MAYBE I’ve got a bit of a cold coming on. Maybe I’m under the weather. Maybe I’m just miserable, but I had to grab the remote control when this show started and put the volume down – and down and down again. Am I just a grumpy killjoy, or is tonight’s show especially loud, flashy and hysterical? I could hardly cope.

From the opening moment when McIntyre runs out on stage with his top hat, through the “mind magic” of Colin Cloud, the high jinks of footballer Robbie Savage, and the melodious warblings of Kathryn Jenkins as she sings Heroes, the whole show seemed like a sparkly assault on the senses. I put the volume down low, took some paracetamol, and then managed to cope better.

This show is so full of puppyish energy and fizzy enthusiasm that it suits Saturday night TV perfectly, and those who like to get merry with a few vodkas before heading out on the town might find this a perfect substitute for the booze because it certainly makes you giddy and fantastically keen to get out the door.


THE First World War always plays second fiddle to its far more deadly successor, and of the First World War’s battles, its seaborne fights always get less attention than those that took place in the infamous trenches.

This documentary tries to correct the balance by taking a detailed look at the Battle of Jutland, which took place over 24 hours in the North Sea off the coast of Denmark, and in which thousands of sailors were killed.

The Royal Navy faced the German Fleet and so began the conflict’s largest battle at sea, and the only one involving battleships in face-to-face combat.

Nick Jellicoe, the grandson of the British Admiral, goes back out to sea with the documentary crew as they survey the area to try and locate the various sunken ships, but he also hopes to “salvage his grandfather’s reputation” as he was blamed for denying the British their “second Trafalgar”.


For a dark Scandi-noir, this new drama is particularly sunny.

Kenneth Branagh plays the Swedish detective Wallander in the first of three new stories.

Called The White Lioness, Sunday’s drama is set in the blistering heat of South Africa. A Swedish couple have set up a faith-based charity where they try to rehabilitate offenders. The message here is very stark: white foreign do-gooders have entered the country to bring their brand of goodness to the black criminals. The underlying tensions are horribly clear.

Inga, the wife, sets off on an errand, going alone in a jeep into the empty countryside, and she pulls into an isolated farmhouse to seek directions. Anyone who’s watched a slasher film will be howling at her not to enter: the place is dusty and silent, with glimpses of hooks, ropes and chains.

When she’s reported missing, her arrogant husband has no confidence in the black South African police and so seeks help from his countryman, Wallander, who happens to be attending a conference in town.


“When you think about what Antonia did, she should be a household name.”

When the director Antonia Bird died in 2013 it was a massive loss to the creative world but, as Kay Mellor says, most of us didn’t know her name – although we’d certainly know her work. Bird directed everything from gutsy social realism to Hollywood films, plays and the famous EastEnders episode where Dirty Den served Angie with divorce papers.

This tribute tries to bring her name to wider public attention, but be assured it is no typical “luvvie” celebration. The tone is initially one of annoyance and injustice as her famous friends and colleagues rally round to say she did not get the fame she deserved: “Her awards list is ridiculous. People should know – and they don’t.”

But she didn’t allow this to hinder her work ethic or artistic spirit, as Robert Carlyle emphasises when saying he remembers her as a “streetfighter.”