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This week's TV | Jack's back - this time in London

24: Live Another Day, The 100, Scandal, Betrayal, Prey, Stop at Nothing, Lance A, Jonathan Creek, Sing While You Work, The Untold History of the United States, Dad's Army, Paul Merton in Europe, Penny Dreadful, The Run Diary, Mr. Popper's Penguins, Midnight in Paris, The Next Three Days

Jack is back, or rather he’s in Westminster innit. Altogether now: “Saucy Jack, you’re a naughty one"

May 23, 2014

by Lawrence Shanahan

After lying low for four years with his new-found status of international terrorist, Jack Bauer is back in the revival of acclaimed TV series 24, which this year is set in London and has so far scored a whopping 9.4 on IMDB. 

Just 12 episodes this time, the series is deviating slightly from the original format of real-time narration. While the general idea will be the same –  each hour-long episode covers one hour of time in Bauer’s action-packed life – this season will exclude some of the duller hours of the day (let’s say, for example, if Bauer decides to take a nap). 

An improvement, many might say as 24 has a tendency to lose credibility when Jack Bauer manages to avoid the infamous bumper-to-bumper traffic of Los Angeles to cross the city during rush hour in a matter of minutes. 

“You know what? I think it’s going to actually make us not have to do the pretzel logic of some of the stuff,” producer Howard Gordon told Crave magazine. 

But not all of it. According to the 24 timeline, which started in 2001, we’re just shy of the year 2022. Jack Bauer, who started the show at 38 years old, is now 56! 

24: Live Another Day, TV3, Mon 20:00

Also new: 

K4, Sun 11:30 & Tue 21:55 Scandal – entire Season 1; Season 2 premiere

Get the memo about one-word TV series titles? 

The 100 (K5, Mon 21:55) didn’t – but they wanted to stand out from Sparta. They’re juvenile delinquents, sent back to an abandoned Earth. With 63 on Metacritic, it has fans, although most of them are preteens. 

Scandal got it, but it is set in the world of PR (Metacritic: 64). Turns out the White House is like the mafia – lots of secrets and they don’t want you to leave. 

Betrayal (K4, Tue 20:00) as well, but with 39 on Metacritic, they should have paid more attention to other basics: like substance and the chemistry of the leads – particularly the repellent Aragorn absconder Stuart Townsend. 

And Prey (SVT1, Mon 22:00), a miniseries featuring John Simm as a cop-turned-fugitive in an “unabated misery-fest” (Telegraph).

Elsewhere, we’ve got two docs about Lance Armstrong: Stop at Nothing (DR2, Tue 21:00) and Lance A (SVT1, Tue 22:00); the 2014 episodes of Jonathan Creek (SVT1, Fri 22:00); Sing While You Work with choirmaster Gareth Malone; Oliver Stone’s The Untold History of the United States (DRK, Fri 20:00); the first episode of Dad’s Army (DRK, Sat 16:10); and all of Paul Merton in Europe (DR2, Sun 10:10). (BH)

Coming Soon:

Creepy Timothy Dalton (left) is licensed to chill

Most Victorians were bisexual – twice a year if they were lucky

Flowing from the loins of Bram Stoker’s Dracula and True Blood, this Victorian England horror-fest by John Logan (Skyfall) ticks every box in the Gothic guide to creepy TV: vampires, zombies, angry-looking wolves, spiders, violent, sadomasochistic sex scenes, crawling upside-down à la The Exorcist and Eva Green. 

Penny Dreadful has captivated audiences, scoring 8.9 on IMDB, and impressed critics with a solid 71 on Metacritic. (LS)

Sport of the week:

Eurosports, all week from Sunday French Open

Sunday will see tabloid darling Caroline Wozniacki take on the pretender to her crown, Kevin Magnussen, as the pair start their respective campaigns to win the French Open and Monaco Grand Prix. Neither have a hope. And don’t forget the Madrid derby in Lisbon. Confused? It’s the Champions League Final! (BH)

TV3+, Sat 19:00
Champions League Final (Photo: Scanpix)

TV3+, Sun 12:30  
Monaco Grand Prix (Photo: Scanpix)

Film of the week:

SVT4, Sat 21:00 The Rum Diary

TV3, Sun 21:00 Mr Popper’s Penguins

TV2, Thu 21:45 The Next Three Days

Many men wish they were Johnny Depp, who in turn wishes he was Hunter S Thompson. So playing him in The Rum Diary was the next best thing. Elsewhere, Mr Popper’s Penguins is the English-language version, Midnight in Paris (DRK, Sun 20:00) is in Franglais, and The Next Three Days in gibberish. (BH)

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