New to View: August 9 – 15


Bob (Hearts) Abishola | TVNZ 2, 4.10

New Chuck (The Big Bang Theory) Lorre comedy about an uptight businessman who falls in love with his cardiac nurse, a Nigerian immigrant. “Groundbreaking, but unfortunately grating, Bob (Hearts) Abishola undermines its own progressive premise with underwhelming humour that relies too heavily on outdated stereotypes.” — Rotten Tomatoes.

Into the Wild With Bear Grylls | Discovery, 9.25

The first of two Bear Grylls premieres this week follows the British adventurer as he takes India’s most well-known celebrities deep into the Indian jungles. 


➢ Dogs: An Amazing Animal Family | Maori TV, 8.30

Big Beast: Last of the Giants’ Patrick Ayree uses CGI to show how different dog breeds have evolved to survive in some of the harshest places on Earth. Promising but a pity it’s against TVNZ 1’s The Dog House. “It’s like Who Do You Think You Are?, but for dogs.” — The Guardian.

Surviving Jeffrey Epstein | TVNZ OnDemand

Surviving Jeffrey Epstein inevitably covers a lot of familiar territory … Still, it’s a sober update — especially for those who haven’t closely followed the case — that emphasises the perspective of the survivors whose determination exposed Epstein’s predatory behaviour while drawing strength and comfort from each other.” — CNN.

Putin: A Russian Spy Story | TVNZ OnDemand

“This profile of Putin’s incredible rise from ‘schoolyard thug’ and ‘dry, humourless man of small stature’ to president of Russia was in turns mesmerising and terrifying.” — The Times.


Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back (S3) | TVNZ 1, 8.30

The hell-on-wheels chef returns on a new channel. “In season 3, he tackles nine failing eateries. In each of the restaurants he visits, Ramsay discovers one or two major major issues — some related to management, usage of low-quality ingredients, food safety violations, or dysfunctional staff members.” — The Cinemaholic.

Emergency | Three, 8.30

Australian observational documentary series set inside the A&E ward of the Royal Melbourne Hospital. Says one of the senior doctors, Emma West: “It is a good representation of what we do at work, which is probably the most exciting part for me because I think it’s fantastic that people get to see what we do as a team in a big inner-city emergency department.”

Living With Tourettes (S2) | Prime 8.30

The local series returns as the lead-in to the relaunch of Honey Wars (9.30) ahead of the premiere of Weediquette (10.00). Variety said the last “showcases its host, Krishna Andavolu, as a de facto tour guide through the politics, economics and human-interest stories associated with marijuana legalisation, kicking off with people who are actually using pot for medicinal purposes, while delving into research about its cancer-treatment benefits.”

Snow Cats & Me | BBC Earth, 9.35

In this “heartwarming” two-part special, wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan joins pioneering Russian big cat experts in a mission to rescue lynx kittens and adults from captivity and return them to the wild.


Last Dad Standing | TVNZ 2, 8.00

“A new six part series will see every day Kiwis battle against one another in showdown of the dad jokes. The battle royal of awkwardness will be hosted, and refereed, by How to Dad’s Jordan Watson and comedian Mel Bracewell. Each round will see two dads face-off to see who can crack the best jokes without cracking up themselves.” — Stuff.

Room 104 (S4) | SoHo2, 8.30 

“Its fourth and final season just might be the show’s most ambitious, surreal season yet, as the freedom and audacity of the programme allows the Duplass’ eclectic crew of filmmakers and performers to reach some dazzling, unforgettable heights. But it also results in a few trips and stumbles along the way.” — Collider.

Vida  (S3) | SoHo2, 9.00

“Still one of TV’s most distinct and compelling series … But Vida‘s six-part farewell season also feels gangly, its ambitions outstripping its execution.” — The Hollywood Reporter.


Michael McIntyre’s Big Show (S4) | TVNZ 2, 7.30

“The best bit of the show is still the game in which Michael borrows a celeb’s phone and sends a cheeky message to all their contacts. It gets funnier every time.” — Daily Mail.

Dirty John: The Betty Broderick Story | Netflix

Dirty John‘s new season widens the anthology’s historical scope, but thin characterisation cheapens its provocations … an exuberantly flawed piece of tabloid archaeology.” — Entertainment Weekly.

World’s Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji | Amazon Prime Video

“Absolute machine and British adventurer Bear Grylls is back for another show, which is sure to inspire us (or possibly make us feel even more unfit than we already do following lockdown) … Prepare to see the limits of human physical and mental endurance tested like never before.” — Radio Times.

Rita Hayworth | Sky Arts, 9.30

An episode from the UK Sky Arts series, Discovering Film, about the most glamorous screen idol of the ‘40s, of whom Orson Welles said, “She was suffering her whole life”.

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15 Responses to “New to View: August 9 – 15”

  1. Warning: preg_replace(): Unknown modifier '/' in /home/customer/www/ on line 66
    August 8, 2020 at 7:17 pm

    I see S3 of Killing Eve has made it to late night TV2. Burnt OnDemand, not good enough for primetime as the audience has been exhausted.

  2. Yes, Mike, like Doctor Who it’s one of those shows that never found a decent enough FTA audience here to justify an ongoing primetime slot. And the reviews for S3 were dire. It’s just cult enough to be a signature OnDemand attraction but too fringe for a premium network slot.

  3. Yes, I gave up on this season after a couple of episodes. Was going around and around in circles.

  4. I see Shudder is now available in New Zealand but it’s not on Apple TV as yet so I may get it then 🙂

  5. Thanks for the heads-up, Trevor. There’s more to read here

  6. Thanks Philip, it’s now on Apple TV so I decided to get it. The first week is free, then it’s $10 per month ?

  7. I’m doing the same, Trevor, as part of appraising LG’s new CX OLED TV. It has a built-in Apple TV app with some fantastic content, such as Greyhound and The Morning Show, but the Shudder channel has yet to be added. I presume you’ve got the 4K Apple TV box with all the bells and whistles?

  8. Greyhound is a good film, watched it once and again with the kids. We are also part way through The Morning Show, seems OK so far. Things I’ve given up on – The Man in the High Castle, Sleepy Hollow and Shots Fired. I have See ready to go.

  9. Likewise with Sleepy Hollow and Shots Fired, Rosco, yet to check out Castle and See.

  10. We binged watched See, it was weird, but a good kind of weird and would be interested to see a second season. We tried and gave up on The Expanse … just didn’t get into it. Another one I’m in two minds about is Watchmen – watched the first ep last night … and I’m left scratching my head. I will try another episode before I make a final call.One thing I do like at the moment is the Idris Elba series In the Long Run – just started season 2, a lighthearted 20 or so minutes with some great 80’s nostalgia …

  11. Hey, Rosco, haven’t seen the others yet but I loved See. Thought it would be absurd but found it inventive and enthralling with fantastic production values. With Watchmen you may need to read up on the back story or at least check out the movie before going deeper into the series.

  12. Thanks Phil, so that explains why I was totally confused by Watchmen, not realising there was back-story and movie history which I had no idea about … What about another DC series Doom Patrol – can I just jump in at S01E01 or again do i need to know the history and journey of the story to date?

  13. I don’t know much about Doom Patrol, other than it’s a very well reviewed twist on superheroes that inexplicably hasn’t landed on a local platform. Enjoy …

  14. So Doom Patrol wasn’t for me it turns out (it took me an age to recognise ex 007 Timothy Dalton), so both seasons were quickly consigned to the recycle bin. But, over the weekend we smashed the 5 parter Chernobyl – now that was something we both enjoyed and got into! Good programming HBO!

  15. You’re right Rosco. Chernobyl was a stunning watch when it premiered in May 2019 (it set the discussion alight for those that remembered the disaster and for those that had visited the area as tourists since – and even did well for Prime when that channel stripped it in December last year).

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