Downton Abbey Challenge for Wannabe TV Critics

The Press newspaper in Christchurch is using Wednesday’s premiere of the Downton Abbey Christmas Special on Prime to test the credentials of wannabe TV critics.

It’s looking for a regular TV columnist for easily the country’s best TV/tech lift-out, The Box (full disclosure: I’m among its contributors).

Box editor Will Harvie is inviting freelance opinion writers to watch part one of Downton Abbey and file 500 words on it, by 9am Friday, along with CVs and story clips, to:

“The ideal candidate will be zealous watcher and vivacious writer who is keen to develop a national profile through Fairfax syndication,” he says.

“There may be occasional celebrity and feature writing opportunities. Proven deadline beaters preferred but I often work with inexperienced writers.

“Familiarity with Canterbury and the South Island sensibilities is helpful, but home location doesn’t matter (indeed Auckland may be an advantage).”

The good news about the Christmas special, which out-rated perennial festive crowdpleaser EastEnders in the UK, is it’s said to be much better than the second season.

Even better news is Universal Pictures NZ plans to release it on Blu-ray, for $35, on February 9, the day after Prime’s SD broadcast of part two (in the UK it aired as a movie).

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