Film & TV

On TV This Week…(June 15th)

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Written by Tim Barnes-Clay

If you can manage to wrestle the remote away from the family long enough to programme these gems into your planner, you’ll be sorted for another whole week of great TV.

Dark Matter (Season 1 *Premiere*)
Monday, 15 June – Syfy UK, 8pm

Sci-fi fans on the lookout for something new will want to check out this new series exclusive to Syfy.

Awoken from stasis in the middle of deepest, darkest space, the crew of a derelict spaceship find their memories have been wiped clean. With no recollection of who they are, how they met or why they’re on board, the only clue to their identities lies in a cargo bay full of weaponry and a preprogramed destination to a remote mining colony on the brink of war.

Undercover (Season 1 *Premiere*)
Tuesday, 16 June – Dave, 9pm

What on Earth is Dave going to do now that there’s no more Top Gear?! Well, it seems the answer is grounded in original content…

Lately, the comedy channel has made a real effort to branch out and produce some original scripted comedy including the belated return of the Red Dwarf crew to our screens back in 2012 and yet another revival due later next year.

But for now there’s this promising little comedy centred around Daniel Rigby’s (that awkward guy from the BT ads) allergy-ridden cop as he is plunged way out of his depth when he is sent undercover to infiltrate the Armenian Mafia.

New Girl (Season 4 *Premiere*)
Thursday, 18 June  E4, 9pm

The ever-lovable Zooey Deschanel (500 Days of Summer) and her posse of dysfunctional misfits are back for another season of quirky hijinks as they fumble their way through early adulthood.

In many ways, the show fills the Friends-shaped hole in the schedule that, before now, had been kept plugged up by the hit and miss How I Met Your Mother. But, much more deserving of the position of prominence on the E4 roster, Jess and the gang, with their infectious chemistry and astounding laugh-count, really do offer something for everyone.

In tonight’s episode, much of the previous histories between central characters are reset making it the perfect time to jump in if you haven’t already been watching.

Hoff the Record (Season 1 *Premiere*)
Thursday, 18 June – Dave, 9pm

Yet another Dave original hits our screens this week, this time focusing on the semi-fictionalised life and times of ex-Baywatch icon and self-professed liberator of the West German people, David Hasselhoff.

The Hoff, as he insists on being called, has become something of a parody of himself since his glory days patrolling the sunny beaches of California, so props have to be given to the man for his willingness to get in on the joke. In fact, his ability to poke fun at himself even manages to make his obnoxious arrogance somehow endearing!

This excellent, semi-improvised ‘mockumentary’ imagines The Hoff all washed-up and looking to revive his career over here in the UK. Joined by his estranged German son and an entourage of oddballs, the man who was once Michael Knight gets put through the ringer and subject to a procession of humiliations – the first of which sees him compete with a dwarf for the role of himself.

The Saboteurs (Season 1 *Premiere*)
Friday, 19 June – More4, 9pm

This Norwegian series dramatising the Allied Forces’ attempt to sabotage the Nazi’s plans to build an atomic bomb might be softer on the action front that in first appears, but what follows is a gripping political intrigue that delves behind the scenes of arguably one of the most significant operations of the Second World War.

Physicist and Nobel Prize winner Werner Heisenberg (yes Breaking Bad fans, that Heisenberg!) is asked to join a secret project to create an atomic bomb at Norsk Hydro’s factory in Norway. When the war breaks out, Professor Leif Tronstad becomes suspicious of the Nazi request for heavy water production and defects to England to warn of the potential threat. Anna Friel also stars.

Rush (2013)
Saturday, 20 June  C4, 9pm

Ron Howard directs this full-throttle biopic centred around the rivalry between two Formula One drivers in the 1970s.

James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) is a maverick, playboy probably most akin to the modern sport’s Jensen Button in his prime, whereas Niki Lauda (Daniel Brühl) is the racing swot and master tactician – a bit like racing’s answer to Ed Miliband.

Naturally, the two clash and the rivalry spills out onto the racetrack where it is played out at breakneck speeds, resulting in the near fatal crash at the 1976 German Grand Prix.