A collaboration between musical director, Andrew Davis, and Glyndebourne's director of productions, Graham Vick, performances thus far (it opened on 15 July) have, while raising the odd quibble among purists about the reading of the girl and a slightly un-Germanic reading of the text, have generally been spoken of as "a good show". Certainly, its one-set, rather spare visual qualities should translate well to the small screen: something one can't always say about televised opera or dance. And the nice juicy plot - girlie works her way through a series of sexual encounters until she eventually bumps into Jack the Ripper - should be enough to keep your average sicko glued to his or her seat.
Rather less edifying, and if it weren't replacing the unsurpassable New Adventures of Superman, more than welcome, is the start of a second season of the ever so slightly barking Due South (Sat BBC1). This is one of those American series the British clutch to their breasts, while the inhabitants of its country of origin remain resolutely unconvinced: we seem to feel that a liking for the eccentric reflects well on us. Sociology aside, this is one of those well-produced, half-comic, half-dramatic cop series concerning a Canadian Mountie dropped on the mean streets of Chicago, with only a deaf wolf, and a partner who can't get a date, to protect him. It doesn't have Lois Lane's clothes sense, but it definitely merits a look-in.
Charles Rennie Mackintosh - a Modern Man (Sun BBC2) assesses the life and work of the great Victorian designer of the Glasgow School of Art and a man as influential in his day as William Morris. A rugged individualist, his style anticipated not only modernism but Art Deco and the Jazz age as well - though as a house architect he didn't make himself popular with his insistence that his clients take on his taste lock, stock and barrel, right down to the furniture. Having survived early recognition, professional rejection, alcoholism and hardship, he left the world a small but perfect collection of buildings characterised by clean lines, exquisite detail and above all, bright, airy lightness. A visual treat.
Under the pretext of serious study of the state of modern marriage, with its 41 per cent divorce rate and shifting power patterns, The Mating Game (Sun BBC2) brings us another slice of that ever-popular documentary spectacle, other people's emotional lives. Of the 300,000 dewy hopefuls who jumped the broomstick last year, four have elected to subject themselves to the scrutiny of the camera: Jonathan and Feryal, who didn't even speak the same language when they met, Steve and Anita, who have lived together for years and are marrying in the teeth of Steve's laddish opposition, Mark and Lin, divorcees who met on holiday in Tenerife and Alex and Katie, whose dual careers in the theatre could be as much hindrance as help to their stability. They have all agreed to share their experiences with us in future years: soap opera with neither script nor plot.Reuse content