Daily Telegraph columnist Joe Hildebrand.
Daily Telegraph columnist Joe Hildebrand.

The real reason I was forced to quit my TV job at Studio 10

There is an old rule in politics: If you haven't heard a rumour by 9am start one yourself.

One could be forgiven for thinking the same applied to journalism: If you haven't got a story by 9am start one yourself.

And so it is easy to imagine that after two weeks of doing a column about television I had completely run out of ideas and the only way to get something to write about was to sack myself from Studio 10.

Well I am here today to tell you absolutely and unequivocally that such ridiculously absurd and unfounded conspiracy theories are only partly true.

The improbably long-lived comedian George Burns coined perhaps the most perfect line ever uttered: "The key to success is sincerity - if you can fake that, you've got it made." He probably stole that quote from someone else but the TV industry has mastered the art form to a perfection that George himself could never imagine.

When you’re not quite sure if what you’re seeing is real or completely fabricated, says Joe Hildebrand, suddenly the view becomes interesting.
When you’re not quite sure if what you’re seeing is real or completely fabricated, says Joe Hildebrand, suddenly the view becomes interesting.

Everything in TV, as in life, is carefully constructed to give the appearance of authenticity, and no amount of money or deception will be spared to achieve that goal. And that is what makes it so awesome.

If people want real authenticity they can just look out the window. Maybe you're looking at harbour views or the extension you complained to council about but either way it's pretty boring.

However when you're not quite sure if what you're seeing is real or completely fabricated suddenly the view becomes interesting.

That is pretty much the entire premise of Married At First Sight: Are they just shagging for the cameras or are they bona fide bogan horndogs?

In our hearts we pray it's both.

Real life, on the other hand, is far less interesting and involves far less sex - although often the same amount of shafting. The theory is I was forced out of Studio 10 because I was too right-wing or too left-wing or too unpredictable.

The boring truth is the network just needed to cut costs and I quit rather than take on a lesser role.

But nobody would want to watch that, so tell the world I went out in a blaze of glory.

Originally published as The real reason I was forced to quit my TV job at Studio 10



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