Doctor Who went to a cliffhanger end to the series with the Daleks back after twenty years to attempt to destroy the doctor and the universe. Despite the rumours David Tenant survived, and in fact was cloned into two doctors – one a Time Lord, the other a human with only one heart. A lot of previous characters returned for the series finale and Billie Piper was glorious as Rose but this time Catherine Tate hit the heights with some fast talking quips and bits. The Doctor will be back at Christmas with the return of the Cybermen. Exterminate.
It’s hard to know what to make of the new BBC1 series Bonekickers which seems to be a little bit of Time Team and a muddy dollop of Silent Witness. It seems too complicated to be popular with dodgy touches of the Da Vinci Code, relics of the Crusades, religious nuts and clunky dialogue if a pseudo scientific nature and a gruesome beheading. Once again a great cast with Julie Graham as a maverick archaeologist called Magwilde. Hugh Bonneville as Professor Parton, Dolly to his friends and that’s about the only joke in the opening episode. Another character whose show name seemed ordinary is Gugu Mbatha-Raw in real life.
Much to my surprise, the third series of The Charlotte Church Show returns to C4. Heavy on the ladette stuff, the opening voice-over refers to her as having a bun in the oven and a quiz wanted to know a contestant’s name for poo. Answer: King Kong’s Finger. Same girl’s party trick was drinking champagne from a condom. Catherine Tate brought a bit of class to the opening show and it is a surprise that Church has succeeded when Davina McCall and Lily Allen didn’t. Much better than either Lab Rats or Touch Me, I’m Karen Taylor, on BBC.
Sing and Cry
BBC1 has a real family pleaser in its new wannabe show, Last Choir Standing, as a whole diversity of choirs compete to make the last fifteen and then go on to votes and eliminations. It has lovely dancing choirs, fishermens choirs, old dears in shiny dresses choirs, hip-hop and dreadlocks choirs, choirs in kilts and lots of tears. Lots and lots of tears, even one of the judges was in tears! Russell Watson, another judge, just finds it hard to say no. Do not know what Myleene Klass or Nick Knowles is doing, except they must be on a contract of some sort. On Saturday nights, this could be as big as those dancing shows or just a tearful washout.
So, its series five for New Tricks, but at times the three male stars, Alun Armstrong, James Bolam and Dennis Waterman, look like Last Of The Summer Wine, especially Bolam. The ratings are strong for BBC1 and Amanda Redman does give the show a touch of predictable glamour. This time the plot was a tad complicated with an old lag in court for killing Bolam’s wife in the series mixed in with car crash, dodgy antiques (not the cast) eye parts and old pals lawyers. Maybe the series needs a bit more humour and they are top class actors going through the motions.
EastEnders got their knuckles rapped by Ofcom by breaching the code by showing two episodes featuring the ‘live burial’ of Max Branning at Easter. The regulator said the storyline had more in common with a dark psychological thriller than a pre-watershed drama.
Wayne Rooney: SKYONE have signed him up to front a new 3 episodes show, Wayne Rooney’s Street Striker. A new Indie company, Plum Pictures, came up with the idea and signed up the Man. United mega-star. Auditions for boys and girls have just started and the first episode will feature about fifty wannabes and by the final episode, two fantastic, but as yet undisclosed prizes. This will be a high skills show not just a group of kids doing keepie-uppies in the park.
Men’s Jobs: C4’s Ricochet show will challenge women to prove they can be better cowboys, hunters or loggers than men. Each week a team of three high-achieving women will take on jobs that have traditionally been the preserve of men. 4 episodes will be broadcast, called Dangerous Jobs For Girls and will include women army officers, high court barristers and sporting champions.
SHIPWRECKED: C4 will broadcast the seventh series of Shipwrecked in the new year, over sixteen episodes. Currently series six is going out on Sunday mornings with about 1 million viewers.