Bingeable TV: Get Krackin’

For years, Americans have enjoyed TV programs from Great Britain (Downton Abbey, Sherlock, Doctor Who), New Zealand (Flight of the Concords), and countless other countries around the world. For some reason though, Australian TV shows have never really made a mark on the US market, until now.

Get Krackin’, which airs on the Australian Broadcast Channel but can also be found on Youtube, is finding growing popularity here at home. The program, which stars Kate McCartney and Kate McLennan of Katering Show fame, is largely an absurdist approach to the standard morning show format of programs like the Today Show and Good Morning America. And while much of the show is a silly (in a good way) takedown of those tired old formats, Get Krackin’s reliance upon sharp edged feminist and pro-science humor is a truly unique feature which should thrill both humanists and other politically progressive viewers.

All too often, the Kates face insane, boring, or just plain stupid guests, all while filming locally at 3am (a time that allows American viewers to watch the show comfortably in the afternoon, but which often force the Kates to fall asleep live on air).  A good example of one of these guests is found during their “MediKate” segment, which deals with the latest health fads. Resident health “Doctor” Mariam Margoylesles pitches her latest health cure on the show (much like Dr. Oz or the hucksters on American TV who push superfoods) and tries to claim that turmeric can cure all diseases, including cancer. As Kate McLennan says, “We all want to be healthy, without having to exercise or stop drinking,”which “Doctor” Margolyesles claims is possible simply by drinking turmeric smoothies. When asked by the Kates to show the scientific evidence to support this claim, their guest provides a video of turmeric turning bad chemicals into smiley faces.  The Kates angrily tell her to get out and immediately start worrying about their need for a lawyer.

But perhaps the most common theme on the show, besides the exhaustion and boredom of the Kates, is their angrily hilarious responses to guests who try to hit on them or belittle women in general. Most guests tend to greet the two Kates with something along the lines of, “Hello Girls!” to which Kate McCartney always replies with a deadpan, “We’re thirty-seven-year-old women with children,” much to the guest’s confusion. But the funniest segment along these lines has to do with flamenco guitar player Pico Pinta, who is ostensibly on the show to play a song from his new album, but who ends up trying to hit on the two Kates. While Kate McCartney just looks uncomfortable and unsure of what to do, Kate McClennan comes running over, heels in hand, and starts physically shooing Pico away, declaring that the Kates have to be more assertive.

Overall, Get Krackin’ is a great Tim & Eric style absurdist comedy with a good mix of gallows humor and the promotion of positive values. So take a moment out of your afternoon and give the show a try.