Our choice of programmes to watch week beginning Saturday, November 28.


Strictly Come Dancing (BBC1, 7.15pm)

Bill Bailey has emerged as one of the surprise favourites to win this year's show. The comedian, who is partnered with last year's winning professional Oti Mabuse, has already wowed the viewers and the judges with a Western-style paso doble and an amazing couples' choice, and you can bet he will be throwing everything into tonight's performance as he continues his quest to win the Glitterball trophy. Once again, Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman invite the remaining couples to take to the floor and impress judges Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel Horwood as well as the viewing public. After everyone has danced, the two couples with the lowest combined judges' scores and viewers' votes will have to face the dreaded dance-off on Sunday's results show.

Michael McIntyre's The Wheel (BBC1, 8.30pm)

Promising to bring a "brand-new spin to Saturday nights", The Wheel sees three contestants doing battle for a life-changing sum of money. Central to the show is a giant rotating set, upon which sit seven celebrities. For every question asked, the contestants will get the help of one of the stars. However, they don't get to choose who helps them - the Wheel does. This means they could get the perfect person they need, or someone who has absolutely no idea about the subject. Either way, they chat through the multiple-choice answer options together before the contestant ultimately decides which one to choose and lock in with host Michael. Of course, the show is not just a quiz or game show, and will be a laughter-filled opportunity for the popular host to do what he does best - having fun talking to big stars about the things they love.

Britain's Most Historic Towns (Channel 4, 8.30pm)

Professor Alice Roberts visits Plymouth, where England's Golden Age was launched in the Elizabethan era. She visits Buckland Abbey, the magnificent home of Plymouth's most famous son, Sir Francis Drake, exploring how the wealth enjoyed by Drake and his second cousin John Hawkins was earned through piracy and slave trading. Alice investigates revolutionary boat building techniques that helped defeat the Spanish Armada, while aerial archaeologist Ben Robinson highlights the physical characteristics that made Plymouth Harbour such an attractive base for pirates.

The Jonathan Ross Show (ITV, 9.35pm)

Matt Lucas joins the host to share what it was like hosting The Great British Bake Off. There is also an interview with comedy power couple Jon Richardson and Lucy Beaumont who star in sitcom Meet The Richardsons on Dave. Dancing on Ice and Don't Hate The Playaz star Lady Leshurr also pops by for a chat, as does artist Grayson Perry. He is back on Channel 4 this coming Friday with Grayson's Art Club Exhibition, which takes viewers behind the scenes at Manchester Art Gallery for the preparation of an exhibition of work produced on Grayson's Art Club.

Rod Stewart: Secrets of His Biggest Hits (C5, 10.55pm)

Rod Stewart's incredible career spans five decades and encompasses a string of No.1 albums and hit singles. His trademark gravely voice, instantly recognisable the world over, has helped define and propel 'Rod the Mod' from truly humble beginnings to worldwide success. This documentary looks at stories behind three of the songs that cemented the 75-year-old London-born singer and songwriter as a musical superstar - 1975 international hit Sailing, Do Ya Think I'm Sexy? from his 1978 album Blondes Have More Fun and Young Turks that first appeared on his 1981 LP Tonight I'm Yours.

Sunday, 29/11/2020

Escape to Barbados (C4, 6pm)

The economy of Barbados relies heavily on the tourist trade - and that has taken a battering during the pandemic. But the Caribbean island has been offering a special visa which allows people to move there to work from home. This documentary meets some of the Brits who have decided to take advantage of the 'Barbados Welcome Stamp', including Kris, Brigitta and their three children from Manchester, who hope the move will lead to a better work-life balance, and grandparents Steve and Amanda from Salisbury, who see it as a chance for one year-long last hurrah.

His Dark Materials (BBC1, 8.10pm)

The drama series based on Philip Pullman's acclaimed novels continues to bring a touch of fantasy to what might otherwise have been rather dreary Sunday nights for many viewers. Will and Lyra's search for the knife leads them to the Torre Degli Angeli, where they discover Giacomo (the always welcome Terence Stamp) has been tied up in the tower. However, they also find themselves drawn into a tense battle with Tullio. In Oxford, Mary turns down Boreal's offer of private funding, but he might get a more receptive hearing from Mrs Coulter, who meets with him to travel to Will's world in search of Lyra. Lee tracks down Grumman - also known as Jopari - and together they set off on their own mission.

Small Axe: Red, White and Blue (BBC1, 9pm)

John Boyega of Star Wars: The Force Awakens fame takes the lead role in the third entry in director Steve McQueen's drama anthology. It tells the true story of Leroy Logan (Boyega), a young forensic scientist who decides to make a career change and become a police officer after seeing his father assaulted by two cops. Not only will joining the police fulfil a childhood dream and allow him to escape the solitude of the laboratory, Logan also believes it will be a chance for him to change racist attitudes from within. Yet despite his naive optimism, Leroy finds himself facing disapproval from his dad - and discrimination in his new role as an exemplary Constable. The supporting cast includes Steve Toussaint and talented newcomers Tyrone Huntley, Nathan Vidal and Jaden Oshenye.

Dick Emery's Greatest Hits (Channel 5, 9pm)

The Dick Emery Show created a new type of comedy - the quick-fire sketch. A one-man cast playing outrageous characters with catchphrases that became instantly repeatable made 15 million TV viewers laugh. Dick Emery's influence stretches years beyond his own days in the 1960s, 70s and early 80s, and shows such as The Fast Show and Little Britain are unimaginable without the London-born comic. So why is it that his shows are hardly seen today, and why has he been forgotten? In this intimate film, those that worked with him and those that loved him most share their incredible stories, show their rare home movies and reveal the man behind the mask.

The South Bank Show (Sky Arts, 10.45pm)

During the 1990s Bernardine Evaristo emerged as one of Britain's most talented, innovative and successful contemporary writers. Born in London and of mixed European and African parentage, her books range in genre from poetry, verse-novels, short stories, prose, radio and theatre drama, and literary essays and criticism. Melvyn Bragg talks to the acclaimed author, who became the first black woman to win the Booker Prize with her eighth novel Girl, Woman, Other, about her life, her work, and her determination to succeed.

Defending Digga D (BBC1, regions vary)

At the age of 20, Digga D is one of the UK's biggest up-and-coming drill artists, with his tracks racking up millions of views online. As this documentary begins, he's not just on the brink of the stardom - he's also just been released from a 15-month stint in prison and has become one of the first musicians in British history to be given a police Criminal Behaviour Order controlling his creative output. If his music is believed to be 'inciting or encouraging violence', it can be taken down and Digga D can be arrested. It may seem like a unique situation, but as the film shows, it highlights larger arguments around censorship and drill music.

Monday, 30/11/2020

Celebrity Supply Teacher (CBBC, 10am)

Paralympic gold medallist Kadeena Cox talks about success on track, the nutrition that an athlete requires to get their body into peak fitness, and her 80/20 rule which means she eats incredibly healthily 80 per cent of the time, but also allows herself the odd treat. Kadeena also gives a cookery lesson where she shows viewers how to make one of her favourite dishes. Also out to inspire CBBC audiences this week are inventor Colin Furze, American actor and voice artist Jacob Hopkins, Emmerdale star James Moore, and young jockey Khadijah Mellah.

Nigella's Cook, Eat, Repeat (BBC2, 8pm)

Nigella begins this episode by delving into a historical cookbook, which contains a recipe using one of her favourite ingredients - the anchovy. After narrating a creamy dressing recipe, which is served with bitter leaves and walnuts, she then creates an elixir, combining silvery salted anchovies with garlic and oil. At her twinkling cocktail trolley, Nigella shakes up a lemon blossom cocktail and this also inspires her lemon and elderflower pudding, which is eaten with lashings of cream. Then, finishing with a final night time love letter to the anchovy, Nigella creates spaghetti with colourful chard and chilli.

Anton Ferdinand: Football, Racism & Me (BBC1, regions vary)

It was one of the most disturbing episodes in English football history. In 2011, a complaint was made against John Terry for using racist language towards Anton Ferdinand during a televised game. Although Terry was eventually acquitted in a criminal court, an FA commission found him guilty three months later, banning him for four matches and fining him £220,000. However, in some some respects, the individual who paid the highest price was Anton. He would play little more than a year more in the Premier League after the infamous spat and has since been subjected to online abuse, which affected his mental health, career and the lives of his loved ones. In this deeply personal documentary, Anton, now 35 and retired from the game, reveals what is was like to be at the centre of a racial storm and football power struggle and also attempts to address wider questions of race in the game.

A Very Royal Christmas: Secrets from Sandringham (C4, 9pm)

In a year when we are all potentially facing a Christmas like no other, this one-off programme looks at how the royal family traditionally celebrate the big day at Sandringham. Archive footage is combined with revealing interviews from royal insiders and former staff, to reveal all the delicious detail, festive fine print and celebration secrets. We hear from royal experts on the garish gifts, classy celebrations, historical traditions and why Monopoly has been banned from royal Christmases. And as well as learning the secrets to cooking a turkey fit for a Queen, we take a look at the infamous joke presents the family have given each other over the years - with many gag gifts passing down into Windsor folklore.

Hospital (BBC2, 9pm)

As autumn arrives the Royal Free's emergency department sees a surge in admissions. Beds are in very short supply, a problem exacerbated by the fact that the Rainbow ward - specifically built at a cost of £4million to ease the pressure created by Covid-19 - stands empty, building problems having delayed its opening. Among the patients followed is Anastasia, who broke her ankle while suffering with Covid at home. The ankle needs surgery but with the virus increasing the risk of death under anaesthetic, she faces a painful manual procedure, while awake, to align her bones.

The Noughties: 2006 (BBC2, regions vary)

Getting their kicks in 2006 are writer and broadcaster Grace Dent and comedian Nathan Caton, who join Angela Scanlon to celebrate the film, music and TV highlights of the year. Among the items up for scrutiny are how Take That staged one of pop music's most successful comebacks ever, and the huge impact much-missed singer Amy Winehouse had here and in America. Plus, the trio look back at when Daniel Craig got his licence to kill for the very first time in Casino Royale, when High School Musical became too cool for school, and how, when pop fans checked their watches, it was 'Chico Time'.

Tuesday, 1/12/2020

For the Love of Britain (ITV, 7.30pm)

Many people had to abandon their plans for a foreign holiday this year, but Julie Walters is here to encourage us to explore Britain and its varied landscapes, from iconic spots to hidden gems. In the first episode, the focus is on Cornwall and Devon, where Julie hands over to Julia Bradbury, who is walking the rugged South West Coastal Path. Robson Green gives viewers a bird's eye view of Cornwall's St Agnes heritage coast, Liz Bonnin gets up close to some amazing wildlife in the waters off Devon's Lundy Island, and Ben Fogle does a spot of extreme gardening.

Great British Christmas Menu (BBC2, regions vary)

Over the years, Great British Menu has honoured many heroes, from D-Day veterans and servicemen and women returning from Afghanistan to NHS staff. So, it's only fitting that the seven-part special Great British Christmas Menu centres around serving up a festive feast to some of the UK's keyworkers, who have played a huge part in keeping the country going over an incredibly difficult year. Previous winners from the series will be joined by veteran judges, including Tom Aikens, Tommy Banks and, in this first episode, Lisa Goodwin-Allen, to compete to create one of the six courses, beginning with Christmas-themed canapes and starters. In a tweak to the usual recipe, Andi Oliver is taking on the role of presenter, while her place in the judges' chamber is taken by comedian Kerry Godliman.

The Great British Bake Off: Best Bits (C4, 8pm)

Last week, the Great British Bake Off crowned the 2020 winner, but the good news for anyone who isn't ready to leave the tent just yet is that Channel 4 is bringing us two extra helpings, celebrating 10 years of the contest. The first edition reacquaints us with Bake Off favourites Norman, Flo and Kim-Joy and looks back at some of the most confusing cakes to be placed in the judges. There's also a reminder that while the various presenters may have rarely been able to resist a double entendre, the bakers themselves have sometimes turned in creations that left everyone blushing.

How to Spend It Well at Christmas with Phillip Schofield (ITV, 8pm)

On a Christmas-loving street in Cardiff, three families try out a range of festive decorations, while Phillip asks some happy campers to put three portable coffee makers through their paces. With the picture unclear on whether Britons will be able to visit loved ones this Christmas, the presenter meets founder of Not On The High Street, Holly Tucker, to get her top tips on what to think about when choosing postal gifts this year. Plus, Grace Dent tries out a selection of food inspired kits, Matt Tebbutt rates time-saving kitchen gadgets, and Chris Kamara sees what fitness gifts are worth the price tag.

The Dam Busters: A Daring Plan (C5, 9pm)

Over the next three nights, historian Dan Snow will be reliving the countdown to one of the most famous and ingenious bombing raids in history. It's a story that begins in the spring of 1943, when, as Snow discovers in this opening episode, 24-year-old wing commander Guy Gibson learned that he had just eight weeks to recruit and train 147 aircrew for a top-secret mission that would require them to master the skill of flying at night and at super-low altitudes. Meanwhile, scientist Barnes Wallis was working on a new precision weapon - a bouncing bomb.

The World's Biggest Murder Trial: Nuremberg (C5, 10pm)

On November 20, 1945, the infamous Nuremberg trials began. To mark the 75th anniversary, this eye-opening documentary takes a closer look at what happened as well as the verdicts delivered almost a year later. Although many leading Nazis had been killed or taken their own lives by the time the trials began, there were still plenty of major figures in the dock, such as the Luftwaffe's commander-in-chief and Hitler's former right-hand man, Hermann Goring; others included Rudolph Hess, Joachim von Ribbentrop, Alfred Rosenberg and Albert Speer. The film uses archive footage to retell the dramatic events that took place in the German city, including incredible moments captured in the courtroom itself.

Wednesday, 2/12/2020

The Repair Shop (BBC1, 8pm)

Jay Blades throws open the barn doors once again as the team reassembles for another hour of almost miraculous restorations. First up is Eve Robinson from Kings Lynn in Norfolk. She's a widow who has brought along a very treasured memento - her diamond wedding ring - in the hope that goldsmith Richard Talman can make it look like it did when her beloved and much-missed husband gave it to her many years ago; expect tears aplenty when Richard hands it back to her. Also in need of some care and attention are a vintage penny arcade game rescued from a bonfire more than 40 years ago, a shop mannequin that's seen better days and, perhaps most unusually, a pair of lumberjack's tree spurs.

Sarah Beeny's New Life in the Country (C4, 8pm)

It feels like an age since the property expert, her husband Graham and their four sons swapped London for the Somerset countryside and outlined their plans to create a modern stately home on a rundown dairy farm. Unfortunately, getting their ideas approved by the local council hasn't been easy, but at long last, they get the thumbs-up and can start constructing their dream house. Their efforts to immerse themselves in the county's culture continue too as they rustle up a batch of local favourite cider.

Harlots (BBC2, 9pm)

We're getting towards the end of the current run, which means we have some good news and some bad news. The good is that we're building up to something exciting happening in next week's season finale. The bad is that once that episode airs, we'll be saying farewell to the Harlots gang forever - so far, a fourth series has yet to materialise because the period drama has not been recommissioned. Tonight, Kate seems to have landed on her feet when she becomes the Prince's mistress - but will receiving royal favours turn out to be as pleasurable as she believes? Life certainly isn't going ver well for Lucy, who is thrown in a debtors prison, while Lady Isabella launches an audacious plot to get the Marquess of Blayne exactly where she wants him - she kidnaps his son.

Surviving Covid (C4, 9pm)

At the start of the year, nobody foresaw how 2020 would pan out. Who could have predicted that we'd spend much of the time under some kind of restrictions that kept us socially distanced, or that thousands upon thousands would be killed by a virus we'd never heard of? Thankfully the majority of us have remained fit and well, but this feature-length documentary tells the stories of four people who haven't been so fortunate. Cameras chart their lives over a six-month period after they arrival for treatment at London's King's College Hospital.

Inside Cinema: Guilt-Free Pleasures (BBC4, 10pm)

Should we really feel guilty or ashamed about the things we like? Probably not, and yet there's always some film or other we don't want to admit to enjoying, because we assume other people will laugh at our supposedly poor taste. Here, film critic Catherine Bray celebrates some of the cinematic trash we can't help but love, with help from comedian Mae Martin's narration. Among the offerings making it onto the duo's list are Ed Wood's famously dreadful Plan 9 From Outer Space, entries in the Sharknado franchise and even Sleepless in Seattle.