1-20 of 22 items from 2010 « Prev | Next »
In one of those music and video exchange places, I recently found a DVD copy of the first Rebus television adaptations: three woefully misguided attempts at bringing Ian Rankin's flawed cop to life. Rebus is written as ex-army, renegade, broken and slightly grubby. In short, everything that John Hannah could never be. Miscasting doesn't do it justice: it's like coming home for Christmas and finding your Nan has been replaced by Dougray Scott.
ITV did rectify the situation by later giving Ken Stott an opportunity to show Hannah how it was done, but lessons were not learned. The casting of Stephen Tompkinson as Dci Alan Banks, earlier this year, for example, left anyone who's read the books muttering "You're not Banks" every time Tompkinson stumbled into view. In fact the whole sorry mess, »
- Stuart Evers
BBC Worldwide continues to be the channel of choice for those wanting to dabble in a spot of anglophilia from time to time.
And this summer will be no different, as the BBC premieres some of its newest and most popular dramas and documentaries on Australian TV.
So what do we have on offer?
Stephen Tompkinson's Australian Balloon Adventure
More >> »
- Peter Allott
The cast and crew of ITV drama Wild At Heart are said to be devastated today following the death of Hamley the giraffe. Hamley was described as one of the most-loved animals on the reserve at Glen Afric , where cast including Stephen Tompkinson and Dawn Steele have worked with him for the past five years. The 7-year-old giraffe died after being struck by lightning during a thunderstorm yesterday. "We are all desperately upset about the passing of Hamley, who has been part of the Wild At (more) »
- By Ryan Love
ITV has reportedly ordered more episodes of Dci Banks. The channel aired Dci Banks: Aftermath, which starred Stephen Tompkinson, earlier this year. According to The Stage, ITV has now commissioned three more Banks adaptations from the book series by Peter Robinson. Playing With Fire, Friend Of The Devil and Cold As The Grave will each be told over two 60-minute episodes. Tompkinson has signed up to reprise his (more) »
- By Catriona Wightman
ITV's new detective thriller Dci Banks: Aftermath closed to more than 5.8 million viewers on Monday night, according to the latest audience data. The two-part mini-series, which stars Stephen Tompkinson as Dci Alan Banks, concluded to 5.65m (22.8%) on ITV1 from 9pm, while 171k (0.7%) watched on ITV1 HD. Dci Banks: Aftermath outperformed Spooks in the 9pm hour, after the espionage drama averaged 5.03m (20.2%) for BBC One, down 180k week-on-week. The One Show appealed to 4.15m (19.7%) on BBC One from 7pm, before Saints & Scroungers grabbed 3.27m (14.3%). Panorama then mustered 2.84m (11.6%) for the channel from 8.30pm. Earlier on ITV1, Countrywise pulled in 3.63m (14.9%) from 8pm and 106k (0.4%) on ITV1 HD. Over on BBC Two, highlights of the final day's action at the Ryder Cup averaged 2.58m (11%) between 7.15pm and (more) »
- By Andrew Laughlin
Spooks | Horizon | Dci Banks: The Aftermath | The Inbetweeners | Hamlet | Him and Her
Just because the cold war's over, that doesn't mean you can trust the Russians. Pity poor Lucas and Beth, then, when they have to work with uncouth Fsb officer Viktor Barenshik to prevent the Azakstan Freedom Front from getting hold of a sample of an outlawed nerve agent, Paroxocybin. For Harry too, it's a particularly difficult operation, keyed off as it was by his error of judgment. In truth, this isn't the strongest episode but at least the backstory surrounding Lucas, or whatever he's really called, is continuing to shape up intriguingly.
Horizon: The Death of the Oceans?
Imagine a list cataloguing every single form of ocean life, from angelfish to zooplankton, and every bug-eyed oddity in between. Imagine no more: after 10 years' fact-gathering, the Census of Marine Life is finally here, »
- Jonathan Wright, Ali Catterall, Martin Skegg
Downton Abbey | ITV Player
Whites | iPlayer
Dci Banks: Aftermath | ITV Player
Inspector George Gently |iPlayer
Horizon | iPlayer
The Inbetweeners | 4Od
Julian Fellowes had a lot of explaining to do in his new costume drama series Downton Abbey, though the opening sequence probably gave us more footnotes about Edwardian grate-blacking and the pecking order of domestic drudges than was entirely absorbable amid the squawk of maids and cackling cooks and general dawn uproar of an aristocratic household being dustpan-and-brushed to its full English properness. And did we have to be herded quite so eagerly around familiar historical landmarks? Those of us who already knew the Titanic was supposed to be unsinkable hardly needed to hear it again from Lady Grantham (Elizabeth McGovern), even if the future heirs to the estate had just gone down with it, »
- Phil Hogan
ITV's new detective thriller Dci Banks: Aftermath opened to more than 5.6 million viewers on Monday night, according to the latest audience data. The two-part drama, which stars Stephen Tompkinson as Dci Alan Banks, premiered to 5.49m (22.8%) on ITV1 from 9pm, while 152k (0.6%) watched on ITV1 HD. Dci Banks: Aftermath outperformed Spooks in the 9pm hour, after the espionage drama averaged 5.21m (21.7%) for BBC One, down 390k week-on-week. The One Show appealed to 4.31m (20.8%) on BBC One from 7pm, before Saints & Scroungers grabbed 3.49m (15.3%). A changed edition of Panorama averaged 2.16m (9%) for the channel from 8.30pm. Earlier on ITV1, Countrywise pulled in 3.62m (14.8%) from 8pm The Inbetweeners continued to prove popular, with 2.28m (11.5%) watching on E4 from 10pm, which was the biggest multichannel audience of (more) »
- By Andrew Laughlin
Dci Banks's case seemed so obvious that there had to be a twist. But there wasn't ...
It's a thankless gig fronting a cop drama going up against Spooks on a Monday night. But someone has to do it and Stephen Tompkinson is this year's fall guy in Dci Banks: Aftermath (ITV1). Not that he would have necessarily known that when he signed up for it. More likely the schedulers took a look at the rushes, didn't like what they saw and decided that since no one was going to watch it anyway they might as well stick it out in this hopeless slot rather than another, superior show.
The story was based on a Peter Robinson thriller, but somehow the adaptation managed to turn a decent book into a succession of crime series cliches. Northern town bathed in grey. Child serial killer with bodies in the cellar. Harassed, divorced cop, »
- John Crace
The new ITV series is part of a wave of small-screen adaptations – which other literary sleuths would you like to see on television?
Tonight ITV will unveil the latest literary detective to make the journey to the small screen, as Stephen Tompkinson stars as Peter Robinson's Dci Banks. But as television continues to search for its holy grail – a critical and popular successor to Inspector Morse – Banks is not the only literary detective to be making a television appearance this season. After the witty Doctor Who-isation of Sherlock Holmes, the autumn also brings us Mark Billingham's Thorne.
ITV has chosen Aftermath, Peter Robinson's 12th Dci Banks volume – which marked his commercial breakthrough – for its first two-part adaptation. The decision is, I think, the right one. But will the series click with the viewer? In its favour, the plot is clockwork-perfect and consistent in its systematic unfolding, »
- Maxim Jakubowski
TV lawmen come in two flavours: dumb comedy cop with a donut gut, or gruff, high-functioning depressive with a problematic personal life. One look at Stephen Tompkinson as Alan Banks in ITV.s adaptation of Peter Robinson.s best-selling crime thriller, tells us that he.s probably not the first kind. Sure enough, he.s a divorcee with two kids who lives for the job, which means he needs a giant tipple to cool off in his down time. Does this sound at all familiar?
Banks ticks every box in the how-to-make-a-tv-detective handbook--from his penchant for jazz and booze to his haunted, sallow eyes. The first hour of this two-part pilot reveals that our Dci is a virtual... More >> »
- Ruth Margolis
Are you aware of the only countdown more globally significant than the Doomsday Clock, the symbolic timepiece that denotes how close atomic scientists estimate the world is to disaster? No? Then let me enlighten you. It is the clock counting down to the launch of the GMTV replacement show, which will debut on Monday morning after a build-up considerably more storied than that to the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
Whether Daybreak will prove as successful an outing as the Great Mesopotamian Adventure is difficult to say at this stage, but I think we all feel the hand of history on our shoulders – not least co-hosts Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley, who were lured expensively from the BBC to front the programme. Chances are, you have watched »
- Marina Hyde
Puerile, silly and shameless – a few people might be vexed by Vexed. But I loved it.
As chat-up lines go, it's pretty much up there with the very worst. "Costa Ricans, good people," says policeman Jack to the attractive woman buying coffee at the supermarket, in new comedy cop drama Vexed (BBC2, Sunday). Even Jack, not a man who lacks confidence or has a surfeit of self-awareness, realises it's bad. So he goes for a different approach. He (mis-)uses his police powers to get the attractive woman's loyalty card company to hand over all the information they have on her – her address, a list of everything she's ever bought. Then he just happens to find himself sitting at an outside table at the cafe next to her house, reading Midnight's Children – which by happy coincidence is the book she bought that very morning ("You like Rushdie?"). And he's on »
- Sam Wollaston
Saturday 14 August
BBC Proms 2010
The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, led by conductor Andrew Litton, celebrate the enduring resonance of Bach's oeuvre with a selection of arrangements of his works made (more or less) during the last century. Walton's Wise Virgins suite is joined by Grainger's Sheep May Safely Graze and scores by Stokowski, Sargent, Wood, Bantock and Respighi. There are also world premieres of two Bach-inspired pieces by young composers. During the interval, while those lucky enough to be there jostle for drinks, viewers at home will enjoy the Brandenburg Concerto No 2, from Saturday's matinee. Katie Derham presents.
