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The Most Legendary NZ TV Moments

Forget who shot JR or what was under the hatch ... where were you when Thingee's eye popped out, 'O' was for 'awesome', or Bob "stormed out of the bracken like a yeti" to bop Rod in the 'Tumble in Taupō'? From Wainuiomata to Guatemala this Top 10 presents the most viewed clips from the previous NZ On Screen Legendary Moments collections (in descending order). 

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Police Ten 7 (always blow on the pie)

Television, 2009 (Excerpts)

It was the food safety advice heard around the world. The late night footage of a policeman interrogating a suspected car thief on TVNZ's long running crime series seemed routine until conversation shifted to the purchase of a pie at a local service station. The officer's deadpanned response came straight out of left field — and went viral (interestingly, only after a repeat screening of the show was posted online). The 'nek minnit' of its day provided global news odd spot fodder, and inspired t-shirts, dubstep tracks and countless YouTube parodies.

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Loose Enz - The Venus Touch

Television, 1982 (Full Length)

In this infamous Loose Enz edition, sexologist Rufus (Grant Tilly) has marriage problems due to being more theoretical than practical when it comes to the ways of the flesh. Things get complicated when an eccentric patient, Ernest (Bruno Lawrence), turns up claiming to have a magic touch with women. With Joy of Sex japes and punning pillow talk galore, it’s very much of its time. The (frankly, odd) sex farce gained notoriety for high-profile newsreader Angela D’Audney (as the sexologist’s wife) going topless, then into a turquoise catsuit.

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The Son of a Gunn Show - Thingee's Eye Pop

Television, 1994 (Full Length)

Thingee's eye popping out is one of the most famous moments on New Zealand television, as an unflappable Jason Gunn continues hosting duties despite his co-presenter being newly one-eyed. The ocular incident occurred during filming of the The Son of a Gunn Show; it didn’t screen live but as part of a bloopers episode. Thingee was a puppet who debuted on After School, and appeared in several children's shows, including What Now?. Thingee was retired from NZ TV when he returned to his home planet. (Alan Henderson is rumoured to be the person behind the puppet.)

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Eyewitness News - Bob Jones punches reporter Rod Vaughan

Television, 1985 (Excerpts)

In July 1985 New Zealand Party leader Bob Jones and president Malcolm McDonald surprised many by announcing the nation's then-third most popular party was taking an 18 month recess. TVNZ went searching for comment, and after chartering a helicopter, found Jones fishing near Turangi. Jones was not amused; he infamously punched reporter Rod Vaughan, arguing later he would fight any charges in court, since the journalists had subjected him to intolerable harassment. When fined $1000, Jones asked the judge if he paid $2000, could he please do it again?

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Eating Media Lunch - Best Of (Episode)

Television, 2006 (Full Length Episode)

Presenter Jeremy Wells manages to keep a straight face as he mercilessly satirises all manner of mainstream media and "issues of the day" journalism in long-running satire series, Eating Media Lunch. No fish is too big or barrel too small. In this 2006 'worst of EML'  special Wells tests the patience of talkback radio hosts; reveals the horrifying 'truth' behind the demise of celebrity merino Shrek; plus there's sneak previews of the al-Qaeda blooper reels; and Anal Mana, our first indigenous porno flick (you have been warned: not suitable for children).  

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Heartland - Wainuiomata

Television, 1994 (Excerpts)

This show was possibly the most controversial edition of the Heartland series. After an obligatory historical preamble, explaining the state house roots of this working class dormitory suburb, Gary hits the rugby league club, local homes and Tupperware parties for some seriously extra-terrestrial encounters with Wainui-o-Martians. Chloe Reeves, with her squeaking voice, romantic dreams, and tiger slippers, proved to be unforgettable and became a national figure. In the second clip future All Black Piri Weepu holds a school road safety lollipop (around 6.40).

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Tonight - Robert Muldoon interview

Television, 1976 (Full Length)

Like many other current affairs shows in the 70s, Tonight had a fairly brief existence, but it provided the forum for this infamous May 1976 battle of wills between journalist Simon Walker and Prime Minister Robert Muldoon. Walker interrogates Muldoon about his assertions regarding the Soviet naval presence in the Pacific, and NZ vulnerability to Russian nuclear attack. Muldoon grows increasingly annoyed and bullish at being asked questions that are not on his sheet: "I will not have some smart alec interviewer changing the rules half way through."

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Face to Face with Kim Hill - John Pilger

Television, 2003 (Excerpts)

"You waste my time because you have not prepared for this interview. This interview frankly is a disgrace." This is an excerpt from Kim Hill's infamous 2003 interview with John Pilger, award-winning journalist, author and documentary-maker. Via satellite link from Sydney, Pilger discusses Middle East politics. He says what he would do about Saddam Hussein, and what he thinks about sanctions against Iraq. An angry Pilger says Hill is not asking informed questions. Hill pushes Pilger's book across the desk. Pilger implores Hill to: "Just read. Read. It takes time."

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Wheel of Fortune - Celebrity Episode (10 Oct 1992)

Television, 1992 (Full Length Episode)

Wheel of Fortune is a game show that involves the solving of Hangman-style posers. Contestants spin the wheel to accrue prizes, guess vowels or consonants that may be in the answer, and earn the right to roll again. The 90s Kiwi edition was hosted by Phillip Leishman and Lana Coc-Kroft. In this 10 October 1992 celebrity episode the contestants were actor Andy Anderson, Fair Go reporter Rosalie Nelson, and Barcelona Olympic bronze medalist boxer (and future World Heavyweight title challenger) David Tua, who infamously requested the letter O, "for Awesome".

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Shortland Street - First Episode

Television, 1992 (Full Length Episode)

This iconic serial drama is based around the births, deaths and marriages of the staff and patients of Shortland Street Hospital. A South Pacific Pictures production, it screens five nights a week on TV2. The show has screened internationally, and is by far New Zealand's longest running TV drama (though not the first ‘soap’ — that honour goes to Close to Home, which played twice a week from 1975 - 1983). Characters and lines from Shortland Street have entered the culture, most famously “you’re not in Guatemala now, Dr Ropata!”, which features in this first episode.