Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Saturday April 30  2022

Spartacus [1960] ITV4 4.15pm

The plot is straightforward. The slave Spartacus survives brutal training as a gladiator and leads a violent revolt against the decadent Roman Republic, as the ambitious Crassus seeks to gain power by crushing the uprising.

We love Spartacus partly because of the history behind the film. Trumbo became the first blacklisted writer to use his own name when he wrote the screenplay for the film. It’s a film that examines the spirit of revolt against injustice. Trumbo, who was persecuted for his Communist Party membership and views, might be making some digs at the House of Un-American Activities Committee in the movie! At the end, when the Romans finally defeat the rebellion, the captured slaves refuse to identify Spartacus. As a result, all are crucified.

Miles Davis: Birth Of The Cool BBC2 10pm

“Miles Davis: Horn player, bandleader, innovator.  Elegant, intellectual, vain. Callous, conflicted, controversial. Magnificent, mercurial. Genius. The very embodiment of cool. The man with a sound so beautiful it could break your heart.

The central theme of Miles Davis’s life was his restless determination to break boundaries and live life on his own terms. It made him a star—it also made him incredibly difficult to live with, for the people who loved him most.  Again and again, in music and in life, Miles broke with convention—and when he thought his work came to represent a new convention, he changed it again. Miles’s bold disregard for tradition, his clarity of vision, his relentless drive, and constant thirst for new experiences made him an inspiring collaborator to fellow musicians and a cultural icon to generations of listeners. It made him an innovator in music—from bebop to “cool jazz,” modern quintets, orchestral music, jazz fusion, rock ‘n’ roll, and even hip-hop.   

Featuring never-before-seen archival footage, studio outtakes, and rare photos, Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool tells the story of a truly singular talent and unpacks the man behind the horn.”

Sunday May 1 2022

Prisoner C33 BBC4 9pm

Oscar Wilde is confined in Reading Gaol. His younger self appears, and the two men wrestle with the humiliation of Wilde’s fall from celebrity to convict because he loved a man. At Reading, Wilde was reduced from a highly-acclaimed writer and wit down to a code.

He had cell number C33. He later used this as a pseudonym under which the Ballad of Reading Gaol was first published as well as signing letter ‘Prisoner C33’. 

The Importance of Being Oscar BBC4 10.10pm

A star-studded account of Oscar Wilde’s glittering and controversial career before his trial for homosexual crimes and tragic fall from grace.

Monday May 2 2022 

Belgrano. Part One BBC RADIO 4 2.15pm

Forty years on from the Falklands War the BBC revisit the true story of Clive Ponting, a top civil servant, who leaked documents about the sinking of the Argentinian Cruiser, General Belgrano. Ponting was put on trial but sensationally acquitted by the jury despite his breach of the Official Secrets Act.

The drama examines what drove Ponting to turn his back on Whitehall and why he walked free from court despite the judge directing the jury to convict him. The writer, Richard Monks, drew on Government Papers, newspaper reports, interviews and court transcripts as well as Ponting’s own account for the drama.

The Long View of the Future: The Harms of Social Media BBC RADIO 4 9pm

Jonathan Freedland explores historical parallels to the concerns around social media today, including the press in the 19th century and the rise of the motor car in the early 1900s.

Tuesday May 3 2022

Belgrano. Part Two BBC RADIO 4 2.15pm

The drama continues.

Novels that Shaped our World: The Class Ceiling BBC4 9pm

This episode deals with class in all its shapes and sizes, from all sides of the class divide, in the UK, USA and India.

Wednesday May 4 2022

The 1951 Festival of Britain BBC4 11pm 

Documentary telling the story of the 1951 Festival of Britain, which in a period of austerity showed how to carve out a bright new future through design and ingenuity.

Kicking Off: The Rise and Fall of the Football League BBC2 930pm

Thursday May 5 2022

The Kubrick Test BBC RADIO 4 14:15

The story of a young actor’s encounter with legendary film-maker Stanley Kubrick, with Henry Goodman playing the cinematic genius and Kerry Shale as himself.

Friday May 6 2022

Billie: In Search of Billie Holliday BBC4 9.30pm

Documentary showcasing American legend Billie Holiday, capturing her depths and complexity through the voices of those who knew her best.

The Girl on the Motorcycle [1968] GREAT! movies classic 1.25AM

A married woman leaves her husband and zooms off on her motorcycle to see her lover. Very 60s.Marianne Faithfull on a Harley-Davidson – what’s not to love!  

Selections by Henry Falconer and Patrick Harrington

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Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Saturday 23 April 2022

Eastern Front 1914-18 PBS America 6.40pm
Often forgotten given the emphasis on the Somme, Ypres etc. that the First World War was sparked by events in Eastern Europe, for which it had massive consequences.

Stalin: Inside the Terror PBS America 9.10pm
Filmed extensively in Russia, this film reveals the life of a man who came to amass colossal power and exert malign influence over his country for more than 20 years. Stalin emerged as the true victor of the Second World War, having gained a vast Empire in the East. But victory over the Germans was not enough, and his attitude towards the West was fuelled by his growing paranoia. Access to a wealth of new material allows us to glimpse behind Stalin’s granite mask into his extraordinary private world.

Sunday 24 April 2022

The Beatles – the touring years 1962-66 Sky Documentaries 6.50pm
A compilation of found footage featuring music, interviews, and stories of The Beatles’ 250 concerts from 1963 to 1966.

Falklands – Islands of Secrets ITV1 10.15pm
In 1980, two years before the war that made the islands famous, a young Royal Marine called Alan Addis walked out of a bar in the Falkland Islands and vanished into thin air.
The mystery of his disappearance has remained unsolved for more than forty years.

Following the discovery of a trove of evidence left behind by Alan’s late mother, Marcel Theroux embarks on a journey to uncover the truth of what happened on that August evening four decades ago.

Monday 25 April 2022

The Post Office Scandal BBC1 8pm
Between 2000 and 2014, the Post Office prosecuted 736 sub-postmasters and sub-postmistresses – an average of one a week – based on information from a recently installed computer system called Horizon.

Some went to prison following convictions for false accounting and theft, many were financially ruined and have described being shunned by their communities. Some have since died.

After 20 years, campaigners won a legal battle to have their cases reconsidered, after claiming that the computer system was flawed.

This programme examines one of the greatest miscarriages of justice in UK history.

Navalny BBC2 9pm
A portrait of the Russian opposition leader.

