HD Heads-Up: March 30

TV2 will test the appeal of its new hypnotherapy game show You’re Back in the Room by screening the British original first. It will air 7.30 Sundays from April 10, the same week TV2 pushes back The Voice to 8.30 Friday and precedes it with new episodes of UK dating game show, Take Me Out. British reviews of YBITR were mixed, with the Mirror declaring co-host Philip Schofield was “going kamikaze on his career with one of the worst prime-time shows you’ll ever see”. The Guardian was kinder (“It’s quite funny. For a while. But hardly original”) while The Telegraph thought it “significantly funnier than anything else on TV.” Viewers agreed, with the series averaging four million an episode …

NZ-made Born to Dance and Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip are the week's only new releases on Blu-ray. The latter also has a Kiwi link, with the visual effects by Weta Digital being singled out in a Blu-ray.com review: "The best detail here is in the pure CGI elements, including things like the chipmunks' fur or even their eyes." Among the extras is a Weta and the Chipmunks: Animators' Reference Reel, which "offers split screen comparisons of film moments with some pretty clunky reference footage" ...

NZ-made Born to Dance and Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip are the week’s only new releases on Blu-ray. The latter also has a Kiwi link, with the visual effects by Weta Digital being singled out in a Blu-ray.com review: “The best detail here is in the pure CGI elements, including things like the chipmunks’ fur or even their eyes.” Among the extras is a Weta and the Chipmunks: Animators’ Reference Reel, which “offers split screen comparisons of film moments with some pretty clunky reference footage”.

TV One will commemorate the late Frank Torley by pre-empting Saturday’s scheduled new episode of Hyundai Country Calendar with a repeat of the 2011 special that profiled the veteran broadcaster for the show’s 45th anniversary. The episode marked the first time Country Calendar aired here in HD and Torley provided ScreenScribe.tv with a characteristically “frank” quip about what the transition would mean for the programme makers …

While premium British dramas like the latest seasons of Happy Valley and Indian Summers languish for a slot here, TV One continues to roll out lesser US newcomers like The Astronaut Wives Club (10.35 Saturdays from April 9) and The Family (9.25 Sundays from April 10).  The former, which focuses on the women behind the men in the Mercury 7 space programme (below), averaged a Metacritic score of 60 and was praised by Variety and pinged by The Hollywood Reporter. Rotten Tomatoes summed up The Family, which already is streaming on TVNZ OnDemand, as taking “a confusing, convoluted course to solve its central mystery that few will want to follow, despite a game performance from Joan Allen”. Meanwhile, another TV One mediocrity that’s miraculously managed to limp on for four seasons, Forgettable, at last winds up on April 13 …

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6 Responses to “HD Heads-Up: March 30”

  1. Just seen The Blacklist has been pulled from TV3 effective last night and will now be a 3Now exclusive. Must have been rating pretty dire for that to happen. It seems now a lot of US dramas have one strong season in NZ but fail to back it up when they return (How to Get Away With Murder etc).

  2. Yes, ratings have slipped significantly the longer the series has gone on, although they’ve not been helped by the show being reshuffled around the schedule. The series will now fast-track here via 3Now, with the next new ep streaming (in low-res SD) from April 8. TV3 says The Blacklist will be back on air in “the next few months” — but don’t be surprised if it’s off-peak.

  3. Apparently there are only two more episodes of Season 3 of The Blacklist.

  4. Thanks, Mark, but according to IMDb, there are seven to go.

  5. OK another website confirmed that this season only had 2 more episodes. Obviously incorrect though

  6. With such dire line-ups it’s going to take more than a dose of hypnotherapy to get me watching broadcast TV again :O

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