In Australia, The LifeStyle Channel’s head of programming and production Trevor Eastment and his team are working on green programming, a genre he thinks ‘has been done extraordinarily badly up until this point,’ especially with its use of scare tactics. ‘There are a lot of these shows where teams of people go into houses and they’re dressed like antiterrorist squads. They look really frightening and I think that’s a really dopey way of trying to sell something to people.
‘You’ve got to make stuff nice and better for people to want to do it. Rather than asking ‘Is your house killing you?’ I think ‘Could your house be healthier?’ might be more appealing.’
Mary Ellen Iwata, VP of program and talent development at HGTV, acknowledges that green is very big this year – and HGTV has aired a few green-themed programs – but she wonders about the longevity of this type of programming.
‘We’re going to wait and see if people are really watching it, or is everybody just talking about it?’ asks Iwata. ‘It’s become a huge press and news thing, but are people really going to want to do this and hear about it on a regular basis, or are they just going to move onto the next thing?’