One Question Quiz
Stacey Morrison (Image: Archi Banal)
Stacey Morrison (Image: Archi Banal)

Pop CultureJuly 8, 2023

Stacey Morrison is haunted by the Goodnight Kiwi jingle

Stacey Morrison (Image: Archi Banal)
Stacey Morrison (Image: Archi Banal)

The co-host of this year’s Matariki coverage on growing up in the era of Wonder Woman and The Henderson Kids, being scared of the Goodnight Kiwi and why she’ll never watch Game of Thrones.

From Mai Time to Toi Time, What Now to Whānau Living, Stacey Morrison (Te Arawa, Ngāi Tahu) has cemented herself as one of our most talented and experienced television personalities. After first appearing on our screens as a teenager on What Now, Morrison became a familiar face over the next three decades, presenting much-loved shows like Marae, It’s in the Bag and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, and appearing on reality hits like Celebrity Treasure Island and McDonald’s Young Entertainers. Morrison may have co-hosted National Treasures, but you could also say she’s one herself.

This Friday, the best-selling author, radio broadcaster, MC and Māori language advocate joins Mātai Smith to host Mānawatia a Matariki, a special multi-network, five hour live broadcast from Ngongotahā Mountain (Rotorua) covering our national Matariki celebrations. Ahead of Matariki, Morrison reflects on her most memorable television moments, which include a slurpy TV debut and an irrational fear of the Goodnight Kiwi.

Stacey Morrison and Mātai Smith will host Mānawatia a Matariki on Friday 14 July (Image: Supplied)

My earliest TV memory is… Being on Romper Room when I was about three. It was like Play School but they had little kids come in as guests. The part I remember most is that I finished my milk first and let out a big “slurp, ahhhh” all on camera. 

The TV show I used to rush home from school to watch was… After School, then as I grew so much older, The Henderson Kids, which had thrilling teenage romances.

The TV moment that haunts me the most is… When the Goodnight Kiwi jingle came on at the end of the night. Why was that so scary?

My earliest TV crush was… Leroy from Fame, and I’m not mad about it. 

The TV ad I can’t stop thinking about is… I recently discovered I still know every word to the song in the Dear John BASF ad from the 1980s, which I’m sure is using storage space in my brain I could be using for something more pertinent. 

My TV guilty pleasure is… Watching my husband on Te Karere. I still remember the days when I couldn’t understand te reo Māori so Te Karere was a learning resource for me as I know it is still for many. Some days it still amazes me that I can understand and enjoy it now. 

My favourite TV moment of all time is… Getting to introduce now-iconic music videos on Mai Time in the 90s… “Here’s a new song from 2Pac & Dr Dre, anei tā rāua waiata hou, ‘California Love’.” 

The Mai Time crew, ft Daniels closest to the camera (Image: YouTube)

My favourite TV character of all time is… OG Wonder Woman. 

The most stylish person on TV is… Mihingarangi Forbes. 

My most used streaming platform is… Whatever other members of my whānau are watching, I hardly ever have control of the remote. 

My favourite TV project I’ve ever been involved in is… This is too hard to choose, but I am amazed that people still remember I was on What Now as a teenager and then Mai Time fairly soon after, especially when people’s dads now claim they had a crush on me then – I was never ever asked on dates!

The TV show that defined my lockdown was… Cobra Kai, which we watched together as a whānau, after they’d done their karate practice for the day (not kidding, all of them are purple and brown belts except for me).

The TV show I wish I wrote/directed/starred in is… Black-ish, but Brown-ish. 

Anthony Anderson and Tracee Ellis Ross in Black-ish

My most-watched TV show of all time is… Whatever the younger people in my life are watching. As I have younger siblings as well as kids of various ages, I’ve been through their Hi-Five, Blues Clues, Little Einsteins phases and will always love Zendaya because of KC Undercover. 

My controversial TV take is… Subtitles should be diversifying the type of content we are served up, not just used to read English subtitles for English-language shows. 

A show I will never watch, no matter how many people say I should is… Game of Thrones. TLDW (too long, didn’t watch). 

The last thing I watched on TV was… Toi Time, the lovely show I play a small role in and have an executive producer role on. 

Mānawatia a Matariki screens on Friday 14 July from 6am on TVNZ 1, TVNZ+, Three, Prime, Whakaata Māori, Pasifika TV, Radio New Zealand and Stuff.

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