David Farrier

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David Farrier
David Farrier.JPG
Farrier in 2016
Born (1982-12-25) 25 December 1982 (age 39)
Tauranga, New Zealand
Alma materAuckland University of Technology
  • Journalist
  • actor
Notable credit(s)
Dark Tourist
3 News
Short Poppies

David Farrier (born 25 December 1982)[1] is a New Zealand journalist and actor. He has worked in news and documentary, including features on New Zealand television and co-directing the internationally distributed documentary film Tickled (2016). In 2018, he created the Netflix documentary series Dark Tourist, in which he visits obscure, peculiar, or dangerous tourist spots. He has also done some acting, most notably in the Rhys Darby mockumentary series Short Poppies.


Farrier's reportage has appeared frequently on 3 News,[2] and he was New Zealand Nightline's entertainment reporter from 2006 until the program's end in 2013. In 2011, he made a 45-minute documentary for TV3 about the origins of "God Defend New Zealand", one of the two New Zealand national anthems.[3] From 2013 to 2017, he co-hosted the cryptozoology-focused audio program The Cryptid Factor with comedian Rhys Darby and producer Leon 'Buttons' Kirkbeck.[4] In 2015, he became co-host with reporter Sam Hayes, for the TV3 show Newsworthy.[5]

In 2014, he played a fictionalised version of himself in Darby's 2014 mockumentary series Short Poppies.[6]

That same year, Farrier began production of the feature-length documentary Tickled, in collaboration with Dylan Reeve.[7][8] The film premiered in January 2016 at the Sundance Film Festival[9] and was shown on HBO. In 2017, Farrier did a follow-up short documentary, with previously unseen footage, entitled The Tickle King.[10][11]

In November 2016, Farrier wrote an article about individuals with various sexual fetishes issuing "challenges" or dares to children on YouTube, encouraging them to make seemingly innocent videos of themselves;[12] this led to several YouTube accounts being banned.[13]

In 2018, he was an executive producer and served as presenter for the eight-episode Netflix documentary series Dark Tourist.[14][15][16]

In September 2020, Farrier appeared on the podcast Armchair Expert with Dax Shepard[17] and thereafter has worked alongside the Armchair umbrella in releasing a podcast series dubbed Armchaired and Dangerous, where they discuss popular conspiracy theories.[18]

Farrier publishes the newsletter Webworm, which he started in 2020.[19] This newsletter covers a range of topics but has a specific focus on conspiracy theories, such as QAnon.[19]

Personal life[edit]

Farrier was raised in Bethlehem, Tauranga, where he was home-schooled before attending Bethlehem College.[1] He graduated from the Auckland University of Technology with a Bachelor of Communication Studies degree in 2005.

In 2012, during the government sitting of New Zealand's Marriage Equality Bill, Farrier came out as bisexual, identifying his relationship with Grayson Coutts, the son of yachtsman Russell Coutts; the couple have since separated.[20]

Television work[edit]

Year Title Director Producer Presenter/Host Actor Notes Ref(s)
2007–13 Nightline Yes Television news program - entertainment presenter
2010 Campbell Live Yes Current affairs television program - presenter
2011 God Defend New Zealand Yes Documentary film - host
Coming & Going Yes Film - Angry Dinner Guest in Wheelchair
2012 3 News Yes Television news program - presenter
2014 Short Poppies Yes Mockumentary television series - Presenter
Manila: No Limitations Yes Documentary film - Himself
2015 Ghost Shark 2: Urban Jaws Yes Feature film - Himself
Newsworthy Yes Television news program - presenter
2016 Tickled Yes Yes Documentary film
Chelsea Yes Television talk show - "Brexit's Aftermath & Competitive Tickling"
2017 The Tickle King Yes Yes Documentary short
The Video Store Yes Miniseries - David (Customer)
2018 Dark Tourist Yes Yes Yes Documentary television series
2020 The Project Yes Current affairs television series - 1 episode
The George Lucas Talk Show Yes Improvised talk show - "Season III: Revenge of the Arli$$ith"


  1. ^ a b "David Farrier: Telly's boy child". Now To Love. Retrieved 29 July 2018.
  2. ^ "David Farrier news". Archived from the original on 13 October 2013. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  3. ^ "God Defend New Zealand – Television – NZ On Screen". www.nzonscreen.com.
  4. ^ "The Cryptid Factor". SoundCloud.
  5. ^ "Hayes and Farrier ready for return to late-night news". Stuff.
  6. ^ Genzlinger, Neil (2 April 2014). "Where a Laugh Track Is Do-It-Yourself (Published 2014)". The New York Times. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  7. ^ Hunt, Elle (18 August 2016). "Tickled: how David Farrier poked the underbelly of 'competitive tickling'". the Guardian. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  8. ^ Barton, Monika (1 May 2020). "NZ filmmaker David Farrier uncovers 'tickling epidemic' in US military". Newshub. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  9. ^ Marshall, Lee. "'Tickled': Sundance Review". Screen. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  10. ^ Erbland, Kate (6 February 2017). "'Tickled': HBO Set to Debut Brand New Follow-Up Special Alongside Bizarre Documentary's Broadcast Premiere". IndieWire. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  11. ^ "David Farrier talks The Tickle King and $40 million lawsuits". NZ Herald. 3 March 2017. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  12. ^ David Farrier, ‘Hello, my name is Ally’ – how children are being exploited by YouTube predators, The Spinoff, 21 November 2016
  13. ^ Anne Cronin, David Farrier talks about uncovering YouTube predators exploiting children, Stuff, 22 November 2016
  14. ^ Croot, James (22 July 2018). "Dark Tourist: David Farrier's Netflix series gets mixed reviews from US critics". Stuff. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  15. ^ "'Don't do any of it': David Farrier warns against visiting Dark Tourist hotspots". Newshub. 23 July 2018. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  16. ^ Gilbert, Sophie (26 July 2018). "The Disaster Zone of Netflix's 'Dark Tourist'". The Atlantic. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  17. ^ David Farrier, retrieved 8 September 2021
  18. ^ "Armchaired & Dangerous". Armchair Expert. Retrieved 8 September 2021.
  19. ^ a b "David Farrier's new life: An audience of 20 million, Hollywood mates and an obsession with conspiracy nuts". Stuff. 29 August 2021. Retrieved 6 November 2021.
  20. ^ "David Farrier in same-sex relationship". 28 July 2012 – via www.nzherald.co.nz.

External links[edit]