It is the morning of Monday, May 25, in the year 2020, and Kyle Sandilands is fine.
This may come as a surprise to anyone who saw last week’s adverts for 60 Minutes, which suggested the Australian radio shock jock has been hiding a severe illness. But no, he’s doing okay, thanks for asking.
Because of Sandiland’s apparently positive health outlook, viewers have questioned the show’s advertising practices after previews implied he was harbouring some kind of serious diagnosis.
One clip, shared online last week, featured Sandilands tearing up alongside longtime on-air partner Jackie O.
“There’s a condition I’ve been diagnosed with that I haven’t spoke with anyone about,” Sandilands said.
A look of surprise from interviewer Karl Stefanovic was overlaid with a grave voiceover: “Is this loudmouth of the airwaves about to be silenced?”
Chaos, controversy and undeniable chemistry. @KyleandJackieO have ruled the Australian airwaves for 20 years. SUNDAY on #60Mins, how the King and Queen of radio have turned being outrageous into a hundred million dollar business. pic.twitter.com/k87KnPgqrd— 60 Minutes Australia (@60Mins) May 20, 2020
The answer, as it turns out, is no. Despite footage of Sandilands fooling around with a blood pressure machine, the full 60 Minutes broadcast revealed Sandilands was taking the piss.
His fake-out elicited a pretty surprised response from both Jackie O and Stefanovic – and from viewers, who didn’t think a guy who built his career on tasteless stunts would execute a tasteless stunt.
It might seem unusual but Kyle’s obsession with his health – or lack of it – has become a regular topic of chatter on the show. But they’re still not sure whether they should be laughing or crying about it. #60Mins pic.twitter.com/x3nQqd03T1— 60 Minutes Australia (@60Mins) May 24, 2020
“Do you feel any shame for your false advertising all week?,” one viewer asked on Twitter.
“People expect the 60 Minutes brand to be the one program remaining on television that doesn’t pull any tricks or mislead the viewer.”
“You advertise all week about a poignant moment and a deadly diagnosis all week. Only for it to be a joke,” said another.
Reviews weren’t so hot on Facebook, either.
“So disappointed in this show… I too thought Kyle was terminal,” one user said.
It’s worth mentioning that 60 Minutes Australia calls Channel 9 home, and PEDESTRIAN.TV also sits under the Nine Entertainment umbrella, meaning there’s a certain irony in me sitting here and bringing all of this to you.
But you ought to know that Kyle Sandilands says he is fine physically. We might need to wait for the next 60 Minutes exposé to really suss how he’s doing spiritually, though.