Ben Elton’s ‘Live From Ratings Hell’

That’s not actually the name of the show, you guys.

Ben Elton, British comic, writer, musical producer and all-round legend is not having an easy ride in Australia. The man responsible for taking Queen off stereos and into musical theatre and writing great novels about the legalisation of drugs in the UK launched his show Live From Planet Earth on Channel Nine last week – and it tanked. In fact, it tanked so bad that the bosses at Nine are apparently giving Elton his marching orders after only seven days

At less than 300,000 viewers by the time the show ended, Elton’s sketch-comedy program is up for the dubious title of the worst Aussie TV debut in recent history. This is pretty bad considering that we made both The Enforcers and Top Gear: Australia. But then, so is this:

So what’s the deal? Nine didn’t pick a good night to premiere the show; 1.2 million of you tuned into Channel 7 to watch Tony Abbott rip into reporter Mark Riley in the wake of ‘Shit Happens’-Gate. Also, Shane Warne‘s shacking up with Liz Hurley became national news. If that’s not live comedy, we don’t know what is.

The ever-present and ever-hilarious Max Lavergne taped Elton’s show and live-tweeted it a day later. Here’s his three of his best from the hourly program, which tell you pretty much everything you need to know.

At least someone made us laugh.