HD Heads-Up: May 4-10

TV3 will launch its latest NZ drama series Harry the same week The X Factor NZ faces its stiffest HD competition yet: hour-long episodes of Shortland Street.

TV2 will begin its “winter season” of the serial on May 6, when 60-minute eps will overlap Mondays with the first half of TV3’s top-rating X Factor NZ.

Harry’s Oscar Kightley, left, and Sam Neill

So far X Factor’s only had to to go head-to-head with SD hit My Kitchen Rules on Monday.

But from the first week in May it will face a double TV2 whammy, with MKR shifting back to 8pm, opposite the second half of the talent quest.

TV2 is betting on Shorty’s viewership sticking with it until 8pm, and then continuing with MKR rather than switch to X Factor, which enters the boot camp phase that week.

More surprising than this canny strategy, however, is TV3’s decision to screen Harry 9.30 Wednesdays, as the replacement for Sons of Anarchy.

True, the Oscar Kightley detective drama co-starring Sam Neill will be taking over an established crime drama slot.

But it’s hard to imagine a weaker lead-in for a new local drama than struggling HD current affairs hour 3rd Degree.

You would have thought a savvier option would have been to launch Harry on the back of X Factor at 8.30 Monday.

The Blue Rose may have died at this hour but Harry sounds like it has the credentials to draw a more muscular audience and given it only runs for six weeks, TV3 should have taken the risk rather than fall back on an action movie slot that squanders the platforming potential of a juggernaut like X Factor.

Also of HD programming note for the week starting May 4:

❑ The network HD movie premieres of Limitless on Saturday (TV2, 8.35), and on Sunday Battle: Los Angeles (TV2, 8.30) and Bridesmaids (TV3, 8.35)

❑ Re-runs in HD of the movies 300 on Saturday (TV2, 10.55), Under the Mountain on Sunday (TV2, 12.00) and Wanted on Monday (TV3, 8.35)

❑ The season finale of The Americans on Monday (TV3, 11.35) and the series finale of Fringe on Tuesday (TV2, 10.45)

❑ Formula 1 ace Lewis Hamilton, comedian Dara O Briain, film director Pedro Almodovar and singer Alison Moyet guest on Friday’s Graham Norton Show (TV3, 8.30).

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3 Responses to “HD Heads-Up: May 4-10”

  1. I’m just as surprised as you are, Philip, as to why TV3 has decided not to launch Harry after Monday’s episode of X Factor NZ. This is certainly a wasted opportunity! Come on TV3, you have a HIT on your hands and your prepared to waste it with movies. I do hope Harry finds an audience and I for one will tune in!

  2. X Factor NZ will crush boring Shortland Street 🙂

  3. Trevor, I find it odd that you would hope that X Factor would crush Shortland Street. Is it really that you think Shorty is boring or is it because TVNZ pay for it to be made? Reading your posts here and on other sites you seem to love everything TV3 does and despise everything TVNZ do … I’m sure X Factor and Shorty together will make for interesting ratings but I certainly would hate to see either crushed. I think it’s a massive call for TV3 to put X Factor in that slot, when they surely knew the Shorty one-hours would be going in there.

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