North

7:00pm Sunday, February 27 on TV One

After exploring the wild south in his last television series, Lush has gone to the other extreme of the country for his next show, North.

Travelling up the east side of the country and down the west, taking in the Far North and Cape Reinga, visiting the Islands of the Gulf, and telling the stories of the great harbours of the Manukau, Hokianga, Kaipara and the Waitemata, before concluding ten weeks later with an idiosyncratic A to Z of Auckland in classic Lush style.

In episode three Lush is in Hokianga – which he ponders can sometimes feel like a separate state of New Zealand. Plus he has a lesson in horse riding and astronomy, and fails to avoid being sentimental about Opo the dolphin.

Tonight Lush begins his travels along the west coast from Bayleys beach, through the Waipoua Forest, to Opononi, and finally to the North Hokianga Heads.

In Bayleys beach his first stop is an observatory which he informs us is, “home to New Zealand’s largest telescope.”

Canadian born astronomer, Deborah Hambey, who is the creator and operator of the observatory tells Lush, “I’d heard the astronomy is so good here [in New Zealand], in fact you have the best of every class of object, the best galaxies, the best globular clusters, the best nebular. You’ve go the best of everything!” she exclaims.

While spying an imprint on the moon caused by a meteorite through the telescope Lush says, “I came up here to fall in love with Northland – but actually I have seen a gash in the moon.”

Over in the Waipoua Forest the theme of nature is reinforced. Lush stands in awe of the large Kauri tree named Tane Mahuta (the father of forests and of all things that inhabit them). He says, “to most New Zealanders this would be the one must see. Forget parliament or where the treaty was signed. I think this is New Zealand’s absolute knockout.”

Next Marcus travels through Rawinin to Opononoi where he revisits the timeless tale of Opo the dolphin. Despite the fact he feels this tale has been ‘done’ so many times before, Marcus is moved by the people that have bonded with the creature.

Missed an episode of North? Full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

7:00pm Sunday, February 20 on TV One

After exploring the wild south in his last television series, Lush has gone to the other extreme of the country for his next show, North.

Travelling up the east side of the country and down the west, taking in the Far North and Cape Reinga, visiting the Islands of the Gulf, and telling the stories of the great harbours of the Manukau, Hokianga, Kaipara and the Waitemata, before concluding ten weeks later with an idiosyncratic A to Z of Auckland in classic Lush style.

In many cases he will be taking the road less travelled, via sand-barge, cement ship, on horseback or small local fishing vessels.

In episode two Lush finds out what people don’t learn about Piha on Piha Rescue, – goes nude – again – and boats the Kaipara exploring both its and his own fish canning history.

Piha local, author and journalist Sarah Coney chats to Lush about what Piha has to offer: “The big thing that happened here was a couple of life guards from America came here in the 1950’s. Bing and Rick went out and rode their boards diagonally across the waves. It spread like wildfire- there was just complete adoration. And that was pretty much the beginning; modern surfing in New Zealand was born at the Piha Surf club.”

Lush then explores a more sinister side of Piha: “The murder mystery and the skull,” Lush announces ominously, referring to an event that rocked Piha in 1939 and has become somewhat of an urban myth today, wherein, two friends who were sharing a bach became the victims of an arson attack – one escaped and the other was killed in the blaze.

Lush informs us that the body found in the bach was not who anyone had expected. “Sure enough the police did find a body but police worked out it wasn’t the escapee’s mate. It was the body of a recently deceased man,” he reveals.

Coney confirms. “They’d gone up and dug up his body and taken it and then put it in the bach and pretended it was his mate who’d been burnt. It was insurance fraud. They’d insured the mate for an awful lot of money in Australia; and that was a very elaborate swindle,” says Coney.

