This week the Goggleboxers watched the soap opera continue on Married at First Sight and a special report on International Women’s Day on The Project.
Every evening in Australia, more than four million of us choose to spend a night in front of the telly. Have you ever wondered what other people are watching? Or whether MAFS is a highlight of the week for the entire population? Or if anyone out there agrees with Dean Wells' claim to be a feminist?
There are lots of problems with Dean and Tracey’s TV relationship on Married at First Sight. It's dysfunctional enough to be very entertaining; its twists and turns, ups and downs are almost unbelievable. What's probably more unbelievable, however – as Angie points out this week – is that Dean is given so much airtime, and Australia is addicted.
In the current climate of #MeToo and Time's Up, and the civil rights movement emerging around women: at work and in the wider world, with gender disparity being called our here, there, and everywhere – where do the Dean Wells and the Barnaby Joyce's of the world fit in? And have we had enough?
This week, The New York Times published a piece on mean blokes and boys clubs in Australian politics, arguing the "toxic culture" was holding back the #MeToo movement in our halls of power. As well as the thrills and spills of MAFS, The Goggleboxers watched a recap of International Women's Day (or 'International Sheila's Day' as Keith would have it) last week on The Project. On the show, Julia Gillard said, "We still have a way to travel before men and women are truly equal."
The Project also called out the pay gap in Australia – the divide that rests somewhere between 15 and 18 percent that saw Lisa Wilkinson join The Project panel. It's a global issue (apparently even The Crown's Clare Foy is paid less than her prince in a support role, Matt Smith), but where the powers that be seem reluctant to change, renegade businesses are stepping in to instigate change. While Sydney's super popular burger venue Mary's offered women 15.3% off on International Women's Day, Australian travel insurance company Travel With Jane's USP is that it offers women the discount 365 days a year.
As Anastasia puts it, maybe it should be International Women's Day all year round. For Australia's first female Prime Minister, now is "a time to be energised and optimistic about what we can achieve."