From the 31 July, 1967 issue of New Zealand TV Weekly


Maybe it's because I'm not an enthusiastic dancer, but there seems to have been something lacking in the Come Dancing series. The exhibitions in particular are out of place-too often they seem to fall between ballet and gymnastics rather than show serious ballroom dancing. And the scoring system, with the judges, the compères and the scoreboard all being called to show how things are going, is overdone. It is too much like one of these frenetic panel games. Maybe wrong, but I would imagine that more viewers would like to see dancing style and technique close-up, and then a little tuition on how the average ballroom hack can do some of the dances simply and adequately... Surprising how many television people are trying to pick up a dollar or two on the side with writing regular articles-or having them "ghosted". . . . . Imagine that the C'mon Show will be a hit everywhere when it takes to the road. But don't expect the same pace and dynamic effects that you can get on the screen. Your eye takes in a lot more than the camera and you can't work fast inter-cutting on the stage.... Rae Pritchard must hold the record for owning (and wearing-attractively. too!) some of the furthest-out patterned and coloured stockings in town.... Pirate "good guy" Carl Olsen may have set some sort of world record for continuous announcing (65 hours) from a Queen Street store window, but is it one of those things which really matter? Rather like being the first man to hide a bicycle backwards down the Great Wall of China. Local columnist took the Pirates to task for so blatantly cocking their snoot at authority. Still, worth trying anything if you feel that you're on borrowed time... Sales of miniature "bonsai" trees boomed immediately after garden expert Jim Macpherson gave them a plug.


After some harsh words about NZBC Reports from this and other critics, the programme has bounded back in popularity, according to the latest TV ratings. It came number three in Wellington, just behind the very popular Town and Around on the local channel. In Auckland, it could not improve on previous ratings, while down in Dunedin it didn't make the top ten. Other ratings were much as expected. Special congratulations must go to Conon Fraser, producer of Looking at New Zealand and his team. They have lifted this programme, which started off quite modestly, on to the top ten charts on all four channels... The NZBC team was on the ball in filming the Coronation of the new King of Tonga. They secured rights to film the actual Coronation. A BBC team headed by Alan Whicker, who were shooting a film for Whicker's World, had their noses put out of joint when the NZBC secured an exclusive interview with the King. Lindsay McCallum, who did the interview and the voice commentaries came through a busy week with great credit... NZBC has bought the series Captain Nice in preference to Mr Terrific. Both are spoofs on the super hero theme. Captain Nice was conceived by Buck Henry, co-creator of Get Smart. It starts running on AKTVZ August 4, will follow in other channels later... Under consideration is The Frost Report, a satirical series from Britain, with the redoubtable 27-year-old David Frost, and a science-fiction show Land of the Giants from the same stable as Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and Lost in Space. It could be, too, that we will be seeing some of the Ed Sullivan Show series here before too long. . . . . The popular Black and White Minstrel Show returns for another run on August 6, while those who remember that earlier series of The Untouchables will have welcomed back Eliot Ness the night before. Pity though that it has to go into the late night slot.


Former Miss New Zealand, Lyndall Cruickshank, made her TV début on Channel 3 late June and came over very well, too... Coming into Line, that fine documentary going behind the scenes in horse racing, produced in Christchurch by Michael Scott, new being edited with a view to overseas distribution... A closed- circuit TV system through which a watchman, not necessarily on the premises, can scan the bullion vaults, will be installed in the new Reserve Bank building in Hereford Street. This is another "first" for Christchurch... Sickening pictures of car race crashes and close-ups of the unfortunate drivers, along with loca11y-dubbed commentaries listing race fatalities this year, have been features of CHTV3's Sports Magazine on more than one occasion recently. Such film is justifiable hard news, but hardly magazine material in the eyes of motor racing enthusiasts who would prefer to see some real motor racing instead... Evidence that Town and Around is getting more Compass-like with some programmes comprising one topic studied in some depth and well worth watching... Royal Shakespeare Company's The Wars of the Roses under fire from one local newspaper columnist on the grounds of too much "blood and guts"!... One problem facing those whose task it will be to provide live telecasts of local college Rugby is to break down the prejudice against the use of numbers on football jerseys... A pat on the back for the NZBC from the Canterbury Education Board. At a recent meeting the board decided to commend the NZBC for the "high quality" of many of its children's TV programmes in Christchurch. C'mon! compère Peter Sinclair will be with the stage version of this popular TV show which opens the end of this month on once-familiar grounds for him-Christchurch where he was brought up and went to school. 35-year-old Mr Richard Harvest, who works for a Christchurch travel agency had a deeper interest than most in Rembrandt, one of the films in CHTVB'S Charles Laughton season screened late last month. Mr Harvest played the part of Rembrandt's 5- year-old son under the film name Richard Gofe. A Londoner, Mr Harvest made his film debut at the age of four years and a half.


If the menfolk are complaining about their wives spending too much time immobilised in front of the television set in the afternoons, they won’t be for much longer. Eileen Cook, in her On Camera programme, is featuring Mrs Olive Smithells, wife of Professor Smithells of the Physical Education School and herself an expert on the subject who is giving demonstrations on how to keep fit. There’s no “watch now, exercise later” theme either! Viewers are encouraged to move out of their armchairs and take part in the exercises as they are being demonstrated. On the “beauty” side of the programme, Joan Wilson, principal of one of Dunedin's modelling schools, shows the correct way to use make-up and shows viewers how to move, stand and sit elegantly. In the midst of all this "glamour treatment" there’s a note of practicality with lessons on how to economise on many household items, and topics in the news are discussed to give housewives an insight on current events. So if wives become adept in all these fields, who’s to complain if dinner’s a little later than usual?... Talking of complaints, there’ll be no more from this writer when the screen blacks out for a few seconds, or a film runs slightly awry-a look at the panels of intricate controls and the cool heads required to keep every- thing running has proved an effective silencer.... Since DNTV2 began transmission, much of the activity has centred round the studio in Dowling Street. Recently, however, life has become rather crowded and a decision has been made to move the producers to new quarters. They will be operating in future from nearby Allbell Chambers, in Stuart Street.

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