The midway point has come. Ramadan, Matariki, DWTS, MKR, ISIS, and CDWMNZ, have all made their presence known, although I concede that I may have pushed the boat out past the flags by singling out CDWMNZ (Come Dine With Me NZ) as being, and I quote myself, "just racist, sexist and stupid enough so that it qualifies as good old-fashioned mindless fun."
I actually forgot what I wrote when I received a message from Guy Williams asking me what the hell I meant by calling the show he narrates "racist and sexist." Jesus, I thought, what did I write? What did I mean? I think I was thinking of a pervy contestant dressed as Hugh Hefner and a Slovakian woman singing in a comedic Asiatic accent while wearing a conical hat.
But the show is as racially diverse as anything on TV and the makers have so far dished up a great selection of odd bods from the melting pot of modern New Zealand. In fact, CDWMNZ is almost an oversized-pounamu-wearing-librarian* from Wellington, compared to most shows, especially Two Broke Girls, not to mention, the now unmentionable, Dukes of Hazzard.
There is nothing worse, I was recently told, than calling a Pakeha a racist, "they can't handle it", my non Pakeha friend said - at least I think that's what she said. It's a theme that has been played out with some skill by the writers of Coronation Street in the past month, (i.e. two years ago in the UK) as a white character (Paul the fireman) was overheard using an offensive term by one of the black characters (Lloyd's daughter). The phrase was "Playing the white man", a British term relating to being trustworthy, a trait, presumably, not shared by people who are black.
Fans of the show will have enjoyed the recent outburst of drama as the ancient soap is going through one of it's regular, but increasingly rare, periods of cohesion.
Not so for season two of True Detective, which is nowhere as good as the first series, but certainly good enough to keep me watching. Once again they had me with the title sequence, even if the casting and pretentious dialogue is now reaching criminal levels.
I don't often give up on shows but I did with Happyish (Soho). It's way too heavy handed, and I really hated the way Steve Coogan said "asshole". An Englishman saying "asshole" is always arse. But the new Dr Strangelove inspired comedy The Brink, (Soho) is a real blast. I have also been enjoying the Australian convict saga Banished, even if it's not Jimmy McGovern's best work, and have just started watching Suits (Lightbox) which I'm really rather liking and not just because the people from Lightbox sent me some bagels, right in the middle of Ramadan!
Anyway, enough dribble, here's this month's list of TV's best, most shocking, funny and revealing quotes.
1) "You look like you are made out of something that is primarily edible."
So said the comic star and part time revolutionary, Russell Brand, to TV3's Melissa Davies during a promo interview for Brand's tour. "You're like a toffee woman", Brand continued, successfully flirting Davies into submission.
2) "He was divorced and of a Yugoslav origin, with a Merv Hughes mustache."
That's a description that wouldn't make much sense outside of the cricket playing nations, but was how serial killer Ivan Milat was described by a rare survivor of one of his attacks, on the superbly chilling true life dramatization Catching Milat (TV3). His ex-wife didn't have a good word to say about him either: "He raped me on our first date and took me up the Khyber on our wedding night."
Obara Sand (Keisha Castle-Hughes) only got one word in her script for episode 9 of Game of Thrones, which she used for slut-shaming her sister.
4) "You can't sell tomatoes and buy BMWs."
The Greek economy summed up via a vegetable and automobile analogy by Maria Margaronis of The Nation magazine, on BBC's weekly panel show Dateline.
5) "The absence of yes, plus time, equals no."
Eli Gold (Alan Cumming) of The Good Wife explaining to Alicia (Juliana Margulies) that telling a billionaire to F-off is never a good idea. "He's rich, he'll forget, he just wants to be listened to."
6) "I have never sexually harassed anyone."
Colin Craig, starring in his own episode of The Good Wife, along with his own wife, in a press conference dealing with allegations involving his former press secretary.
7) "You flog this whore or you die."
Now here's a show full of sexism and every other ism, welcome to the brutal world of convict-era Australia as depicted in Banished, the latest, if not greatest work of TV legend Jimmy McGovern, (UKTV, Friday's 8.30pm). He said he based the style on Deadwood and it shows.
8) "I'm griddling while Rome burns."
Coronation Street's Roy Cropper (David Neilson) heats up some unidentifiable piece of meat on the griddle at Roy's Rolls but muses that he can do nothing about his wife's cancer.
9) "Our friend here might be a coconut but none of us like the pigs."
Race relations Westside-style (TV3 Sunday's 8.30pm). This show has hit a rich seam of 1970s nostalgia: dawn raids, Muldoon, casual racism, mid-century furniture and a lovely selection of period vehicles. But in these days of wall-to-wall Police PR, via reality shows, hearing cops being called "pigs" is somehow the most refreshing of all.
10) "This guy has put more people to sleep than warm milk."
Bill Maher talking about Bill Cosby, via a very listenable podcast of his Realtime HBO talk show. On new Presidential hopeful Donald Trump: "He never apologises. He's never wrong. He's the white Kanye."
*People who are known for political correctness, inclusiveness, environmental awareness and making noisy kids shut up. For some reason the ones from Wellington are always more so.