HD Heads-Up: September 28-October 4

TV One will launch a top new Australian drama series in HD the same week it rolls over the shockingly low-rating Scandal for its second season.

A Place to Call Home is a big-budget period drama set just after World War II that includes Kiwi Craig Hall in its cast.

Creator Bevan Lee told The Australian the show was the pinnacle of a four-decade career that included Sons and Daughters, Home and Away and Packed to the Rafters.

He already has mapped out the first three series and compares each to the development of Australia during the 1950s itself.

“Season one sees the characters running from their secrets, season two has them facing those secrets and three is about them living with those secrets.

“There are comparisons there with Australia during that period, running from the winds of change and then facing up to them.”

It struck a chord with viewers, with the first series averaging about 1.2 million an episode — enough for Channel Seven to commission a second, which is soon to start filming.

According to The Guardian, “A Place to Call Home actually explores with real sophistication the stuff that resonates powerfully in our national consciousness – a longing for the past, and a longing for home – and that makes for great television.”

News.com.au called the first episode “a heady brew – equal parts Titanic, Downton Abbey, and Baz Lurhmann’s Australia.”

And the Sydney Morning Herald said this “sumptuous” series “not only reflects the secrets and scars of people who have been through the war, it is also made in a style and with a narrative structure that harks back to an older era of filmmaking.”

A Place to Call Home will screen Sunday nights, on the back of NZ’s Got Talent, from September 29 (the same night another Aussie HD drama, Winners and Losers, ends its run).

Three days later, TV One will launch season two of Scandal, despite the Washington DC drama having tanked in the ratings from the outset.

The network is clearly gambling on its twice-weekly scheduling strategy to build momentum for the series, as it was the second season that turned it into an addictive guilty-pleasure sensation in the US.

The risk is the longer it sticks with Scandal on Tuesdays and Wednesday, the more likely TV3 will build audiences for its low-rating Hawaii Five-O and Breakout Kings.

Incidentally, the DVD of Scandal’s first season goes on sale here on October 31, along with season two of Once Upon a Time.

But unlike the latter, Scandal misses out on a Blu-ray release — as does season two of Revenge, which is due October 2 on DVD.

Also of HD programming note for the week starting September 28:

❑ The double-episode season two premiere of Touch (TV3, 11.20 Sunday) and the launch of Project Runway: All Stars (TV3, 9.30 Thursday)

❑ Season finales of MasterChef Australia (TV One, 8.30 Saturday, pre-empting Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries) and Arrow (TV2, 8.30 Thursday)

❑ The network movie premiere of Mr Popper’s Penguins (TV3, 7.00 Sunday) and re-runs of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I (TV2, 7.30 Sunday) and Eagle Eye (TV3, 8.35 Monday).

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3 Responses to “HD Heads-Up: September 28-October 4”

  1. Good to see the return of Touch and Mr Popper’s Penguins is well worth watching, it’s a fun movie 🙂

  2. I can’t wait for A Place to Call Home and the new season of Scandal.

  3. Project Runway: All Stars is finally starting here, with season one just as the US is starting season three.

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