TV Listings | Broadly speaking, it’s brilliant
Pick of the Week
Broadchurch (SVT4, Sun 23:55)
Somebody get SVT4 (a channel that most Danish households can access without a multi-channel TV deal) on the blower: they have got to be kidding. Not only are they showing one of Britain’s most popular series of the year in the middle of the night, they are showing the first four episodes in one sitting, and then just one the following week: “Yarrr, it is true, we are blowing most of this year’s drama budget on Broadchurch to be airing it at midnight on a Sunday. It is part of our strategy to be going after the all-important security personnel/sex workers/students with mild insomnia demographic. We might be losing the ratings war in the evenings, but from 12-6am yarrr, we are like smörgåstårta and Borg before the cocaine: we reign supreme.”
The eight-part series stars David Tennant (the tenth Dr Who, Fright Night) and Olivia Colman (Peep Show, Tyrannosaur) as Dorset detectives investigating the murder of an eleven-year-old boy, and by April, close to 9 million Brits were suitably gripped enough to tune in to discover who done it.
A second series has already been commissioned with the same writer onboard, and there’s an American version on the way for those who can’t decipher the west country dialect.
Broadchurch is, like many crime series doing the rounds, similar to Forbryldsen. “It is well paced and values the effect of still shots and silence,” praised The Independent, which like every British broadsheet was left in awe by a first episode that “was stunningly shot with a yellow tinge of sun that might hang over the sea in mid afternoon”.
So you’ve been warned: it’s slow, but with patience comes the kind of pay-off an episode of CSI can only dream of. (BH)
Amazingly this is the first outing for The Office (DR3, Mon-Thu 00:55), the US remake of the classic British sitcom starring Steve Carell, which started in 2005. One door down is Million Dollar Intern (BBC Ent, Sun 22:00 or Tue 22:50), a reality show in which the tea-boy is lo and behold a whizzkid, who the show’s website reveals is now a bankrupt. And across the road in the copshop is the third and final series of British crime drama Luther (DR2, Wed 20:40) – absurd but compelling viewing.
Elsewhere we’ve got the 20th anniversary episodes of Absolutely Fabulous (SVT1, Mon 23:50); a maths series for aspiring code crackers, The Code (DR2, Tue-Thu 18:30); and five docs that are exactly what they say on the tin: the peculiar case of The Boy Who Can’t Forget (DR3, Mon 20:30); Wallace Simpson: The Secret Letters (DRK, Sun 12:25), David Bowie: five years in the making of an icon (SVT2, Sat 19:00), Jimi Hendrix: Voodoo Child (SVT1, Sat 22:30) and Pussy Riot (SVT1, Tue 22:00). (BH)
Sport of the Week
There’s a Spanish theme this week and it’s not the widespread use of nandrolone. Fernando Alonso will be gunning for victory in the Belgian Grand Prix (TV3+, Sun 13:00); its rainy plains welcome back cycling race La Vuelta (TV2, daily from Sat at 16:00); Barcelona face Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup (K6, Wed 22:55); on-loan keeper Pepe Reina will be watching Aston Villa vs Liverpool (K6 or TV3+, Sat 18:30) with interest from his temporary home in Naples; and Lyon will try to overturn Real Sociedad’s 2-0 lead in the Champions League (TV3+, Wed 20:45). (BH)
Film of the Week
The consistently good Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine) in Mike Leigh’s 2008 film Happy-Go-Lucky (DRK, Sat 10:40) leads a best of British selection this week, but only marginally from Christian McKay, who was somehow overlooked by Uncle Oscar for his brilliant portrayal of the title character in Me and Orson Welles (DRK, Sat 01:15). Meanwhile, vying for the worst tag are 126.96.36.199 (DR3, Wed 22:15), a dismal 2010 affair about wrong-uns from the director and writer of Adulthood, and James McAvoy’s forgettable turn in the romcom Penelope (DR3, Sun 21:00). (BH)
Channel 4’s gripping four-part drama series offers an insight into the effects of a mass shooting on a small community. Screenwriter Tony Grisoni, who has not based the series on a specific event, explores the individual nature of grief and the loss of those affected. He took his inspiration from first-hand accounts of those who have lived through terrible events like the shooting, and this has inevitably led to comparisons with the 1996 Dunblane shootings.
According to The Daily Telegraph, the power of Southcliffe lies in “its unique insistence on bringing into our living rooms a harrowing sense of the grief, numbness and trauma of mindless murder, shoving it in our faces and refusing to let us look away”. The series has an extraordinary level of emotional intensity throughout and has raised the bar far beyond your average Sunday night crime drama. (CJ)