Gogglebox's Wayne And Tom Invite PM To Watch The Show

The couple credit Gogglebox with helping promote marriage equality.

22/08/2016 2:06 PM AEST | Updated 22/08/2016 4:49 PM AEST
Nick Wilson / Foxtel
Wayne and Tom in their house, with cocktails (of course).

When it comes to reality TV gigs, Gogglebox's 'gay dads' Wayne and Tom know they have it pretty good.

"Where else do you get paid to watch television in your own home?" Wayne asks.

"For us, nothing changes [in our daily lives]. It's just us sitting on the couch, with me feeding Tom lots of cocktails."

Adds Tom: "The only thing we notice [that's different] is we're watching some really bad TV we might not normally watch."

For the uninitiated, Gogglebox is a program where you watch other people watch television. Sounds ridiculous, right?

Except, strangely, it continually proves to be a popular format. Originally adapted from the highly successful British version of the same name, Gogglebox is about to enter its fourth season on air in Australia, and even won a Silver Logie for Best Factual Program earlier this year.

The show's popularity came as a surprise to both Wayne and Tom, who were originally scouted on a steam train en route from Melbourne to Shepparton.

"Apparently there was a scout on board we didn't know about," Wayne told The Huffington Post Australia. "This guy came up up and sat down with us, and basically asked 'would you like to be on the show?'"

"We'd seen it on YouTube -- the English version -- but weren't really all too familiar with it," Tom continued. Our children made us have a look."

While the Melbourne couple isn't 'paid' for their involvement (though they do score a 'location fee' for the use of their house and the electricity), being on the show has had some unexpected benefits. For Wayne and Tom, who have been together for 15 years and have raised three children, sharing their lives with the wider Australian public has been a surprisingly powerful way of promoting marriage equality.

"At first, [the producers] were a bit worried about having two real life gay people on television," Wayne told HuffPost Australia. "Not actors, but real-life people actually in a relationship who are just living their lives.

"I have to say, the fan response has just been amazing.

"We don't want to get anything out of this -- we don't want to get any fame or fortune -- we've just done it more for the experience.

Are you listening, Mr Turnbull? Australia is. Are you?

"But to have that realisation of how much impact we're having on marriage equality and getting the message out there; that's what is really driving us now.

"We see the response all the time. There was one girl who tweeted about her Dad who was really against same-sex marriage, but who after watching us on the show, has completely changed his mind. For us it's really about being there and being visible getting people to understand us as a normal couple."

"Are you listening, Mr Turnbull?" Tom asks. "Australia is. Are you?"

In fact, Tom and Wayne have proved so popular on the show, Tom insists they are still waiting for some kind of online backlash that's yet to rear its ugly head.

"The poor Bachelor gets hammered all the time," he said. "I always thought, well, I guess if you put yourself on Australian TV, you have to get ready to be taken down. We've honestly had none of that at all. I'm waiting for my first troll. Where are you?"

In terms of what to look out for in the upcoming season, Wayne and Tom are excited to introduce Australia to their new puppy Trixie. Other than that, they are as keen as the rest of us to find out what's in store.

Well, some are keener than others.

"If I have to watch one more of those music and entertainment shows I will poke my eyes out," Wayne told HuffPost Australia.

"Don't listen to him," Tom interrupts. "'The Voice' is great!"

"Or a cooking show," Wayne continues. "Once you see Manu once, you don't need to see him again."

"I guess, in terms of what to expect, audiences can expect more of the same," Tom said. "We have no idea what we're going to be in for.

"They never tell us what to do. In fact, that's the joy of what we do. Until we sit down, we have no idea what we're going to watch. It just comes up on our TV. It's like the devil."

Gogglebox Australia returns on Wednesday, 24 August at 7.30pm on the Lifestyle Channel, and Thursday, 25 August At 8.30pm on TEN and WIN Network.

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