TV guide: 19 of the best shows to watch this week, beginning tonight

Dancing on Ice, An Bronntanas, Ghislaine, Prince Andrew & the Paedophile, Queens, As We See It

The World According to Jeff Goldblum, streaming from Friday on Disney+

The World According to Jeff Goldblum, streaming from Friday on Disney+

 

Dancing on Ice
Sunday, Virgin One/ITV, 6.30pm
Last year Dancing on Ice was hit by so many injuries (and positive Covid tests) that one episode had to be replaced by a clip show and the final was brought forward by a week. That hasn’t deterred ITV from bringing the show back – or a new group of celebrities from signing up. Sally Dynevor, Bez, Stef Reid, Liberty Poole, Ben Foden, Kimberly Wyatt, Regan Gascoigne, Rachel Stevens, Brendan Cole, Ria Hebden, Kye Whyte and Connor Ball will all be taking to the rink, and six of them will be competing tonight. Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby are back as presenters, while Strictly pro Oti Mabuse gets to dish out the scores as she joins Ashley Banjo, Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean on the judging panel.

Sue Perkins’ Big American Road Trip
Sunday, Channel 4, 9pm
The comedian and presenter has appeared in various travelogues over the years, but her latest looks set to be the most compelling yet. Although Perkins has never been particularly keen on camping, she does want to know more about a phenomenon that has been gaining traction over the past few years in the US – the so-called vanlife, in which folk give up their apartments, bungalows or houses, swapping them for camper vans or caravans so that they can hit the road. Perkins follows in their footsteps while exploring California and Colorado during an eye-opening two-parter. She also meets those who have adopted this lifestyle, including one of the stars of the Oscar-winning movie Nomadland.

Geordie Hospital
Monday, Channel 4, 8pm
A new series goes behind the scenes at Newcastle’s hospitals to learn more about the work being carried out by medics and their dedicated support teams. In the opening episode, we’re introduced to consultant transplant surgeon Colin as he prepares to perform a live kidney transplant on Kimberly, using an organ donated by her older sister Debra. We also meet Kit (4), who has a mechanical heart. Now, children’s heart consultant Emma is changing the device that powers it, meaning he can leave the hospital grounds for the first time in months. Meanwhile, staff welfare hound Poppy Jingles hasn’t been at work for 18 months due to Covid, but now her “furry-lough” is over, head chaplain Katie is bringing her back to work.

Art on the BBC: Monet – The French Revolutionary
Monday, BBC Four, 9pm
Claude Monet is known as the father of Impressionism, but his work has become so commercialised that most of us have little sense of the radical artist he really was. Now, by delving into the BBC archives, art historian Katy Hessel rediscovers Monet as an artist driven by a burning ambition to relentlessly reinvent his technique and reshape art. She learns how Monet set light to the Impressionist movement, created his Series Paintings in an extraordinarily ambitious attempt to capture the nature of time, and influenced America’s midcentury artistic revolutionaries such as Jackson Pollock.

An Bronntanas
Tuesday, RTÉ One, 11.15pm

Dara Devaney in An Bronntanas
Dara Devaney in An Bronntanas

We’ve seen this story before. A group of people come across a valuable stash and are faced with a dilemma: should they report their find or keep it for themselves? The twist to this tale, though, is that we really have seen this one before. An Bronntanas was first aired on TG4 in 2014 to huge acclaim, and the Irish language series is credited with kickstarting the Celtic noir genre. Eight years later, will it still have the dark power over viewers? Dara Devaney stars as JJ Magill, who returns to his village in Connemara following the death of his father, and finds a community struggling under the weight of the financial crash. When JJ goes out with the local lifeboat crew to rescue a fishing boat in distress, they find it abandoned, but with a million-euro cargo of drugs on board. Will something good come out of this bad catch? Don’t count on it.

Winterwatch
Tuesday-Friday, BBC Two, 8pm
Wild Ken Hill – what a great name. But who was Ken and what made him wild? Maybe Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan can address those questions when they return to the nature reserve near King’s Lynn in Norfolk for a new run of the seasonal series. Across the next two weeks, they will present live from the site while keeping an eye out for various local residents, including stoats, pine martens and the UK’s rarest owl species. Programme regular Iolo Williams is also back in action, reporting from his home on the Isle of Mull, where he hopes to showcase footage of the eagle population. Look out too for Packham’s stepdaughter Megan McCubbin and her insights into creatures at Castle Espie in Northern Ireland.