Tuesday 26 April 2022

Twelve Angry Men (1957) Film 4 12.45pm
The jury in a New York City murder trial is frustrated by a single member whose sceptical caution forces them to more carefully consider the evidence before jumping to a hasty verdict.

On Assignment ITV1 10.55pm
The deepening divisions between India’s Hindus and Moslems.

Wednesday 27 April 2022

The Balkans in Flames (1/3) PBS America 2.10pm and 6.35pm
Series on the origins and course of the Yugoslav wars in the 1990s. See our review here.

Calm with Horses (2019) Film 4 9pm
Douglas ‘Arm’ Armstrong has become the feared enforcer for the drug-dealing Devers family, whilst also trying to be a good father. Torn between these two families, Arm’s loyalties are tested when he is asked to kill for the first time.

Thursday 28 April 2022

The Balkans in Flames (2/3) PBS America 2.05pm and 6.35pm

Bat Superpowers PBS America 8.50pm
Could the source of the world’s deadliest viruses hold the secret to a healthier and longer life? Bats have a sinister reputation as potential sources for some of the deadliest disease outbreaks: Ebola, MERS, SARS, and most recently, SARS-CoV-2, the virus behind the COVID-19 global pandemic. Yet scientists are discovering new evidence that bats are biological marvels and may hold a key to longevity. Not only are these airborne mammals the fastest recorded flyers in the sky, they’re resistant to the diseases they carry and have freakishly long lifespans for their tiny size. So, what’s their secret? Could bats’ unique flying abilities be tied to their super-charged immunity? And what else can we learn from their peculiar biology? From caves in Thailand and Texas, to an infested bell tower in France, to labs around the globe, NOVA meets the scientists who are decoding the superpowers of the bat.

Friday 29 April 2022

The Balkans in Flames (3/3) PBS America 1.35 and 6.50pm

Ozark returns on Netflix. Season 4, Part 2 will contain seven episodes and marks the conclusion of the Emmy Award–winning series, which originally debuted in 2017. There’s no telling what’s in store for Marty Byrde and family but it’s sure to be compelling.

Josephine Baker Sky Documentaries 8pm
Chartering her life and career from 1920s Paris.

RADIO – all available for at least 4 weeks on BBC Sounds

Sunday 24 April 2022

Letter from Ukraine BBC RADIO 4 11.45am
Ukrainian writer Andrey Kurkov gives a personal account of daily life in war-torn Ukraine.

Monday 25 April 2022

Start the Week -The Age of the Strongman Leader BBC RADIO 4 9.00am
Gideon Rachman, Judy Dempsey and Christopher de Bellaigue discuss authoritarian leaders, with Tom Sutcliffe.

Walking with the ghosts of the Durham Coalfield BBC RADIO 3 10.45pm
A meditation on Bill Martin’s poetry of pits, Buddhist-inspired pilgrimage and the post-industrial landscape once inhabited by the Haliwerfolc.

Tuesday 25 April 2022

Putin: The Ultimate Insult BBC RADIO 4 11am
False flags, brutal military tactics and aspirations of greatness – Putin’s approach to the war in Syria, as he tries to prove Russia is still a power-broker in the Middle East.

Thursday 26 April 2022

What’s Left of Kerouac? BBC RADIO 4 11.30am
Searching for Jack Kerouac one hundred years after his birth in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Selections by Henry Falconer and Pat Harrington

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Culture Vulture: Our guide to the week’s entertainment

Saturday 16 April 2022

Easter from King’s. Choir of King’s College Cambridge 2022 BBC2 6.20pm
Music and readings for Holy Week and Easter from the Chapel of King’s College, Cambridge, with the world-famous choir directed by Daniel Hyde.

Siege of Masada Smithsonian 8pm

This fascinating documentary, seeks to examine the accuracy of the event that took place in 70 C.E. in which approximately 960 Jews sought refuge in the mountains of Masada. Even though the Jews were outnumbered 10-to-1, they managed to survive for several months against the Roman army. According to one report by Flavius Josephus, a Jewish historian, 960 people were killed and 7 captured.

The Jewish people took their lives rather than be captured by the Roman army, according to Josephus. He explained that Eleazar Ben Yair, one of the leaders, told the group that “a glorious death is preferable to a life of infamy.”

Queens of Country: The Hits and the Heartbreak Channel 5 9.15pm
Wall-to-wall music from the undisputed Queens of Country. Featuring a mixture of legendary performances, rarely seen archive and iconic videos, take in all your favourite country classics.

Sunday 17 April 2022

1922 the birth of Now. Louis Armstrong leaves New Orleans for ChicagoBBC RADIO 4 2.45 pm
Louis Armstrong’s move to Chicago is akin to James Joyce’s from Dublin to Paris, from entrenchment to cultural emancipation.

The Beatles – made on Merseyside PBS America 9.15pm
Few dispute that the Beatles defined 1960s music and popular culture like no other band, but how John, Paul, George and Ringo made the journey from Merseyside teenagers to international pop stars is less known. Director Alan Byron’s documentary recounts the rise of the band as American rock ‘n’ roll and rhythm and blues dragged post-war Liverpool into one of the most vibrant music cities ever with the Mersey Beat sound.

Opera Italia. History of Italian Opera BBC4 10.20PM
Series tracing the history of Italian opera presented by Antonio Pappano, conductor and music director at the Royal Opera House

Monday 18 April 2022

Crossing Continents: Russia’s Unwelcome New Exiles BBC RADIO 4 8.30pm
President Putin’s war/special militiary operation against Ukraine has sent hundreds of thousands of Russians into exile, for political or economic reasons. In Georgia, some now help Ukraine. But they’re not always welcome.

House of Maxwell (3/3) BBC 2 9.55pm
The story of the latest in a long line of scandals to engulf the Maxwell family: the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell.

Mae West: Dirty Blonde PBS America 9.55pm
Dive into the life and career of groundbreaking writer, performer and subversive star Mae West. Over a career spanning eight decades, she broke boundaries and possessed creative and economic powers unheard of for a female entertainer in the 1930s.

Comedians Giving Lectures Dave 10pm
Sara Pascoe challenges fellow comedians to deliver an inspiring lecture on a random topic of her choosing. They are given the title of a real lecture but not the content, their oratory skills are judged by experts in the topic.

Tuesday 19 April 2022

Novels that shaped our world; A Woman’s Place BBC 4 9pm
Ever since Samuel Richardson’s novel “Pamela’, published in 1740, the novel has been a predominantly female literary form, offering far more opportunities to women writers than any other and consistently turning a powerful lens on the full range and depth of women”s lives.

