Tonight in HD: June 1

Series Premiere: Hounds (TV3, 10.00) A shiftless lawyer inherits a half-sister, half a house, and an alcoholic dog trainer after his father dies suddenly at the dog track. TV3 could be on to a winner with this Kiwi comedy if advance reviews are any guide to its form. “This isn’t the laugh-out-loud, neon-lit, canned-laughter comedy we get from so many American imports,” says Stuff’s Pattie Pegler. “It’s original, understated and thoroughly well written … If you like your comedy imaginative and quirky, don’t miss it.” The NZ Herald’s Paul Casserly dubbed it “bit of a mongrel, an edgy comedy set in the working class grime of the Greyhound racing scene – far from the glamour of The GC although most of the characters share the borderline narcissist disorder that seems so rife among the mozzies. But this is white-trash central. The scenario is familiar enough: Family members forced together in unlikely circumstances under one roof – kind of like Packed to Rafters on drugs with dogs and the world’s most unpleasant Tongan lawyer. In other words, it’s perfect for the Friday-night, post-pub timeslot.” But Nick Grant in sister paper Herald on Sunday thought a more apt comparison was the movie The Castle and said he’d watched the six-part series in its entirety three times: firstly out of diligence, secondly to make sure it was as good as he thought it was, and thirdly “for the sheer, absolute joy of it”. ✮✮✮✮

Glee (TV3, 7.30, 5.1) A Saturday Night Glee-ver homage to Saturday Night Fever. “The episode errs more on the side of Serious Emotions and less on the side of Whimsical Fantasies (aka the direct opposite of Britney/Brittany),” said Rolling Stone, “except for the final, and best, Glee Project guest star arc.” The Hollywood Reporter highly recommended the “Stayin’ Alive” number just to see  “Jane Lynch finally getting to be a part of a full cast performance, singing and dancing. More shimmy, please! ✮✮✮✮

Home & Away (TV3, 5.30) Liam struggles to help Hayley; Harvey faces pressure leading up to his court case; Marilyn assures Colleen the universe works in mysterious ways. ✮✮

Friends (TV2, 6.30, R) Ross tries to flirt with the pizza delivery girl, with horrible results; Rachel loses a pair of earrings that Monica had lent to Phoebe. ✮✮✮

Shortland Street (TV2, 7.00) Zac puts family first; Phoenix hooks up with a bad influence; Brooke’s machinations catch up with her. ✮✮✮

The Big Bang Theory (TV2, 7.30, 5.1, R) Sheldon creates a monster when he introduces Penny to the world of online gaming, and her addiction wreaks havoc on his life. ✮✮✮✮

The Graham Norton Show (TV3, 8.30) With Will Smith, Take That’s Gary Barlow and Sir Tom Jones. ✮✮✮✮

The Vampire Diaries (TV2, 10.40, 5.1) Elena and Damon travel to Denver to check in on Jeremy and to see if his special abilities can help them track down the information they need about the ancient vampire bloodlines. ✮✮✮

Numb3rs (TV3, 12.15, 5.1) Charlie focuses his attention on tracking a previously undetected serial killer to help deal with his guilt over Don’s almost-fatal stabbing. ✮✮

NCIS: Los Angeles (TV3, 1.10, 5.1, R) The team is assigned to track down a missing unmanned aerial vehicle after it is compromised during a training exercise killing a marine before it disappears. ✮✮

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