What to watch on TV this week...


What to watch on TV this week...

Ronald Reagan: A Custom Made President

RTÉ Two, 8.15pm

A documentary looking at whether late US president Ronald Reagan had ties to organised crime. Among those contributing to the show are author James Ellroy (LA Confidential), an avowed fan of the controversial politician.

Fast & Furious 6

Channel 4, 10pm

You know exactly what to expect from this 2013 instalment of the hugely popular franchise.

Performance Live: Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere

BBC Two, 10pm

Paul Mason is an economics journalist who has worked for BBC’s Newsnight and other shows. Here he’s written a play that traces the change in world mood from the optimism of the Arab Spring and the Occupy Movement, to the new horrors that have been unleashed in the Middle East and the election of Donald Trump.


Francis Brennan’s Grand Tour

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

A cycle tour through some paddy fields and a game of blind man’s buff with a difference are among the activities the group partake in on their ongoing tour through Vietnam, while Fr Richard impresses with his party piece.

Wild Alaska Live

BBC One, 7pm

Another one of those excellent wildlife ‘events’ that the BBC is so good at doing, it will run through the week with presenters including Liz Bonin and Steve Backshall. The centrepiece of it all will probably be the salmon migration at Katmai National Park, where hundreds of bears are getting ready for the annual feast. As well as the teams filming on land, Backshall will be diving with some of the 300 million salmon getting ready to run the gauntlet of predators and spawn in Alaska’s rivers. There will also be reports on the mass gatherings of walrus and orca in the area. On Wednesday, Backshall will be climbing into a glacier, and seeing how their movements kickstart a chain reaction that goes from microscopic organisms all the way up to huge whales.

Ross Kemp Extreme World

Sky 1, 9pm

The presenter is in the Philippines to talk to various people on both sides of president Rodrigo Duterte’s ruthless treatment of people involved in the drugs trade.

The shoot-to-kill policy has already seen more than 3,000 deaths, and Kemp meets some of those who are doing the killing, as well as the drug dealers whose occupation has suddenly become all the more dangerous. He also encounters the addicts squeezed in the middle.


BBC Four, 9.50pm

The word ‘anarchy’ gets used mainly to describe a situation of unpleasant chaos, but its original meaning came from a political idea that society would be improved without a central government. Carne Ross is a contemporary proponent of the idea, and his background as British diplomat adds an extra layer of interest to what he has to say in an episode entitled ‘Accidental Anarchist: Life without Government’. Ross was the man who testified at the Butler Review into the UK’s reasons for invading Iraq, where he contradicted Tony Blair’s claims that the war was justified. He subsequently lost faith in western democracy, and this episode has him travelling the world looking at alternative ways of living. Among the people he visits are a farming collective, and a group of Kurdish fighters in Syria.


Horrible Histories

CBBC, 5.25pm

The makers of this programme prove that history really can be fun as they return with another series of sketches that will teach while they entertain. Henry VIII goes on a series of blind dates, we hear about Louis XIV’s bottom problems, and Florence Nightingale sparks a craze for tatty souvenirs.

Love Island: The Live Final

3e, 9pm

After weeks of bed-hopping shenanigans, the time has come to choose the winning couple. There’s a prize of £50,000 up for grabs, and who knows — perhaps even a path to everlasting love.

Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy

ITV, 9pm

British royals William and Harry leaf through a family photograph album as they talk about the mother they lost when they were children. Other contributors to a show marking 20 years since Diana’s death include her brother Earl Spencer, and Elton John.


Craft It Yourself

Channel 4, 8pm

Perhaps it’s a backlash against the digital age and overly-busy lifestyles, but crafting has been growing in popularity in the western world in recent years. This new series shows how making things by hand can be combined with innovative home interior trends.

Addicted Parents: Last Chance To Keep My Children

BBC Two, 9pm

The concluding episode follows Micky and Faye, a couple who’ve been together for four years, all of it while addicted to heroin. Now they’ve a son, they’re faced with the choice of finally getting clean or losing him altogether. If both parents can’t get through rehab, then Micky will consider the scenario of becoming a single parent.



Channel 4, 10pm

The quirky drama is up to its penultimate episode, and Nikki is trying to negotiate a deal.


Liveline: Call Back

RTÉ One, 8.30pm

There’s a strong death theme in the show tonight, with Joe Duffy looking back on such stories as the case of Bridget Crosbie, who had lain in her home undiscovered for two weeks after her death. The Wexford-based woman had been a member of a religious sect called the Palmarians, and had cut herself off from her family. We also hear about Stephen Sacker in Wicklow, who wanted to bury his father in his back garden, part of his dad’s dying wish to join his mother who was already buried there.


RTÉ One, 9pm

Steve Carell shows he can excel in a serious role as he plays the real-life figure of multi-millionaire John du Pont, an eccentric character who set up a wrestling team on his huge estate. An excellent cast also includes Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo.



Channel 4, 8pm

The final episode in the current series has the young critics voicing their opinions on such TV shows as First Dates and Nature’s Weirdest Events, as well as the film Dirty Dancing.

Gardeners’ World

BBC Two, 9pm

The show has been restored to its Friday slot, and Monty Don has plenty of useful advice on how to prune fruit trees to ensure bigger crops. He also looks at tomatoes and chillies.

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