The loss of some true icons, the breakout of some emerging local talent, and a collection of classic Kiwi TV ads were just some of the drivers of NZ On Screen's most viewed titles in 2016. Nicky Harrop profiles them by month.

January 2016 saw the death of David Bowie resonate worldwide, and shone the spotlight on Flight of the Conchords' Bowie, their epic tribute to the star. Their 2000 performance of the song on Pulp Comedy drew viewers from around the globe to NZ On Screen.

See Flight of the Conchords perform Bowie here:

Closer to home, the tragic deaths of two well-known New Zealanders influenced views in February and March. Actress Sophia Hawthorne passed away in February, bringing many to the site to see her breakout performance in Savage Honeymoon. March saw legendary cricketer Martin Crowe lose his battle with lymphoma; a 2006 Holmes interview with both him and cousin Russell Crowe was widely viewed.

See Martin and Russell Crowe interviewed by Holmes here:

April saw the record-breaking Hunt for the Wilderpeople in NZ cinemas. A NZ Herald feature on the many other classic NZ screen gems referenced in the blockbuster led to the trailer for Goodbye Pork Pie being our most viewed title for the month. (The remake of this Kiwi classic - Pork Pie - hits cinemas in February)


See the original trailer for Goodbye Pork Pie here:

Veteran actor Ian Watkin (who also had a role in Goodbye Pork Pie) passed away in May. His appearance in the Great Crunchie Train Robbery prompted many to re-watch this iconic Kiwi commercial. Another local actor, Karl Urban, took out the top title in June, with a flashback to his breakout role in 90s soap Homeward Bound.

Watch the Great Crunchie Train Robbery here:

July saw the launch of NZ On Screen's Top 10 NZ TV Ads Collection, with a NZ Herald poll sparking much online debate as to which title was worthy of the number one spot. After much "internalising of a complicated situation" in people's heads, Ghost Chips eventually triumphed.

Watch Ghost Chips here:

With the arrival of the Rio Olympics in August, an early profile of silver-winning golfer Lydia Ko proved popular. By September, an unlikely Kiwi talent was starting to become a global sensation. Sam Wills (aka Tape Face) made the finals of America's Got Talent, with many hunting down this early Pulp Comedy appearance.

See Sam Wills appearing on Pulp Comedy here:

An October screening of Belief: The Possession of Janet Moses on TVNZ1 sparked renewed interest in the controversial case, and the trailer for the docu-drama became NZ On Screen's most viewed of the month. In November Ray Columbus passed away, and many visited the site to see the pop pioneer performing She's A Mod.

See Ray Columbus performing She's A Mod, here:

In December, the local music community was rocked once again with the death of Bunny Walters, this appearance in Koha - Māori Musicians becoming the final most-viewed title for the year.

You can see NZ On Screen's Most Viewed of 2016 here, and see the background to what was included here.