TV not to miss

SATURDAY

The Jonathan Ross Show

UTV, 10.20pm

Jonathan Ross reaches the end of his current series with an impressive panel of guests: Simon Cowell, David Walliams, Dara O Briain and Danny DeVito. Music is by Labrinth.

SUNDAY

Avatar

Channel 4, 5.50pm

Avatar really is made for the big screen 3-D experience, but David Cameron’s blockbuster also probably contains enough of a decent story to successfully transfer to your humble system at home. Its tale of an ex-Marine siding with the humanoid inhabitants of a planet being threatened by a ruthless mining company also has obvious allegories with issues on Earth. Stars Sam Worthington and Sigourney Weaver.

Dancing One Ice

TV3, 6.50pm

Emmerdale star Matthew Wolfenden is the favourite to win tonight’s final, but there’s always the chance of a slip-up that would pave the way for Chico of X Factor or Hollyoaks cast member Jorgie Porter to take the title. They’ll each perform their favourite routine from the series plus their final showcase routine which incorporates their own ideas, from styling to lighting. After one couple is eliminated, the final two skate to a version of Bolero.

Upstairs Downstairs

BBC One, 9pm

The final episode sees Lady Agnes doing her best to sort her marriage problems, while Sir Hallam also seems to be realising that he really has acted like a cad. There are big shocks for everyone in the house, however, with major revelations and the rapidly approaching war. Overall, the series hasn’t lived up to expectations, but has probably done enough to warrant a return.

In Orbit: How Satellites Rule Our World

BBC Two, 9pm

There are more than 2,000 satellites in space which help to do everything from surf the internet to waging wars. Space scientist Maggie Aderin-Pocock is among those explaining how, as well as revolutionising exploration and communication, satellites have increased scientists’ understanding of our planet, facilitated improved navigation and assisted surveillance techniques.

Coco Before Chanel

Film4, 9pm

Audrey Tautou stars as the legendary French fashion designer who spent much of her childhood in an orphanage.

Dragons’ Den

RTÉ One, 9.30pm

When Jason O’Reilly’s work as a bricklayer dried up in the slump, he searched around for a new way to make a living. On his way back from a Shamrock Rovers’ game in Italy he bought a silicone watch and an idea was born. Why not make these watches in team colours? His product is already being manufactured in China, and he enters the Den looking for €45,000 for 30% equity. What should have been a straightforward pitch becomes laden with emotion, however, and when he tells his personal story, even one of the Dragons is moved to tears.

MONDAY

Panorama

BBC One, 8.30pm

The stories about Rupert Murdoch’s media empire just keep coming, and this show entitled Murdoch’s TV Pirates looks at the alleged role of former police officers involved in dodgy practices aimed at News Corporation’s commercial rivals.

TUESDAY

This World — The Mormon Candidate

BBC Two, 7pm

John Sweeney travels to Utah to look at the beliefs of Mitt Romney, the Mormon who may be up against Barack Obama for the presidency of the US. Mormonism is the world’s fastest growing religion and, as well as meeting its missionaries and unorthodox polygamists, Sweeney talks to former church members with few good things to say about the organisation, and also Protestant evangelicals in the Republican party who don’t like Romney.

Big Fat Gypsy Weddings

Channel 4, 9pm

The final episode in the highly watchable series follows the McFadyen family as they celebrate some major family events. Family patriarch Chris is being released from prison, so a stretch limousine is organised, while the recently-convicted Josie gives her offenders’ electronic tag the bling treatment to prepare for her daughter’s christening.

WEDNESDAY

The Apprentice

BBC One, 9pm

The unashamed ambition of some of the candidates comes to the fore as they try to outdo each other on presentations related to this week’s task of inventing new household gadgets. The men focus on the kitchen, while the ladies try their hand at bathroom-based items.

The Biggest Chinese Restaurant in the World

BBC Two, 11.20pm

Given that this establishment can cater for 5,000 diners, it probably safe to assume that the claims implied in the show’s title aren’t outlandish. This documentary looks at life in the West Lake Restaurant in Changsha, China, and talks to its ambitious owner, the mighty Mrs Qin.

THURSDAY

The Day The Germans Bombed Dublin

TV3, 9pm

Documentary on the North Strand bombings of May, 1941, when a Luftwaffe raid left 28 people dead and 400 homeless. After the war the West German government paid compensation of £344,000.

The Works

RTE Two, 11.10pm

Two big centenaries get discussed in tonight’s show: the Titanic and some of the plays and other artistic works it has inspired; and the 100th anniversary of the death of Dublin-born creator of Dracula, Bram Stoker.

FRIDAY

Titanic With Len Goodman

BBC One, 8.30pm

Len Goodman, right, doesn’t exactly fit the stereotype of what you’d expect from a welder at Harland and Woolf, but he did work in the company’s London plant before he became a dancer. As such, he qualifies as the ideal candidate to explore some of the tales from the ill-fated ship. In the first programme of the three-part series he tries the type of riveting that was used in the building of the Titanic, and also talks to descendants of the ship’s crew and passengers. Through the series, he’ll also trace the ship’s route, and spend time in Southampton and Cobh.

The Doors: The Story of LA Woman

BBC Four, 10.20pm

The Doors’ 1971 album marked the highpoint of a group who effectively came to an end when their lead singer Jim Morrison died later that year. It was the album that gave us such songs as Riders on the Storm and Love Her Madly.


Lifestyle

Five things for the week ahead with Des O'Driscoll.Five things for the week ahead

From Liverpool’s beat-pop to Bristol’s trip-hop, Irish writer Karl Whitney explains the distinctive musical output of individual cities in the UK, writes Marjorie Brennan.Sounds of the City: The musical output of individual UK cities

As landlords’ enclosures of villages and commonages during England’s industrial revolution drove landless countrymen into the maws of the poet William Blake’s “dark Satanic mills”, a romantic nostalgia for the countryside began to grow.Damien Enright: Great writers took inspiration from walking

Take no risks, ‘do all the right things’, and you’ll lead a comfortable, but dull, existence. ‘Living dangerously’, on the other hand, yields ‘highs’ of excitement usually followed, alas, by pain andRichard Collins: Live fast and die young or last up to 500 years

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