”

Darren Palmer in Jimmy and Tam's home gym.

Darren Palmer was delighted with Jimmy and Tam’s home gym.


Only Neale wasn’t completely sold. He saved his most glowing praise for the fact the Queenslanders were the only team to have a floor lamp in their apartment (everyone knows Neale is turned on by lighting).

“Not everybody wants a home gym,” Neale declared.

“There will be people who walk in and go: ‘Oh, that’s amazing!’ and there will be an equal number who say: ‘Well, that’s not for me.’”

Neale was far more enamoured with Sarah and George’s garage storage system and well-designed upstairs area featuring a desk, laundry, kitchen, bathroom and bedroom that could be used to house an au pair, boarder or elderly relative.

Sarah and George's studio apartment.

Sarah and George’s studio apartment was the only one with a laundry, making it entirely self-contained.


And it was in awarding Sarah and George a full 10 points for their renovation that Neale secured the couple their half point victory over Jimmy and Tam.

The judges didn’t find it hard to agree that the other three teams were far from the mark.

And it wasn’t just that they hadn’t finished painting, corking, plastering or dressing their spaces that let them down.

The judges criticised the lack of imagination they’d shown by creating glorified additional bedrooms rather than clever multi-use spaces.

They were scathing about Harry and Tash’s kitchen bench, which they felt was too big for the room and came at the expense of creating a workable desk space. They had also failed to finish painting their stairway or erecting their shower screen.

Harry and Tash's studio apartment.

Harry and Tash’s studio apartment had a kitchen bench that compromised their ability to fit in a proper desk.


The judges also felt Harry and Tash had poorly designed their en suite to put their toilet in front of the doorway, on centre stage (where, let’s face it, no-one wants it to be) rather than in a more discreet spot behind the sink.

The judges in Harry and Tash's studio.

The judges prefer to live in a world where they don’t have to acknowledge the existence of toilets, like this one in Harry and Tash’s studio.


Any concerns about the lack of discretion in Harry and Tash’s studio WC placement, went out the window when they visited Luke and Jasmin’s place and discovered they had completely done away with the dunny door.

Jasmin was never a fan of Luke’s plan to create an en suite without a door, and now she had even more evidence that (a) she is always right and (b) he needs to check in with her before he makes any decisions.

“If you were running a business here in a home office, you can’t use the toilet,” said a gobsmacked Shaynna.

Luke and Jasmin's studio apartment.

Try and find a madder decision this season than Luke and Jasmin’s choice of a doorless dunny. Go on, we’ll wait.


Neale concurred, adding that the lack of a door choice limited their studio space even more than their decision to style it (albeit beautifully) as yet another bedroom without so much as a desk.

“The fact that we don’t have a door here it’s very clear that they only ever envisaged this as a luxury bedroom for one person,” he commented with a look of visible distaste on his face at the lack of foresight (and perhaps at the prospect of having to live in a house without bathroom doors).

Jade and Daniel fared better with their bathroom. It was the rest of the upstairs room that failed to make the grade with the judges branding it impractical and devoid of personality.

Shaynna felt the TV dominated the room and that the kitchen was let down by the lack of a stovetop.

Daniel and Jade's studio apartment.

Daniel and Jade’s efforts were described as “clunky” by Shaynna.


Mostly, Shaynna felt the room felt “clunky” and that it was unnecessary having another bedroom when they already had five in their main house.

Neale added that their studio lacked “finesse.”

“It’s got about as much personality as the average serviced apartment,” he remarked with clear disdain. “And that’s weird, because when I look at the individual pieces there are some beautiful pieces here, but I am not making any emotional connection.”

The judges were also unimpressed by another connection problem of the electrical variety. They noticed the desk was not serviced by a power-point making it useless for much of anything beyond a spot of letter writing.

And who does that these days?

Final scores:

1 Sarah and George: 29.5

2 Jimmy and Tam: 29

3 Daniel and Jade: 25.5

3 Luke and Jasmin: 25.5

4 Harry and Tash: 20

MISSED AN EPISODE?

