Film & TV

On TV This Week…(June 8th)

Written by Tim Barnes-Clay

With the summer finally in full swing, you have even less time to keep up with what’s new on the telly. So, we’ve boiled down this week’s viewing to those shows you simply cannot miss…

Have I Got a Bit More News For You
Monday, 8 June – BBC One, 10.35pm

Another chance to catch the last in the current series of the satirical current affairs quiz that pushes the boundaries of topical comedy to near-libellous extremes.

The king of deadpan, Jack Dee, is on guest hosting duties and will be doing his best to reign in regular team captains Ian Hislop and Paul Merton. Joining them tonight is stand-up comedian James Acaster as well as journalist and broadcaster, Janet Street-Porter.

Hannibal (Season 3 *Premiere*)
Wednesday, 10 June – Sky Living, 10pm

Possibly the sharpest show on TV right now, this adaptation of the Hannibal Lecter mythos has proven early critics, who questioned the adaptability of Thomas Harris’ novels, utterly wrong.

The result is a devilishly hypnotic cat and mouse game between FBI profiler Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) and the notorious cannibal, played with devastatingly sinister charisma by Mads Mikkelsen.

The writers have done well to weave the familiar elements of the source material into something completely fresh but the real draw is the show’s willingness to delve into a character so dark that it is impossible to find the way back out again. Be warned, graphic is too mild a term for the truly disturbing acts showcased in this pitch black thriller – not for the faint of heart!

We catch up with Dr Lecter as he settles into his new life under a new identity in Florence, but of course, Will Graham is not far behind. This season promises to introduce some familiar characters, not least of which is Francis Dolarhyde AKA The Red Dragon.

Mock the Week (Season 14 *Premiere*)
Thursday, 11 June – BBC Two, 10pm

As one beloved current affairs based comedy quiz show draws to a close, another one begins.

Dara O’Briain host the irreverent news quiz that takes a no holds barred look at the week’s events. Series regulars Hugh Dennis and Andy Parsons take their seats on the panel and are joined this week by Josh Widdicombe, Matt Forde, Katherine Ryan and…James Acaster – who seems to be everywhere!

Orange is the New Black (Season 3 *Premiere*)
Friday, 12 June – Netflix, On Demand

From the creator of the critically acclaimed series Weeds comes this slick comedy set within the walls of a women’s federal prison.

Three seasons in and Piper “wrong place wrong time” Chapman is no longer the fresh-faced newbie she was when she first graced the halls of Litchfield Penitentiary. Although, you can still be sure she’ll fall victim to her own poor decision-making abilities and see her already hectic life thrown into further turmoil.

With a huge cast of colourful characters, the appeal of this one tends to be in the many and varied stories of the disparate residents of the prison – all with varying degrees of neuroses and psychoses – that are handled with a razor sharp wit from an impressive script.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)
Saturday, 13 June – ITV, 7pm

The first in Peter Jackson’s second cinematic trilogy based on the works of fantasy writer JRR Tolkien sees the titular Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman) approached by the legendary wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen) to partake in an adventure that will change his life forever.

Joined by a band of dwarves, the gang embark on a quest to reclaim the Kingdon of Erebor from the notorious dragon Smaug – but before they can face the beast they will encounter orcs, goblins, trolls and, of course, the conniving cave dweller known only as Gollum.

Admittedly, the Hobbit Trilogy does not quite stand up to its predecessor. However, Jackson manages to hold on to some of the things that we loved about the Lord of the Rings Trilogy and delivers some superb action set pieces along the way. Hardcore fans of the films ought to be pleased for another chance to venture into Middle-Earth.

Humans (Season 1 *Premiere*)
Sunday, 14 June – C4, 9pm

In the not-so-distant future, androids or ‘synths’, have become a commonplace thing in society, used for domestic chores, among other things.

In this sprawling series, a couple who buy a synthetic human to help around the house find that the new arrival presents a threat to their marriage, a retired engineer’s fatherly relationship with his own synth hangs in the balance following a malfunction and a detective grows suspicious of his wife’s unnaturally close bond with her android.

Looking very much like an expanded episode of Charlie Brooker’s techophobic Black Mirror series, Humans promises to explore the ramifications of life lived alongside robots. Expect things to go horribly wrong for all involved!