Six of the best TV shows this week

George Lee looks at farmers, Brexit and the future while Next of Kin focuses on radicalisation of a family in London

Lisa Tchenguiz is fighting for her share of her former husband's fortune in Millionaires’ Ex-Wives Club

Brexit: Farming on the Edge
Monday, RTÉ One, 9.35pm

Cow graze in a pasture at a dairy farm operated by Van Diemen's Land Co. in Woolnorth, Tasmania, Australia, on Monday, May 30, 2016. Tasmanian-branded exports to China have soared 37 percent since a 2014 visit to the state by China's President Xi Jinping bolstered trade ties. Photographer: Brendon Thorne/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Farming is a tough enough job without the threat of Brexit to add a sour taste to the milk. George Lee meets farmers who are preparing for the worst in Brexit: Farming on the Edge. If Britain crashes out of the EU without a deal, will Irish farmers reap the whirlwind, or can they find green shoots in the post-Brexit landscape?

Next Of Kin
Monday, TV3, 9pm

Jack Davenport and Archie Panjabi in Next of Kin (2018)

Dr Mona Shirani is a top doctor who leads a seemingly charmed life, until her beloved brother is murdered in a terrorist attack while working overseas for a medical charity. Mona’s grief is compounded when it turns out that her brother’s son is the prime suspect. Now her entire family is in danger, and she must untangle a web of conspiracy and betrayal to save them.


This gritty, fast-paced contemporary drama, which tackles the topic of radicalisation, stars the excellent Archie Panjabi from The Good Wife in her first lead role in a British series, with Jack Davenport from Pirates of the Caribbean as her husband and is written by husband-and-wife team Paul Rutman and Natasha Narayan. It follows Mona as she deals with the grim possibility that a close family member may have been turned into a terrorist.

Active Shooter: America under Fire
Monday, Sky Atlantic, 9pm

Active Shooter America under Fire. Series on Sky Atlantic

The horrific mass murders of 2017 have done nothing to diminish America’s fetish for guns. Americans remain armed to the teeth against a range of imagined threats, and no one wants to admit that the biggest homeland threat is from gun-owners themselves.

The programme revisits some of the most notorious mass shootings down the years, using footage, eyewitness accounts and survivors’ recollections. With no sign of any end to the gun violence, and no chance of the Trump administration even slightly curbing gun ownership, the producers will never be short of source material. Episode one looks at the July 2012 cinema shooting in Aurora, Colorado, when a lone gunman killed 12 people during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises.

Millionaires' Ex-Wives Club
Wednesday, BBC2, 9pm
For some people, the idea of being married to a multimillionaire sounds like a fairytale but according to the documentary Millionaires' Ex-Wives Club, if things go wrong, it can seem like the more money a couple has, the more acrimonious the divorce will be.

The cameras follow two women in their fight for what they believe is theirs. Viewers are introduced to Michelle Young, who has got through 65 court hearings, 13 sets of lawyers, and 11 years – and her battle against her former husband, Scot, still isn’t over despite a judge ruling he had hidden assets of over €50 million and awarded Michelle half, plus costs.

Meanwhile, Lisa Tchenguiz explains how her former husband Vivian Imerman made his first fortune from his Del Monte fruit juice business prior to their marriage, but made a second, €280 million fortune during the course of their nine-year union. She wanted that cash to be split 50-50, but his first offer was €2.3 million. The fight was on, but for Tchenguiz it was about more than money. “My pain wasn’t a one-minute pain. It went on for too many years. I just needed something back for all the years.”

Wednesday, RTÉ Two, 9pm

Jonathan Rhys Meyers: a particularly appropriate acquisition for the Irish-Canadian show’s fifth series

Britain is seriously under siege these days, and if it’s not well-organised Roman cohorts, its marauding Norsemen trying to get a foothold on old Blighty. Season five of Vikings continues with a double bill, as the Lothbrok brothers lock horns, and Ivar the Boneless devises a plan to defeat the Vikings, helped by the visions of Bishop Heahmund (Jonathan Rhys Meyers). What, you still can’t wait for Game of Thrones? There’s no satisfying your bloodlust.

Thursday, Sky Atlantic, 9pm

Kelly riley as Kerra

In the year AD 2017, a great warrior in a lycra vest and novelty socks came forth and conquered Britain. Varadkar the Impatient did what even Julius Caesar couldn’t do – brought those wild, wanton, Brexiting Brits to heel and forced them to cleave to the promise of a soft border, or feel the righteous wrath of the Leo.

Just over 2,000 years earlier, Caesar tried to invade Britannia – and was sent scuttling back with his toga between his legs. In AD 43, however, the Emperor Claudius sent the Roman armies back to the island, under general Aulus Plautius, and this time they were determined to tame this wild, unruly land. Britannia is a major new historical drama series that Sky hopes will keep Game of Thrones fans happy until their next visit to Westeros.

Britannia features an all-star cast led by The Walking Dead’s David Morrissey, True Detective’s Kelly Reilly, Zoe Wanamaker from Harry Potter, and Mackenzie Crook from Pirates of the Caribbean and Detectorists. Expect dark magic, power struggles and lots of beheading as Plautius tries to conquer a country riven by clan warfare and ruled by mysterious, sinister druids – and with bad weather to boot. Will the Romans bring Britain under its rule, or will they start looking for the nearest Brexit? If you paid attention in history class, you should already know how it turns out, but don’t tell the GoT fans – they like to be kept guessing right to the end. – Additional reporting PA

Kevin Courtney

Kevin Courtney

Kevin Courtney is an Irish Times journalist