Dr Mumbo

Did The Loop use Ten Network staff to fake its awkward new year audience countdown? (Yes)

The plot thickens on The Loop’s New Year’s Eve countdown audience mutiny.

As regular readers may recall, there were curious going-on during Eleven’s end of year countdown. Never has an audience of “competition winners” seemed so uninterested.

A YouTube video of those awkward final moments of 2016 is currently the number one trending video on the platform in Australia, having clocked up more than half a million views in the last 48 hours – which will be far, far larger a number than the show itself will ever have previously achieved.


An intriguing possibility now reaches Dr Mumbo. Rather than a bunch of pissed-off competition winners who’d been treated badly in the green room, could the rentacrowd actually have been members of staff dragged in from other departments?

A few factors point in this direction.

Despite trawling through The Loop’s social media feeds (Dr Mumbo did it, so you don’t have to) Dr Mumbo has been unable to find any evidence that a competition was ever run for viewers to take part in an end-of-year countdown.

It also seems unlikely that such an off-Broadway show (remember, it was secondary channel Eleven, not even on Ten’s main channel) went out as a live production (although Dr Mumbo does note a lot of dubious claims in The Loop’s feeds about various bands playing “live” in the studio in previous weeks).

Then, there’s the way the “audience” is dressed. They look rather more like they’re in typical media office casual rather than New Year night out.


Worst NYE party ever?


One source claims to Dr Mumbo that host Scott Tweedie has deleted a number of tweets that might hint at nefarious goings-on.

This exchange (involving Big Brother alumni Michael Beveridge and Chrissie Swan) certainly points in that direction.



Also, don’t forget (not that you knew) that back when he had more awesome hair, Tweedie’s previous duties included ABC’s Prank Patrol, which certainly hints at an inclination towards prankdom.


Tweedie: Used to have a much more awesome haircut

Dr Mumbo has two sources (if you can count somebody talking to him on social media as a source) claiming to recognise people in the crowd as actually working at Ten.

One of them points towards the uncanny resemblance between the awkward man with the pompoms, and Ten producer Paul Perigo’s LinkedIn profile.


Would you give this man a TV job?



Dr Mumbo has reached out to Tweedie, and also to Ten’s communications team. Unusually, there’s been no response…

Assuming the whole thing was staged, it leaves one remaining question: Were the staff genuinely cross about being dragged in and that’s why they looked so awkward? Or was the whole thing a genius plan to stage something that would be such awful television it would inevitably go viral?

Dr Mumbo will leave it up to you to decide…

10am update: As commenter Shamoo points out below, there’s another interesting resemblance, with the woman behind pompom guy looking a lot like Ten publicist Chelsea Manzer. (Dr Mumbo gave her a quick ring on her office number, but it went straight to voicemail…)


Reviewing an important NYE press release?


11.30am update: Scott Tweedie has just told Studio 10 that the segment was pre-recorded a week earlier, and deliberately awkward. View the video below…

Tweedie told Studio 10: “We’re on holiday so we pre-recorded it a week beforehand. We decided – how can we make this as awkward as possible?”


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