Iran- Iraq War (1/4) PBS America 9.55pm
This powerful and gripping series examines the course of the Iran-Iraq War over eight long years, the unprecedented slaughter on both sides of the conflict and the damaging legacy it has left on the region.

Better Call Saul (season six releasing on Netflix from today)
The core of this season is the moral fall of Kim Wexler.

Wednesday 20 April 2022

The Lady and the Dale (1/4) Sky Documentaries 9pm
“The Lady and the Dale” explores the story of mysterious entrepreneur Elizabeth Carmichael, a trans woman who rose to prominence when she released a fuel-efficient three-wheeled vehicle during the 1970s gas crisis.

Thursday 21 April 2022

Chivalry Channel 4 10pm
Steve Coogan stars as a producer who has to detoxify his film in the wake of the #MeToo movement. Also features Sarah Solemani, Wanda Sykes, Sienna Miller, Lolly Adefope, Robert Lonsdale and more. This promises to be either really good or really bad!

Friday 22 April 2022

Lost art of the churches BBC RADIO 4 EXTRA
Curator Paul Bayley discovers forgotten examples of important 20th century modernist visual art in British churches.

The art in our churches might surprise you

Selections by Patrick Harrington and Henry Falconer

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Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Sunday 10 April 2022

The Re-union – Libel case McDonald’s v critics BBC RADIO4 11am

It was in 1994 that McDonald’s began a libel case against a postman and gardener from London. It took a decade for the case to be resolved, making it the longest-running libel case in English legal history.

In the late 1980s, Helen Steel and Dave Morris, based in London, were active campaigners for Greenpeace and had distributed a leaflet that questioned the fast-food giants’ claims that their burgers were both healthy and good for the environment.

McDonald’s took offence and began a case against them. The pair were unable to get legal aid and so faced the prospect of having to represent themselves in court. Keir Starmer was a young lawyer at the time and was keen to help – offering his services for free.

The initial ruling in the High Court went in part against Steel and Morris and they were told to pay £40,000 damages. But by 2005 the pair had won their appeal to the European Court for Human Rights – and McDonald’s faced a PR disaster.

Joining Kirsty Wark are the “McLibel Two”, Helen Steel and Dave Morris, along with barrister Timothy Atkinson who was part of McDonald’s legal team, and film-maker Franny Armstrong who spent a decade following the case.

Where Angels Fear To Tread (1991) Great Movies Classic 1.40pm
After a rich Edwardian widow impulsively marries a handsome but poor Tuscan dentist and dies in childbirth, her English in-laws try to gain custody of the baby.

Monday 11 April 2022

House of Maxwell (2/3) BBC2 9pm
The story of the latest in a long line of scandals to engulf the Maxwell family: the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell.

Worlds Collide – the Manchester Arena bombing ITV1 10.45pm
Featuring emotional contributions from the families of those who lost their lives, Worlds Collide: The Manchester Bombing marks the fifth anniversary of an attack that shocked the nation to its core. The two-part special uses new revelations to piece together the chilling timeline of that day and explores how, five years on, the truth of what happened that night is finally emerging.

Tuesday 12 April 2022

Putin: An Indispensable Tsar BBC RADIO 4 11am
Putin returns to the presidency to save Russia from the west.

Like him or loathe him Putin is a powerful and complex man

Wednesday 13 April 2022

The Invention of Poland: A nation without a state BBC RADIO 4 15:30
Between 1795 and 1918 there was no Poland, but the idea of Poland remained extremely strong. Travelling by bus and train around the south east, Misha Glenny and producer Miles Warde go in search of what kept Poland alive. With contributions from Professor Natalia Nowakowska and Timothy Garton-Ash. Part of the How to Invent a Country series for Radio 4 and BBC Sounds.

Europe’s Forgotten Dictatorships: The Regime of the Colonels (1/2) PBS America 9pm
In April 1967, fifteen colonels staged a coup and installed a dictatorship in Greece. This dictatorship was the last stage of a deep social division that had already begun in the Greek civil war.

Thursday 14 April 2022

Our Friends in the North BBC RADIO 4 2.15pm
Drama examining the politics and change across Britain from the Sixties to the Nineties seen through the varying fortunes of four friends.

World’s Collide continued ITV 9pm
Programme two re-lives the final minutes and seconds in the run up to the detonation and its aftermath, unravelling the emergency services’ response through the eyes of the victims and those first on the scene.

Europe’ Forgotten Dictatorships: The Era Salazar in Portugal (2/2) PBS America 9pm
The dictatorship in Portugal was the longest right-wing dictatorship in Europe in the 20th century. For 48 years, one personality had it all: António Oliveira Salazar.

And in other news

Pissarro: Father Of Impressionism
Ashmolean Museum Oxford
See a great review here

Selections by Pat Harrington and Henry Falconer

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Counter Culture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Saturday 2 April 2022

Rap Gets Real BBC RADIO 4 15:30
Once considered part of the problem, can rap music help change black men’s attitudes towards mental illness? Guvna B looks at the genre’s changing representation of mental health.

Sunday 3 April 2022

Analysis: The Dictator’s Survival Guide BBC RADIO 4 21:30
A handbook on the strategies autocrats use to survive in office. James Tilley finds out how authoritarians manage to suppress opposition and remain in power.

Arena: All the world’s a screen BBC4 22:45
An exploration of the history of Shakespeare’s plays, from the silent era to the modern day featuring archive interviews with movie directors including Laurence Olivier, Orson Welles, Franco Zeffirelli, Kenneth Branagh and more.

Monday 4 April 2022

Hybrid Humans by Harry Parker: Becoming Hybrid BBC RADIO 4 09:45 (1/5)
Harry Parker’s new book tells the story of how his life changed after losing his legs to an IED in Afghanistan. As he grapples with a new identity and disability, he is introduced to a world of robotics and technological advances in medicine and wearable devices that have possibilities for what a body can be, now and in the future. Today, Harry recounts the months of recovery following the moment that he stepped on a bomb.

Harry Parker was in his twenties when he stepped on an IED while serving in Afghanistan in 2009 which altered his life in an instant. Here he takes us on his own personal journey as he grapples with an acquired disability and a new identity. At the same time he explores the little known and fascinating history of prosthetics, and the extraordinary advances in medicine and technology designed to ameliorate the effects of disability, illness and injury, from cochlear implants to wearable robotic suits, or exoskeletons. We’ll also find out about the multi-billion pound industry involved in rehabilitating the body, and how invention, art and creativity play their part.

