Editorial: TVNZ's offering sharper actually

By Kelly Makiha

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Us Kiwis are a picky bunch aren't we?

Poor old Seven Sharp has really copped it since it came on air at the start of the month.

It's a tough gig. TV One's Holmes held the most viewers for the 7pm to 7.30pm time slot for years and Close Up didn't do too bad keeping up.

But now, for the first time, Campbell Live on TV3 has been beating TV One on the odd occasion.

There was talk advertisers would want to pull out of TVNZ and executives would need to act quickly to pull Seven Sharp.

But the TV channel is standing behind its new show, saying research showed viewers wanted this concept.

The new show premiered on February 4 and is hosted by Ali Mau, Greg Boyed and Jesse Mulligan. It targets an interactive audience, with heavy references to social media.

The main criticism is it's too fluffy - more entertainment than news.

What's the problem with that?

After watching an hour of news, wouldn't something a bit more light-hearted be a welcome relief?

Around 7pm is usually madness in my household but I have managed to catch the odd Seven Sharp story.

I've listened to the kerfuffle about the show around the water cooler and on Twitter but haven't been able to form an opinion.

On Monday night, I made a big effort to sit down and watch it.

It was great, especially the last story where reporter Craig Stanaway went inside the Waka Huia kapa haka group camp at Te Matatini in Rotorua.

Mau and Boyed are both classy acts in the television industry and Mulligan isn't too shabby either - even if his jokes tend to be a little weak at times. I challenge anyone to head over the ditch and find better live television.

Australians make a song and dance about their warmer weather, higher wages and cheaper living but Kiwis kick their behinds when it comes to television.

Think what you like about Seven Sharp but I'm going to give it a chance to settle into a rhythm and save my criticism for television that really deserves it - like anything starring Nicolas Cage.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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