TV listings | Missing Originality

You can picture K5 in negotiations for new series Missing (56 on Metacritic) and Perception (Sun 20:00, 52): “Okay, it’s a choice between Breaking Bad and this tripe.” The former has 99 on Metacritic for its fifth season, while the other two have bombed. “Fifth season! And no-one’s taken it – there must be something wrong with it.”

Missing sees a former CIA operative (yawn, men’s crotches beware, we can feel a drinking game coming on) looking for her abducted son (yawn, she failed the child surveillance module) in Europe (yawn, it’s mildly xenophobic). Like most US series, it’s overflowing with Brits. Sean Bean’s at home in anything that involves missing children, while Gina McKee (Our Friends in the North) really has cornered the sardonic cow market. “Think The French Connection meets Alias with a big helping of Taylor Lautner’s Abduction,” praised the New York Post. Taylor Lautner! Are you trying to praise it or raze it to the ground?

Missing (K5, Sun 21:00 )The NYP was less kind to Perception, observing that the “quirky-genius cop genre is getting a bit mouldy around the edges” in a plot that revolves around an eccentric neuroscientist played by a stubbly Eric McCormack (Will & Grace). 

So thank god for Kidnapped – A Georgian Adventure, this week’s pick. The BBC doc recounts how Robert Louis Stevenson was inspired to write his classic by the story of a 12-year-old sold into slavery in 1728 by a nasty uncle keen to get his hands on the boy’s inheritance.

And even nastier is the subject matter of Saving Face (DR2, Tue 21:30), an Oscar-winning doc that looks at the practice of throwing acid in women’s faces in Pakistan.

Elsewhere, two celebrity chefs  will help you pile it on at Christmas: Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Christmas (TV3 Puls, Tue & Wed 20:00) will land you in WeightWatchers while Nigella’s Christmas Kitchen (TV3 Puls, Thu 20:00) will see you celebrate New Year in a coronary care unit; there’s another chance to see Norwegian drama series Lilyhammer (K5, Sun 21:55); while The Desert of Forbidden Art (DRK, Tue 16:00) chronicles one man’s mission to gather 44,000 works of banned Soviet art at an obscure museum in Uzbekistan.