Harry Parker is the author of the acclaimed novel, Anatomy of a Soldier. He joined the army when he was twenty-three and served in Iraq in 2007 and Afghanistan in 2009. He is now a writer and artist.

Tuesday 5 April 2022

Positive Thinking: Citizens’ Assemblies BBC RADIO 4 09:00
Sangita Myska asks if citizens assemblies are the way to strengthen democracy in Britain.

Wednesday 6 April 2022

Ingenious: The Warrior Gene BBC RADIO 4 09:30
Is there really a gene that makes some people more violent than others? And should some criminals get a lesser sentence because of what’s in their DNA? Dr Kat Arney investigates.

Thursday 7 April 2022

One, Two, Three (1961) GREAT! movies classic 18.45
In West Berlin during the Cold War, a Coca-Cola executive is given the task of taking care of his boss’ socialite daughter.

One, Two, Three is a rarely screened Wilder film treat

Terrorism and the Mind: Talking to Terrorists BBC RADIO 4 20:00
What are researchers learning about the prevalence of mental illness among convicted terrorists, and the role it plays in their actions? Raffaello Pantucci investigates.

Friday 8 April 2022

Punk Sky Arts 23:15 (1/4)
The series continues with an exploration of the birth of a form of punk so extreme it has been dubbed hardcore, embraced by The Germs, Bad Brains, Black Flag and more.

And in other news…

“Star Wars” fans, like me, will have to wait just a bit longer to see Ewan McGregor back in action as Obi-Wan Kenobi.

The upcoming “Obi-Wan Kenobi” series has delayed its premiere from Wednesday, May 25, to Friday, May 27. The first two episodes of the limited series will air on Disney Plus that day.

Selections from Pat Harrington

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Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Monday 28 March 2022

Making History; the storytellers who shaped the past. From Herodutus to the present. BBC RADIO 4 9.45am and next 4 days.

Inside Art: Van Gogh At the Courtauld Gallery Sky Arts 7:00pm
Kate Bryan pays a visit to the London venue to tour an exhibition bringing the full span of Vincent van Gogh’s self-portraiture together.

Pay Freezes 1970s-2008 BBC RADIO 4 8pm
With labour shortages and the cost of living back as big issues for the first time in years, Phil Tinline traces the ups and downs of the politics of pay in Britain.

The Court of Putin BBC RADIO 4 8:30pm
Tim Whewell examines the changing face of decision-making in Putin’s Russia and asks if anyone can say no to its president.

Can the UK ever be a low- tax economy again? BBC RADIO 4 8.30pm

The Rhythm Section Film4 9:00pm
A woman seeks revenge against those who orchestrated a plane crash that killed her family. Blake Lively and Jude Law star.

Panorama: Beyond Reasonable Doubt, Britain’s Rape Crisis BBC1 9:00pm
Filmed over the course of 18 months, this edition of Panorama examines why so few reported rapes in England and Wales result in a conviction. It follows five cases and the detectives leading them to find out why it’s so difficult to bring perpetrators to justice.

Spotlight 11:40pm BBC2
A team of journalists investigate an attempt to cover-up child abuse in the Catholic Church. See our review here.

Tuesday 29 March 2022

Banned!: The Mary Whitehouse Story BBC1 9:00pm
In 1963, armed with just a typewriter, a Midlands housewife began a 30-year battle against the permissive society. But how successful was the original ‘cancel culture’ warrior?

Wednesday 30 March 2022

Putin, Russia and the West BBC4 9:00pm (1/4)
How the great Soviet superpower, crushed and humiliated, has been resurrected in the form of Vladimir Putin’s new Russia.

Up the Junction – The Wednesday Play BBC4 10pm
Up the Junction. The Wednesday Play . Classic play by Nell Dunn about three working-class young women who live, work and play in Battersea.

Addresses some of the major social issues of the day

Thursday 31 March 2022

Our Friends in the North. (1/10) BBC RADIO 4 2.15pm
Peter Flannery’s adaptation of his award-winning 1996 drama chronicling the lives of 4 friends from the 1960s to the 1990s.

Tolkien Film4 9:00pm
The formative years of the orphaned author J.R.R. Tolkien as he finds friendship, love and artistic inspiration among a group of fellow outcasts at school.

Friday 1 April 2022

Punk Sky Arts 10:45pm (2/4)
The Ramones visit to London.

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Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Saturday 19 March 2022

Roman Kemp: Our Silent Emergency BBC3 11:30pm

Roman Kemp explores the mental health and suicide crisis affecting young men. When Roman lost his best friend, he had no idea he was struggling. Now, Roman is searching for answers.

Bridge Of Spies, C4 11:30pm

During the Cold War, an American lawyer is recruited to defend an arrested Soviet spy in court, and then help the CIA facilitate an exchange of the spy for the Soviet captured American U2 spy plane pilot, Francis Gary Powers. See our review of this great film here.

Sunday 20 March 2022

Desert Island Discs: Alan Cumming, actor BBC RADIO 4 11:00am

I listen to Desert Island Discs every week. It’s one of the things I love about the BBC. Alan Cumming, actor, shares the eight tracks, book and luxury item he would take with him if cast away to a desert island. With Lauren Laverne.

Glass C4 10:00pm

After pursuing Kevin Wendell Crumb and the multiple identities that reside within, David Dunn finds himself locked in a mental hospital alongside his archenemy, Elijah Price. Forms a trilogy with Unbreakable and Split. See our review of the Trilogy here.

Monday 21 March 2022

The Court of Putin BBC RADIO 4 20:30

Tim Whewell examines the changing face of decision-making in Putin’s Russia and asks if anyone can say no to its president.

Ian Hislop’s Stiff Upper Lip: An emotional history of Britain BBC4 10pm

Ian Hislop asks when and why we British have bottled up or let out our feelings and how this has affected our history.

Tuesday 22 March 2022

The Undiscovered Kenneth Williams Sky Arts 1:55am

Victor Lewis-Smith give a fascinating insight into the life of Kenneth Williams, one of the UK’s best-loved comic performers who starred in more than 20 Carry On films. Also features Stanley Baxter, Robert Chidell, Adam Brand and Robin Sebastian.