10pm, Channel 4
After five excellent episodes, it's a suitably rambunctious finale for the Misfits. A mysterious religious fervour has taken over the area's young folks, turning them prim, proper and defiantly straight-edged. Nathan, not so keen on the lack of swearing, »
- Andrew Mueller, Rebecca Nicholson, David Stubbs, Will Dean, Martin Skegg, Phelim O'Neill, Jonathan Wright, Julia Raeside
'When it comes to hot air ballooning on TV, Stephen Tompkinson has got it locked down'
Every once in a while, perhaps due to a slow cultural week, we at The Guide like to wheel out one of our tried and trusted "Random Generator" features. You know the kind of thing: think of a three or four number code, see what said code corresponds to in a series of numbered lists, and hey presto, you've got the plot of a film or a tabloid newspaper story, summat like that. Our hilarious random generators are, of course, satirical in nature and should never be actually, y'know, used or anything silly like that. But TV's programme-making bods seem to be showing an ever-growing willingness to embrace our methods. The current approach to documentary-making seems to be simply: choose a random cuddly TV type who everybody likes, send them to a random location on another continent, »
- Charlie Brooker, Pete Cashmore
ITV has confirmed that Warren Clarke has joined the cast of Wild At Heart, as production on the sixth series got under way this week. Stephen Tompkinson and Dawn Steele will return for ten new episodes of the South Africa-based drama, which will begin its new run with the couple on honeymoon in London. However, with the trip cut short, Tompkinson's Danny Travanion is reunited with his estranged father - played by Clarke - who then travels back to meet the extended family in Leopard's den. Speaking of the former Dalziel and Pascoe star's casting, Tompkinson said in a statement: "I first worked (more) »
- By Ryan Love
Stephen Tompkinson has admitted that he is looking forward to filming the new series of Wild At Heart. The actor, who plays Danny, explained that he often misses the animals on the show. "I find myself dreaming about the animals when I'm back in England," he told What's On TV. "They have a big effect on me and I do miss them. "I can't have pets because I'm away filming a lot so it wouldn't really be (more) »
- By Catriona Wightman
Wimbledon | World Cup | Russell Brand: Scandalous | Ladies of Letters | Gazza's Tears | Urban Fox Attack and more
Saturday 5 July
Wimbledon Ladies Final;
World Cup Quarter-Finals
1pm, BBC1; 2.30pm, BBC1;
Time for the Wimbledon ladies' final, between Vera Zvonareva and – surprise, surprise – Serena Williams. Meanwhile, the World Cup has reached its climactic phase, with on-form Argentina and the England-removing Germany battling for a place in the semi-finals in the afternoon, and in the evening it's Paraguay v Spain.
Stephen Fry On Wagner
Fry's programme (previously shown on BBC4) starts ominously with the line, "My love affair with Wagner began when I was a child." What looks set to be a luvvie-fest develops into an interesting, highly personal look at the implications of Fry loving the music of a notorious antisemite. He travels to Wagner's home town in Bavaria, and reflects eloquently on the very real problem of »
- David Stubbs, Will Hodgkinson, Phelim O'Neill, Will Dean, Rebecca Nicholson, Julia Raeside, Martin Skegg, Andrew Mueller, John Robinson
Saturday 26 June
Richard Chamberlain Marathon
2pm, CBS Drama
In the 1980s, it was practically TV law that you had to have Richard Chamberlain looking pensive and tangled up in a complicated historical romance if you wanted to make a mini-series. Here, CBS Drama are dedicating a weekend to his work. It's The Thorn Birds today, all forbidden love in the Australian outback; then James Clavell's epic Shogun tomorrow, where he's a 17th-century adventurer in Japan opposite Toshirô Mifune (above) – star of many of Akira Kurosawa's classics.
To recap: Amy's bought a bullet, River's up the creek, and every school bully in the playground has ganged up on our anvil-headed hero and locked him in a cupboard at playtime. However this one resolves itself, it's going to be »
- Richard Vine, David Stubbs, Ali Catterall, John Robinson, Andrew Mueller, Martin Skegg
Filming on ITV1's South African-based vet drama starring Stephen Tompkinson will begin later this summer
Sunday night ITV1 vet drama Wild at Heart is to return for a sixth series.
Filming on the South African-based series starring Stephen Tompkinson will begin later this summer with 10 new episodes to be made.
However Wild at Heart is still proving popular with ITV viewers and drew average audiences of around seven million when it last aired earlier this year.
In the sixth series, viewers will see how newly weds Danny and Alice Trevanion – played by Dawn Steele – fare during their honeymoon in the UK and when they return to South Africa.
Hayley Mills will also return as Caroline Du Plessis.
- Tara Conlan
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