10 things we learnt from watching TV last week 3
Feature by Tim Carson
Here’s what we learnt from watching TV between 7th and 13th November.
1. Going on holiday can really mess with your viewing habits. But it can lead you to discover programmes you’ve never watched before. For example, Gareth Malone’s The Choir. Having never watched any of his earlier programmes the The Choir: Military Wives proved to be a bit of a shock as it was moving and enlightening to see the wives and girlfriends of soldiers from RMB Chivenor in Devon struggling to cope with life with their blokes in Afghanistan. Watching them sing Bob Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love” (made popular again recently by Adele) in the Pannier Market in Barnstaple was powerful TV.
The Choir: Military Wives, BBC2, Monday, 9pm.
2. I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here is still the best reality show on TV. Yes it’s silly, yes it’s stupid, but it’s still very funny. Seeing Mark Wright being pushed out of a plane strapped to parachute is hard to beat.
I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here ITV, Sunday, 9pm.
3. Oh and while we’re talking about Mark Wright his “ahem” dramatic exit from The Only Way Is Essex was one of the most ridiculous, forced moments on TV ever. It looked like he was pulling the hairs on his arms to make himself cry.
The Only Way Is Essex , ITV2, Wednesday, 10.15pm.
4. Blue Bloods can be good. This week’s was a much more enjoyable episode as Commissioner Frank Regan did a little bit of political manoeuvring while helping to solve a case against a preacher playing the race card to build himself a power-base. He should never have had his hoods throw Frank’s son Jamie down the stairs.
Blue Bloods , Sky Atlantic, Tuesday, 9pm.
5. ITV’sThe Jury was one of the best five-part dramas they’ve done. An interesting concept and look at the whole trial by jury system set around a case that made it genuinely hard to figure out if the defendant was guilty or not. And it was great to have Julie Walters back on TV in a high profile role.
The Jury, ITV1, Monday-Friday, 9pm.
6. Fin whales are amazing. Catching a glimpse of these huge beasts on Autumnwatch as naturalist Iolo Williams took to the high seas off the coast of Ireland was quite awe-inspiring – helped by the appearance of dozens and dozens of playful dolphins. Another holiday viewing bonus.
Autumnwatch, BBC2, Friday, 8:30pm.
7. In contrast to last week it seems that sometimes it’s okay to volunteer in one Derren Brown’s shows. This week unlucky Wayne – a man who would (and did) miss a £50 lying on the pavement – was finally persuaded to embrace an opportunity to be lucky in the last show of Derren Brown: The Experiments. He gambled his life savings on the roll of a dice and won four times what he’d risked. Not bad after all.
Derren Brown: The Experiments, C4, Friday, 9pm.
8. Thursday night is too full. There’s just too much stuff on that you want to watch – from Glee to Southland and now there’s Life’s Too Short. Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s new mockumentary about a dwarf actor (Warwick Davis, playing a version of himself) whose career and marriage has hit the skids has now started on Thursdays too. It got off to a decent start and was certainly funny enough to warrant further viewing – damn!
Life’s Too Short, BBC2, Thursday, 9.30pm
9. Watching England play football is generally pretty dull. While England did pull off a victory against the World Champions Spain – an excellent result in itself – they managed to drag the whole game down to the level of a Sunday league 0-0 draw. The best team in the world weren’t allowed to show off the skills they possess and England didn’t even bother to try. Pragmatic but less fun than watching The X-Factor.
International Football, ITV1, Saturday, 5.15pm.
10. Glee’s controversial episode about sex was, er, not all that controversial. And a bit like The X-Factor it’s themed shows are now generally disappointing – though just about watchable.
Glee, Sky 1, Thursday, 9pm
What did you learn from TV this week? Tell us…