Television choices: Grief stricken designer seeks answers of a reflective kind

 

TV pick of the week: Black Mirror

Monday 10pm Channel 4

Charlie Brooker is celebrated for satirising television – a Harry Hill for Guardian readers, if you like – but it turns out that he is a rare example of a critic who can also turn artist. In fact, to judge by his Black Mirror series, this rather than journalism is his true metier. Brooker's first new tale of the unexpected (there does seem to be something Roald Dahl-esque about his series) is a modern-day Frankenstein that asks philosphical questions about grief as a bereaved graphic designer (superbly played by Hayley Atwell, bringing much-needed humanity to the dsytopian drama) recreates her recently deceased boyfriend using software that mimics dead people by mining their online history (and, incidentally, providing better sex than the original).

Spiral: State of Terror

Saturday 9pm & 9.55pm BBC4

Now part-produced from these shores ("en association avec BBC Four"), the subtitled French detective drama returns with Captain Laure Berthaud (Caroline Proust) investigating when a body is dumped in woodland by his accomplices. A sub-plot involves the arrest of a Malian immigrant who has been working illegally in Paris for 10 years.

The British Academy Film Awards

Sunday 9pm BBC1

It's Argo vs Lincoln for best film, according to the bookies, with Daniel Day-Lewis ridiculously short odds to take home the Best Actor gong, as Bafta once again pre-empt the Oscars with their own awards, thus harvesting a more star-studded audience than might otherwise have been. Stephen Fry keeps us chuckling along (or not) as MC.

The Railway: Keeping Britain on Track

Tuesday 9pm BBC2

A timely new documentary going behind the scenes of the UK's rail network, departs from London's King's Cross station. Here, platform staff search for late drivers to keep trains running on time, while ticket-desk staff bear the brunt of passenger ire, and management are on a recruitment drive for the new concourse.

Free Speech

Wednesday 8pm & 1.30am BBC3

The so-called "yoof Question Time" returns with a new presenter, Rick Edwards (Jake Humphrey having left a rising career in the BBC to front BT Vision's football coverage). Long-term unemployment and internet safety are on the menu, as the grime artist Devlin, the entrepreneur Shazia Awan and the leader of Plaid Cymru Leanne Wood face the studio interrogation.

Hugh's Fish Fight: Save Our Seas

Thursday 9pm Channel 4

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall dons his diving gear to inspect the lifeless ocean floor after a trawler has passed dredging for scallops, and widens an admirable campaign that has already got the EU looking again at its outrageous practice of discards. "This time we're going global," says St Hugh, as he visits the Isle of Man.

The Beatles' Please Please Me – Remaking a Classic

Friday 9pm & 12.30am BBC4

On the 50th anniversary of the 12-hour session at Abbey Road, which resulted in the Beatles' iconic album Please Please Me, the likes of Stereophonics, Graham Coxon, Joss Stone and Mick Hucknall attempt to record the same songs, in the same timescale, in the same studio. The ubiquitous Stuart Maconie presents the results.

Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
Arts and Entertainment
Ready to open the Baftas, rockers Kasabian are also ‘great film fans’
musicExclusive: Rockers promise an explosive opening to the evening
Arts and Entertainment
Henry VIII played by Damien Lewis
tvReview: Scheming queens-in-waiting, tangled lines of succession and men of lowly birth rising to power – sound familiar?
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Hell, yeah: members of the 369th Infantry arrive back in New York
booksWorld War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift is heading to Norwich for Radio 1's Big Weekend

music
Arts and Entertainment
Beer as folk: Vincent Franklin and Cyril Nri (centre) in ‘Cucumber’
tvReview: This slice of gay life in Manchester has universal appeal
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
‘A Day at the Races’ still stands up well today
film
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tvAnd its producers have already announced a second season...
Arts and Entertainment
Kraftwerk performing at the Neue Nationalgalerie (New National Gallery) museum in Berlin earlier this month
musicWhy a bunch of academics consider German electropoppers Kraftwerk worthy of their own symposium
Arts and Entertainment
Icelandic singer Bjork has been forced to release her album early after an online leak

music
Arts and Entertainment
Colin Firth as Harry Hart in Kingsman: The Secret Service

film
Arts and Entertainment
Brian Blessed as King Lear in the Guildford Shakespeare Company's performance of the play

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
In the picture: Anthony LaPaglia and Martin Freeman in 'The Eichmann Show'

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Anne Kirkbride and Bill Roache as Deirdre and Ken Barlow in Coronation Street

tvThe actress has died aged 60
Arts and Entertainment
Marianne Jean-Baptiste defends Joe Miller in Broadchurch series two

tv
Arts and Entertainment
The frill of it all: Hattie Morahan in 'The Changeling'

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny may reunite for The X Files

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
TV
News
A young woman punched a police officer after attending a gig by US rapper Snoop Dogg
people
Arts and Entertainment
Reese Witherspoon starring in 'Wild'

It's hard not to warm to Reese Witherspoon's heroismfilm
Arts and Entertainment
Word up: Robbie Coltrane as dictionary guru Doctor Johnson in the classic sitcom Blackadder the Third
books

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscar nominations are due to be announced today

Oscars 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Hacked off: Maisie Williams in ‘Cyberbully’

Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challenge

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything and Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game are both nominated at the Bafta Film Awards
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee