New to View: December 27 – January 2

A weekly guide to what’s new of note on air and online


Des TVNZ 1, 9.20 (Concludes 9.50 Monday)

“The serial-killer thing has been done to death, one might say, but David Tennant gives an unforgettable performance as Dennis Nilsen, a portrayal that dances dangerously along the edge of comedy. One of the U.K.’s more prolific serial murderers, Nilsen might have continued his spree beyond its five-year span had the other tenants of his North London apartment house not complained about the plumbing — the human remains he’d disposed of were clogging up the drains. Once the police get involved, Tennant’s Nilsen admits to everything so matter-of-factly it catches everyone off guard, including us viewers.” — Wall Street Journal.


➢ Moonbase 8 Neon

John C Reilly plays one of three astronauts living on NASA’s Moon Base Simulator in the Arizonan desert. “Despite a talent central trio and a few great moments, Moonbase 8‘s portrait of monotonous mediocrity may be too low-key for some viewers to achieve comedic lift off – though that may be exactly the point.” — Rotten Tomatoes.


 Attenborough and the Giant Elephant Prime, 7.30

“The bittersweet tale of the world’s first animal superstar — Jumbo the elephant, London Zoo’s foremost attraction in Victorian times — [was an] archaeological examination of unintentional animal cruelty and the appalling ignorance of generations past … Attenborough did his best to see the positives. He took us to elephant sanctuaries in Africa and America, showed us how much we humans have learnt and changed and improved our attitudes in the century and a half since.” — The Telegraph.


Equinox Netflix

Equinox may just be the right series to fill the big Dark-shaped void in the streaming world, for those who love intricate and complex stories about different timelines and dimensions that make you question reality in very thought-provoking ways.” — Forbes.


The Vicar of Dibley in Lockdown TVNZ 1, 7.00

Thirteen years on from her last sermon, Geraldine returns to video message her flock. “Dawn French revives the amiable nonsense that graced our screens between 1994 and 2007 – but it’s just not the same without all the dearly departed eccentrics … How could the show carry on without them? Curtis came up with a good answer: by pretending they are still alive.” — The Guardian.


Agatha Christie: One Hundred Years of Suspense Sky Arts, 8.00

An investigation into 10 of the mystery writer’s most iconic works in chronological order, from Murder on the Orient Express to And Then There Were None and Curtain: Poirot’s Last Case — complete with clips from original radio productions, movies and TV series.


Doctor Who: Revolution of the Daleks TVNZ 1, 7.00/TVNZ OnDemand

The BBC icon returns but on a new channel (its third in as many years). Also back is John Barrowman as Captain Jack while exiting the show will be Bradley Walsh. The Daleks’ resurrection is the first in 15 years and comes 57 years virtually to the day after their debut. “When it came to designing a new look for the iconic villains, [showrunner Chris] Chibnall wanted to make sure that they went with a look that would be unique while still staying true to the Daleks. ‘We wanted something sleek, shiny and powerful, and slightly different from any Dalek you’ve seen before.'”– Bleeding Cool.

Call the Midwife Christmas Special TVNZ 1, 8.30

Call the Midwife [is] a drama I admire because it maintains a solid quality like M&S knickers and (nearly) always makes me cry. But this was not its best effort. It centred on a visiting circus with the owner Mr Percival (Peter Davidson) secretly dying of lung cancer (his circus was sponsored by a cigarette company) and with a heavily pregnant daughter. But it felt underpowered and didn’t yank on the heartstrings as fiercely as some run-of-the-mill one-hour episodes can.” — The Times.

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