The most intriguing thing about

X-Factor USA

(tonight and tomorrow, 7.30pm, TV3) - apart from whether Paula Abdul can string a coherent sentence together - will be seeing Simon Cowell in one-on-one mentoring mode with the contestants later in the competition. While the coming weeks will be taken up with auditions, as the competition progresses each judge takes a group of wannabes and prepares them for pop super-stardom. It will be a true test of the smarmy poison-tongued talent show guru's credentials to see if he can come up with the top dog.


Also new this week, Rove McManus makes a return to TV on Rove LA (Thursdays, 9.30pm, TV3) with a talk show similar to his old one (only beamed in from Hollywood), and Underbelly: Razor (Wednesday, 8.30pm, TV3) goes back to the brutal and bloody streets of Sydney in the 1920s and 30s.

Finally, while I was more of a Six Million Dollar Man fan, I do remember the hot and feisty trio of Jaclyn, Farrah and Kate on Charlie's Angels. Thirty five years on, the remake of the 70s TV show starts on Wednesday at 9.30pm on TV2.

Down at the Cloud after the big game between the All Blacks and France on Saturday see Pitch Black - perhaps the most appropriate act to be playing tonight given the importance of this pool game - who will be mangling sonic bass frequencies and rippling the dancefloor into the early hours.

Meanwhile, Vincent Damon Furnier (that's Alice Cooper for those not in the know) plays Trusts Stadium tonight where he will no doubt be killed off numerous times before being brought back to life in time to sing School's Out and Poison.

Or, for something more tranquil, local alt-country songstress Jess Chambers plays the Wine Cellar tonight in support of her new album, Desire.

Opening this week is Jane Eyre which gets yet another film outing, this time with Mia Wasikowska (Alice in Tim Burton's Alice In Wonderland) and Michael Fassbender; Little White Lies stars Marion Cotillard (best known for her role as Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose) in this French Friends-meets-The Big Chill comedy drama; and New Zealand action horror Devil's Rock follows two Kiwi commandos behind enemy lines during World War II where they discover occult German goings on. Sounds scary.

... let Harold the Giraffe look after the kids for a while on Saturday afternoon at the Life Education Trust mascot's annual Big Day Out at Ellerslie Racecourse from midday. During the year Harold visits primary and intermediate schools spreading the word about health, wellbeing and good self-esteem, but this is his special day to relax, take it easy, and take part in a few egg and spoon races with the kids. More info go to

- TimeOut