NZ On Screen’s Zara Potts takes us on a tour of some of the funniest moments in New Zealand screen history.

Human beings are a funny lot. To many people (adults included) there's nothing better than seeing someone famous slip on a banana skin or fluff up their lines.

Perhaps it's because seeing normally unflappable professionals having to deal with the unexpected makes them more human. Or perhaps it's just because we're all just a little bit mean.

Whatever the case, bloopers have always been popular with viewers. Television history is littered with shows dedicated to pratfalls, crashes and mistakes.

One of the most viewed items on the NZ On Screen website is the clip where children's TV co-host, Thingee, loses an eye.


And so, where better to start than with that?

Broadcaster Hilary Barry is a consummate professional – but even consummate professionals get the giggles.

In this clip from The Paul Henry Show, she fails to keep her giggles at bay after mistakenly saying that rugby player Waisake Naholo broke both his legs (instead of just the one) in a news update.

Watch the clip here:

And a second round of the giggles struck when a news report about "an emergency defecation situation" caused Barry to succumb to uncontrollable laughter live on air. She quips that "today might be the day I lose my job" after unsuccessfully trying to keep a lid on her laughter.

Watch a giggling Hilary Barry here:

And maybe there's something in the drinking water at TV3 – as the news shows at the network have had their fair share of bloopers. In this clip, newsreader Sacha McNeill introduces a whole range of goofs, slip-ups and shenanigans in honour of the station's 25th birthday.

Watch 3 News goof-ups here:

But it's not just newsreaders and journalists who get themselves in a tangle – youth shows are also fertile ground for finding tongue-tied presenters and plenty of "didn't mean to pull that face" moments.

The bloopers reel from Pasifika show Fresh has many such moments, including star choreographer Parris Goebel as you've never seen her.

Watch Fresh – Bloopers and Fob Outs here:

And the normally unflappable Stacey Daniels Morrison has a hair-raising (or should that be a hair-losing) moment in this blooper reel from Mai Time – the pioneering series for rangatahi. Set to the Jackson Five's Blame it on the Boogie – these presenters have no one to blame but themselves for these bloopers.

Watch the Mai Time blooper reel here:

But it's not just the young who make on-air mistakes – experience doesn't count for much when the God of tongue twisters comes calling. The outtakes for Bill Ralston's show Backch@t is full of blooper gems from famous faces such as Chris Knox and opera singer Jonathan Lemalu.

Watch some of the Backch@t bloopers here:

And from the time that television began, there have been funny, unexpected moments. 1985 marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of the boob tube (showing my age here) in NZ and in celebration of that, a montage was made to mark the slip-ups that had happened during the years. In this clip, you can see Pete Sinclair disappear in a fog of dry ice as well as newsreader Tom Bradley losing his script – but not his cool.

Watch 25 Years of Television – Funny Moments here:

Possibly one of NZ's most infamous bloopers was actually a sporting mishap. Weightlifter Graham May managed to fall flat on his face during the 1974 Commonwealth Games. The moment was preserved for many years when the "Moments like these" ads from Minties ensured that future generations would also get to see the iconic faceplant.

Watch Graham May here:

Dexter the dog was a firm favourite of Kiwi audiences during the long-running series of Tux Wonder Dogs. But despite his usually obedient manner, off-camera Dexter could be a bit of trouble for Mark Leishman.

Dog owners will sympathise with this clip of Leishman trying very hard to get Dexter to do as he's told ...

Sometimes in sports, things don't go as they're meant to. Even when you're not playing sport – here's All Black great Zinzan Brooke trying (and failing) to get a Shetland Pony under control…

Watch the clip here:

You can see more great bloopers here, in NZ On Screen's Bloopers Collection.