wed 24/05/2017

BBC Two

The best TV to watch this week

So much to view, so little time... theartsdesk sorts the TV-wheat from the telly-chaff.Tuesday 23 MayTwin Peaks:The Return, Sky Atlantic & Now TV – after 26 years, its back, and still starring Kyle MacLachlan as agent Dale Cooper.Going Back,...

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A Time to Live, BBC Two review - an exquisite legacy

Imagine a doctor has just told you that you have only a year to live. What would you do? Learn to sky dive, spend every last penny you have, be brutally honest with anyone who has crossed you, or curl up in a ball and wait for the inevitable?...

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A Time to Live: 'I did not want to reveal at the end who was alive or dead'

Do you ever wonder what you’d do if you were given a terminal diagnosis and told you may only have months to live? That question is what my latest film is all about. It may sound maudlin and sad but I can assure you it isn’t. And the reason for that...

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King Charles III, BBC Two review - royal crisis makes thrilling drama

Actor Oliver Chris, who plays William in Mike Bartlett’s ingeniously-crafted play about the monarchy, was doing some pre-transmission fire-fighting by going round telling interviewers he couldn’t see what anybody (eg the Daily Mail) could find to...

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The Last Kingdom - 'one of the very best things on television'

The first series of The Last Kingdom in 2015 kicked off with a blockbuster episode which managed to encompass savage violence, dynastic rivalry and a speedy tour of the state of Britain in the ninth century, while allowing the central protagonist,...

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Puerto Rico: Island of Enchantment – Natural World, BBC Two

The soothing voice of David Attenborough narrated this cautionary tale, which is improbably heading not for a happy ending but a happy new beginning. Puerto Rico, the so-called island of enchantment, overwhelmed early western visitors with its...

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Meet the Lords, BBC Two

To Westminster and Meet the Lords, a series which Radio Times assures me follows “the larger-than-life characters” in one of our “most idiosyncratic and important institutions”. Obviously it was shot well before the current Brexit deliberations in...

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Andrew Marr: 'I don’t want to look like I'm in pain'

Television audiences love seeing familiar faces in different contexts – whether it’s actors exploring their ancestry in Who Do You Think You Are? or politicians awkwardly busting their moves on Strictly. But there’s always a risk that the camera...

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Francis Bacon: A Brush with Violence, BBC Two

Francis Bacon died in April 1992, aged 82, but heaven knows how he managed to live that long. The tortuous story of his life is now fairly well known, but Richard Curson Smith's documentary marshalled a formidable array of critics, biographers and...

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Hospital, BBC Two

It’s the ghastly scenario of a grim morality play. A man called Simon comes into hospital for the removal of a tumour in his oesophagus and the construction of a new food pipe. But there are not enough berths in the intensive therapy unit to ensure...

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David Bowie: The Last Five Years, BBC Two

It’s been 12 months since the news guy wept and told us: David Bowie, ever out in front, became the first to depart in the year of musical mortality 2016. After the initial lamentations, the memorial tributes have been a mixed bag. Best was the...

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The World's Most Extraordinary Homes, BBC Two

This was the first of four programmes looking at houses made of extraordinary materials in various environments, some extreme. We began with "Mountain", and further explorations are promised to "Coast", "Forest" and "Underground". The presenters...

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