TV Listings: The Ultimate Shockumentary

November 28th, 2014

This article is more than 9 years old.

Pick of the week: The Imposter
SVT1, Tue 22:00

DELVE into the fascinating mind of Frédéric Bourdin in Bart Layton’s gripping documentary about a compulsive liar with a lust for deceit.

Nicholas Barclay, 13, vanishes in Texas in 1994.  Three years later, his family gets the call they’ve been hoping for. Despite his French accent and starkly different appearance, they welcome the imposter with open arms. 

This bizarre tale is glued together with archive footage and interviews, as Layton pieces together an eerie sequence of events that will leave you aghast at the depths of Bourdin’s chronic need to deceive. 
Remarkably, it’s not only the family who are hoodwinked.  Officials in Spain and the US lapped up the story until a private investigator and FBI agent finally unearthed the truth.

Perhaps its most haunting element is Bourdin’s walk-through of the whole charade. It won’t take you long to realise that this was a man at the top of his game: an accomplished fraudster addicted to the thrill of dishonesty.
It’s a transfixing analysis of a blip in the human psyche that runs so close to the unbelievable you might be left a little edgy afterwards.

Also new:

COCAINE took its toil on Bowie in the ‘70s. He famously couldn’t remember writing his 1973 album ‘Pin Ups’ – which is just as well as they were all covers. And he doesn’t remember that time he arranged to meet Bing Crosby and ended up on the pull with Bill Cosby either.

But if any period defined him, surely it was then, not the five years towards the end of the decade covered in David Bowie: Five years in the making of an icon. 

Sticking with the Brits, the likeable millionaire Peter Jones presents How we made our millions (BBC Ent, Thu 21:05) and the millionaire Jamie Oliver shares more of his secrets in Jamie’s Festive Feast (TV3 Puls, Thu 21:00). While Cold War, Hot Jets (DRK, Mon 20:00) recalls how Blighty ruled the airspace for five minutes following WWII. 

Elsewhere, we’ve got S2 of Devious Maids (K4, Thu 22:55), S8 of Big Bang Theory (K5, Mon 20:00), S2 of Under the Dome (Zulu, Mon 21:50 – watch S1 all day Sunday); there’s another chance to see the first seasons of The Paradise (DR1, Wed-Thu 16:55) and Bad Education (BBC Ent, Sat 21:00); while the American Music Awards (DR3, Sat 20:45) prove that the more generic the award name, the cheesier the show. 

Coming Soon: Utopia

NAMED best international drama series at the Emmys, Channel 4’s Utopia is not to be missed.

A group of geeks discover a comic book that has predicted disasters and soon find themselves pursued by a shady gang called ‘the network’, but not the Mark Zuckerberg kind.  

Not to be confused with a disastrous US reality show with the same name, Utopia is often praised for its brooding Liverpudlian backdrop and gripping plot. 

Sport of the Week: 

CHAMPIONS and Europa League, FA and League Cup, pointless friendlies – there’s never a free week in English football. And when there is, we’ve got the PL, of which Chelsea vs Tottenham (3+, Wed 20:30) is this week’s pick. Elsewhere, snooker’s UK Championship (gets underway and we’ve got NFL (+3, Sun 22:15) and NBA (Zulu, Sun 21:30) action. 

Film of the Week: 

YOUNG Matthew’s career has been in the ascendancy for three years, although he did his best in 2012 to sink it playing former stripper Dallas in Magic Mike (K5, Sun 21:00). Funnily enough, his next film was Dallas Buyers Club. Tom Hardy and Jude Law also showed peculiar taste to star in This Means War (3+, Fri 21:15) and Repo Men (3+, Fri 21:15). With not too shabby ratings Happythankyoumoreplease (SVT1, Sat 23:00) can also serve as evening entertainment. 


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