The New Zealand Herald
It’s no surprise The Moment often ventures into the juvenile, but some real gems have managed to surface.
from the women’s weightlifting on day one. Oh dear. In an attempt to give their short series some semblance of cohesion, Heath and Lane walk us through a handful of regular features during each episode of The Moment.
My personal favourite is the slot they’ve reserved for poking fun at the TVNZ talent covering the Games over on the grown-up channels.
One night, they’re chatting to sports presenter Andrew Saville while he dangles his legs (“great pins!”) in a spa and rightly mocking him when he suggests he’s not old enough to remember the 1990 Commonwealth Games. The next, they’re grilling veteran broadcaster Peter Williams about a hypothetical situation involving $20 million and a tenacious, deadly snail. (Don’t ask.)
Heath and Lane also routinely skewer New Zealand’s favourite medal table — the per capita version — on the show, with a different variant of that theme each evening. Think “flightless fauna to medals” or “Warriors fans to medals”, instead of boring old population statistics.
And, of course, there’s the Alternative Commentary Collective signature move: coming up with a nickname for a famous Kiwi athlete. Games recipients thus far include Eliza McCartney, Tom Walsh and, in a particularly toe-curling moment, weightlifter Laurel Hubbard.
It’s no surprise The Moment often ventures into the juvenile, but some real gems have managed to surface, such as their ruthless-yet-hilarious commentary on the farce that is competitive walking. The show is also quite rough in parts, but that’s all part of the charm.
For smoother, more professional commentary on the day’s events (as well as actual coverage of the day’s events) you would need to flip the channel back to Toni Street and her colleagues over on TVNZ 1. But then you’d miss the Games’ multi-coloured koala mascot Borobi being described as a “chlamydia-ridden Pokemon”.
The Moment was designed to add an amusing and unpredictable counterpoint to TVNZ’s Games coverage and, at the time of writing, it’s certainly achieved that. Although there’s still five days of the Commonwealth Games to go, so this little experiment could yet go down in flames.
But let’s hope not — because it’s an experiment that’s definitely worth rolling out again for whatever TVNZ’s next major sporting event happens to be. The Moment screens weeknights throughout the Commonwealth Games on TVNZ Duke at 8.30pm.