Tuesday 28 January 2020

TV3 apologises after Toy Show sparks complaints

Brian McFadden and Karen Koster at Tv3's Toy Show at The Rds Dublin
Brian McFadden and Karen Koster at Tv3's Toy Show at The Rds Dublin
Brian McFadden and Karen Koster at TV3's Toy Show

TV3 has received a number of complaints following its Christmas Toy Show broadcast - with the actions of host Brian McFadden and guest Brian Dowling coming in for most criticism.

The station has confirmed it has so far received around a dozen complaints from members of the public.

Others have contacted the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) to register complaints and have been referred to TV3 where their issues have to be lodged first.

The Ballymount-based station broadcast the popular show live from the RDS last Friday to an overall audience of more than one million viewers.

McFadden partnered Xpose host Karen Koster to front the show, with former Big Brother winner Brian Dowling guesting on the 90-minute slot.


One complaint concerned what a viewer said was Dowling's "graphic and inappropriate descriptions of his toy action man in various states of clothing".

In the piece, Dowling said he loved Action Man.

"There were different types of Action Man, he'd be naked Action Man, he'd be topless Action Man, he'd have no trousers on Action Man, and then one time he was a cross-dresser because he'd try to wear Barbie's clothes and then I started liking Barbies and the rest is kind of obvious," he added on the show.

The viewer felt it was "not appropriate for a young audience, particularly noting it was a pre-recorded piece and not live.

TV3 confirmed that it had received around 12 complaints regarding the Dowling slot.

"It was not TV3's intention to cause any offence and we wish to apologise to viewers if they were offended by the clip," a station spokesperson said.

"In response to these complaints we withdrew the clip from the repeat of the show on Sunday afternoon," it added.

Complaints forwarded to the BAI, which have now been referred to TV3, also include anger at Westlife singer Brian McFadden.

One complaint is that, in the opinion of the viewer, he grabbed a doll from Karen Koster and exclaimed: "Woman we need to talk."


Another complaint is that he encouraged the young reviewers to shoot at people in the audience with toy guns.

A promotion with premium phone details was also criticised. Complaints guidelines from the BAI state that a person must first approach the broadcaster within 30 days of the programme being aired, and the station then has another 30 days to respond.

If it fails to respond, or if the viewer is not satisfied with the response, they can then refer the matter to the BAI.

TV3 said an average of 472,100 viewers watched the festive toy show on Friday night, with the programme reaching 1.1 million people in total.

RTE's Late Late Toy Show, hosted by Ryan Tubridy, will be broadcast this Friday night at 9.30pm.


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