HD Heads-Up: June 5 – 11

➢➢ Nigella Lawson, Heston Blumenthal and MasterChef Australia Back To Win winner Emelia Jackson are among the guests lined up for the new season of MasterChef Australia, which TVNZ 2 will strip 7.30 Monday-Thursday from June 7 ahead of Three resurrecting The Block NZ. TVNZ 2 will be banking on the seasoned reality competition to lure back the viewers that Popstars lost while off-setting the poor ratings of lead-out shows like Have You Been Paying Attention? and Patriot Brains by pushing them back to 9.15 …

➢➢ The risk is MasterChef may be running out of steam — last month’s season premiere on Channel 10 dished up “a record-low audience,” the Sydney Morning Herald reported. “An average 670,000 metropolitan viewers tuned in to watch season 13’s debut – down from the 1.23 million who watched last year’s premiere. [The] figures represent the smallest metropolitan audience for a main season premiere in 12 years, and the second-smallest if the show’s spin-offs are included” …

➢➢ Veteran Aussie TV observer and ex-Channel 10 chief David Knox reckons the ageing show “doesn’t cut it anymore” against fresher competition like Lego Masters and Big Brother, criticising seasons and episodes that run too long, and a kitchen set in need of a makeover …

➢➢ Matai Smith will host the new bilingual game show 9 LIVES from June 6 (TVNZ 2, 6.00 Sundays), in which contestants will answer general knowledge questions interchangeably in English and te reo Māori …

➢➢ The same night at 8.30, TVNZ 1 will premiere the NZ telemovie, A Love Yarn, which stars Anna Hutchison (Go Girls) as a yarn shop owner who organises a “knit-off” to try to stop a local yarn mill from going under …

➢➢ Beat the Chasers will return on June 9 (TVNZ 1, 7.30 Wednesdays) with a celebrity special that guest stars comedians Katherine Ryan and Joe Pasquale, athlete Christine Ohuruogu, actor Shaun Williamson, and TV presenter Radzi Chinyanganya …

➢➢ Pre-empting Seven Sharp on Queen’s Birthday Monday will be Spotlight: Craig McLachlan (TVNZ 1, 7.00), in which the Australian actor and his partner of 10 years, Venessa Scammel, “finally tell their story” about the 13 serious indecent assault and common law assault charges he was acquitted of …

➢➢ Disasters Engineered (Duke, 8.30 Wednesdays from June 9) will explore such man-made disasters as Chernobyl, Bhopal, Deepwater Horizon, Titanic, Challenger and the Hindenburg …

➢➢ Don’t overlook Burden of Truth (TVNZ 1, midnight Tuesdays from June 8), an acclaimed four-season Canadian drama that’s been streaming OnDemand. About a big-city lawyer who returns to her home town to represent a large pharmaceutical firm, it was described by the Boston Herald as “a show by and for adults looking for something a little challenging” …

➢➢ Returning for its eighth season will be Mountain Men (Prime, 6.00 Saturdays from June 5) while ending their runs the same week will be Fight for the Wild, Call the Midwife, 20/20, Patriot Brains, Transplant, 7 Days, New Zealand Today and 2nd Chance Charlie

➢➢ The only network movie premieres in the week starting June 5 will be Tomb Raider (Three, 8.00 Sunday) and Rams (Maori TV, 8.40 Sunday). Other HD coming attractions will include:

  • The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Saturday)
  • Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again! (Three, 7.00 Saturday)
  • Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow  
  • The Prince of Egypt (Maori TV, 7.00 Saturday)
  • The Hills Have Eyes (Duke, 8.30 Saturday)
  • Goldstone (Maori TV, 8.45 Saturday)
  • 2 Guns (Three, 9.15 Saturday)
  • Black Sheep (TVNZ 2, 9.40 Saturday)
  • War Dogs (TVNZ 2, 11.30 Saturday)
  • Patriots Day (Three, 11.30 Saturday)
  • Jerked (TVNZ 2, 1.35am Sunday)
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer (TVNZ 2, 3.05am)
  • Blended (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Sunday)
  • The Intern (TVNZ 2, 9.10 Sunday)
  • Exorcist II: The Heretic (TVNZ 2, 11.40 Sunday)
  • District 9 (Prime, 8.30 Monday)
  • Amy (Maori TV, 8.30 Monday)
  • I Feel Pretty (TVNZ 2, 9.30 Monday)
  • Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (Duke, 8.30 Tuesday)
  • Narc (Duke, 10.40 Tuesday)
  • The Karate Kid (Prime, 7.30 Thursday)
  • The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (Three, 7.30 Friday)
  • Eight Legged Freaks (Duke, 8.30 Friday).
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