HD Heads-Up: June 25 – July 1

➢➢ TVNZ 2 is doubling down on making us double up by refreshing its comedy line-up ahead of Taskmaster NZ’s return. Laughs Unleashed (9.30 Friday from July 1) is being promoted as a post-Covid resumption of funny business. Each episode will feature three comedians in an intimate studio space: Tom Sainsbury, Nick Gibb, Brynley Stent, Tim Batt, Lana Walters, James Mustapic, Cori Gonzalez-Macuer, Liv McKenzie, David Correos, Paul Ego, Courtney Dawson and Josh Thomson …

➢➢ Season two of the celebrity game show Guessable, which TVNZ 2 pulled after only one episode, will resurface to anchor the network’s Wednesday night comedy block on June 29, as the lead-in to a S12 re-run of Would I Lie to You? (which will continue late-night Fridays). S1 of Guessable aired on Sky, where Stuff praised it as “Comedy Central’s Covid-era answer to Taskmaster … While certainly not without its risque moments, one of the most charming aspects of Guessable is its family friendly nature. The competitions are ones you could play at home and all the contestants approach them with plenty of energy – and deep disappointment when they lose” …

➢➢ And as a curtain-raiser to Taskmaster NZ’s S3 premiere on TVNZ 2, Duke will re-run S1 as a weekend marathon: July 2, from 8.30, and July 3, from 10.00 …

➢➢ QI host Sandi Toksvig will return in two new series: Extraordinary Escapes (TVNZ 1, 3.00 Sunday) and The Great Big Tiny Design Challenge (Three, 8.30 Friday). The former follows her and “some of Britain’s most fascinating and funny women escape to awe inspiring locations across Scotland and England”; the latter tests the miniature making skills of 10 amateur crafters. When asked whether the show will have a wide appeal despite being a niche industry, Toksvig promised the press the designs would be “breathtaking … I think it’s the scale that will make people not be able to believe it” …

➢➢ Also back, for S3, will be Eat Well For Less NZ (TVNZ 1, 7.30 Tuesday) and, for S25, Location, Location, Location (TVNZ 1, 8.30 Wednesday) while resuming its S9 run in a new slot will be George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces (TVNZ 1, 8.30 Sunday). Ending their runs will be America’s Got Talent and First Responders

➢➢ God Shave the Queens (TVNZ 2, 3.35am Sunday) is a 2020 “behind the scenes” look at the first RuPaul’s Drag Race UK tour. Said Decider: “If you loved RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, I cannot imagine a reality wherein which you would want to skip this” …

➢➢ Prime will screen four hours of live Wimbledon coverage nightly from June 27 (10pm-2am) — a far cry from when TVNZ served up overnight and online coverage …

➢➢ Screening free-to-air for the first time will be Written In The Stars (TVNZ 1, 9.00 Saturday), Combat Wombat (TVNZ 2, 4.20 Sunday) and Tehran Taxi (Whakaata Maori,8.30 Sunday). Other HD coming attractions will include a mix of Matariki-related movies across TVNZ 1, Whakaata Maori and Eden, along with:

  • Whale Rider (TVNZ 1, 7.00 Saturday)
  • Hoodwinked 2: Hood vs. Evil (Three, 7.00 Saturday)
  • The Secret Garden (Whakaata Maori, 7.00 Saturday)
  • 50/50 (Three, 8.35 Saturday)
  • Parasite (Whakaata Maori,8.50 Saturday)
  • Despicable Me (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Saturday)
  • The Piano (Eden, 8.30 Saturday)
  • Table 19 (TVNZ 2, 8.50 Saturday)
  • The Foreigner (TVNZ 2, 10.50 Saturday)
  • The Fate of the Furious (TVNZ 2, 8.30 Sunday)
  • The Expendables 3 (Three, 8.30 Sunday)
  • The World’s Fastest Indian (Eden, 8.30 Sunday)
  • Poltergeist (TVNZ 2, 2.55am Saturday)
  • Fallen (Duke, 8.30 Tuesday)
  • Looper (Duke, midnight Tuesday)
  • The Dark Horse (Whakaata Maori, 8.30 Wednesday)
  • Johnny English Strikes Again (Three, 7.30 Friday).
  • American Pie (Duke, 8.30 Friday) .
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