Pitbull: Reality Bites on RTÉ2 on Thursday looks at whether some breeds of dog have been unfairly demonised in Ireland.
Beasts of No Nation
American director Cary Fukunaga rose to prominence with his superb work on the first series of True Detective, and this film offers some similarly uncompromising material in its portrayal of a child soldier and his commander. Idris Elba takes on the latter role. Available on Netflix since yesterday, the film is also getting a cinema release in the US and a few venues in Britain.
RTÉ One, 6.45pm
Amy Adams and Susan Sarandon star in the tale of a princess who is sent to New York by an evil queen.
Second Captains Live
TV3 may have the live games, but RTÉ can still muscle in on the World Cup action with shows such as this. The Second Captains crew present a live show from Cardiff with a host of rugby people to talk about the tournament, and an enthusiastic bunch of Irish fans to give it plenty of atmosphere.
Joe Duffy’s Spirit Level
RTÉ One, 1.10pm
Niall ‘Bressie’ Breslin and Louise McSharry are among the guests on the show for a discussion of mindfulness and how it can help with mental health issues, and life in general. Guest chefs Stephen and David Flynn of the Happy Pear in Greystones demonstrate some cooking skills and offer tips, while Mary Coughlan performs some music.
Hollywood in Éirinn
The final episode of Denis Conway’s series on the impact of films on various locations around Ireland goes to Ballyvourney to hear tales of local involvement in Song for a Raggy Boy, the adaptation of Patrick Galvin’s novel.
Cogar: Leabhar Leighis Hi Brasil
The story of Moracha Ó Laidhe and the ‘Book of Hy Brasil’, a collection of cures and medicinal knowledge the Connemara man claimed that he was presented with after saving the life of a beautiful woman in this mythical land 400 years ago. What’s interesting about the book, according to recent research, is that some of the cures are actually of Arabian origin.
The Meaning Of Life, With Gay Byrne
RTÉ One, 10.35pm
Just because you’re an atheist doesn’t mean you can’t have a moral code. That’s always been one of the central tenets of Richard Dawkins, the committed non-believer who regularly rails against what he sees as the destructive force of organised religions. Of course, the British professor has controversial opinions on other matters, such as aborting foetuses who have Down syndrome. Overall, this should make for a fascinating encounter.
RTÉ One, 7.30pm
This new three-part series on particular aspects of the GAA begins with a look at the All-Island Football Tournament which features a gathering of teams from offshore communities. Inishturk held the last one, and we hear how Clare Islander Olof Gill has flown home from Brussels to play in an event that’s a matter of pride and craic. Future episodes look at the four-game Dublin v Meath series in 1991; and the changing role of women in the GAA.
Sky 1, 8.30pm
Your first chance to see season seven of the hit comedy on this side of the Atlantic.
SAS: Who Dares Wins
Channel 4, 9pm
The SAS are some of the most highly-trained killers on the planet. While the regiment’s selection process is highly secretive, this five-part season has former special forces soldiers putting 30 civilians through similar physical and psychological tests.
Channel 4, 10pm
The opening run of a series inspired by the Coen Brothers’ classic film was one of the best TV dramas of last year, so hopefully the producers can again strike gold with a second season that’s set 30 years before the first. Familiar faces include Kirsten Dunst, Ted Danson, and Jesse Plemons (the cold-eyed young killer in the latter episodes of Breaking Bad).
Republic of Telly
Kevin McGahern is joined by new sidekick Joanne McNally for the season.
Karl Pilkington: The Moaning of Life 2
Sky 1, 10pm
The earnest presenter explores the question of gender by donning a female bodysuit and wig, and strolling along a beach as a woman. He tries out cutting-edge toupees for men and life as a celebrity lookalike in Las Vegas.
BBC Two, 10.30pm
There’s a back-to-the-future feel about the appearances of Duran Duran and Public Image Ltd, while there’s also fresh material from r’n’b star Miguel and London band Wolf Alice.
BBC One, 9pm
There’s mucho confusione on tonight’s episode as the teams set off to negotiate the best possible price for a number of items. Half the team stay in Kent, while the others head to France.
Muskerry sean nós singer Máire Ní Chéileachar talks about the role of music in her life, as well as her teaching job, and her love of travel.
My Son The Jihadi
Channel 4, 9pm
Documentary following Sally Evans, a white woman from Buckinghamshire, as she discovers that her 21-year-old son had joined the murderous Islamist group, al-Shabaab. We hear how she first welcomed Thomas’s conversion to Islam after a few years of troublesome behaviour. Unfortunately he became radicalised and we see how his departure to Somalia took an ultimately tragic route.
A Different Class
RTÉ One, 10.15pm
New two-part observational documentary on the establishment of an Educate Together secondary school in west Dublin. With the Catholic Church firmly hanging on to its control of the majority of schools, the Educate Together organisation has been working to provide an alternative. Here, we see the trials and tribulations involved in setting up the school in the suburb of Ongar, and follow the school through its first year in operation.
BBC One, 8.30pm (not NI)
It’s the final episode of the current season, so Monty Don looks back at Longmeadow, while we also hear why autumn leaves can be so useful to gardeners.
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