HD Heads-Up: January 30 – February 5

➢➢ Three will experiment with the primetime stripping of documentary series in February, starting in the first week with the three-part Cocaine: Living With the Cartels (9.40 Monday, 8.40 Tuesday, 9.00 Wednesday). Channel 5 aired it in 2019 as Doing Drugs for Fun? because it exposes four recreational cocaine users to the true cost of their party highs by taking them on “a dangerous journey to Colombia to learn about the effects of the class A drug”. Said The Guardian: “It is a deep-dive through the superficial fun of a party drug that 1 million Britons take into the brutality beneath. It manages to be compelling, honest and unpreachy, and treats its subject with robust respect” …

➢➢ Three also will premiere the latest instalment of War on Plastic (9.40 Tuesday), in which Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Anita Rani consider the problem of disposable face masks. In a separate interview with the BBC, Rani said: “The commonly used blue single-use surgical masks contain polypropylene, a type on non-recyclable plastic, and if every person in the UK was to wear one of these every day for a year, that would create about 128,000 tonnes of plastic waste“…

➢➢ Three’s daytime schedules will get a makeover of a makeover from February 1, when the network will launch its Newshub Live at 11.30AM bulletin. Originally Three was going to continue screening season 14 of Celebrity MasterChef UK  10.30 weekdays but has now replaced this with S1 of Hideous Houses, a home renovation show. The latter was scheduled for midday but now re-runs of Lost & Found S2 will air post Newshub. The rest of the afternoon schedule will continue with a telemovie (1.00), S3 of Ninja Warrior UK (3.00) and S2 of Travels With the Bondi Vet (3.55) …

➢➢ Louis Theroux: Life on the Edge (Prime, 9.45 Wednesday), which recycles the highlights of the documentarymaker’s 25 years in the “weirdo-pursuit biz, probably wants to be called a retrospective rather than a clip job,” The Guardian said. “I am feeling generous, so I will let you choose. But there were a lot of clips, and not much else.” But the Independent did think it a thoughtful retrospective” and said Theroux had “a deep well to draw from – neo-Nazis, UFO fanatics and right-wing patriots abound” …

➢➢ Duke will add a late-night block of [adult swim] animation to its Monday line-up, starting with S1 of Rick & Morty (10.30), continuing with Robot Chicken (S1, 11.00), Tim And Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! (11.30) and Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law (11.45). These series and other [adult swim] shows, including The Venture Bros. and Aqua Teen Hunger Force, also can be streamed on TVNZ OnDemand from February 1 with the launch of a branded [adult swim] channel. Peculiarly TVNZ chose to announce this initiative through its 1 News website rather than advising media directly …

➢➢ Also new that week will be A Current Affair (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Sundays from December 31), The Bachelorette NZ (TVNZ 2, 7.30 Mondays and Tuesdays from February 1), Seven Sharp (TVNZ 1, 7.00 weeknights from February 1), Ambulance (Prime, 8.30 Wednesdays from February 3) and 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown (Duke, 8.30 Thursdays from February 4) …

➢➢ Ending their runs the same week will be Endeavour, Surviving Jeffrey Epstein, Inside the Bomb Squad and SEAL Team

➢➢ On or near the red sofa on the February 4 broadcast of The Graham Norton Show (Three, 8.30) will be Keeley Hawes, Noel Clarke and Rebel Wilson, Daniel Sloss, M Night Shyamalan and Jake Bugg …

➢➢ The January 24 repeat of Outback Truckers (Prime, 7.30) will be pre-empted by a re-run of American Pickers. The following Sunday, Pawn Stars and Outback Truckers will be pre-empted by live NBL coverage, Perth Wildcats vs Sky Sport NZ Breakers (7.00) …

➢➢ The networks are taking longer than usual to launch their new seasons but at least are starting to offer more movie premieres. Lined up for the week starting January 30 are: Wonder Park (Three, 7.00 Saturday), A House With a Clock in its Walls  (TVNZ 2, 7.30 Sunday), Hellboy (Three, 8.30 Sunday), Neruda (Maori TV, 8.30 Sunday) and Tag (TVNZ 2, 9.40 Sunday). Other HD coming attractions will include:

  • Meet the Fockers (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Saturday)
  • American History X (Duke, 8.30 Saturday)
  • Julieta (Maori TV, 8.40 Saturday)
  • This Is the End (Three, 9.00 Saturday)
  • Austin Powers 2: The Spy Who Shagged Me (TVNZ 2, 9.25 Saturday)
  • Rock Star (TVNZ 2, 11.20 Saturday)
  • Sniper: Special Ops (TVNZ 2, 1.25am Sunday)
  • Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (TVNZ 2, 12.05 Sunday)
  • The NeverEnding Story (TVNZ 2, 2.40 Sunday)
  • Captain Phillips (Prime, 9.00 Sunday)
  • National Security (Duke, 9.35 Sunday)
  • Cloverfield (TVNZ 2, 11.40 Sunday)
  • The Expendables (Prime, 8.30 Monday)
  • Rough Night (TVNZ 2, 9.05 Monday)
  • The House (TVNZ 2, 8.30 Tuesday)
  • The Hunt for Red October (Duke, 8.30 Tuesday)
  •  The Devil Wears Prada (TVNZ 2, 7.30 Wednesday)
  • Speed (TVNZ 2, 8.30 Thursday)
  • Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (Three, 7.30 Friday)
  • Rock of Ages (TVNZ 2, 8.35 Friday).
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