TV

BBC1’s Three Girls is a harrowing, believable & brave account of the child-grooming scandal

20 May 2017 9:00 am

I’ve often thought that a good idea for an authentic TV cop show would be to portray the police as…

A damn fine cup of coffee: Sherilyn Fenn and Kyle MacLachlan in the original Twin Peaks

Twin Peaks: the ultimate study in nostalgia

13 May 2017 9:00 am

The return of Twin Peaks is part of a wave of Nineties nostalgia, says Peter Hoskin

The bemused protagonist with a stupid name: Ricky Whittle as Shadow Moon in American Gods

This isn’t drama as most of us understand it: American Gods reviewed

13 May 2017 9:00 am

Since completing season two of the brilliant Narcos, I’ve been unsuccessfully looking for a replacement serial drama that is more…

1932. Right, John Cockcroft adjusts a pump at the Cavendish Laboratory's atom splitter. Left, Ernest Walton sits working in the detector of a Cockcroft-Walton generator.

Britain’s Nuclear Bomb: The Inside Story was as good as its word – I wish it was longer

6 May 2017 9:00 am

Like most documentaries, Britain’s Nuclear Bomb: The Inside Story (BBC4, Wednesday) began by boasting about all the exclusives it would…

However much you may loathe the fakery of reality TV, you cannot but admire the editing

29 April 2017 9:00 am

The other day I had a very dispiriting conversation with a TV industry insider. It turns out that everything you…

Please don’t let the dark secret in C4’s latest thriller be child abuse again

22 April 2017 9:00 am

Psychological thrillers — or ‘thrillers’ as they used to be known — have become almost as ubiquitous on television as…

Self-flagellatory pornography designed for white liberal pillocks: Guerrilla reviewed

15 April 2017 9:00 am

‘What we really need is a faux-historical drama series about police brutality and black activism set in 1970s London,’ said…

The Trip is unmissable TV – shame so many of us will miss it now it’s on Sky Atlantic

8 April 2017 9:00 am

Sky Atlantic — available only to Sky customers — has the cunning/infuriating policy of broadcasting the kind of programmes most…

Vincent Franklin (Mr Prendergast), Jack Whitehall (Paul Pennyfeather) and Douglas Hodge (Captain Grimes) in ‘Decline and Fall’

Jack Whitehall does Waugh proud: BBC1's Decline and Fall reviewed

1 April 2017 9:00 am

Jack Whitehall could have been perfectly awful as Paul Pennyfeather in Decline and Fall (BBC1, Fridays). He has spent most…

Adam Driver as Adam Sackler, the most unsparingly but sensitively drawn modern male to grace the small screen this decade

The real joy of Lena Dunham's Girls is the boys

25 March 2017 9:00 am

Say what you like about Girls creator Lena Dunham, says Jonathan McAloon. She can write men

Brenda Blethyn as DCI Vera Stanhope 'wearing the kind of hat not seen since the glory days of All Creatures Great and Small'

DCI Vera Stanhope may well be the most implausible cop on TV

25 March 2017 9:00 am

As we know from all those newspaper articles and actress interviews, there’s a scandalous lack of high-profile British TV dramas…

What would we do without nutcases like Steve Backshall

18 March 2017 9:00 am

Down the Mighty River with Steve Backshall (BBC2) was perfect Sunday-night TV — one of the most enjoyable adventure travelogues…

How refreshing to find the BBC doing its job instead of handwringing about Islamophobia

4 March 2017 9:00 am

Here’s the bad news. One day you or someone like you will be shopping in a mall or enjoying a…

‘SS-GB’ takes the commitment to the crepuscular a lot further than most

A drama set in Nazi-occupied Britain really shouldn’t be this dull: BBC1’s SS-GB reviewed

25 February 2017 9:00 am

Rival law-enforcement agencies arguing about which of them should investigate a murder has, of course, been a staple of crime…

The SAS in the Western Desert, c.1942. John Tonkin second from right.

Why am I drawn to things that could kill me?

18 February 2017 9:00 am

Recently on holiday I did a very bad thing. I nearly left the Fawn to die on a precipitous mountain…

Would Britain have become half so great without George III?

4 February 2017 9:00 am

Before he died aged 44 (probably of a pulmonary embolism, poor chap), Frederick, Prince of Wales, compiled a list of…

Apple Tree Yard (BBC1) didn't always observe the boundary between slow burn and just slow

28 January 2017 9:00 am

The mid-life crisis novel, I think it’s fair to say, is traditionally a male form. But in Louise Doughty’s Apple…

‘Real Housewives of Isis’ is dark and courageous – but the rest of Revolting is lamentable

21 January 2017 9:00 am

Revolting (Tuesdays) is the BBC2 comedy series that spawned the now-infamous sketch ‘Real Housewives of Isis’. It has been watched…

‘Blimey! How did they think of that?’ said no one about BBC2’s Our Dancing Town

14 January 2017 9:00 am

‘Blimey! How on earth did they think of that?’ is unlikely to be anyone’s response to Our Dancing Town (BBC2,…

BBC1’s Sherlock is peak Remain

7 January 2017 9:00 am

One of the few intelligent responses from the liberal-left to our radically altered political landscape was an essay published last…

Unprecedentedly odd: BBC1’s The Entire Universe reviewed

31 December 2016 9:00 am

As you’ve probably noticed, TV critics spend a lot of their time trying to identify which other programmes the one…

Why Christmas TV, all Christmas TV, makes me feel suicidal

10 December 2016 9:00 am

When I was a child in the 1970s, the two big excitements of the run-up to Christmas were first the…

Would BBC1’s The Missing blow it in the concluding episode – like so many thrillers before it

3 December 2016 9:00 am

BBC1’s The Missing has been one of the undoubted TV highlights of 2016. Yet, even thrillers as overwhelmingly thrilling as…

Drama queen: Claire Foy as Elizabeth and Matt Smith as Prince Philip in Netflix’s ‘The Crown’

Is it curtains for BBC drama?

26 November 2016 9:00 am

Power is ebbing from the once-mighty BBC drama department to the likes of Netflix. But is it terminal? Neil Armstrong has the inside story

I was so looking forward to The Grand Tour but it’s not there yet

26 November 2016 9:00 am

Apart from the next Game of Thrones, there’s nothing I’ve been looking forward to quite as much as The Grand…