Thursday, July 21, 2016

EVENT: Auckland Zinefest 2016

Above: Auckland Zinefest 2016 poster, designed by Chippy.

Auckland Zinefest is back for 2016, and bigger and better than ever! With over 50 exhibitors, covering everything from zines to comics, journals, independent media and much more, the event will be taking place this Sunday 24th of July, at the Auckland Art Gallery.

This new venue is a great opportunity to introduce a wider audience to the D.I.Y wonders of the local self-publishing community, and take Zinefest to the new level of public awareness. The event will be open from 11am - 4pm, so make sure you're in early for the best purchases and a chance to chat with stall holders, as it's likely to be a very busy day of selling!

For a full list of exhibitors and related Auckland Zinefest events, visit the website HERE, and the Facebook event page HERE for further updates!

Event Details: 
Auckland Zinefest 2016
Date: Sunday 24th of July
Time: 11am-4pm
Location: Auckland Art Gallery, North Atrium
Corner of Kitchener and Wellesley Streets, Auckland CBD

- AK!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Terry Teo Returns to the Small Screen!

Above: The cast of the new Terry Teo TV series. From right: Kahn West as Terry Teo, Drew Brice Ford as Caleb, Hanna Tevita as Polly, and Manon Blackman as Penelope Butterworth. Copyright Semi-Professional Pictures 2016.

This week sees the release of the new Terry Teo TV series on TVNZ Ondemand, a modern interpretation of the classic NZ graphic novel Terry Teo and the Gunrunners by Bob Kerr & Stephen Ballantyne, and the fondly remembered 1980s TV series starring Adrian Bell, Billy T James and Sir Robert Muldoon.

With his skateboarding skills and crime-solving street smarts, Terry become an unlikely kiwi icon - joining Footrot Flats as one of our best known local comic book characters. When Housebound filmmaker Gerard Johnstone was looking for his next project, the idea of rebooting Terry Teo was an appealing opportunity. "Which has never really been done before with a local property," explains Johnstone. "He's the only character we've got that I can think of that was a comic and had broad recognition with the public. In New Zealand the only chance we may get to make our own version of a Batman or Spider-Man, is probably Terry Teo."

The new TV series updates the material for a modern audience, recasting Terry as a petty criminal and gang prospect, who turns his life around when he learns that his policeman father has been killed in action. This leads Terry to investigate his father's murder and take on Auckland's criminal underworld - beginning with crime boss, Ray Vagas.

In maintaining the balance of action and humour that made the source material so appealing, the creators of the new show drew criticism from broadcaster TVNZ, who expressed concern when episodes of the show were classified PG instead of the preferred family friendly G rating. 

Johnstone and producer Luke Sharpe were quick to defend their take on the comic book character. "We've got shootouts, car chases, kung-fu fights, it's very full on", Johnstone explained. "And you don't want to talk down to kids. My favourite shows from when I was a kid were The A-Team and MacGyver, which weren't made for children. So the idea was to do something that had that same kind of appeal. I really don't think of this as a kids' show - it should have something for everyone".

Above: Terry Teo Co-Creator and artist, Bob Kerr. Photo copyright Nick Reed.

The graphic novel's co-author and artist Bob Kerr appreciated that certain changes would be made in bringing the character up to date for the small screen. In an interview with the NZ Herald this week, Kerr commented on the new interpretation, "it's darker and sharper. Terry's now 17 and he drives a car and he's got a cellphone. It's a hang of a lot of fun but it's a wildly different world to the romantic era we depicted".

Looking back on Terry's legacy, Kerr reflects, "we weren't thinking about any of this when we started. We were probably a bit naive. We just wanted to create a story featuring some local kids having a ripping adventure with heaps of laughs along the way, and somehow that connected with readers. Steve [Ballantyne] and I are delighted that Terry has been remembered and that 30 odd years later he is having another outing both in print and on the telly".

Terry Teo and the Gunrunners by Bob Kerr & Stephen Ballantyne is available now from bookstores and online at

Terry Teo is now streaming on TVNZ Ondemand HERE.

- AK!