The TV keeping us indoors this week
The last minute trip to Portugal didn’t come off but let’s focus on the positives: namely that there’s loads of good stuff on TV. Here's what Muddy is watching.
Your Home Made Perfect (BBC Two) – Mon 24 May
After staring at the same four walls for the last 18 months, some dodgy DIY, it’s time to check out how the pros do it. Your Home Made Perfect is back for its third series – minus architect Robert, his man bun and obsessions with banquette seating. Instead we’re treated to five new architects all competing for the winning design with the help of whizzy VR designs. If you’re renovating, extending or just design obsessed, this is the show for you. We’re also girl crushing Angela Scanlon and her perfect wardrobe.
Cook Clever, Waste Less with Prue & Rupy (C4) – Mon 24 May
Who doesn’t love Prue Leith? Well, here she is alongside Dr Rupy Aujla (GP and author of The Doctor’s Kitchen) to transform the shopping and cooking habits of four families. The first episode helps a Bristol family that has a handful of food allergies to deal with on a daily basis – but can Prue and Rupy come up with a gluten and dairy-free meal plan that will save on time, money and waste? We can safely assume the answer is yes.
The Year Britain Stopped (C4) – Mon 24 May
You may well have had enough of examining the why and wherefores of lockdown by now but this 90-min documentary is slightly different in that it aims to explore the more personal stories of the last year – and has managed to secure an interview with the nurse who treated Boris Johnson when he was holed up in the ICU. A single mother whose son went missing in the first lockdown is also telling her story. So, less facts and figures, more human experience and arguably all the better for it.
Bake Off: The Professionals (C4) – Tues 25 May
Benoit Blin, Cherish Finden, Tom Allen and fan-favourite Bake Off 2017 runner-up Liam Charles are fronting series four of this, the most intense of baking shows. Surgical precision is demanded as pastry chefs from across the land are tasked with making 24 identical Jaffa Cakes and Tarte Piémontaise in just three and a half hours. Seeing as I can barely make a basic sponge cake in that time, it really is quite a feat.
Before We Die (C4) – Wed 26 May
The awesome Lesley Sharp is heading up this new six-part crime series, based on the hit Swedish drama of the same name. DI Hannah Laing (Sharp) is trying to track down her romantic partner and fellow police detective Sean Hardacre (Bill Ward) who has mysteriously disappeared. Could it have something to do with his recent investigation into a local Croatian family? And is it going to get very dark and twisty? Yes and yes.
Britain’s Biggest Dig (BBC Two) – Tues 25 May
If you live nearby the proposed route for HS2 (shout out to our Bucks, Oxon and Worcs readers!), you’ll be well aware of the engineering prowess and sheer drama of the project. However, down at the line’s terminal in Euston, there’s even more to contend with as the building works require an excavation of a Georgian cemetery. In this three-part documentary shown on consecutive days, Professor Alice Roberts and Dr Yasmin Khan are digging up – quite literally – stories of centuries past. Fascinating stuff.
Springwatch (BBC Two) – Tues 25 May
It’s back! For two glorious weeks! And it’s spring, so there’ll be loads of cute baby animals and equally, loads of predators wanting to eat them. Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan are leading from the front at rewilding project Wild Ken Hill in Norfolk, while Iolo WIlliams is stalking red deer in Scotland and Gillian Burke is at Northern Ireland’s Strangford Lough. Brace yourself for a brutal reeducation on the circle of life.
What are we feeding our kids? (BBC One) – Thurs 27 May
The second most handsome doctor on TV (after his identical twin brother Xand), Dr Chris van Tulleken is exploring the alarming rise in childhood obesity rates (which have risen tenfold in the last 50 years). Ultra processed food and its availability are deemed to be behind the terrifying statistics and Dr Chris courageously consumes acres of the stuff to analyse the impact it has on him so we can get some perspective on what it’s doing to our children. Chilling.
Friends The Reunion (Sky One) – Thu 27 May
Could it BE more exciting? Well, actually, it could. We’ve waited ? years for Friends: The Reunion, and despite all the hype, it’s not an episode we’ll be getting but a chinwag with the cast and a trip down memory lane. Quite frankly we’ll take what we can get.
Cruella (Disney +) – Fri 28 May
Lock up your puppies! Cruella is back and this time she’s all about fur and fashion. Another spin off of Disney classic 101 Dalmations, this time with Emma Stone, in the titular role. Set in the 70s Britain, the soon-to-be Cruella wants to innovate in the fashion world, but strong forces are against her. With 45 costume changes to enjoy, if you need post lockdown style inspiration, this is about as extra as it gets.
Panic (Amazon Prime) – Fri 28 May
In a similar vein to The Hunger Games, Lauren Oliver’s YA thriller, Panic, features high school grads who compete against each other in high stakes games to get a ticket to a better life. It’s now a 10-part series on Amazon and all episodes will drop this Friday. Binge away the weekend. You’re welcome.
Breeders (Sky One) – Thurs 27 May
Martin Freeman and Daisy Haggard are once again picking up the reins as Paul and Ally in this true-to-life comedy that doesn’t at any point attempt to put a polish on the neverending, relentless occupation that is parenting. This time, the kids are a few years older and as Paul so succinctly puts it: “It does drive me slightly mad that we just can’t make them do what we want anymore.” Said every parent of teenagers, ever.
Breaking News in Yuba County (Sky Cinema) – Fri 28 May
This full length feature film, which is premiering on Sky, has a brilliant female cast – Mila Kunis, Regina Hall, Awkwafina, Juliette Lewis and Wanda Sykes to name a few – so it deserves two hours of your time on that basis alone. Positioned as a ‘comedy crime drama’, it follows the story of Allison Janney’s Sue Buttons, a downtrodden suburban wife, who basks in the attention of the community after her husband goes missing. But while her celebrity grows, the tale she’s constructed around his disappearance starts to unravel.