fri 17/08/2018

tv

Derry Girls, Channel 4 review – bring on series two!

Owen Richards

When first announced, Derry Girls seemed a strange prospect.

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Spiral, Series 6 Finale, BBC Four review - hot fuzz hit new heights

Adam Sweeting

Happily, there’s hope for Spiral junkies – as series six ends, we bring you news that series seven has just gone into production. This is just as well, because these last dozen episodes have been an object lesson in how to make TV drama for the mind and body, nimbly evading cop show genre-pitfalls to bring us carefully-shaded characters operating within a Venn diagram of overlapping grey areas...

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Requiem, BBC One review – everything but the scares

Owen Richards

Despite horror’s omnipresence in cinema, British television has been somewhat deprived of jump scares.

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Gomorrah, Series 3, Sky Atlantic review - there will be blood

Adam Sweeting

No doubt McMafia has its strengths, but it’s like a mug of Horlicks compared to the grappa-with-aviation-fuel blast of Gomorrah (Sky Atlantic). The Naples-set organised crime drama takes no prisoners. It gives no quarter, and expects none.

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Strike Back, Series 6 part 2, Sky 1 review - shoot first, talk later

Adam Sweeting

After a mysterious mid-season break which seemed to catch everyone by surprise, Strike Back’s sixth season belatedly bounces noisily back. So far the story has ricocheted around the Middle East before detouring to Hungary, where our indestructible Section 20 operatives just managed to save “Mac” McAllister (Warren Brown) from being hanged by the fanatical Magyar Ultra extremist group.

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Hits, Hype and Hustle: An Insider's Guide to the Music Business, BBC Four review - how gigs got big

Adam Sweeting

The “insider’s guide to the music business” tag attached to Hits, Hype and Hustle: An Insider's Guide to the Music Business (BBC Four) dangles the carrot of all kinds of clandestine scams being exposed, such as extortionate recording contracts, systematic chart-rigging or Mafia rackets involving cut-out records.

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Inside No 9, series 4, BBC Two review - laughter in the dark

Jasper Rees

Talk about laughter in the dark. With every successive episode, the fourth series of Inside No 9 (BBC Two) has perceptibly turned a shade blacker. "Zanzibar" was a festive farce mashing up half the plots of Shakespeare from Macbeth to A Comedy of Errors. "Bernie Clifton’s Dressing Room" was a mournful reunion with a twist featuring a failed comedy double act.

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Great American Railway Journeys, Series 3, BBC Two review - edutainment despite shortage of trains

marina Vaizey

Michael Portillo has barely been off a train since leaving politics, taking journeys blending scenery and history: it must be a relief receiving plaudits for edutainment instead of the abuse habitually heaped on politicians.

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Rebecka Martinsson: Arctic Murders, More4 review - Swedish sleuth is a cold case

Jasper Rees

Sara Lund and Saga Norén have a lot to answer for. Their adventures in the murk of murder as they grapple with their own dysfunctional psychology entranced audiences who don’t speak a scrap of Danish or Swedish. The search has since gone on for other gripping instances of Nordic noir.

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Britannia, Sky Atlantic review - Druids, sex and sorcery

Adam Sweeting

What did the Romans do for us? On the evidence of new drama Britannia, they pillaged, murdered and tortured, but also found themselves mesmerised by the psychedelic Druid magic that hovered over our ancient land like fairy dust.

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