Episodes
When Eric Mareo was convicted of murder for a second time, the judgewrote to the Attorney General raising grave concerns about the verdict. In this episode, we look at how prejudice and sensationalist media might have seen an innocent man sentenced to death.
Published 05/23/21
Kiwis rose to their feet and cheered when the flamboyant orchestra conductor Eric Mareo was found guilty of murdering his wife in 1936. But 85 years later, the verdict seems less certain. Was justice done? Or was Mareo an innocent man? RNZ's Black Sheep podcast investigates.
Published 05/16/21
George Wilder is an accidental folk hero. He never sought the spotlight, but his three escapes from prison in the 1960s made him a national sensation. Black Sheep investigates his story.
Published 05/09/21
In the first week of June 1863 half the population of a small Tongan island called 'Ata boarded a ship captained by Thomas McGrath. They were never seen again. In this episode, Black Sheep investigates the story of a slave raid which destroyed a small civilisation.
Published 05/02/21
In the second of Black Sheep's two part episode on Sir George Grey, Aotearoa is launched into the worst conflicts of the New Zealand Wars. For more on the Waikato War, watch and listen to Stories of Tainui.
Published 04/26/21
Sir George Grey led Aotearoa into some of the worst conflicts of the New Zealand Wars. In this two part episode, Black Sheep investigates his life story. 
Published 04/18/21
Black Sheep returns for a Sixth Season!
Published 04/14/21
Minnie Dean must rank as one of New Zealand's most infamous figures. The only woman to be judicially executed in New Zealand history. For years she was portrayed as a cold-blooded killer who murdered babies for cash. More recently, attitudes towards Minnie have shifted, but she's still a controversial and complex figure. Black Sheep dives into the story of the baby farmer of Winton. 
Published 08/30/20
The case breaks wide open, two key witnesses come forward with critical information. But the most interesting part of the Bassett Road murders is what happens after the conviction...
Published 08/23/20
It's 1963 and two bodies are found in a house at Bassett Road in Remuera. Detectives are shocked to discover they were killed by a submachine-gun. Newspaper headlines read "Chicago Comes to New Zealand". Black Sheep investigates a true crime story that scandalised New Zealand
Published 08/16/20
Flora MacKenzie is one of the most colourful characters in New Zealand history: A hard drinking, hard talking brothel owner from the 1960s and 70s who won the affection of sex workers, police and punters alike. In this episode of Black Sheep, we look at the legend of Madam Flora
Published 08/09/20
Between the 1960s and late 2000s Stewart Smith went on a one-man crusade, releasing thousands of invasive fish into New Zealand’s rivers, lakes and streams. In this episode of Black Sheep, we investigate his story.
Published 08/01/20
In part two of Black Sheep's series on Edward Gibbon Wakefield we see theories of "systematic" and "humanitarian" colonisation run into bitter realities. The result is conflict, death and disaster. For Wakefield and for Māori.  
Published 07/26/20
Edward Gibbon Wakefield used to be known as “The Father of New Zealand.” But modern historians have pointed to the disastrous impact of his colonial policies on indigenous people, his misleading propaganda and, (not least) his abduction and marriage of a teenage girl. This two part episode of Black Sheep, William Ray investigates Wakefield's life and legacy.
Published 07/19/20
Published 07/05/20
The story of New Zealand and its people, from its geological origins to modern day. Hosted by William Ray and Leigh-Marama McLachlan, with animation by Chris Maguren. Made possible by the RNZ/NZ On Air Innovation Fund.
Published 10/07/19
Published 10/07/19
In this special episode of Black Sheep, William Ray looks at the history of white supremacy in NZ.
Published 03/25/19
The story of Horatio Robley continues... How did a man once dubbed a "predator of culture" for his collection of Maori heads become better known as a "friend of the Maori"?
Published 02/12/19
Horatio Robley witnessed the most famous battle of the New Zealand Wars, he fathered a child with the daughter of a sworn enemy, his sketching helped end a war, his book helped save the art of Maori tattooing... But mostly he's famous for his grotesque collection of nearly 40 human heads.
Published 02/12/19
The death penalty has started wars, won elections, outraged the population and ruined lives. Join William Ray for this live podcast recording at the Bread and Circus Festival in Christchurch with guests Dame Fiona Kidman, Vincent O'Malley and Mark Derby as they unpick the history of executions in New Zealand.
Published 02/10/19
A few listeners told William this podcast puts them to sleep. But you know what? He's just happy to help. If you'd like William to put you to sleep in person: book a FREE ticket to our live podcast recording at the Bread and Circus World Busker's Festival in Christchurch on January 26th, 2019.
Published 12/19/18
Bully Hayes is famous as a charismatic "pirate" of the South Pacific. But most stories gloss over his more heinous crimes: Slavery, sexual assault and the brutal abuse of his crew.
Published 12/17/18
In part two, how Gustavus von Tempsky went from a relatively famous soldier to the uber-hero of NZ colonial history.
Published 12/09/18