Wednesday 23 March 2022

Strangeways Riot 25 Days of Mayhem C5 11:05pm

I can remember watching the riot on the news every night in April 1990. This documentary tells the story of the UK’s worst prison riot.
Inmates seized control of Strangeways prison in Manchester as a protest against inhumane conditions inside Strangeways. The consequences rippled across the prison system and are still with us.

Thursday 24 March 2022

In our time: Antigone BBC RADIO 4 09:00am

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss Sophocles’ tragedy of dilemmas, where King Creon threatens death to anyone who buries a traitor and that traitor’s sister, Antigone, defies him. This compelling story raises questions about loyalty and obligation and the cost of defying tyranny. It will be interesting to hear the discussion.

Tonight: Cost of Living What You Need to Know ITV 10:45pm

The cost of living has risen to its highest rate in over 30 years, with families about to be hit by huge hikes in our energy, fuel and food bills, a situation made worse by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Datshiane Navanayagam investigates the impact on household finances, and finds out how we can save money.

Our Friends in the North BBC RADIO 4 2:15pm

Playwright and screenwriter Peter Flannery has rewritten his multi-award winning TV series Our Friends in the North as audio drama for BBC Radio 4. Also available on BBC Sounds.

Friday 25 March 2022

Elton John: Uncensored BBC4 9pm

Sir Elton and Graham Norton sit down for a world-exclusive intimate chat, which sees the legendary ‘Rocket Man’ look back at his extraordinary life and career. I’m a big fan of Elton’s music and also what he has done to benefit our country by paying tax, employing people and speaking out on important issues. I’m looking forward to finding out more about him.

Coming soon…

Halo (2022)

Dramatizing an epic 26th-century conflict between humanity and an alien threat known as the Covenant, Halo the series will weave deeply drawn personal stories with action, adventure and a richly imagined vision of the future. Nobody can save humanity alone-not even the Master Chief. Meet the heroes who will risk losing everything to come together and protect humankind from the universe’s greatest threat in this stunning new trailer for the Paramount+ Original Series, Halo. Stream the premiere of Halo on Thursday, Mar. 24, exclusively on Paramount+.

Selected by Pat Harrington with help from Henry Falconer

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Review: Unbreakable

My own Unbreakable Origins Story began one Saturday Afternoon, circa 2012, when I was listening to Jonathan Ross’ BBC Radio 2 show, as I was in the habit of doing at this time. Ross, a keen collector of comic books, mentioned a new book by the well-known comic book writer Grant Morrison. The book was called SUPERGODS, and was essentially a history of the Superhero genre in comics and film, from the so-called Golden Age of the nineteen thirties to the present day, as well as an exploration of the way that the classic Superhero God-like archetypes – Batman, Superman, Spiderman, the Hulk, Thor et al have come to serve as fictional replacements for actual Gods within our secular, post-religious society.

At this time, I was attempting to write (an as yet still unfinished) novel on the theme of Chaos Magic(k). The fact that Ross mentioned that Morrison, in common with his fellow superstar comic writer Alan Moore, was himself a dedicated practitioner of Chaos Magic was an added incentive for me to go out and purchase a copy of SUPERGODS as quickly as possible.

I devoured Morrison’s book quickly and still highly recommend to it to anyone with an interest in the subject.

At this point in my life, I was what might be called a lapsed, collector of comics. As a child, I have fond memories of being taken to a particular shop in Grimsby (the name of which I’ve forgotten) once a week to pick up a selection of the latest Marvel and DC editions, though later I would ‘progress’ to football comics like Scorcher and Score and its offshoot Roy of the Rovers. Since then, I had mostly confined myself to watching the Big Screen adaptations, such as the nineteen seventies Superman movies starring the ill-fated Christopher Reeves , Tim Burton’s Gothic tyle series of Batman movies (I’d enjoyed the camp Adam West version in the sixties), the more recent and more serious Dark Knight trilogy, and the various and not entirely successful attempts to bring the likes of the Hulk, Spiderman and the Famous Five to life on the big screen.

One thing SUPEGODS did, as well as to deepen my interest in Chaos Magic(k), was to introduce me to the Graphic Novel as an artform in and of itself. For instance, to Alan Moore’s The Watchmen, a beautifully conceived, written and illustrated postmodern exercise in world-building, a world where Superheroes are real and suffer the same human foibles as the rest of us (a book which Zak Snyder would, against Moore’s protestations, make a fair-fist at adapting for film).  This book is now so highly regarded critically that is not only often cited as the greatest Graphic Novels of all time, regarded as not only generally regarded as the greatest Graphic Novel of all time, but is also frequently listed by critics amongst the top ten or twenty greatest books ever, full stop. I also read Moore’s follow up to Watchmen, From Hell, his excellent take on the Jack the Ripper murders, with its marvelous black and white recreation of Victorian London, plus some of Morrison’s heavily Chaos Magic(k) influenced series The Invisibles, Art Spiegelman’s Maus, the best book I’ve ever read on the Holocaust, and Red Son, a reimagination of the Superman story, where the infant, alien, proto-Superhero crash lands in a small town in the Soviet Union rather than in Smallville, Kansas, USA, and thus grows up fighting for International Communism rather than ‘Truth, Justice and the American Way.’

SUPERGODS concentrates mostly on the literary development of the Superhero genre, but Morrison also, perhaps unavoidably, touches upon the movie and T.V. spin-off’s,, from the now laughably bad attempts to adapt Superman for American T.V. in the nineteen fifties (starring the equally ill-fated George Reeves (no relation), to our modern Marvel and DC cinematic blockbusters.

 It was of some surprise to me that Morrison mentioned the movie Unbreakable, directed by M. Night Shyamala and starring Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson, as being his favourite Superhero movie of all time.

Although by this time the film, having been made in 2000, was already over a decade old, and I was a regular user of the Love Film DVD postal service (remember that?), as well as a fan of both Willis and Jackson, it was a film of which I was completely was unaware.

I sought to rectify this immediately, my first viewing being, if I remember correctly, via Amazon Prime.

The first thing to be said, and this is also stressed by Morrison, is that, whilst it deals with the familiar Superhero trope of Good Vs Evil, Unbreakable is far from being a conventional Superhero film. There is no ostentatious Superhero costume, although as we shall see, there is subtle uniform of sorts. The super-powers’ of our hero’, Willis’ professional security guard David Dunn, though real enough, do not emerge suddenly, full formed through, to use a long over-used cliché, a sudden exposure to radiation, but are allowed to become apparent slowly, and again subtly, and to the initial disbelief of the hero himself, as the film progresses.

