tue 10/12/2019

reality TV

theartsdesk Q&A: Director Sir Jonathan Miller

Doctor, writer, sculptor, curator, comedian, presenter and director, Sir Jonathan Miller (1934-2019) was one of the mighty cultural and intellectual omnivores of our age. To those of a musical or theatrical bent, however, Miller was above all one of...

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Ant Middleton and Liam Payne: Straight Talking, Sky 1 review - when the commando met the pop star

“What is wrong with us? What are we doing here?” Liam Payne asked the camera, as we neared the end of his jaunt round picturesque Namibia with his quizmaster Ant Middleton. The short answer would be “it’s for the publicity, you idiot,” but of course...

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The Great British Bake Off, Series 10 finale, Channel 4 review - bittersweet end to a divisive series

And that’s a wrap: last night concluded 10 years of The Great British Bake Off. This show is the nation’s TV equivalent of comfort food. In the past, it has stuck to a well-worn recipe — the result was fun to fight over but easy to love.This series...

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The British Tribe Next Door, Channel 4 review - risible culture-clash farrago

What’s the most ridiculous programme that Channel 4 has ever made? Sex Box? The Execution of Gary Glitter? Extreme Celebrity Detox? Whatever, The British Tribe Next Door is up there vying for supremacy.The Moffatt family, from Bishop Auckland, have...

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CD: James Arthur - You

It’s an easy joke to suggest that James Arthur needs an editor. By this point, the 31-year-old singer is almost as famous for his lyrical mis-steps and ill-advised use of Twitter as his 2012 The X Factor victory. You, his third album, seems to have...

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The Great British Bake Off, Episode 7, Channel 4 review - bakers hampered by pointless celebrities

What’s extraordinary about Bake Off is not just the staggering complexity of the cooking challenges, but the amount of technical shenanigans that go into turning it into a finished programme (actually, spoiler-averse Channel 4 had teasingly left the...

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Saving Lives at Sea, BBC Two review - derring-do on the ocean wave with the RNLI

Learning support officer. Student. Chip shop owner. Mobile caterer. Gym owner. These were the day jobs of some of the volunteers featured in this week’s portfolio of tales on BBC Two from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, who would all...

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Love in the Countryside, BBC Two review - reaping a harvest of marital bliss?

If you’re a farmer who works round the clock to feed sheep, milk cows and so forth, how on earth do you make time to find a partner and reap a harvest of marital bliss? Well you could ask Sara Cox if you can join in her dating game for “lonely rural...

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Sink or Swim, Channel 4 review - the Channel awaits for these celebrities

Is there any challenge that television producers haven't filmed celebrities doing? They won't be happy until they've followed a bunch of them snowboarding down an Alp while baking a cake, conducting an orchestra and researching their family history...

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Bear's Mission with David Walliams, ITV review - celebs go wild in the country

In the past, Bear Grylls has taken President Obama up an Alaskan glacier and trekked through the Swiss Alps with Roger Federer. This jaunt with David Walliams (ITV) was on a more modest scale, merely requiring the Britain’s Got Talent judge to be...

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Olly Murs, SSE Hydro, Glasgow - a little cheesy, a little laddish, but sincerely entertaining

In an alternate timeline, Olly Murs - runner-up on a TV talent show a full decade ago - would have faded into obscurity by now. This, as the relentlessly charming performer on stage delights in reminding us, is not that timeline. Some internet...

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CD: Olly Murs - You Know I Know

Olly Murs has done alright for himself. After finishing second in 2009’s X Factor, he’s managed to forge a successful pop career and made a genuinely decent fist of TV presenting (most recently as a mentor on The Voice). ...

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