sun 20/01/2019

Channel 4

Catastrophe, Series 4, Channel 4 review - final series starts strongly

Some may have thought that Catastrophe (Channel 4) had neared the end of the road with the third series, but I disagree. It was still managing, with some deftness, to pull off the difficult trick of mixing broad humour with serious themes of love,...

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Brexit: The Uncivil War, Channel 4 review - Benedict Cumberbatch gets the best tunes

One day this all will be over. Give it half a century. In 50 years' time, there will be documentaries in which today’s young, by then old, will explain to generations yet unborn exactly how and why Britain went round the twist in 2016. Much as we...

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Best of 2018: TV

Bruce Springsteen once sang about there being "57 channels and nothin' on". Those were the days. Now we have so much to watch (including Netflix's Springsteen on Broadway) that all the world's remaining elephants couldn't remember them all.But...

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Grayson Perry: Rites of Passage, Channnel 4 review - making meaning in death

Grayson Perry is at it again. The Turner Prize winner, Reith lecturer, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, curator, writer, British Museum trustee, CBE, RA – plus Britain's and the art world’s favourite transvestite – is trying to find sense...

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On the Edge, Channel 4, review - fast and furious new dramas

Television drama is living through a golden age, yes, but one thing mainly absent from the vast choice available on terrestrial and streaming broadcasters alike is the short story. Short dramas used to be a regular fixture on television, when...

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h 100 Awards: Broadcast - TV's national treasures

In the ever-expanding field of broadcast, it’s easy to get lost in the deluge of product raining down from swaggering global providers who sometimes seem to have more money than critical acumen. How gratifying, then, that some of the best of British...

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Who Is America?, Channel 4 review - sudden return of Sacha Baron Cohen

Cunningly kept under wraps until the last moment, Sacha Baron Coen’s new show is a timely reminder of his gift for trampling the boundaries of good taste and decorum. But despite a certain amount of hyped-up pre-uproar, it doesn’t represent any...

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Line of Separation, All 4, review - handsome if soapy epic

You don’t see a lot of German drama imported to British television. France, Italy, Scandinavia, yes. But the biggest country in Europe is less of a player. The great exception – and it really was great - was Deutschland 83, a thrilling hit when...

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The Handmaid's Tale, Series 2, Channel 4 review - it's not getting any better for Offred

Not the least startling element of Bishop Michael Curry’s house-rockin’ sermon at the royal nuptials was his quotation from the old spiritual “There is a balm in Gilead”. Evidently the Bishop was not referring to the endlessly looping nightmare that...

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Homeland, Series 7 Finale, Channel 4 review - Russian roulette

In a manner uncannily reminiscent of last year’s Season 6, this latest edition of Homeland spent at least half the series trying to get warmed up for the dash to the tape over the final furlongs. Viewers finding themselves slipping into a catatonic...

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True Horror, Channel 4 review - a Ronseal approach to ghost stories

As if the real world wasn’t scary enough... Ghost stories are en vogue at the moment, and after the BBC’s hit-and-miss Requiem, Channel 4 brings True Horror to the small screen – a collection of "real" ghost stories, told by witness interviews and...

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Lifeline, Channel 4 review - Spanish sci-fi drama on speed

It is with some trepidation that the globe-trotting viewer embarks on a new drama from Spain. Last year in BBC Four stole the best part of 20 hours of some lives with its split-series transmission of the maddening I Know Who You Are. Lifeline (...

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