Although some critics panned rugby drama The Kick, it was watched by more people than the critically acclaimed Consent: The Louise Nicholas Story.
The Kick, a dramatisation of the 2011 Rugby World Cup and Stephen “Beaver” Donald’s story, brought in an audience of 412,000 when it played on August 10, a TVNZ spokeswoman said.
It has also been viewed 30,000 on demand.
Some described some of the casting in the film as “bizarre” and the dialogue as “forced”.
A week later, Consent: The Louise Nicholas Story played and drew an audience of 305,000, she said.
It was too early to gather on-demand figures for Consent.
Critics hailed it as a “brilliant” and a “masterclass in sensitivity”.
Both films were the highest-rating shows in their time slots.
TVNZ also came under fire online for screening an advertisement for Skyn condoms during Consent, which featured a woman in her underwear saying how much she enjoyed sex.
Jill Smith wrote on TV One’s Facebook page: “Incredible woman. Pity about that condom ad during the break. Shows bloody bad taste on your part.”
The sentiment was echoed by others and forced an apology from TVNZ.
“We apologise for broadcasting a condom ad in last night’s [Sunday] screening of Consent on TV One.
“It was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“We are very sorry that we didn’t pick this up before it went to air.”
TVNZ said human error led to the programme’s subject matter not being taken into account when the advertisement was placed.
“It wasn’t a deliberate decision.
“The fault was ours and it shouldn’t have happened.
“We are reviewing our ad-booking processes as a result.”