#PartyTricks TV characters take to Twitter

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Tonight, the hotly anticipated new @ChannelTen political drama #PartyTricks starring Asher Keddie and Rodger Corser hits Aussie TV screens, but Twitter users have had an exclusive preview of the show through the two official character accounts penned by producer and writer @MrMichaelLucas.

Whether it’s #Scandal, #Offspring or Orange Is The New Black (#OITNB) drama is a big conversation starter on Twitter. In a new political drama about to air on @ChannelTen, fans will be able to get even closer to the story and characters in a particularly unique fashion via Twitter. Welcome to #PartyTricks.

To bring the show to life, @ChannelTen and @EndemolAus have created create two official character accounts for @kateballardMP and @davidmcleod — the two rival politicians at the heart of the drama. These characters will live-Tweet topical news stories, post additional story content that reflects the drama unfolding on-screen, and, in an Australian-first, engage with fans and celebrities via Twitter Q&As.

This ambitious idea was only possible through careful planning from the outset of the production process. David Corkery (Social Media Manager, @ChannelTen) says, “Like most politicians, we felt that Kate and David would naturally have Twitter accounts to promote themselves, talk with their ‘constituents’ and project their public personas. When we presented the idea to @MrMichaelLucas, the show’s producer and writer, he jumped at it. From there, our social and digital teams worked closely with Michael and @EndemolAus to create a content strategy across tenplay and Twitter. Viewers can learn more about the characters by interacting with them directly on Twitter.”

Live-Tweeting for two characters is quite a daunting task but former #Offspring writer (and now producer and writer of #PartyTricks) @MrMichaelLucas was up for the challenge and felt it was a natural extension of his writing for the show: “Writing for TV, you live with the characters for months on end, so their voices become second nature. I’ve spent most of this year writing dialogue for David and Kate, so it doesn’t take any time at all to get into the mindset. The real challenge will come when the show airs, and I’ll start tweeting back and forth between them, as well as with their followers. Then I’ll really need to be on my game.”

And how has the audience interacted with the characters to date?

“I have had someone asking why Kate Ballard looks so much like Asher Keddie (and they were serious!)” says Michael. “And I’ve also had some very fun, slightly cheeky questions hurled my way, many of them about policies, many of them from political bloggers.”

To promote the activity and bring the characters to life the @ChannelTen digital team are already leveraging existing Twitter accounts and arranging for Ten Talent to interact with Kate and David and promote which character they would back in an election.

And so far the results have been great with eachs account already beating benchmarks for previous new drama series in terms of new followers and engagements. But as @MrMichaelLucas says, the real fun starts when the first episode airs: “So far, it’s all just a warm-up. Monday night, the first ep will air, and the public will finally get to meet these characters, and Tweet them if they choose. I’m looking forward to seeing what happens…”

If you want to explore the #PartyTricks world why not give Kate and David a follow and Tweet them your questions: