Prime Minister John Key has joined thousands of Coronation Street fans calling for the show to remain in its 7.30pm viewing slot.

Mr Key took to the airwaves on RadioLive, hosting what he described as "the inaugural Prime Minister's hour" - an election-free zone.

This week's headlines were dominated by the world economic crisis, the country's rating downgrades, and the death of a New Zealand SAS soldier.

But during the Prime Minister's hour on RadioLive, the crumbling economy remained off-limits. Mr Key talked cats and hobbits, and interviewed some of his "favourite" figures, including Virgin Group chief Sir Richard Branson, All Black captain Richie McCaw, The Hobbit director Sir Peter Jackson and Warriors man of the moment Lewis Brown.


And the Prime Minister declared the time-slot-troubled British soap Coronation Street "worth saving".

TVNZ has come under fire this week for its decision to start screening the show two hours earlier from October 17 and replace it with MasterChef Australia.

An online petition aiming to stop the change already has 4484 signatures.

The Prime Minister indicated, possibly tongue in cheek, that he would come to the rescue of the long-running show.

"I'm going to speak to someone important enough to see whether that can happen."

Not that he watches it. As Mr Key reminded RadioLive host Paul Henry - when he's not playing DJ, he's got a nation to run.

A statement in response from TVNZ said that like all viewers, "the Prime Minister is entitled to his personal opinion".

The question of the week, according to Mr Key, asked if he could save Coronation Street.


He said he grew up watching Coronation Street and would probably be "carted out watching Coro".

Subject matter

Prime Minister John Key's talkback topics:

cats, favourite food, outer space, the Warriors, Rugby World Cup, hobbits

Off limits