MYSTERIES: Loch Ness Monster: The Missing Evidence (Channel 5, 8pm)
Whether you believe in the existence of the Loch Ness Monster or not, Channel 5 has deemed it enough of a debate-worthy topic to bring us another documentary about it.
Tales of the monster lurking in the water in Loch Ness go back 1,500 years, but the legend has been truly taken into people’s hearts over the last century, and there has been no end of photographs and videos released to back up ’sightings’ of the beast.
This documentary conducts a detailed exploration of the legend, with modern forensic technology re-examining well-known photos and footage.
Meanwhile, the spotlight falls on historian Albert Jack who believes that the mystery began with a sighting of bathing circus elephants, while psychologist Chris French offers a different explanation, owing the real source of the monster to a mix of hoaxes, natural phenomena, everyday animals and our own imaginations.
The Science Squad (RTÉ One, 8.30pm)
How close are we to giving personalities to robots and computers?
TCD’s Prof Nick Campbell research focuses on developing an intelligent user interface to infuse robots with social verbal and non-verbal communication skills like laughter, humour, empathy, compassion and charm.
Radiology is at the centre of modern medicine. From dentistry to oncology, x –ray imaging is an indispensible tool; yet remarkably, until now, the vacuum tube x-ray technology used today has remained relatively unchanged for the past 100 years!
They mightn’t look as terrifying as Audrey II, but Ireland’s smaller creatures still have plenty to fear from our native carnivorous plants!
Regenerative medicine is revolutionising healthcare and Irish scientists are playing a ground-breaking role, as for the first time ever, adult stem cells for human use are now being manufactured in Ireland.
HOUSING: Ireland, What’s Next? The Housing Crisis (TV3, 9pm)
‘Ireland – What’s Next?’ is a brand new TV3 series that will look at some of the major issues facing Irish society today and attempt to kick start a debate about what type of Ireland we want to rebuild as we emerge from the economic crisis.
In the first of a series of authored documentaries, broadcaster Matt Cooper will tackle the issue of Ireland’s housing crisis.
Whether it is families being made homeless because of rising rental costs and a lack of social housing, or spiraling house prices in Dublin that are pricing potential buyers out of the market, the housing crisis in Ireland affects everybody.
This series will examine a range of issues and ask what can be done to solve the various crises and if we have learnt from our past mistakes.
Vikings (RTÉ Two, 9pm)
Ragnar and King Horik return to Kattegat and the final showdown between two Viking leaders is at hand.
Ragnar has placed his trust in those who have stood by him and now the time has come for new alliances to be made.
Vikings returns to RTÉ2 for a second series. At its heart, Vikings remains a family saga, following the fortunes of Ragnar, his extended family and the people he represents now that he is an earl.
Ragnar’s own desire to sail west, to explore new kingdoms, in alliance with King Horik, leads to a storm-tossed landing on the coast of Wessex, an important Saxon kingdom ruled by a king not unlike Ragnar.
Season 2 is all about crises: of faith, of power and of relationships. Kingdoms are at stake. Lives are at stake. Love is at stake. And all under the watchful eyes of the gods.
REAL LIFE: Skint (Channel 4, 9pm)
These are hard times we’re living in, and no-one knows that better than the struggling folk of East Marsh in Grimsby.
Filmed over the course of a year, the programme follows everyone from fishermen out of work after a lifetime at sea to people doing whatever they can to make ends meet.
The locals of Grimsby aren’t the only ones struggling. This particular documentary follows on from last year’s Grierson Documentary Award-nominated series which was filmed in Scunthorpe – and up and down the country, and shows people who are struggling to find work in places where industries have disappeared and there hasn’t been much by way of replacing them.
In the 1950s, Grimsby was the largest fishing port in the world, but it’s a very different picture now. The town has all but completely lost its fishing industry – there are just four trawlers left, and parts of East Marsh, once home to many of the fisherman, are now among the most deprived areas in the country.
FILM: Terminator 2: Judgment Day (Film4, 11pm)
Two cyborgs return from a nihilistic future. One is an old-school killing machine reprogrammed to protect teenager John Connor; the other a state-of-the-art assassin made from liquid metal.
With John’s mum Sarah locked in an asylum, the future resistance leader and his robot bodyguard attempt to get her out.
James Cameron’s blockbusting sci-fi thriller pushed the boundaries of special effects, and inspired a theme-park movie, T2: 3-D: Battle Across Time, and a spin-off TV series, The Sarah Connor Chronicles.
It also spawned Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, and Terminator Salvation. Keep an eye out for the fifth instalment in the franchise, directed by Alan Taylor, due to hit cinemas next year.
This was the only Terminator movie to be Oscar-nominated. It won Best Effects, Sound Effects Editing; Best Effects, Visual Effects; Best Makeup and Best Sound.
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong, Robert Patrick.
RottenTomatoes.com Rating: 92%