Housos’ Paul Fenech: Australia suffers from Nazi political correctness

Comedic writer and director Paul Fenech has warned that the Australian public is being marginalised by the influences of the media.

“People in the media are so polished that the real people are being marginalised.” Fenech told Encore. “You don’t see real people on TV, (even) reality contestants are hand-picked.”

His new show Housos, a slapstick comedy about residents living in a housing commission began airing on SBS this week.

“The show is more about bogans than housing commissions. It follows in the comedic tradition of Paul Hogan. I never thought it would be as topical as it has been.”

When the show’s Youtube trailer first aired in February, A Current Affair initially reported the comedy was a reality TV show, missing known actors Ian Turpie, Amanda Keller, Melissa Tkautz, Jason Davis and Fenech himself, and called for a ban on the program before seeing it.

“I think they outsourced the research to some Indian guy because they actually thought that. And they had this promo ‘tomorrow night – the reality show that makes fun of poor people.’ They went and reshot the story. The housing commission guys loved it. It basically became a promo.”

Fenech said the location of the story didn’t matter, the show was character-based. “It’s like people working in an office being offended by The Office.”

“I get offended by people who get offended. I think there’s some sort of Nazi political correctness happening in Australia. The principals of political correctness are good but we have the top ten per cent of Australia wanting to nanny state everything we do. We’re not responsible for ourselves. We can’t decide what’s funny. What’s insulting is you can’t have a joke in Australia. Housos is the most ango-friendly show I’ve done. I’m copping it for having a go at bogans – are you serious?”

“I like doing stuff that has truth in it. I do a lot of research whenever I go into comedy. The truth always hurts. I think the thing is, there is nothing better than seeing the qualification of something you know in the media.”

Fenech told Encore’s sister publication Mumbrella, “People don’t realise that 60% of the population are into V8 Supercars,” acknowledging that his show will appeal to the majority of Australia.

“You may not advertise Chanel [around our show], but maybe Britney Spears’ new perfume. You’d advertise anything that gets the testosterone going for people aged 15 – 25 – cars, army recruitment or fast food.”

He also told Mumbrella, he was disappointed by SBS’s decision to premiere Housos at the 10pm timeslot, but the network thought the show was too “full-on” for an 8.30 or 9pm slot.

UPDATE: Housos pulled 284,000 viewers according to OzTam.


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