Ghislaine, Prince Andrew & the Paedophile
Tuesday, ITV, 9pm
Ghislaine Maxwell is currently in a New York jail having been convicted of recruiting and grooming teenage girls for sexual encounters with her friend and former lover Jeffrey Epstein. She awaits sentencing and is facing up to 65 years behind bars – and, as she’s 60, it’s highly likely she’ll spend the rest of her life in prison. In a revealing report, Ranvir Singh investigates how the daughter of a billionaire sunk so low after once enjoying a life of wealth and privilege. She also shines a light on Maxwell and Epstein’s network of rich, powerful and famous friends, one of which was, of course, Prince Andrew, who may yet have to face a civil court case brought by Virginia Giuffre.

Stacey Dooley: Stalkers
Wednesday, BBC One, 11.05pm
According to police, there has been a “significant increase” in stalking offences in England and Wales during the pandemic. Figures from the Office for National Statistics show more than 80,000 incidents recorded in 2020 – a large increase on the 27,156 offences in 2019. It’s clearly a serious problem, one which Stacey Dooley is determined to investigate. Across two programmes, the Strictly Come Dancing winner embeds herself within the specialist Cheshire police force, as well as a victim support organisation. Tonight Dooley explores ex-partner stalking, the most common type of stalking behaviour. As her ex goes to court, Sabrina (25) waits to find out if he will be convicted of stalking her. Plus, the police investigate a pilot accused of stalking his ex-partner who works in cabin crew. Iis he heartbroken or is it more sinister?

The Rookie
Thursday, Sky Witness/NowTV, 9pm

Nathan Fillion in The Rookie
Nathan Fillion in The Rookie

Looking to change career in your 40s? Craving excitement and danger after 20 years at your desk? Why not train to become a police officer with LA’s finest? Nathan Fillion plays John Nolan, the oldest rookie in the LAPD, in the fourth series of the drama based on the true-life story of William Norcross, who joined the LAPD in his mid-40s. Nolan must navigate a world where most of his colleagues are 20 years his junior, and prove that he has what it takes to make the grade. The new season brings a whole new set of challenges for Nola,- starting with the kidnapping of his colleague Angela (Alyssa Diaz). They never had to deal with this sort of stuff at Templemore.

Andy Warhol’s America
Thursday, BBC Two, 9pm
The third and final episode of the series covering major historical events and the artist’s response to them sees a much more cautious Warhol – a man obsessed with money and security. He reflects on the upper echelons of American society and becomes obsessed by Nixon’s visit to China. He also documents the underside of US life, such as exiled drag queens, racism and the plight of the homeless. Struck by the difference between rich and poor, Warhol volunteers in a church soup kitchen. Friends, biographers and fellow artists including Jerry Hall, Bob Collacello, Penny Arcade, Bianca Jagger, Victor Bockris and Jeffrey Deitch share their insights.

The Graham Norton Show
Friday, BBC One, 10.35pm
We may only be a few weeks into the new year, but today sees the UK release of what may critics are predicting could be one of the best movies of 2022. For Belfast, Sir Kenneth Branagh has followed in the footsteps of other acclaimed moviemakers by making a film inspired by his own childhood. The semi-autobiographical story focuses on the Troubles in 1969, and the love, laughter and loss in one young boy’s life. Norton chats to Branagh about his eagerly anticipated film as well as his rich and varied career. Brit Award-winning Emeli Sandé also takes her place on the sofa before performing a new single (Brighter Days) from her forthcoming album.

Would I Lie to You?
Friday, BBC One, 8pm
Host Rob Brydon and regular captains David Mitchell and Lee Mack are back with another edition of the comedy panel show. Tonight’s guests are singer and Kitchen Disco host Sophie Ellis-Bextor; Australian actress and star of Lockie Leonard Briony May Williams; and comedic duo Loyiso Gola and Jason Manford. They will all aim to hoodwink their opponents in rounds such as Home Truths and Quick-fire Lies. But whose absurd facts and plausible fibs will secure their team victory, and whose porkies will be found out?

George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces
Friday, Channel 4, 8pm
The architect explores more inspirational and ingenious spaces, meeting Kay from Stockport, who breathes life back into an ambulance as she turns it into a ski chalet on wheels. Plus, an oil rig lifeboat owner tries to get his build shipshape and plush enough to convince his partner to move on board. Clarke is joined by designer/craftsman Will Hardie on his world tour of the UK as they indulge in a slice of Africa in the midlands. And Hardie visits an awe-inspiring Thomas Heatherwick building in Leeds that puts nature at its very heart.

