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Hero image for The Great TV3 Comedy Debate - Rugby, It's Only a Game

The Great TV3 Comedy Debate - Rugby, It's Only a Game

Television (Full Length Episode) – 2002

New Zealand's obsession with rugby provides a wealth of quips, jokes and return serves in this TV3 Great Comedy Debate. Actor Ginette McDonald (creator of Lynn of Tawa) leads the Affirmative team and sports journalist Phil Gifford fronts the Negative. McDonald's team members Oliver Driver and Craig Parker tell dubious (but colourful) tales of lives ruined by rugby. On the Negative bench Rebecca Hobbs describes her (mythical) quest to 'bag an All Black'  and although writer Oscar Kightley admits his heart-warming family story is 'crap' he lands some zingers about Kiwi nationhood.  Chairperson Nathan Rarere keeps the 'game' as clean as he can, but with a Cantabrian audience one team has the advantage.

At times in the night, when I'm flat on my back, and thinking about our boys in black, and the Silver Fern and their glistening thighs, and the slow motion look in their blood-shot eyes, that's when I grieve; have they no shame? Is it the money, or is it the fame? Or do our boys really believe that rugby, "it's only a game"...
– Ginette McDonald gets poetical in her closing address for the affirmative