Over in Parakai, Lush relaxes with a spot of skinny-dipping. “These days Parakai has an almost-something bad happened at youth group feel to it,” Lush announces. “It’s not necessarily a bad thing; it’s still got a kind of melancholy niceness to it. And the really exciting thing is, as those in certain circles know, every last Thursday of the month at Parakai is nude day,” he announces with raised eyebrows.

When Lush reaches the Kaipara harbour, after meeting some very interesting characters, visiting many other special destinations in his journey up the coast, he learns how his own roots are ingrained in the history of the north. “Well this is quite strange for me, I don’t normally like to give too much of myself away,” he concludes.

Missed an episode of North? Full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button.

7:00pm Sunday, February 13 on TV One

After exploring the wild south in his last television series, Lush has gone to the other extreme of the country for his next show, North, kicking off an exciting all new line up for Sunday nights on TV ONE.

From lighthouses to lava flows, kayaks to kiwis, beaches to butterflies, Marcus Lush covers a lot of ground – and water – in his latest adventure about New Zealand’s special places and people.

Lush decided to head up north for a while after discovering renewed passion for the region while spending more time in his hometown Auckland for work last year.

“As a visitor back up north, the stories have become much more interesting to me, more relevant and resonant,” he says.

“The bottom of the South Island looks very different from the North, the cultures are different and the North has so much interesting history to explore, including plenty of lovely lighthouses and dramatic shipwrecks.

“There are the modern stories too, like the Mangere Bridge industrial dispute – the longest in New Zealand history – and, of course, the great harbour stories of the Manukau, Hokianga, Kaipara and Waitemata,” says Lush.

He was also thrilled to visit off-shore locations like the Three Kings, the Cavallis and the islands of the Gulf, which have not been documented on television since Shirley Maddock’s popular television series back in the 1960s.

Lush worked on North with his long-time collaborator, Jam TV producer Melanie Rakena, with whom he also made Off The Rails, Ice and South. At last year’s Qantas Film and Television Awards, the pair won best presenter and best director for entertainment and factual programmes.

In episode one of North Lush gets spooked and does a bit of spooking of his own, meets an astronomer with an observatory in her back garden, enjoys close encounters with dolphins, gannets and butterflies and discovers the ultimate man cave in suburban Mount Albert. And, yes, the occasional train chugs into view too.

Opening with spectacular aerial views of Lush arriving in Manukau Harbour by container ship, the show goes up the east side and down the west, taking in the Far North and Cape Reinga, visiting the Islands of the Gulf, and telling the stories of the great harbours of the Manukau, Hokianga, Kaipara and the Waitemata, before concluding 10 weeks later with an idiosyncratic A to Z of Auckland in classic Lush style.

In many cases he will be taking the road less travelled, via sand-barge, cement ship, on horseback or small local fishing vessels.

Missed an episode of North? Full episodes are available online. Go to tvnz.co.nz and click the ‘Ondemand’ button

What can we expect from TV One in 2011?  Well, it appears as though the experiment of 2010 has been done away with and the edginess has gone and it’s returned to solid 25-54 programming.

Check out the trailers below.  Unfortunately, the kiwi shows don’t have trailers on YouTube, yet (nudge, nudge, wink, wink @TV2Boy!).

New Shows

Enlightened

Body of Proof

Episodes

Harry’s Law

Offspring

Winners and Losers

Tangle

Suspect Behaviour

Spicks and Specks 

New Local Shows
North – The sequel to Marcus Lush’s highly acclaimed South
Masterchef Masterclasses
Nothing Trivial – from the creators of Go Girls
Do or Die – confronting Kiwi’s with bad health habits
Politicians at Work
The Politically Incorrect Guide to Teenagers
Family Feud

Returning Shows
Packed to the Rafters
Undercover Boss
Criminal Minds
Castle
Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution

Returning Local Shows 
One News
Close Up
Sunday
Intrepid Journeys
The Investigator
Beyond the Darklands
Fair Go
Animal Rescue
Coastwatch
Piha Rescue
Real Life
Real Crime