Brown Eye is Maori Television's foray into news satire. We asked presenter Nathan Rarere and producer Bailey Mackey about the thinking behind the programme and the deeper meaning on the show's name.
Brown Eye, catchy title. Was Whakapohane rejected?
Nathan: I can't lay claim to coming up with the title, but my eyes are a luxurious brown. So that's something.
Bailey: Brown Eye has so many awesome meanings, doesn't it? It was one of those names that once we came up with it, we wondered why hasn't there been a show with that name before? Plus I too have brown eyes.
So is this a Te News for the 21st century?
Nathan: Abe Pakatewhainau was a personal hero of mine so I won't have a disparaging word spoken about Te News. You can't just make current affairs puns by themselves any more. People like to be more educated and all have the likes of Google and Wikipedia in the palm of their hands now. If we can make people laugh and then trick them into looking further into the subject then that's good.
Bailey: Yes, that's right ha! No one or nothing will compare to what Billy did.
It's pitched as "a satirical news show from a Maori perspective". Will it all be from that perspective? And if you don't have a Maori perspective will you still get it?
Nathan: If you could feel the joy of Homai te Pakipaki, then you can feel the focus of the Brown Eye. Anyone can feel it.
Bailey: Yeah I think so. We have non-Maori as part of the team, but you know. I guess I'm an editor in chief kind of thing so I funnel everything through my brown eyes.
Who are you hoping to entertain or educate the most?
Nathan: People who thought they already knew it all.
Bailey: Ourselves ... No seriously I hope the New Zealand public in general. That would be awesome if they were able to see things through brown eyes.
Who are you hoping to annoy or offend the most?
Nathan: People who thought they already knew it all
Bailey: Hopefully, the New Zealand public - no just joking. I guess satire is at its greatest when you punch up. Being Maori that probably means most sections of society are open for a bit of offence. To be honest though we aren't really aiming to offend, it's more about offering a different point of view and at times pointing out the ridiculousness of the truth which is ridiculous in itself.
Who is this Uncle Isaac* guy who features in the show? He looks kind of familiar.
Nathan: He's a brilliant member of staff and a wealth of knowledge. I like to describe him as either the best history teacher you'll ever have. Or the most uncomfortable.
Bailey: I actually think he may have changed his name. Maybe it will be Uncle Matiu by the time we go to air. Who knows with that guy?
*Uncle Isaac is to be played by one Taika Waititi.
Where: Maori TV
When: Fridays, 9.30pm
What: Satirical news from a Maori perspective