Best of the Week's TV (Feb 22-28)

True Detective  debuts on Sky Atlantic,  while Operation Transformation reaches its conclusion for this year.

SATURDAY

True Detective  

Sky Atlantic, 9pm  

Nic Pizzolatto’s creation for HBO is already being hyped as another triumph in the golden age of American TV, and with Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson in starring roles, it certainly has the heavy-hitters to back up those claims. That impressive duo plays a pair of state policemen on the trail of a serial killer. Heard it all before? Not this one.  The whodunnit aspect  is almost subsumed by the character explorations of the two leads, particularly McConaughey’s portrayal of troubled strangeness in Cohle. As slow-moving as the Louisiana bayou where some of the series is set,  you may need a smattering of patience, but this is a show  well worth sticking with.

The Jonathan Ross Show

UTV, 9.50pm  

Guests on tonight’s show include comedian Jack Whitehall, actor-presenter Bradley Walsh and the members of new hybrid boyband McBusted.

 

Sport  

England v Ireland (RTÉ Two, ko 4pm) tops the bill in rugby. In hurling, it’s Laois v Cork (Setanta Ireland, throw-in 7pm), while football’s Sigerson Cup Final (TG4, 6.30pm) is live from Belfast. Soccer action includes Middlesbrough v Leeds (Sky Sports 1, ko 12.15pm), Hearts v Celtic (Sky Sports 2, ko 12.45pm), Chelsea v Everton (BT Sport 1, ko 12.45pm), Man City v Stoke (Setanta 1, ko 3pm) and Crystal Palace v Man Utd (Sky Sports 1, ko 5.30pm).

SUNDAY

Lads Mar Dads

 TG4, 9.30pm  

Due dates are approaching for the three

families, and Sinéad is already in Cork University Maternity Hospital for bed rest.

 

Sport  

Ireland are among the second seeds for the Euro 2016 Draw (RTÉ Two, 11am) from Nice, and two teams qualify from each group. On the pitch, it’s Newcastle United v Aston Villa (Sky Sports 1, ko 1.30pm) and Norwich v Tottenham (Sky Sports 1, ko 4pm). Rugby action features Ospreys v Munster (delayed broadcast, TG4, 5.55pm) in the RaboDirect PRO12, while the hurling league has Kilkenny v Tipperary (TG4, throw-in 2pm), followed by a deferred broadcast of Dublin v Clare.

 A Prophet (Un Prophète)  

RTÉ Two, 10.25pm  

Superb Oscar-nominated French film from 2009 following the path of a petty criminal who climbs the underworld ladder while in prison.

 

MONDAY

The Lie

TV3, 8pm  

The first contestants on the third episode of the new game show are siblings Julie and Sean, right, from Cork. Despite their  different interests, they try to work together to spot the untruth and walk away with the 10,000 jackpot.

 

One Born Every Minute

Channel 4, 9pm  

 The excellent documentary series moves to Southmead Hospital in Bristol for the new season of highs and lows in the maternity unit. One dad makes the mistake of going home for a rest just before his wife’s contractions get stronger, while one of the midwives is happy to lend a hand during her next-door neighbour’s eventful labour.

The Walking Dead  

Fox, 9pm  

Rick and Carl continue to adjust to life outside the sanctuary of the prison.

TUESDAY

Olympiakos v Man Utd

TV3, ko 7.45pm  

On paper, David Moyes’s men were given a kind draw for the last 16 of the Champions League, but their patchy form this year means anything is possible in this first leg in Greece.

Operation Transformation

 RTÉ One, 8.30pm  

Over tonight and tomorrow, we’ll see the final two episodes of what has been another superb series from the Operation Transformation team. Tonight we’ll see the participants leading the 5km runs, while Brendan Courtney gives them tips on how to dress for their shape and size. Tomorrow’s episode will look back on the past eight weeks and feature the traditional end-of-season catwalk show.

 

Dissected: The Incredible Human Foot  

BBC Four, 9pm  

Dr George McGavin and his team do exactly what it says on the tin and take apart a real human foot to show how it works. We hear about the interplay between the foot’s muscles, tendons, nerves, etc, and see the  complicated processes of movement and balance.

The Necessary War  

BBC Two, 9pm  

While we’ve had plenty of shows underlining the seemingly senseless slaughter of the First World War, in this documentary, former war correspondent Max Hastings explains his view why Britain was right to enter the conflict against Germany.

 

 

WEDNESDAY

Breaking Bad

TG4, 9.30pm  

The final episode of the final series is a fitting end to one of the best TV series of the modern age. Walt knows the end is nigh, and is busy trying to tie up loose ends, settling old scores and still trying to ensure his family will be okay. Meanwhile, Jesse has been imprisoned at the meth lab in the desert, but surely a rescue is a step too far for his old partner in crime?  

 

Sport  

It’s Galatasaray v Chelsea (RTÉ Two, ko 7.45pm) in the Champions League, with Jose Mourinho’s men hoping to grab an away goal against a Turkish side that could feature former Stamford Bridge hero Didier Drogba.

 

THURSDAY

Ear To The Ground

 RTÉ One, 8.30pm  

 The final show of the current series is an equestrian special, looking at three interesting horse-related features. First up is the tale of young jockey Jonjo Bright, right, back living on the family farm after a racing accident left him paralysed last year. There’s also a report from Ireland’s biggest farm, Coolmore, Co Tipperary, the 7,000-acre operation that produces 100,000 bales of hay a year to support the facility’s horse-breeding facility.

 

Éagóir

TG4, 10pm  

Michelle Nic Phaidín looks at the case of Frank Shortt and the awful treatment he received at the hands of gardaí in Donegal.

 Pioneers And Aviators  

RTÉ One, 10.15pm  

The concluding part of this series on Irish aviation looks at such issues as the birth of Ryanair, and the turmoil in the wake of 9/11.

FRIDAY

Tracks And Trails  

RTÉ One, 7.30pm  

Jim Sherwin walks along the coast from the Bull Wall in Clontarf, Dublin, before moving inland past Bram Stoker’s former residence, the Casino in Marion and the Botanic Gardens.

The Pity Of War  

BBC Two, 9pm  

Considering that the First World War claimed the lives of 37m people, the question of whether it was a mistake seems a strange one. But, as we see with Max Hastings on Tuesday, there’s a considerable rump of opinion in Britain that views the conflict as some sort of worthwhile sacrifice. In this show, Harvard historian Niall Ferguson argues that Britain’s decision to enter the war was a tragic error. 

History Of Violence

 RTÉ Two, 9pm  

Viggo Mortensen stars in David Cronenberg’s 2005 crime thriller, a film whose claims to fame include being the last major film to be released on VHS video in America.

 

 

The Late Late Show

RTÉ One, 9.35pm  

Ryan Tubridy hosts a Eurosong special with the five acts hoping to represent Ireland in the Eurovision in Denmark in May. A number of RTÉ-appointed mentors selected Patricia Roe, Eoghan Quigg, Can-linn, Andrew Mann and Laura O’Neill, and the eventual winner will be chosen by a combination of votes from the public and the regional juries.

The Graham Norton Show  

BBC One, 11.05pm  

Another biggie, with Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul (Jesse Pinkman) and Irish actor Jamie Dornan, the star of The Fall who is also to play the lead in Fifty Shades of Grey.


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