HD Heads-Up: October 5-11

The Vampire Diaries and its spin-off The Originals are the latest series to launch online ahead of on air.

TVNZ Ondemand will premiere season five of Diaries and the series premiere of The Originals barely a day — 28 hours — after they bow in the US.

It’s a double-edged sword for fans: they’ll be drooling at the prospect of seeing their favourite fanged ones so soon but cursing their standard definition presentation.

TVNZ Ondemand’s streaming quality’s pretty good but it’s no match for the HD splendour of TV2’s showcasing.

The other downside for fans who opt to wait for Diaries to resurface in HD is TV2 may be looking to assign it the midnight shift, after its Sunday Suspense movie from later next month.

That’s if the network’s advance advertising schedules are accurate but, given they’re notoriously unreliable, more than a few weeks out this could change.

No sign of The Originals going to air yet. It centres on the Mikaelson siblings, “the world’s original vampires”, who become trapped in a war between vampires and werewolves.

It stars the ‘original’s’ Joseph Morgan (Klaus), Daniel Gillies (Elijah) and Claire Holt (Rebekah), and will stream here from 6pm on October 5.

A new HD drama that will screen first on TV2, ironically in what originally was The Vampire Diaries’ lair (8.30 Thursdays), is the US re-make of Mistresses.

The sexy soap has just ended its first season in the US, and despite barely average reviews, is likely to be renewed. ✱

Star Alyssa Milano told TV|Line: “We were supposed to find out about a pickup by August 15.

“And the network extended our contracts until September 30.

“So they have until September 30 to make a decision. It’s tough to imagine that they won’t pick it up, only because the response has been so great from fans and the media.”

Initially, however, only The Wall Street Journal was effusive, calling the series a “sharply written and entertaining saga of four women destined to lead exceedingly complicated lives”.

Variety cautiously recommended it — “the casting is key to make these fairly stock situations pop” — but most critics echoed The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s verdict: “Tawdry but lacking a spirit of fun, Mistresses strives to be a guilty pleasure, but it’s more likely to induce guilt than pleasure.”

Also of HD programming note for the week starting October 5:

❑ The series premiere of This Town (TV One, 7.30), in which notable Kiwis talk about where they live and their links with the locals

❑ Season premieres of Kiwi kids shows Operation Hero (TV2, 4.00 Saturday) and Let’s Get Inventin’ (TV2, 4.30 Saturday)

❑ The 100th episode of Castle (TV One, 9.25 Monday)

❑ Season finales of Wild About NZ (TV One, 8.30 Tuesday) and Devious Maids (TV2, 9.30 Wednesday)

❑ The network movie premieres of Brooklyn’s Finest (TV2, 11.40pm Saturday), Lovestruck – The Musical (TV2, midday Sunday), Gulliver’s Travels (TV3, 7.00 Sunday) and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II (TV2, 7.30 Sunday), and a re-run of Transporter 3 (TV3, 8.35 Monday)

❑ Re-runs of Offspring (TV One, 10.40 Sunday) and NZ drama The Cult (TV2, 12.25am Friday).

✱ ABC renewed Mistresses just hours after this posting.

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6 Responses to “HD Heads-Up: October 5-11”

  1. This is great news for Vampire fans and its good to see TVNZ joining the fast tracking band wagon. Hope to see more content arrive ondemand soon, a bit surprised TV2 has given Mistresses the coveted Thursday slot, thought this show would end up at 10.30 but I will sample it despite the reviews.Now all thats left is Nashville to finally air or is that coming in 2014? Just a question Philip I actually thought TV2 would be playing the short-lived American series Cult on Fridays?

  2. ‘fraid not re The Cult, Leo — it’s definitely a re-run of the NZOA-funded failure.

  3. Rats, I was hoping it would be Cult! Cheers, Philip.

  4. FYI, TVNZ does have the rights to Cult but seems in no hurry to schedule it.

  5. Doesn’t surprise me that TVNZ are going to sit on this series possibly until 2014 when it will see the light of day as a 10.30 filler. They should just play out the series Ondemand.

  6. Sorry, but TV vampires are so meh. You guys seen Let Me In or Byzantium?

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