A marriage made in free to air heaven, bringing the charm of old Vice and the heady multicultural spice of SBS to a head. You can turn it on anytime of night and be rewarded with an interesting perspective, a fresh take or untold story. Like Sunday night viewing for every night of the week.
And odd move perhaps for a channel marketed to millennials to base itself anywhere but online, but Vice has a pull so magnetic it can move us from our Netflix entangled hands to the couch. It’s been labelled controversial by some touching some topics that really shocked Daily Telegraph readers, gay travel, weed and god forbid crime. Sure it’s brazen but at what it isn’t is fake.
So sandwiched between the daily rotation of news in every language your tongue can muster, a wealth of programs that will pique your interest in the most unlikely of ways. Here’s our top five pick of quality shows on Viceland you’re going to need to watch, especially if you want to keep up with water cooler chit chat.
#1 Vice: World of Sports
Taking you into the pits of the darkest grudge matches the world over, Vice visit Serbian football for a fanatic display of violence. Flairs erupt into the sky clouding the pitch with a dense fog pixelated by fire, fans rip their chairs from their posts and riot squad police unleash tear gas on the mounting crowd. All in a days work for the match between Red Star and Partisan. It’s electric to watch the tensions unfold off the pitch and the terse atmosphere of a country in unrest coming undone at a game. And that’s just in one episode, tune in to see a game day weigh in, American basketball abroad and the path to international stardom as an athlete. Riveting viewing from day dot.
#2 United Shades of America
Especially poignant as of recent events, this program travels cross country in the US to delve into the deepest corners of people. The KKK, Latino America, the business of prison and the tensions between police and black americans, no stone is left unquestioned. With comedian W.Kamau Bell at the helm it’s not as depressing as you think it might be and has a Theroux-esque tone to it, asking the questions with earnest.
If the world wide web could be exposed and laid bare on the street this is the program to do it. Interviewing Anonymous, NSA hackers, Silk Road purveyors and more underground internet enterprises operating criminally online. Logging into the world of geopolitical warfare and cyber battle ground where governments and hackers quibble for information. It’ll make you want to turn off your webcam for good and digital detox for a while but it’s wonderfully enlightening.
#4 Black Market: Dispatches
Ever wondered why abalone is so expensive? How pop culture influences drug taking behaviours? Or maybe you’re just a burgeoning criminal looking to collect information for their next endeavour, Black Market takes you to the back stairs and all the way down to the basement. The host Michael Williams embeds himself in a criminal organisation for our viewing pleasure and the result is honest and captivating.
Wonder where musical subcultures come from? Why Compton or Nashville is synonymous with a certain sound? Well wonder no more. Noisey takes its special brand of music reportage to the streets and hometowns of cultural icons come artists, from Kendrick Lamar to Major Lazer. Map out the cultural shockwave that reverberates when one of the community’s prizes makes it to the pinnacle of success. We have Kendrick to thank for enlivening Compton, and Major Lazer for funkifying the world from the clubs of Brazil.
To watch it for yourself tune into Channel 32 or stream online here, don’t throw out your TV anytime soon.
Image source: EurWeb.