New to Netflix in October

The Ranch Season 1: Part 2 (07/10/16) The Bennett men ponder the future of the ranch as Colt and Beau wrestle with conflicted feelings about the women in their lives. Haters Back Off! (14/10/16) Based on the character created by Colleen Ballinger-Evans, Haters Back Off delves into the oddball family life of Miranda Sings, an […]

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Critical Condition: This Is Us

This Is Us (TV2, 8.30 Tuesday) “The current vogue for dramedy is raw, slightly absurd, shaky cam sitcom subversions – the indie film aesthetic of ‘authenticity’ that has become cliché to the point of bogusness. This Is Us ain’t that. In some ways, it typifies the big turn, big feel sentimentality that neo-grunge tries to deconstruct. I […]

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Critical Condition: The Exorcist

The Exorcist (TV2, 9.40 Sunday) “The premiere … doesn’t try to be the movie or outdo it in terms of fright factor, nor does it provide any reasons for mockery. It’s well-made, well-acted television, which is more than can be said for some of the reboots rolling out this fall. Where it’s going after the first episode is anyone’s […]

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Critical Condition: Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon (TV2, 8.40 Sunday) “Don’t expect even a spark of originality from Fox’s Lethal Weapon, the fifth iteration of the Mel Gibson/Danny Glover movie franchise — and the 1000th example of TV’s abiding affection for bicker-and-bond buddy cops. This is a strictly a by-the-books affair, starting with its appropriation of pre-tested characters up to and including the completely ludicrous but […]

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Next Week in HD: October 1 – 7

New Zealand’s definitive guide to what’s airing nightly free-to-air in 1080i    Saturday  Chasing Monsters (TV1, 4.55) Africa (TV3, 4.55, R) Movie: Flushed Away (TV2, 5.20, R) Newshub Live at 6pm (TV3, 6.00)  Simply Nigella (Prime, 6.00, R) Hyundai Country Calendar (TV1, 7.00) Wonderful World of Disney: Bridge to Terabithia (TV2, 7.00, R) Network Movie Premiere: The Boxtrolls (TV3, 7.00, 5.1) The Great Pottery Throw Down (TV1, 7.30)  The Holiday […]

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Game On — at Last — For Beowulf on TV2

As frustrating as it is to see so many HD series stream in SD on TVNZ OnDemand before they ‘premiere’ on TV One or TV2, they do eventually make the transition from online to on air. The latest is Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands. It launched on ITV in January and will make its TV2 bow […]

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HD Ratings: Auckland Wives Beat LA Heroes

Bravo’s controversial The Real Housewives of Auckland out-rated TV3’s NCIS: Los Angeles for the first time on Tuesday in the 18-49 demographic. The reality hour averaged 2.4% of this audience compared to the action hour’s 2.3%. It was competitive in TV3’s other key demo, 25-54, with NCIS: LA averaging 3.2% against Wives’ 2.5%. The previous week […]

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HD Ratings: Dirty Laundry Makes Its Mark

TV One’s new local drama, Dirty Laundry, didn’t make a clean sweep of the ratings when it launched on Wednesday but improved on the British series that previously aired in the 8.30 slot. It averaged 5.4% of the network’s target audience, 25-54 year-olds, which was well ahead of TV3’s Chicago Med (2.1%) but well behind […]

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HD Heads-Up: September 22

Nearly live from the BBC … New Humans due? … TV3 lifts lid on Boxtrolls … TV3 will screen The Graham Norton Show within a week of the BBC when the chat show host returns for his 20th series on October 7. It will open with guests Daniel Radcliffe, Justin Timberlake, Anna Kendrick and Robbie Williams. A year […]

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Prime Spring Clean Half-Baked UPDATED*

Prime will refresh its schedule in the first week of October with an impressive slate of newcomers but two of the best won’t be in HD. At least fans of Poldark will be able to see the costume drama here in HD for the first time, when it succeeds Jericho as the 8.30 lead-in to Game […]

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HD Heads-Up: September 21

Beastly slot for jungle rumble … Gold Coast roast … Car crash TV pile-up … TV One is unleashing one of the BBC’s better wildlife specials off-peak on October 2 when it will premiere Return of the Giant Killers at 4.55pm. Culled from a BBC Two series, The Telegraph hailed it as a “fine Natural World film” about lions fighting to survive in […]

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New to Blu: September 21 – 27

X-Men: Apocalypse lands here here ahead of the US in 4K, 3D and Blu-ray editions with the same extras but different audio encodes. The 4K transfer has Dolby Atmos whereas the 3D/Blu-ray tops out at DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1. A commentary by director Bryan Singer and screenwriter Simon Kinberg headline the extras, which include: An hour-long documentary, […]

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HD Ratings: New Life for Fair Go and House Rules

Shifting TV One’s Fair Go from  7.30 Wednesday to 7.30 Monday boosted the consumer show’s ratings at the same time as TV3’s House Rules doubled its Monday night viewership. Their extra eyeballs came at the expense of Australian Survivor, which dropped more than a point in the 25-54 demographic. Fair Go averaged 8.9% of this demo and […]

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Critical Condition: American Horror Story

American Horror Story: My Roanoke Nightmare (SoHo, 9.30 Tuesday/encore 7.30 Sunday) “At last, at last, American Horror Story aired an episode that was simply an American horror story—not an American fever dream and tonal pastiche featuring supernatural rapists, non-essential enema scenes, muddled social commentary, and the misuse of Broadway’s most venerated talents. The theme for the sixth season […]

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HD Ratings: Sky Spectre Haunts Networks

Sky Movies’ premiere of the James Bond movie Spectre dented the free-to-air debuts of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part I and Gone Girl. Spectre rated above average for an 8.30 Sunday premiere on Sky’s premium movies channel, averaging 2.3% of 18-49 year-olds and 2.2% of 25-54 year-olds. The FTA movies rated higher but Spectre’s popularity would still have […]

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