As a black disabled man, our Super-villain, Elijah Price, AKA Mr. Glass, is not quite your typical Superhero arch nemesis either. Perhaps we are fortunate that the movie was made when it was, at the turn of the millennium, as the fact that Glass is black is simply that, an incidental fact, not a weapon to beat us over the head with for our Original Sin of Whiteness. Elijah’s disability on the other hand, is intrinsic to his character and to the development of the plot, and is not used as a device for highlighting the horrors of being ‘differently abled’ in world built for the benefit of those fortunate enough to be born able in body and mind.

The action begins with the derailment of the train Eastrail 117. It is a horrific event from which David Dunn is the only survivor. This is set up nicely, with Dunn surreptitiously removing his wedding ring so as to hit upon the attractive lady seated beside him, thus showing that this hero is no Superman/Spiderman type goody-two-shoes. In any case, his sexual advance is spurned and the lady in question turns out to be the last of the passengers to die, as Dunn, with hardly a scratch to show for the ordeal, anxiously awaits news in the hospital.  

I don’t wish to spoil too much of the plot, but Dunn’s survival is our first indication of his special nature as a human being who literally, aside from through his own, earthly, mundane equivalent of Superman’s Kryptonite, plain old water as it turns out, cannot die, become seriously ill or even be seriously injured.

Soon, we are introduced to Dunn’s polar opposite, Elijah. We first see Elijah as a child, a child who suffers from a rare condition, osteogenesis imperfecta (brittle bone disease, which means that even the slightest injury, a broken bone for instance, could prove fatal. It is this condition that leads Elijah, brilliantly played by Jackson, to acquire the nickname Glass from the typically cruel children of his locality.

Coddled at home by his loving, protective mother Cassy in a small but pivotal role brilliantly performed by Charlayne Woodard, Glass, unable to leave the safe bubble of his house, begins to obsessively read and collect comics, and it is this theme that gives the movie its pleasingly meta-aspect, making it as much a commentary on the geeky sub-culture of the comic book collector as a straight Super-hero v Super-villain battle between good and evil.

 Indeed, the film itself begins with plain text upon screen, informing us of the price range of the average comic, and the amount of time and amount of money the average comic book reader spends in pursuit of his hobby/passion.

The next time we see Elijah, he is the curator of an exhibition of original comic book art, pointedly refusing to sell a ‘priceless’ example of such art to a patron with more money than aesthetic sense, who wishes to buy it for his four-year-old son. This is a scene that reminded me strongly of the scene in the film High Fidelity, where the independent record shop owners show their indignation towards a middle-aged man who asks to buy a copy of Stevie Wonder’s ‘I Just Called To Say I Love You’ for his fourteen year old daughter.

As mentioned, Dunn’s realisation that he is not as other men, builds slowly, culminating in a brilliant scene where he continues to lift weights in his home gym, observed and egged on by his awestruck young son Joseph, until he reaches levels well beyond human possibility. Later, this son, convinced of his father’s superhero status much more quickly than the father himself (but then aren’t all fathers’ Superheroes to their sons?), has to be talked down from shooting his dad at point blank range, by Dunn and his wife, in order to prove his hunch correct.  

David’s growing realisation is aided by his various meeting with Glass, meetings that at first sight seem accidental, but are actually manufactured by Glass himself, to the point that the two almost seem to become friends.

It should be mentioned that as part of the back-story, and as a part of the build-up to Dunn’s moment of self-understanding, the filmmakers throw us a delightful red herring with the idea that Daniel can indeed be hurt, and that this was in fact proven by the College football injury that ended his highly promising Football (of the American variety) career. In reality, we later, this was in fact a feigned injury, designed for reasons I won’t go into here, in order to retain the love of the woman who would eventually become his wife.

During the meetings between Dunn and Glass, Elijah does his best to convince Dunn of his destiny, and of his need to realise that destiny: ‘Do you ever wake up with a feeling of sadness, without knowing why?’ He asks, before pointing out, when Dunn replies in the affirmative, that it is because he is not doing what he is meant to be doing. ‘Is it an accident you work in places where people may need your help’, he says in reference to David’s job as a security guard at big stadium football matches and concerts. He also says ‘These are mediocre times. It’s hard for people to realise there are amazing powers, inside themselves, as well as inside others.’

Unbreakable is a movie of many such memorable sayings, mostly from Elijah/Glass

Incidentally, it is David’s hooded security man uniform that does, given certain cinematic lighting and vantage points, at times resemble a Superhero costume, as is mentioned in the Grant Morrison book.

The only notable weak point of the film is the montage of footage of David doing what Superheroes do, after he finally accepts his true nature and his mission in life. For me, these Superhero exploits were never quite Superhero enough to fully illustrate the importance of Dunn’s transformation.

It is through the meetings between David and Glass that the central theme of Unbreakable is revealed.

Essentially, the movie is a meditation on the mutual dependency between good and evil, Light and dark, the Superhero and the Super-villain., on how one cannot exist without the other, by each necessary to the definition of its opposite, Rather in the manner that many Theologians attempt to explain away the Problem of Evil in monotheistic religions.

Again, I don’t want to give away too many plot points, the macabre truth is that, since he had became aware of his fragile physical nature, and especially since his discovery of the Comic Book as a means not only of escapism, but as a guide to living, Glass has spent much of his life scouring through reports of accidents that resulted in mass fatalities, searching for those that had one single survivor. Through this means, he hoped to find his opposite, the super-strong, seemingly invincible hero against which he, the weakling turned self-invented Criminal Mastermind, can test his Dark Genius.

‘The scariest thing is to not know your place in the world, to not know who you are,’ he says.

Elijah is the Joker looking for his Batman, Lex Luther seeking out Superman.

As the film finally reaches the inevitable showdown, he exclaims ‘I am not a mistake…I am the complete opposite of the hero,’ and by implication every bit as necessary, the one who fights the hero, in the word of his mother Cassy, purely with his intellect.

It is at this point, as the showdown reaches its final, bloody culmination, that Elijah, the sad, sick boy whose only view of the world was through a window and the panels of a comic book, fully embraces the nickname given to him by his childhood tormentors:

‘They called me Mr. Glass.’

