What's the best night of TV?

22:06, Dec 12 2010

"You know, I think 7.30pm to 10.30pm on TV3, on a Friday night is the best three-hour stretch on any channel, any night, all week." I'm telling this to my dad, as he scuttles between his garage and the busted pump for his pool, which he is trying to repair. "Glee, The Graham Norton Show, 7 Days, Wanna-BEN, it's a great night of TV," I say, extending the fingers on my left hand as I count them down. "What do you think?"

He shoots me a look and I can tell he's wondering why I'm a TV blogger and not a part-time pool repairman. "To be honest," he says, indicating the broken pool pump, "I've got more important things to think about right now."

Fortunately I'm a TV blogger, so I do think about things like this.

In fact, I've spent an inordinate amount of time thinking about what might constitute the best night of TV during the week, since I noticed last week that TV3 on a Friday night was highlighted red from 7.30pm to 10.30pm on my MySky. It's a solid three-hour stretch of TV programming, even if I did panic when I first saw the big red box. I thought something was wrong with my decoder (I don't repair those either).

But it got me to thinking: what is the best three-hour stretch on television?

To figure this out, I used three basic rules: a) it must be a three-hour stretch, no more, no less; b) it must be evening viewing - three straight hours, starting sometime after 6pm; and c) it has to be a week night, Monday to Friday. Let's call it The Best Night of TV.

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So here are a few nominees I came up with for The Best Night of TV, from the next seven days - in no particular order, of course ...

Tuesday, 7.00pm - 10.00pm: A killer line up of comedy on C4, even if they are mostly repeats. Things heat up at 7pm with Family Guy, followed by 30 Rock (my favourite comedy of the week), How I Met Your Mother, Better Off Ted (my second favourite comedy of the week - and by the way, one of the greatest ideas for a TV show, ever) and The Office US, before winding down with Girls of the Playboy Mansion, a show more notable for its unintentional hilarity than for any real purpose it might have.

Wednesday, 7.30pm - 10.30pm: Top notch current affairs show 60 Minutes starts us off on TV3, before we flick over to Castle on One, then back to TV3 for Sons of Anarchy. This time period used to include Chuck and Human Target, both on TV2 and both finished for the season in the last few weeks (TV2 actually doesn't feature in this post at all, since The Mentalist finishes tonight and Fringe was pulled a couple of months back; I'm not regularly watching any TV2 shows at the moment.)

Thursday, 6.30pm - 9.30pm: The documentary channels are quietly loaded with decent programmes, so we head over there for Air Crash Investigation on National Geographic, before flicking over to Prime for Man Vs Wild and SGU. By the way, have we ever figured out why Air Crash Investigation is so interesting? "Tonight on ACI, we show you why most planes are seconds away from disaster, subsequently making you question every little shake and rumble on your next flight from Auckland to Palmerston North." Actually, why do I even watch this show?!

Friday, 7.30pm - 10.30pm: The three-hour stretch which started the idea for this post - TV3's Friday lineup starts with high school comedy Glee, continues with British talk show The Graham Norton Show, then winds up with Kiwi comedy in the form of 7 Days and Wanna-BEN (which has improved dramatically since my review of the premiere).

What are your favourite nights of television - what three-hour stretch of television do you look forward to each week? Post your pick for The Best Night of TV in the comments, below!

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