ONDEMAND

The World According to Jeff Goldblum
From Wednesday, Disney+
Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it hasn’t done Jeff Goldblum any harm so far. H his inquisitive mind is on the loose again in these five new episodes as he tries to get under the bonnet of everyday life and find out what keeps it all ticking over. Like some alien landed from another planet, Goldblum finds himself fascinated by ordinary things we take for granted – dogs, dancing, backyards, birthdays, motorbikes. He starts off by unravelling our mysterious compulsion to solve puzzles, pitting his brain against some serious enthusiasts. Next, he drops into people’s back gardens to investigate the myriad ways we like to landscape our lawns. And why do some people celebrate their birthdays by doing daredevil stunts and risking it being their last? This could go on ad infinitum: Goldblum washes dishes, drives a tractor, eats a hot chili, goes bog-snorkelling, becomes taoiseach for a day etc. Call me if you need any more ideas.

Queens
From Wednesday, Disney+ Star

Eve, Brandy Norwood, Nadine Velazquez and Pepi Sonuga in Queens
Eve, Brandy Norwood, Nadine Velazquez and Pepi Sonuga in Queens

Four fortysomething women set out to prove they’ve still got their mojo working. Sounds like another Sex and the City reboot, but this new series tells the story of four former hip-hop stars known as The Nasty Bitches who decide to make a big comeback and regain the fame and fortune that was theirs back in the 1990s. But will Professor Sex, Butter Pecan, Jill Da Thrill and Xplicit Lyrics still have the chemistry? And can they survive in a new world of streams and memes and superstar teens? The series stars real former music stars Brandy and Eve, along with actor-singer Naturi Naughton and actor Nadine Velázquez.

As We See It
From Friday, Amazon Prime

Sue Ann Pienn and Albert Rutecki in As We See It
Sue Ann Pienn and Albert Rutecki in As We See It

Jack, Violet and Harrison are twentysomething roommates just trying to get along in life. So far so Friends, but this trio are on the autism spectrum, and sometimes they find life a little bewildering. It’s a social experiment of sorts – their aide Mandy is hoping that by sharing an apartment, the three will learn to find their feet in a headwrecking world. Jack (Rick Glassman) has a problem holding down a job and relies on his dad (Joe Mantegna) for money, but Jack has to reassess his lack of career options when Dad reveals he’s got cancer. Violet (Sue Ann Peng) wants a boyfriend because that’s what normal girls have, but she tends to scare them off with her lack of filter. And Harrison (Albert Rutecki) has found his own way to navigate the world: just stay at home. And no, they’re not doing a Dustin Hoffman in Rainman; the three leads all identify as being on the spectrum, so they have an idea how to pitch it.

Ozark
From Friday, Netflix
All good things must come to an end so, sadly, we’re about to say farewell to the Byrdes – the fourth run of the acclaimed drama will be its last. Netflix is spinning it out a little by splitting the 14-part series in half, with the first batch heading our way this week. Unfortunately, we’ll be missing three key faces this time around: Helen, Ben and Sue, who have all been murdered, but the central pairing of Marty and Wendy (Jason Bateman and Laura Linney) remains intact – at least for now.

Servant
From Friday, Apple TV+
It may be set in the US and backed by executive producer M Night Shyamalan, but there’s a distinctly British flavour to this acclaimed psychological horror series, which is returning for its third run. For the uninitiated, Servant focuses on a Philadelphia couple struggling to save their marriage in the aftermath of a terrible tragedy. The rifts in their union allow a dangerous force to enter their home. Apart from a tense trailer, few details have been released about the latest run – but we can expect nail-biting tension throughout. A fourth and final season is now in the pipeline.

A Hero
From Friday, Amazon Prime

Amir Jadidi (right) in A Hero
Amir Jadidi (right) in A Hero

In his recent four-star review of the Iranian drama tipped to receive an Oscar nomination, IT critic Donald Clarke writes: “A man temporarily released from debtors’ prison seeks to get his affairs in order. It would not be entirely accurate to describe Asghar Farhadi’s sixth feature as a thriller and yet, from the opening seconds, A Hero exerts a vice-like grip on the viewer. In common with the director’s most-admired films – including the Oscar-winning A Separation – A Hero seamlessly marries genre kicks and social circumstance. The bustling streets of Shiraz make for a lively soundscape and spectacle behind the various dilemmas.”

Contributing: PA

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