EXTRA: Auckland Daze

Wanda and Glen
Wanda (Jennifer Ward-Lealand) and Glen

Auckland Scene gets funny + Deleted Scene! [by James Wenley]

Wanda and Glen
Wanda (Jennifer Ward-Lealand) and Glen

If you already haven’t already, fans of Auckland theatre should definitely check out TVNZ’s new online comedy Auckland Daze, about four wannabes “chasing fame in Auckland’s ridiculously small entertainment industry”.

The brainchild of actor/director Kiel McNaughton, local theatre actors amongst its cast include Natalie Medlock, Jacqui Nauman (of Outfit Theatre Company), and Faye Smythe. Our recent interviewee Jennifer Ward-Lealand told us she’s been having a ball in her cougarish role of Wanda the Real Estate Agent. “It’s a gorgeous cast, and outrageous, and I haven’t seen anything else like it.”

On the show, the main cast play very lose and exagerated versions of themselves. Fasitua Amosa wants to become a stand-up comedian -- on the show his routines are terrible, in real-life, as his show during the recent Basement-fest proved, he’s actually really kick-ass.

We’ve been contacted to promote the show, and very happy to too. Its a nice concept -- episodes are shot each weekend, and viewers can get a say on the content through their Facebook page. Not to mention, its very funny, and good to see local actors bringing the laughs.

As a sweetener, here’s a Deleted Scene from the most recent episode of Auckland Daze, where ‘Glenjamin’ plays Ninja Golf:

New episodes are up every Thursday. Check it out here.

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3 Comments on EXTRA: Auckland Daze

  1. I don’t want to come across as provincial and whiney (I grew up in Auckland, even if I now live elsewhere), but Auckland Daze seems like yet another example of the TV industry cracking local in-jokes and expecting the rest of the country to love it.

    There’s been more than a few of these in the last decade… it started, I think, with the Jaquie Brown Diaries. Other culprits to greater or lesser degrees include A Night at The Classic, Feedback, 7Days, Go Girls, bro’Town… I’m sure there are more.

    This is partly because New Zealand TV comedy and drama production is concentrated almost exclusively in Auckland, and partly because “write what you know” is solid, well-practised advice. It’s also probably unfair to pick on Auckland Daze, a more experimental web-only series clearly done on a shoestring where a bit of self-referentialism shouldn’t go amiss.

    None of the shows I mentioned above lived or died on their self-reference quota alone – there’s more to good or bad TV than just that – but does anybody else feel like New Zealand TV has reached in-joke overkill?

  2. Fair call Robbie. I don’t know how well the humour plays outside Auckland – there are a fair number of cheeky in-jokes! I definitely agree thats there’s a big trend for this sort of style, reflected in comedy theatre shows too (Sainsbury, Sampson etc). Not sure if its played out yet… I think Daze’s online format helps it a lot, it doesn’t carry the same baggage as a television screening (invariably an 11pm!), so maybe doesn’t carry quite the same stakes.

  3. …there’s a big trend for this sort of style, reflected in comedy theatre shows too (Sainsbury…

    Yeah, Close Up is some of the best satire on TV at the moment. It reminds me of Frontline.

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