HD Heads-Up: April 19


➢ Maori TV will use the free-to-air premiere of the Michael Moore documentary, Where to Invade Next (8.30, April 30), to launch a week of new-season fare. Highlights will include: Island Feast with Peter Kuruvita (7.30 Monday), which explores the culturally diverse northern region of the Philippines; Matau (8.00 Tuesday), about two fishing-mad brothers on Great Barrier Island; Piri’s Tiki Tour (8.30 Tuesday), in which Piri Weepu tours a new marae of papakainga each week to celebrate culinary talent and try out the crème de le crème of Māori kai; Hangi Pit Masters (8.00 Wednesday), which showcases six of the best chefs in Aotearoa; and the return of Game of Bros (8.00 Thursday) and Sidewalk Karaoke (8.30 Thursday) …

➢ Unusually, three FTA movie premieres will square off that week at 8.30 on Sunday: TVNZ 2’s Legend of Tarzan, Three’s Central Intelligence and Maori TV’s Charlie’s Country. Other HD coming attractions will include:

  • Kung Fu Panda (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Saturday)
  • Turbo (Three, 7.00 Saturday)
  • Starsky & Hutch (TVNZ 2, 8.40 Saturday)
  • The Eagle (Three, 8.50 Saturday)
  • End of Watch (TVNZ 2, 10.30 Saturday)
  • Her Final Bow (Three, 11.00 Saturday)
  • Lawless (Duke, 9.30 Sunday)
  • The Possession (TVNZ 2, 11.30 Sunday)
  • Fighting (Prime, 8.30 Monday)
  • Training Day (Duke, 9.00 Monday)
  • The Terminator (Three, 8.30 Thursday)
  • Everly (Duke, 8.30 Friday) …

➢ TVNZ 2 will resume two of its newer US comedies from April 30. American Housewife and Life in Pieces will screen on a post-My Kitchen Rules double-bill. The duo usurp The Resident, which starts Monday in that slot but will screen permanently post-MKR on Tuesdays (ahead of a second weekly episode of Grey’s Anatomy). Personally, I think TVNZ 2 should have continued with The Resident and Grey’s Anatomy as a Monday-Tuesday double-bill to feed the binge-viewing appetite that the likes of Netflix and Lightbox have whetted with their streaming platforms — particularly given Housewife and Pieces are two of its weaker sitcoms …

➢ TVNZ 1’s only newcomer for the week starting April 28 is Design Junkies, which will screen 7.30 Thursdays. It challenges 10 ingenious Kiwi designers  to create the most beautiful creations out of trash (a more interesting variation on this premise would be to ask NZ free-to-air programmers to pull off the same feat with their schedules) …

➢ Three will team the Monday night episode of Dancing With the Stars with a new season of its top-rating Lost & Found from April 30. It will be followed by a season of crime-themed docos that will open with An Hour to Catch a Killer, in which Sir Trevor McDonald examines the “the golden hour” of murder investigations. The Guardian said the programme’s extraordinary access to police procedure makes you “less of a viewer, more part of the investigation” …

➢ Prime has two premieres that week for its Wednesday action reality block: The Selection (8.30), in which 30 civilians begin the most intense physical and mental challenge of their life under the watch of six Special Ops vets; and Ross Kemp: The Fight Against ISIS (9.30). “This is gripping television and Kemp’s approach frequently pays dividends,” said Radio Times while The Times argued it was “not only immersive, as people say these days when something doesn’t make you reach for the channel zapper, it was illuminating” …

➢ Also new to Prime is Round Planet (6.30 Sundays from April 29), an irreverent repurposing of BBC natural history content. The parody stars Little Britain’s Matt Lucas as presenter Armstrong Wedgewood and is billed as “combining mind-blowing fact with genre-bending comedy” …

➢ Ending their runs that week are Storage Wars, Elementary, Coast Australia, Midsomer Murders, Our Dream Hotel and Conviction

➢ Appearing this week and next on Prime’s The Late Show With Stephen Colbert are: Cynthia Nixon, Alan Cumming, and a musical performance by Franz Ferdinan (11.30 Thursday); Antonio Banderas, US Senator Kamala Harris and a musical performance by Snow Patrol (10.30 Friday); and James Marsden and YouTube personality Coyote Peterson (11.00 Monday) …

➢ From next week, Duke will replace Ghosted with seasons 19 of South Park (8.30 Mondays) and three of Travel Man (10.30 Thursdays). This is due to Ghosted’s US air dates being delayed because of a ratings decline that could spell an early death. Predicted TV By the Numbers in January (when the show last aired in the US): “Ghosted’s profile is looking a lot like that of the cancelled Son of Zorn last season (the two have nearly identical ratings), and now that Fox’s NFL commitment is done, there will be no more Sundays with heavy football traffic leading into primetime and bumping ratings up” …

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4 Responses to “HD Heads-Up: April 19”

  1. Why are we replaying Big Bang Sunday evenings? You can do something way better than this, so think big really big to succeed Survivor NZ leading into our big budget movies.

  2. Strange the Duke pulled Ghosted from the schedule as the eleventh episode that hasn’t aired in the US was previously scheduled to air on the 23rd. Especially considering that they also aired an episode that hasn’t aired in the States yet on the 19th (episode 10) … Wonder if they messed up by airing that on Duke.

  3. Big Bang re-runs have replaced the same-week repeat of Young Sheldon, which TVNZ 2 pulled mid-season from Mondays. BB is TVNZ 2’s go-to show whenever it needs to plug a hole in the schedule.

  4. Very odd, indeed. Generally, US or UK series/episodes can’t air internationally until they’ve been broadcast domestically.

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