Best of the Week's TV (Oct 12-18)

Highlights include RTÉ documentaries on taxi passengers and nightshift workers.

Best of the Week's TV (Oct 12-18)

SATURDAY

The X Factor

TV3, 8pm

The first of this year’s live shows has each of the remaining performers picking a classic song from the 1980s.

Love/Hate  

RTÉ One, 10.55pm

If you don’t catch the first broadcast on Sundays, this weekly repeat may provide a way for you to belatedly join the watercooler chat.

Sport  

The Heineken Cup got underway last night, and today’s games include two Irish provinces in action: Edinburgh v Munster (Sky Sports 2, ko 1.25pm) and Ospreys v Leinster (Sky Sports 2, ko 6pm). Highlights of both games are on TG4 at 9.30pm. The international fixtures mean there’s no Premier League action this weekend, so those seeking a soccer fix may be interested in the friendly clash of South Korea v Brazil (BT Sport 1, 11.30am).

SUNDAY

Love/Hate

RTÉ One, 9.30pm

Episode two of the new series of the Dublin crime drama has Nidge turning the screw on the unfortunate dentist he’s blackmailing to do some illegal deeds for the gang.

Cogar; Tyrone Power — Gaol Eile ag an bPaorach  

TG4, 9.30pm

Documentary exploring the Irish links to Hollywood star Tyrone Power, whose ancestors came from Kilmacthomas in Co Waterford. Apparently when he was filming The Rising of the Moon in Dublin in 1957, he visited the village and was disappointed that only the local postman recognised him.

The Meaning Of Life With Gay Byrne  

RTÉ One, 10.35pm

Tonight’s guest is Emily O‘Reilly, the former journalist who has taken over the office of European Ombudsman, after 10 years in the equivalent role in this country. She tells Byrne about her fear of lifts and aeroplanes, as well as talking about her family and stellar career path, and her outlook on some of the bigger questions in life.

MONDAY

Abhainn  

RTÉ One, 7.30pm

The beautiful Bandon river is the subject of the final episode of the current series. We follow the river from the slopes of the Shehy Mountains between Cork and Kerry, through Dunmanway, Bandon and Innishannon until it enters the sea at Kinsale. Along the way we hear tales of the 16th century McCarthy clan and the War of Independence, as well as accounts of the river’s famed salmon fishing.

Taxi

RTÉ One, 9.35pm

Observational documentary filmed in taxis in Dublin, Cork and Limerick. Timed to co-incide with Budget 2013, it captures passengers’ opinions on the nation’s finances and other issues impacting on the lives of Irish people. A cross-section of Irish society is represented by those who travel in the cabs, including a businesswoman dropping her child to crèche, an emigrant and a cancer patient.

Beyond Belief

RTÉ One, 11.15pm

While the Angelus has long been a fixture on the national airwaves, tonight Mick Peelo and a panel explore the idea of whether it should still be broadcast on a publicly funded network.

TUESDAY

Republic of Ireland v Kazakhstan

RTÉ Two, ko 7.45pm

Noel King’s second and final game in charge of the national side should produce a win against a team that ranks about 70 places below Ireland. From here, the next scheduled game is a friendly against Serbia in March, so presumably a new manager will be in place by then. Another interesting World Cup qualifier tonight is England v Poland (UTV, ko 8pm).

Prime Time

RTÉ One, 9.40pm

A special programme of discussion and analysis of Budget 2013 and what it means for the various sectors of Irish society. Softer than expected or more austerity?

I mBarr do Shláinte  

TG4, 8pm

Multiple sclerosis is a terrifying condition that affects 6,000 people in Ireland, the majority of them women. Dr Sinéad O’Beirn talks to sufferer Ciarán Mullens and consultant neurologist Orla Hardiman.

WEDNESDAY

River Cottage to the Core

Channel 4, 8pm

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall begins a new four-part series on novel ways of using fruit, from mojitos with blackberry leaves to putting strawberries in a savoury dish.

The Tunnel

Sky Atlantic, 9pm

Inspired by The Bridge, a collaboration between Danish and Swedish TV companies, this new 10-part English-French co-production moves the action to the Channel Tunnel. A body is found on the border of the territory controlled by England and France, sparking an investigation by characters from each side played by Clémence Poésy (Birdsong) and Stephen Dillane (Game of Thrones).

Hello Ladies  

Sky Atlantic, 10pm

Along with The Tunnel and Veep, this show is part of a big night of launches for the Sky channels. Stephen Merchant breaks free from the yoke of Ricky Gervais to write and star in his own eight-part series. His character Stuart is a geeky web-designer in Los Angeles doing his best to become attractive to members of the opposite sex.

THURSDAY

Guth

TG4, 9.30pm

The ongoing documentary series traces some of the fascinating Irish influences on popular music with a look at Manchester band the Smiths. With the surnames Morrissey, Maher (later changed to Marr), Joyce and Rourke, it won’t be a surprise to hear that all the members had Irish blood in their veins and were influenced by the experience of their home city’s Irish links.

Nightshift: Reality Bites

RTÉ Two, 9.55pm

The latest instalment in the sporadic documentary series meets people who work at night. Among those we meet are Cork-based paramedics, Peter and Imelda, on a 12-hour shift that includes dealing with someone who has taken a heroin overdose and attending a stroke victim. Others featured include a Childline volunteer, a bat monitor, and a man performing online sex shows.

The Good Wife

RTÉ One, 10.15pm

Final episode of season four has the team busy on emergency court proceedings related to the vote for a new governor.

FRIDAY

The Science Squad

RTÉ One, 7.30pm

The final episode of the current series throws up more fascinating research being done in Ireland, including a vaccine for malaria and work being done on the science of running in terms of gait analysis and clothing design.

The Walking Dead  

Fox UK, 10pm

The superb third season has just finished on RTÉ, and this offering from Fox is the first chance to see if series four can keep up such high standards.

The Graham Norton Show

BBC One, 10.35pm

Former Beatles singer Paul McCartney is the star guest on tonight’s episode, while the presence of Natalie Portman, Katy Perry and James Corden should make for another excellent show. The programme goes out after 11pm on BBC Northern Ireland, and is repeated on 3e on Saturday at 9pm.

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