This week’s must-see TV: From Bear Grylls to Body Shopping
Plus: RTÉ’s judges decide on the Home of the Year, and the Silicon Valley gang return
The Island with Bear Grylls
Monday, Channel 4, 9pm
So, who would survive being stranded on a remote desert island, a bunch of fresh-faced youngsters, or a group of experienced older people? Welcome back to the fourth series of the survival show which does the very simple thing of pitting two generations against each other to see which one can keep from dying of starvation, disease or just plain boredom. The oldies and the youngsters are marooned on two separate Pacific islands, and in last night’s opening episode. the youngsters (with Grylls, above) made their first mistake by setting up camp in a swamp – not a good idea, especially when it starts raining. It’s not long before they’re running to their elders for help – typical kids, eh?
Monday, Sky Atlantic, 10.10pm
If you want to see the real effect technology has on men’s sex lives, look no further than the boys behind tech startup Pied Piper. They may be bitcoining it with their new video-chat app, but their dysfunctional lives make the nerds from The Big Bang Theory seem positively well-adjusted. The fourth series of Silicon Valley follows the further adventures of this motley crew of geeks as they navigate their way through the shark-infested waters of the tech industry and deal with the vulture capitalists that forever circle the valley.
Tuesday, RTE One, 8.30pm
It’s bad enough when you have to pour zillions into your interior design just to get a nod from RTE (See Home of the Year, below), but now we’re expected to fork out and turn our little patch of scrub into a veritable Garden of Eden. Three words: Can’t. Be. Arsed. However, some people have the endless patience and creativity required to create a wondrous world of greenery outside their back door, and Super Garden pits five “budding” garden designers against each other in a bid to win a plot at Bloom, the annual garden festival run by Bord Bia at the Phoenix Park. You’ll need to be blooming good at gardening to get a look-in with the judges, Bloom show manager Gary Graham, Bloom gold medallist Leonie Cornelius and garden design lecturer Monica Alverez.
Thursday, RTE Two, 9.30pm
So, you’ve got the house done up, and the garden’s been landscaped to perfection. Now it’s time to look in your Phillippe Starck mirror and ask yourself, is it time I got a new body? Body Shopping is a new three-part series looking at the lengths some people go to achieve their ideal look. Dr Ciara Kelly is your guide on this trip into the world of surgically enhanced beauty. She meets people who are going through surgical procedures to improve their appearance, including women who want to make their boobs bigger, and men who want to make theirs smaller. She learns that some men won’t bat an eyelid at getting hair transplants, and that many people are happy to pay through the nose for a nosejob.
Home of the Year Final
Thursday, RTE One, 8.30pm
If you suffer from house envy, better switch channels, because all you’ll see is green. It’s time for the final of Home of the Year, when the remaining seven homeowners battle it out to see who’s got the best gaffe. However nicely you’ve done up your house, you can bet these homes will make yours look like a shebeen. Among the champion cribs are a restored Dublin Georgian apartment, a contemporary, aluminium-clad end-of-terrace house in North Dublin, a 17th- century Quaker-built farmhouse in Co Wicklow, and a converted 19th-century railway goods shed in Co Wicklow. Quake as the judges pore over every design detail and clever feature you wish you’d put in your pathetic little two-up two-down. Kinda makes being in negative equity sting a little sharper.
Brian Johnson’s A Life on the Road with…
Friday, Sky Arts, 9pm
Want to know what it’s like being a rampant rock‘n’roll star? Brian Johnson could tell you. Even better, he can call in a bunch of his rock-star buddies to give some insights into life on the road, dealing with endless hotel rooms and endless temptations such as groupies, drugs and hard liquor. Each week the AC/DC singer chats with such legends as Lars Ulrich from Metallica, Joe Elliot from Def Leppard, Nick Mason from Pink Floyd, Robert Plant from Led Zeppelin, and Sting from The Police. You want some hair-raising stories of on-the-road excess and exegesis? You’ve come to the right place. The first bean-spiller in the hotseat is Roger Daltrey from The Who.