So, there it stood. I watched Unbreakable perhaps twice, and thoroughly enjoyed it both times, as a fascinating and unusual stand-alone take on the Superhero genre. Then, in 2016, I heard about a new film called Split, again directed by Shyamalan, and starring James McAvoy as Kevin who, through a rare dissociative disorder, has acquired twenty-three alter egos who battle for supremacy within him. The film was marketed as the second part of a trilogy, sometimes called the Eastlrail 117 trilogy, of which Unbreakable would now form the belated opening salvo.

This trilogy was finally completed by the movie Glass in 2019.

I won’t say too much about these latter two films here.  Split has only a tangential link to Unbreakable, the Bruce Willis/David Dunn character making an appearance only at the very end, where he refers briefly, whilst watching news of Kevin’s murderous rampage in a bar, and it has to be said rather gratuitously, to Glass, and the fact that he has now spent almost two decades in an institute for the criminally insane.

The film Glass itself, brilliantly brings together Dunn, Kevin, and the returning Jackson as the eponymous anti-hero in one of the great comic book/superhero showdowns of all time.

Unbreakable can still be enjoyed as a movie in its own right. But it now works best as the opening part of a cinematic trilogy that deserves to be regarded as one of the very best.

Reviewed by Anthony C Green, March 2022 

Unbreakable (film series) – Wikipedia

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Culture Vulture: our guide to the weeks’ entertainment

Saturday 5 March 2022

Inn of the Sixth Happiness Great Movies Classic 5.40pm A tenacious British woman becomes a missionary and runs an inn for travelling merchants in China during the Japanese invasion and the tumultuous years leading up to the Second World War.

Riot Girls : Susan (1/3) BBC RADIO 4 9pm First of three new plays charting British feminism through three generations of women. Birmingham, 1975. Susan tries to forge a new life for herself in a commune. By Lucy Catherine.

Mr Dynamite: The rise of James Brown Sky Documentaries 9pm
A look at the music career of musician James Brown beginning with his first hit song, “Please, Please, Please,” in 1956.

Sunday 6 March 2022

Passport to Pimlico Sky Arts 3pm
Residents of a part of London declare independence when they discover an old treaty. This leads to the need for a “Passport to Pimlico”.

Leonard Cohen Sky Docs 5pm
A documentary on the legendary singer-songwriter, with performances by those musicians he has influenced.

The Birth of British Music – Haydn (2/4) BBC4 7pm
Charles Hazlewood explores great composers’ lives and music. He looks at the fascinating two-way relationship Haydn, an astute businessman, had with Britain.

A timely re-invention as a new Cold War with Russia begins

The Ipcress File (1/6) ITV1 9pm
As the Cold War rages, ex-smuggler turned reluctant spy Harry Palmer finds himself at the centre of a dangerous undercover mission, on which he must use his links to find a missing British nuclear scientist. An appropriate return to screen as we enter a new Cold War with Russia.

Nixon by Nixon Sky Documentaries 11.10pm
Emmy-nominated documentary examining the different sides of President Nixon through thousands of hours of declassified audiotapes recorded during his administration.

Monday 7 March 2022

The Real Peaky Blinders (1/2) 9pm BBC2
The origins of the real Peaky Blinders, a mass street gang phenomenon that arose in Birmingham at the end of the 19th century.

Tuesday 8 March 2022

Tianamen: The People Against the Party (1/2) PBS America 11.50am
On June 4, 1989 the world’s biggest, longest, and most famous pro-democracy demonstration was brought to a tragic end. The images from those final bloody days still burn bright in our imaginations; the death toll — from the Chinese official figure of 300 to estimates as high as 15,000 — is still disputed.

The Wars of Coco Chanel Sky Arts 3pm
An iron will, a perpetual need to take revenge on society, an unquenchable thirst for freedom and independence, Gabrielle Chanel, the world’s most famous fashion designer, embodiment of Parisian chic, was also a pitiless and determined warrior. To build her empire, she used every possible means, including the most shameful…

Jane Fonda in five acts Sky Arts 9pm
A look at the life, work, activism and controversies of actress and fitness tycoon, Jane Fonda. I love ‘Hanoi Jane’ as she was once cruelly called. It started with Cat Balou and Barberella and continued from there.

All My Sons Great Movies Classic 9pm
During WW2, industrialist Joe Keller commits a crime and frames his business partner Herbert Deever but years later his sin comes back to haunt him when Joe’s son plans to marry Deever’s daughter.

Wednesday 9 March 2022

Our Man In Havana Great Movies Classic 4.55pm
Jim Wormold, who is a vacuum cleaner salesman, participates as an Agent in the British Secret Service. But he soon realizes that his plans by lying are going to get him into trouble.

A Bloody Legacy (1/2) PBS America 6pm
The End of the Ottomans Part one of two. Examining conflicts past and present between eastern Europe and the Middle East. Part two of two. With the outbreak of the First World War, the Ottoman Empire joins forces with the Central Powers of Germany and Austro-Hungary to fight against the British Empire. The Allies persuade the Arabs to rise up against the Ottomans, and in return, they are promised their own kingdom

Thursday 10 March 2022

The Cannabis Question PBS America 7.25pm As state-legalised cannabis spreads, NOVA investigates the latest scientific evidence for its potential benefits and risks, and how criminalisation has disproportionately harmed communities of colour.

A Bloody Legacy(2/2) PBS America 6.15pm (See above)

Friday 11 March 2022

Crowd Science – the virtues of massage BBC WORLD SERVICE 8.30pm

John Denver: Country Boy BBC4 9pm
A profile of the life and career of singer/songwriter John Denver.

Film: The Batman
Riddle us this: when a city’s in turmoil and a mysterious killer emerges, leaving only a trail of cryptic clues, what do you get? Crooked cops, scheming mobsters, a cat, a penguin – and, of course, a bat.

A dazzlingly dark detective story with superhero style and a superb new caped crusader in Robert Pattinson, The Batman flew into UK cinemas on Friday 4 March 2022.

Film: The Godfather: 50th Anniversary

Cinemas are making you an offer you can’t refuse: another chance to see Coppola’s mafia masterpiece on the big screen.

Francis Ford Coppola’s epic masterpiece features Marlon Brando in his Oscar-winning role as the patriarch of the Corleone family.

Detailing a chilling portrait of the Sicilian clan’s rise and near fall from power in America, masterfully balancing the story between the Corleone’s family life and the ugly crime business in which they are engaged.

Theatre: Julius Caesar

The countdown is on until #JuliusCaesar begins its tour Cumbernauld Theatre on Thursday 17 March before touring until May to OneRen Tron Theatre The Byre Theatre Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum and Arts Centre Ceòlas An Lanntair Seall The Barn Eden Court Theatre and Cinema Universal Hall Promotions Lyth Arts Centre The Gaiety Summerhall.

