Andy Lee on how the show is using The Hundred in different ways for season three

The Hundred

• “Our stats pretty much lined up with what has been reported in the paper and by the ABC”

How many Australians – so far – have managed to avoid Covid? How many of us are adopted? Do you pick up the phone and call your mum every day? The third season of The Hundred with Andy Lee is firing up the wall of Zoom call screens to answer all these questions and more.

Mediaweek spoke to host Andy Lee ahead of the season premiere on Channel Nine and 9Now at 8:45pm Tuesday, August 16.

Three seasons in, Lee says that one of the side effects of working on the show is that statistics begin to pop up everywhere you look. 

“I was ordering food the other day, and one of the people at my table said, No anchovies. I said, Oh, it’s actually the number one food that people like the least. He said what’s number two? Tofu. Suddenly I’ve got all these stats in my head!”

With two seasons of The Hundred under their belt, Lee says the team has certainly found their footing with the show. With solid ground comes the ability to branch out and try new things – although the show won’t be straying too far from its roots.

“People aren’t going to come and go, What the hell are they doing?! I’m not doing some weird, absurd third album when we’re all used to the music that was playing. It’s more that there are a couple of quirky songs in there.

“There are new segments, but there is a lot of the same fun that we’ve been having, as well as using the Hundred in different ways.”

Whilst the segments viewers already know – such as Pick the Percent and Celeb-A-Really – aren’t going anywhere, Lee says the show has brought in some new ones for the Hundred to mull over.

One new segment, in particular, may (or may not) ease the conscience of anybody who has stared at the ceiling at night, replaying unfortunate social situations over in their mind. 

“We’ve got a new segment called Is It Rude? We’re talking about basic social situations like is it rude to be on your phone at the dinner table? Is it rude to use the neighbour’s bin? Or is it rude not to open a present in front of the gift giver? We put it to a hundred people and find out whether we’ve been rude in our lives or if we’re fine.”

The show has tackled tricky relationship questions before, but another segment will see the intensity taken up a notch.

“In Couples Court, if anyone’s got a disagreement with their partner and they both think they’re in the right, they come on the show. They both present their argument and a hundred people decide. That’s been a heap of fun this season. 

“There have been some frivolous ones, but as more and more come in, we’re seeing some more serious ones. We’re going to attack a few more of those later in this series, but we’ll keep it light early on.”

When the big screen lights up with a hundred faces looking back at you from all around the country, it can sometimes be easy to forget that every box is a person with a life of their own. For Lee, however, hearing the stories behind the statistics is one of the perks of the job.

“A lady got expelled from school because she blew up the sewing machine in a Home Ec class. Her dad was in mining, and she took black powder to school and actually blew up the machine – that’s how much she didn’t like the subject!

There are things you’re going to be shocked by and surprised by, but that’s what I love about the show. I’m continually surprised about what people have gotten up to in their lives.”

The Hundred is in a unique position. Having launched during the heights of Covid restrictions, the show now has to navigate a world where people are allowed outside of a 5km radius from their house. 

One of the side effects is that finding a hundred people available to shoot during the day isn’t as easy when people aren’t home as often. 

“It has been a little bit harder,” says Lee. “We’ve actually moved the shoots to nights so people can do it after work.”

the hundred

A much more positive effect that Covid has had on the show is giving a yardstick as to the accuracy of The Hundred.

“One of the questions on the first show is ‘how many people still haven’t had Covid?’ It seems like it’s everywhere. It was interesting – our stats pretty much lined up with what has been reported in the paper and by the ABC, so it’s interesting to see that our Hundred can stand up against those types of stats.”

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