What to watch on TV this week

SUNDAY: One Ocean: No Limits (RTÉ One, 8pm)

What to watch on TV this week

SATURDAY

Sports Personality Of The Year 2014

BBC One, 8pm

It seems like a bizarre concept for an award, but has been around for 60 years, and is possibly no stranger than any other prize you’d care to deconstruct. It’s given added interest on this side of the pond as Northern Irish golfer Rory McIlroy is among the favourites to take the prize.

Olive Kitteridge

Sky Atlantic, 9pm

Frances McDormand stars in this two-part adaptation by HBO of Elizabeth Strout’s novel. She plays the teacher in the title, as we see the life of a New England town through her eyes. Seemingly placid, like any small town, there’s plenty going on under the surface, with affairs, crime and tragedies aplenty.

The Jonathan Ross Show

UTV, 10.35pm

Guests on tonight’s show include Jon Hamm (Don Draper in Mad Men), TV presenter James Corden and Keith Lemon.

SUNDAY

One Ocean: No Limits

RTÉ One, 8pm

Documentary on the efforts of Adam Burke from Skerries and Rob Byrne from Bray to row across the Atlantic onboard a boat with a six-man crew.

The Moment Of Truth

RTÉ One, 10.10pm

Bláthnaid Ni Chofaigh chats to former Irish army officer Edward Horgan who was affected so much by his peace-keeping duties in various war zones that he turned to peace activism.

During the second Iraq War, he undertook a legal case against the Irish Government for allowing American troops to land at Shannon, in what he deemed to be a breach of our neutrality.

In 2004, the Kerry-born grandfather was also arrested for trying to arrest George W Bush when he visited Ireland.

MONDAY

Building Ireland

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

Repeat of the fascinating episode on the feats of engineering involved in building the Cork to Bandon railway, including the boring of an 800m tunnel through Goggins Hill near Ballinhassig.

Holding Out For A Hero

RTÉ2, 9pm

Neil Delamere’s humorous look at Irish historical figures continues with his take on the antics of Fionn MacCumhaill and the Fianna.

Russell Brand: End The Drugs War

BBC Three, 9pm

Ever since he dragged himself away from the hell of a serious heroin habit, Russell Brand has been one of the most articulate advocates for a different approach to addiction.

In this show, he further expounds his basic view that, “The war on drugs isn’t working: drug addiction should be treated as a health issue rather than a criminal one.”

Along the way, he visits a legalised drug consumption room in Berne, Switzerland, and also looks at other nations’ approaches to the problem.

TUESDAY

The Supervet: Christmas in the Clinic

Channel 4, 8pm

An hour-long special follows Irish vet Noel Fitzpatick as he treats a labrador who needs a hip replacement on both sides. The show also revisits some of the pets who have benefitted from Fitzpatrick’s innovative approach to treating them.

Bressie’s Teenage Kicks

RTÉ2, 10pm

Niall Breslin has his band up and running. In this final episode we see the fruits of his labours in Limerick, as the selected members of the band take to the stage at Dolans.

Gray Matters

RTÉ One, 10.15pm

Documentary on how Irish architect and designer Eileen Gray was a major figure in the Modernist movement in Europe during the 1920s and ‘30s. Born in Enniscorthy, she hung out with the likes of Le Corbusier.

WEDNESDAY

Ear To The Ground

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

Love ’em or loathe ’em, brussels sprouts are part of our Christmas food fare, and tonight’s show has a segment on their journey from farm to fork.

The Apprentice

BBC One, 9pm

Five candidates enter the semi-final and each are put through tough interviews by Alan Sugar’s sidekicks. Their CVs and self-assured blather are picked apart in what is a difficult process for the contestants. After reading all the reports, Sugar picks the two people who’ll progress to the final on Sunday, December 21. There’s also an episode on Thursday, where Sugar explains his choices through the series.

The Great Irish Bake Off Christmas Special

TV3, 9pm

A one-off episode pits judge against judge, as Biddy White Lennon and Paul Kelly show off their very different approaches to baking. She prepares a traditional Christmas pudding, while he gets all modern by taking that seasonal dessert and turning it into lollipops.

Smack ‘Em Up: Reality Bites

RTÉ2, 9pm

It isn’t just Hozier who’s putting Bray on the map. As this documentary shows, Wicklow native Fergal Devitt is one of the biggest names in the world of Japanese pro-wrestling.

THURSDAY

Apple’s Broken Promises

BBC One, 9pm

A Panorama investigation into how some of Apple’s products are made, with a look at life for workers in China making the iPhone 6, and conditions in tin mines in Indonesia.

The Fall

BBC One, 9pm

If you miss Wednesday’s finale on RTÉ One, this is a chance to catch up on the feature-length episode.

Playhouse Presents: Marked

Sky 1, 10pm

Buddies from their 24 days, Kiefer Sutherland and Stephen Fry are reunited for this drama about two neighbours who hatch a murder conspiracy.

FRIDAY

The Works

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

A review of the year in terms of films and sports autobiographies.

Gogglebox

Channel 4, 9pm

A TV programme showing people watching TV programmes probably shouldn’t work, but Gogglebox reaches the end of its fourth series with the type of audience figures that’ll ensure its back for a fifth.

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