TV | The mad dog who came out and got killed in the midday sun

Pick of the week: Mad Dog: Gaddafi’s Secret World 

BBC World, Sat 20:10 or Sun 15:10

Few despots in history have exhibited the same ruthlessness, tenacity and pomp as Muammar Gaddafi, the infamous ‘Mad Dog of the Middle East’.

Acclaimed documentary filmaker Christopher Oligati (Say Goodbye to the President) offers us a glimpse into the twisted life and psyche of this once-powerful tyrant, following his incipient rise and tumultuous downfall in Mad Dog: Gaddafi’s Secret World .

Oligati’s film explores the dictator’s 40-year career on the world stage, from Pan-Arabism to Pan-Africanism, from Green Book socialism to full privatisation, and from the start of the Arab Spring to his death.

Among those interviewed are CIA counter-proliferation operative Valerie Plame, a former female bodyguard in Gaddafi’s regime, and an American businessman who supplied Gaddafi with poisions during his prolonged campaign of terror against Libyan citizens. 

Revealing, intimate and shocking, Oligati’s film illuminates the charismatic depravity of this complex historical character.

(James Cage)


Also New: The Shell House Raid

DRK, Mon 21:30 or Thu 19:30

It’s not often you can see a doc in English about Denmark, although they will probably drop some of the subs in The Shell House Raid.

The raid in question was on the Gestapo’s HQ in Copenhagen. According to the promo, members of the resistance were being held prisoner in the attic. So it was just as well the RAF had a good aim.

It’s a good week for docs. Chortle along to the inevitable culture clash as Paul Merton on Ibiza (DR2, Sun 12:10) hits the clubs; Robert Blecker wants me dead (DR2, Mon 23:00) is a jaw-dropping expose on Death Row in the US; and When God was a Girl (BBC World, Sat 15:10 or Sun 20:10) recalls how most of us were happy to worship Mother Earth and her sisters back in the day. 

Elsewhere, The Millers (SVT4, Tue 21:30) is an average 2013 US sitcom about a man who has to move back in with his parents;  there’s a chance to watch the entire third season of Blue Bloods (Zulu, Sun 13:20); and America’s Stoned Kids (DR3, Tue 23:00) and Andy Murray: The man behind the racquet (SVT2, Fri 18:00) pretty much speak for themselves.


Coming Soon: The Trip to Bountiful

With 86 on Metacritic, the TV movie The Trip to Bountiful, which debuted stateside on March 8, comes highly recommended. 

Following hot on the heels of the 2013 Broadway revival of Horton Foote’s play, critics agreed Cicely Tyson was brilliant as the elderly widow who makes a journey to her hometown. 

“It’s exquisitely rendered and masterfully acted,” said the LA Times.

“With her shining ageless eyes and effortless physical grace, Tyson is quietly but relentlessly hypnotic in all she does.” 


Sports of the week:

TV3+, Sun 06:00 Formula One: Australian Grand Prix

TV3+, Wed 19:30 Champions League: Man United vs Olympiakos

Eurosport, Fri-Sun 17:55 Under-17s World Cup

Ahead of one of the most intriguing F1 seasons in history, Mercedes  look favourites, but what will McLaren’s new boy, Denmark’s Kevin Magnussen, have to say? Elsewhere, Olympiakos take a 2-0 lead against Man United to Old Trafford in the CL. If ever David Moyes needed Fergie time, this is it. 


Films of the week:

DR3, Sat 20:45 Mr Nobody

SVT1, Wed 23:50 London River

DR3, Fri 21:50 The men who stare at goats

Jared Leto’s Oscar turn in Dallas Buyers Club was his first since Mr Nobody (2009), a visually rich, surreal story recounted through the alternate universes that one man’s decision-making produces. While London River follows two strangers coming to terms with their children’s death in the 7-7 attacks.



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