Episodes 42/43 recap: Jimmy’s rage at Harry’s ‘easy’ sledge

Episode 41: Shady deal splits Block besties

Episode 40: Nightmare week makes Tash crack

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Episodes 38/39: ‘It’s a f..king joke’: Sarah fires up over slur

Episode 37: ‘Thievery’: Daniel’s temper tantrum over timber

Episode 36: ‘We should have won’: win splits Block besties

Episodes 34/35: Why Mark and Mitch aren’t impressed by Harry and Tash

Episode 33: Plasterer’s tirade reduces Sarah to tears

Episode 32: The Block’s most heartwarming moment

Episode 30/31: Daniel’s foul-mouthed tirade at Dan

Episode 29: Why Harry and Tash didn’t deserve their win

Episode 28: Jimmy and Tam’s ‘complete fail

Episode 26/27: Harry storms off The Block

Episode 25: ‘Say it to our face’: Luke & Jasmin hit back

Episode 24: Did Luke and Jasmin copy again?

Episode 23: ‘It’s not in the spirit of the game’: Scott Cam slams copying


Episode 22: ‘They won with somebody elses idea’

Episode 21: Why Dan’s tradies walked off the job

Episode 20: Why winning room looks eerily familiar

Episode 18/19: Queue jumping Jasmin earns Jade’s wrath

Episode 17: ‘It’s shifty’: why the contestants are dirty on Harry

Episode 16: The most jaw-dropping bathrooms The Block has seen

Episodes 14, 15 recap: ‘D*** move’: Tensions rise as team dobs on another

Episode 13 recap: ‘Blockhead’s potty antics disgust Keith’

Episode 10-11 recap: The new Block rule that could ruin the season

Episode 9 recap: Favouritism allegations hit The Block

Episode 8 recap: Judges pull no punches on grieving Daniel and Jade

Episode 6-7 recap: Sack your builder: Keith slams ‘pathetic’ work

Episode 4 recap: Luke and Jasmin’s big stuff up

Episode 3 recap: “So two years ago”. Team’s boring room slammed

Episode 2 recap: Disappointment as Block houses are handed out

Episode 1 recap: Block 2020 tears start flowing early



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The Great British Bake Off 2020: episode five – live | Television & radio











Pedro
(@peetermiguuel)

Bake a Cornish pasty.
*Linda bakes a samosa*

Bake an eclair.
*Linda makes churros*#GBBO


October 20, 2020

Poor Linda. It’s just not her week.










Laura’s cage looks ok, so is Hermine’s. Mark’s looks like he’s presenting a cheddar cheese slice fit for a sandwich.

And oh god. Linda’s has completely disintegrated. She’s a goner. Even though Mark’s looks quite bad (did it melt?), Linda is doomed because of what happened in her technical and signature. I also can’t remember a Showstopper in recent years where the bakers have either done amazingly, or terribly, with absolutely no bakers in between.










Hysterically fragile? Can relate.

Mark pronounces “pears” as “purrs” and I’m obsessed. I never want to hear a different pronunciation again. What if he was to come across a pair of pears? Throw a happy cat into that mix and it’d be carnage.










They are now taking their cages out of the oven. All of them look hysterically fragile.










The bakers are using a lattice cutter! The Bake Off stores seem to have everything. Was there anything the Bake Off cupboard wasn’t able to provide you, equipment wise?










*WHISPERS* Hermine has been getting better and better. She didn’t excel in bread or biscuit week, but so far in pastry week she’s nailed it. I’ll stop typing now because I’ve absolutely jinxed it haven’t I? *STOPS WHISPERING*










MANGO KLAXON! This week, it’s Dave that succumbed to our least favourite fruit’s tropical delights. When will we be free of this curse? Oh look, Scott’s done another bar graph. Or, a tart chart, if you will.

Scott Bryan
(@scottygb)

In case you are wondering, I have counted how many times mangoes have been included in recipes this series.

(the reason why there was loads in biscuit week was because it was in a technical) #GBBO pic.twitter.com/xjjepwPKqH


October 20, 2020










Thoroughly enjoyed the showdown there between Paul’s instinct and Lottie’s preparatory Googling. Pies don’t need walls – a triumph for the millennials!










They’ve claimed that Nicolas Cage is a big fan of this show. In an unrelated note, if you can link to your favourite Nicolas Cage memes BTL, Michael and I would very much appreciate it, thank you.










It’s the Showstopper.

This week they have to bake a sweet tart, placed within a highly decorative pastry cage. It’s a bit of a relief, after some pretty wild weeks, to only have a Showstopper that is only mildly challenging to find examples of on Google.





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