Wellington Paranormal is back with a star-studded new season. The spin-off of the film What We Do in the Shadows, created by Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement, follows a special police unit who investigate paranormal activity in New Zealand’s capital city.
In season 2 it gets spooky at sea with the season opener entitled ‘Taniwha’. Sergeant Maaka (Maaka Pohatu), and constables Minogue (Mike Minogue) and O’Leary (Karen O’Leary) visit Wellington Harbour where fishermen are disappearing.
One of the missing anglers is the New Zealand Prime Minister’s fiancé Clarke Gayford! Suddenly, the case is of national importance.
The idea to include Gayford in the episode began as a joke between the writers because he’s one of New Zealand’s most famous fishermen.
Writer and producer Paul Yates had to have Gayford in the episode.
“Knowing Clarke was a good fisherman and was spending some of his time in this part of the island, we thought it would be a cool thing to have him involved,” Yates told Stuff.
Aside from ‘first bloke’ and dad duties, Gayford hosts the fishing show Fish of the Day. With such a full schedule there was a little worry he wouldn’t be available.
“I didn’t think we’d get him to be honest,” says Yates, “but he said ‘nah that sounds like a hoot’.
“He and [Prime Minister] Jacinda [Ardern] love the show apparently.”
Wellington Paranormal now has the honour of being one of the Prime Minister’s favourite shows but Gayford’s cameo wasn’t a glamorous day of acting.
“… poor old Clarke … was covered in all sorts of weird goo stuff. He had all this seaweed wrapped around him, tied to this pretend wall with all this gross slime all over him,” says O’Leary.
The title of the episode takes its name from a sea monster of Māori legend. Gayford features in a scene where people are found cocooned. It’s only a short scene but it’s packed with jokes about Gayford and how his fishing misadventure is a matter of national security.
“Being such a keen fisher-person, there really wasn’t anyone better for the job,” says O’Leary. “… it just goes to show as well that him and also our Prime Minister are good, down-to-earth New Zealand people who care about being part of good stuff like Wellington Paranormal.”
Fans are in for a treat because season 2 has twice the number of episodes as season 1. More surprise cameos are planned and we’ll meet new supernatural beings like witches and ghost policemen.
Season 2 of Wellington Paranormal premieres on Thursday, 28 November 2019 at 9.25pm on SBS VICELAND (after The X-Files). Episodes will be available to stream at SBS On Demand afterwards.
Season one is available to stream in its entirety:
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