What to watch on TV this week

Check out the best of this week’s TV.
What to watch on TV this week


The Voice UK

BBC One, 7.15pm

Boy George has a wry smile as one of the contestants cover his smash hit, ‘Do You Really Want to Hurt Me’, and Will.i.am also gets to hear a version of his ‘Bang Bang’ tune.

As well as the usual array of buskers and aspiring pop singers taking part, we get a slightly out-of-the ordinary contestant in four-time winner of Britain’s Strongest Woman competition Gemma Magnusson.


Greece With Simon Reeve

BBC Two, 8pm

Fresh from his recent sojourn in Ireland, the affable travel show presenter begins a new two-part trip to a country whose brand has taken quite a hammering in recent years.

Once associated with fascinating ruins and island paradises, the overwhelming images of the country in recent years have been of financial distress and drowned refugees.

Reeve looks at both of those situations, as well as travelling to the rugged mountains of Crete to meet the armed shepherds who guard their flocks.

At Your Service

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

Francis Brennan is in Co Donegal to try and help the Bluestack Centre to attract more visitors to its hostel.

Room To Improve

RTÉ One, 9.30pm

Dermot Bannon returns with a ninth series of the show where he guides people through major home renovations.

He begins in Puckaun in Tipperary, where teachers Darragh and Sarah want to split the old family bungalow into two: one section for the couple and their baby; and another for his mother Mary.

They’ve €200,000 to spend but, not unusually, Bannon’s plans look ambitious for that budget.

His clients are also wary of some of his ideas, and the tension between the architect and the homeowners is one of the major appeals.

The Meaning of Life, With Gay Byrne

RTÉ One, 10.30pm

After the civilian contributions of recent weeks, tonight’s guest is the distinctively religious figure, Jonathan Sacks, former chief rabbi of the UK.

He explains his strong support for Israel, and discusses his recent book, Not in God’s Name, which deals with the misinterpretations of religious scripture which some people think justify killing.

He also talks about the increase in anti-Semetic attacks in Europe.


Mary Berry’s Foolproof Cooking

BBC Two, 8.30pm

Spring has sprung, apparently, and some people may even venture outdoors soon after the weather-enforced hibernation.

Berry tries her hand at catching crayfish, cooks up a seabass, and also makes lamb burgers with mint mayo.

That show is followed by Rick Stein’s Taste of Shanghai (9pm), where he tries one of Chairman Mao’s favourite dishes, red braised pork.

The Docklands Bomb: Executing Peace

BBC One NI, 9pm

On February 9, 1996, the IRA ended a 17-month ceasefire with a huge truck bomb near Canary Wharf in London that killed two people in a newsagents and caused about £100m worth of damage.

Twenty years later, this documentary looks back at the events surrounding the bombing, and how Crossmaglen man James McArdle was eventually found guilty of being involved.


Fair City

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

Heather is central to much of this week’s drama, and in tonight’s episode Ama realises she’s been lying about the pills and uncovers the shocking truth about what she’s been doing to her daughter.

Back In Time For The Weekend

BBC Two, 9pm

Another look at leisure in the 1960s has the family taking a trip to the seaside in the family Mini, as well as playing Subbuteo and getting a Dansette record player.

Sandie Shaw makes a guest appearance to talk about some of the more daring fashions that came along during the era.


Neven Maguire: Healthy Home Chef

RTÉ One, 7.30pm

Well-known psychologist Maureen Gaffney is the guest on today’s show, and she explains how good food and eating together as a family can help relieve stress levels.

She also shares a favourite recipe of her own for Middle Eastern chicken.

Meanwhile, Maguire himself aims to show that desserts can be both healthy and nutritious by preparing crème pots, and hot cakes with banana and mango.


The Story of China 

BBC Two, 9pm

Many people would be aware that the Ming dynasty in China was a time of great vase-making, but Michael Wood goes way beyond the ceramic significance in tonight’s episode on the 276-year era that stretched from 1368 to 1644.

We hear how the dynasty was founded by a peasant rebel who went on to become emporor, and also the great voyages to Africa and other places that helped spur a rich time in terms of culture and the economy.

The Works Presents

RTÉ One, 11.15pm

Brian Maguire is one of the more interesting Irish artists by virtue of the worlds he explores.

Time spent in the infamous city of Juárez in Mexico led to a project in which he’d meet the bereaved families of some of the hundreds of young women being murdered there, and paint portraits of the deceased from old photographs.

He has also worked with prisoners and psychiatric patients in Ireland.

Tonight, John Kelly asks the Wicklow-born artist about his expressionistic style and why he’s drawn to such dark areas of society.


Earth’s Greatest Spectacles

BBC Two, 9pm

Domhnall Gleeson tells us about the end of winter in Svalbard in the Arctic, as the sun and increased temperatures bring about a transformation that plants and animals do their best to take advantage of.

From the ice-eating micro-organisms at the bottom of the food chain to polar bears, walrus and reindeer, each creature has incredible adaptations to survive in this harsh environment.

AC/DC and the Story of Aussie Rock

BBC Four, 10pm

As rock veterans AC/DC near their end as a creative force, this timely documentary looks at their humble beginnings in Sydney in 1973 to gradual climb to the top of the rock mountain.

Along the way we’ll hear about the tragic death of original lead singer from alcohol abuse in 1980, soon after the band had begun work on their greatest album, Back in Black.

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