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Pop CultureJanuary 29, 2024

‘A yummy granny’: Everything you missed from the return of AM 


AM returned this morning with a brand new co-host but many of the same breakfast television shenanigans. Alex Casey recaps. 

Rising groggily a week after their TVNZ counterparts, Three’s breakfast show AM returned to our screens this morning with a brand new co-host in broadcaster and Skytower scratch builder Lloyd Burr. “Finally, we are back” welcomed Melissa Chan-Green. “It’s lovely to be here,” added Burr, his big smile concealing a deep hurt – he still can’t seem to login to his work computer. It was a suitably shambolic start to three hours of early morning hijinks – here’s every weird, wonderful and notable thing you might have missed from AM’s first day back. 

Lloyd Burr was praised for his choice of socks… 

After a viewer emailed in praising Burr’s neon checkered socks, he lifted his foot as high as the tallest cardboard model Skytower and presented them proudly to the nation. “That’s some good flexibility there” said Chan-Green. “I did some pole dancing at the weekend, so I’m very flexible at the moment,” Burr replied. There is footage out there, he teased, but not for today. “Not for tomorrow, either,” added his co-host.  

… But told off for his choice of language

It’s not often that you get David Seymour and Chloe Swarbrick agreeing about anything on morning television, but a misstep from Burr during their political panel saw him suitably chastised by both. “Are you worried about being lynched at Waitangi?” he asked Seymour of his upcoming appearance. “I’d ask you to reflect on that language,” interjected Swarbrick, raising the historical context of the phrase in relation to our most marginalized population. “I would agree with Chloe there,” said Seymour, adding that he recently went to a Civil Rights museum and found Burr’s use of it inappropriate. Burr later apologised for his poor choice of words, but it was hard to hear over his loud socks. 

Ryan Bridge haunted the show

In classic first week back fashion, there were some loose ends from last year that still needed tidying up. Namely, the fact that Ryan Bridge is still on all the posters and graphics for AM. William Waiirua tacked on a Lloyd Burr mask over the old AM billboard at Three’s reception desk, and later the graphics team jankily added Burr’s head onto Bridge’s body in a promotional plug for the ThreeNow app. Jankiness? Around the ThreeNow app? Well I never. 

The music was terrific… 

Shout out to whoever chooses the post-ad-break music, because today’s playlist was an absolute stormer, particularly if you have a penchant for glittery-lidded popstars. We had Carly Rae Jepsen’s ‘Talking to Yourself’, we had Miley Cyrus’ ‘Midnight Sky’, we had Chela’s ‘Hard 4 U’, we had Harry Styles’ ‘Late Night Talking’. Special shout out for ‘We Didn’t Start the Fire’ as the musical introduction for David Seymour and Chloe Swarbrick. 

… And this was freaky

Presented without context.

The big issues were tackled… 

It can’t be a breakfast show without the breakneck zig-zagging between banter and horror, news and views, serious Lloyd Burr and novelty socks Lloyd Burr. Over the three hours, AM traversed a range of topical issues from the Treaty Principles Bill to gang violence, smash and grabs to dying whales, employment law to cellphones in schools. “Just on the cellphone stuff, it’s nothing new,” said Burr. “I always had my Panasonic GD68 out text bombing on my Boost Mobile plan.” Neither colleague could relate to this extraordinarily specific observation. “I’d love to say that cellphones were a thing when I was at school” said Chan-Green. “I just had two tins and a string,” sighed newsreader Nicky Styrus. 

… But there was still plenty of filth

Reflecting on the departure of Ryan Bridge, Waiirua said “Ryan used to rub me up the wrong way… I mean literally.” Earlier, Burr said to Styrus “you’re a yummy granny”, referred to paywave repeatedly as “tap and gap” and a sponsored Wild Bean cafe segment ended with Styrus revealing her favourite spot for “a coffee and a perve”. Maybe all this pole dancing is to blame, but I haven’t seen live television this sexed-up since ‘come box’.

When British comedian Russell Howard took the couch, Burr even suggested he should have a televised meet up with the Tauranga woman who once described him as her “weird” crush. “Would you like to come back on the show and have a… live on air…with her?” he proposed, redacting himself live, while Chan-Green reminded him that AM is “not that kind of show”. “Wow, breakfast TV is different here,” laughed their guest. It is indeed Russell Howard, it is indeed. 

AM airs 6am-9am Monday-Friday on Three

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