Company of Wolves take Julius Caesar on tour

Tell me, good Brutus, can you see your face?

Brutus and Cassius fear Caesar will crown himself king. But when they kill Caesar to prevent him taking the throne, they unleash forces that threaten to tear their world apart.

What happens when we trust the wrong people? When we confuse conspiracy and reality? What happens when we cannot see ourselves?

Five actors immerse us in Shakespeare’s play, creating a world on the brink of crisis, teeming with crowds and politics: a wild ride from the streets of Rome to the steps of the Capitol, from whispers in the night to outright war.

With their signature physicality, Company of Wolves breathe new life into Shakespeare’s masterpiece, exposing the thin line between trust and deceit, conspiracy and reality, civilisation and mob rule.

Selections by Pat Harrington and Henry Falconer

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Culture Vulture: our guide to the week’s entertainment

Sunday 27 February 2022

Soundtracks: Songs That Defined History 1:00 (1/8)

This fascinating series continues with “Out, Loud and Proud”. A look at the growth of the gay rights movement and how music has played a vital role in promoting tolerance of sexual diversity.

Desert Island Discs BBC RADIO 4 11:00

I listen to Desert Island Discs every week. It’s just one reason I support the BBC and public service broadcasting. It reminds me of all the good things the BBC does. This week Professor Nick Webborn, Chair of the British Paralympic Association and Professor of Sports and Exercise Medicine, shares the soundtrack of his life with Lauren Laverne.

Peaky Blinders BBC1 21:00

It’s the end of the road for this great TV show with this season (6). The good news though is that there is a stage show and a film coming. The Peaky Blinders movie will begin filming in 2023 and the stage show, titled Peaky Blinders: The Redemption of Thomas Shelby, is coming to Birmingham in the UK this September, then London and other UK locations later.

The new episodes show Tommy Shelby pitted against the charismatic Fascist politician Sir Oswald Mosley (Sam Claflin) once more in what is sure to be a tense showdown. “Dark as f**k” is how Cillian Murphy (Thomas Shelby / Exec Producer) described season 6 in an interview with Esquire. “I think it’s going to be very intense,” Murphy previously told Rolling Stone. “The word we keep using is ‘gothic’. Yeah, it’s going to be heavy!”

Sadly Helen McCrory who played Polly so brilliantly will be absent as she died. The cast and crew ant this to be a tribute to her. I’m sure all fans will want that too.

Louis Theroux’s Forbidden America: Porn’s Me Too (3/3) BBC2 22:00

Louis head to LA as the porn industry grapples with its own wave of #MeToo.

Frank Skinner on Muhammad Ali BBC2 23:00

I like Frank Skinner and am a big fan of Ali so this is a no-brainer. I will be interested to see how far Frank delves into Ali’s membership of the Nation of Islam, relationship with Malcolm X and opposition to the Vietnam war.

Monday 28 February 2022

Thomas Chatterton: The Myth of the Doomed Poet BBC4 20:30

One of the first, if not the first, to die in a lonely garret of a drug overdose, was 17-year-old poet-forger Thomas Chatterton. His career really took off after that but did he take his own life in an act of creative despair? “Give me a Chatterton attic,” wrote Dylan Thomas. Michael Symmons Roberts set out to interrogate the myth of the poet as doomed risk-taker.

Chernobyl: The Lost Tapes Sky Documentaries 21:00

Chernobyl: The Lost Tapes tells the story of the nuclear power-plant explosions at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukrainian SSR on 26th April 1986.

The two explosions happened after a routine test at the power plant went wrong. The explosions released more than 400 times more radiation than the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II.

Emmy Award-winner and James Jones uses newly discovered footage filmed at the nuclear plant during the disaster coupled with deeply personal interviews of those who were there.

The synopsis says: “From a ten-year-old schoolboy to a Russian general, the film details how the lives of millions of people were transformed and how their memories of that fateful night and the aftermath have haunted them since.”

Tuesday 1 March 2022

Danny Dyer on Harold Pinter Sky Arts 00:10

Taken under his wing following roles in films like 1997’s Human Traffic, Pinter cast Dyer in several of his plays. Now, years after Pinter’s death, Danny takes a look back at his mentor’s work (including exploring the effects the Cold War had on his plays) and the profound influence he had on his life.

Wednesday 2 March 2022

Your Body Uncovered with Kate Garraway (1/6) BBC2 20:00

Your Body Uncovered with Kate Garraway on BBC2 shows us a minor medical miracle. Just imagine that we could better understand our health conditions simply by looking inside our own bodies. Now, this groundbreaking new BBC2 series allows patients to do just that, thanks to some incredible state-of-the-art 3D technology. Each week, presenter Kate Garraway meets patients with everyday medical conditions and, together with consultant Dr Guddi Singh from Trust Me, I’m A Doctor fame, guides them through an immersive journey inside their own bodies to help better understand their illnesses.

The fall of Singapore BBC RADIO 4 09:30

In February 1942, Singapore fell to the Japanese. Tens of thousands of Commonwealth soldiers became prisoners of war. Most were set to work in prison camps across South East Asia. Witness is a great way to learn about history and it is very accessible. This episode lasts only 14 minutes but covers its subject well.

Thursday 3 March 2022

Split Up in Care: Life Without Siblings BBC3 22:00

Thousands of children have been separated from their brothers and sisters by the UK care system. Ashley John-Baptiste hears from those whose lives have been changed forever.

Friday 4 March 2022

AI: A Future for Humans The Reith Lectures Stuart Russell – Living With Artificial Intelligence (4/4) BBC RADIO 4 21:00

Stuart Russell suggests a way forward for human control over super-powerful artificial intelligence. If you missed the first three fret not as you can hear them here.

The Atom and Us PBS America 21:50

Take an action-packed tour through the history of one of the most controversial subjects of the 20th century – nuclear power – as told by those who experienced it first-hand. Focusing on events in the US, UK, France and Germany, it charts its social and political development from the early days of post-war atomic euphoria, through to the struggling ‘nuclear renaissance’ of the present day.

Looking ahead…

I’m not that interested in the Superbowl but I tuned in to watch the entertainment which included the Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power trailer. It is expected to last for five seasons. It stars Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Joseph Mawle, Lenny Henry, Peter Mullan and Saint Maud star Morfydd Clark.

Selections by Pat Harrington

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