Legendary Thingee set for return

STACEY KIRK
Last updated 11:04 04/07/2013
Fairfax NZ

New Zealand's favourite puppet Thingee is set to make a return to television

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New Zealand media puppet darling Thingee is set to make a comeback, with personality Jason Gunn confirming the pair had "caught up for a private meeting".

"We did have a bit of a private meeting, Thingee and I, which you have to because you can't have a subtle meeting in a public place with him," Gunn said.

"There are certain elements where it's hard to disguise - lack of legs, big nose etc."

Thingee began presenting children's television shortly after emerging from an egg in a 1987 episode of After School, quickly winning a keen following for his quick wit and goggly eyes.

Thingee and Gunn first met the following year and went on to present many shows together, including the Son of a Gunn show and What Now?, before co-starring in the road movie Jason and Thingee's Big Adventure.

Thingee famously lost one of his eyes on an episode of What Now? - the moment now described as New Zealand television history.

Thingee eventually returned to his home planet on an episode of What Now?

"But did he?" Gunn asked.

"That's the big question.

"What we really want to know is what has he been up to all these years? We all know what I've been doing, but hey, when we met it was in the Koru Lounge and I was in there on his pass, so he's obviously been doing okay - that's what his return would likely focus on first"

Since his retirement, Thingee has returned a few times to make appearances on New Zealand television, most recently last year Wishing TVNZ U a Happy Birthday.

Gunn said he and Thingee were on the same page about his return to the media spotlight.

"We created some magic together, we're keen to do it again, but we're very aware though that they were good days - sometimes that's where things should be left," he said.

Gunn said Thingee was conscious his return would incite significant nostalgia, and it had to be planned carefully.

"There was less better [quality television], now, there's more out there but is it better? No," he said.

"Now, you can tweet the world with what you had for breakfast and Facebook status with your latest toilet update, and television up the wazoo, but I'm not too sure that means it's quality."

Gunn said it was likely Thingee's return would happen on his own show, and it would be the original "A-team" who would be involved.

Thingee was voiced by producer/director Alan Henderson.

Gunn said the group were not yet in a position to confirm when Thingee's return might occur.

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