Television choices: Knightly duo take a tilt at sitcom roles as jibing jousters in Vicious

 

TV pick of the week: Vicious/The Job Lot

Monday 9pm/9.30pm ITV

Sorry to wheel out the bus gag again, but you wait years for a new ITV sitcom and, well, you know the score. Vicious, co-created by the playwright Mark Ravenhill and the Will & Grace writer Gary Janetti, stars Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Derek Jacobi as lifelong partners growing rancorously old together in their Covent Garden flat. And if the threadbare milieu suggests ITV's greatest ever sitcom, Rising Damp, so does the casting of Frances de la Tour – although Vicious actually seemed more like a waspish, gay Last of the Summer Wine. The Job Lot is much more conventional, a workplace sitcom set in a Midlands Job Centre and starring Being Human's Russell Tovey and Miranda's Sarah Hadland.

Doctor Who

Saturday 6.30pm BBC1

"You're like one of those guys who can't go out with you unless their mother approves," Clara (Jenna-Louise Coleman) scolds the Doctor – and "mother" is the Tardis, with which she is being encouraged to bond. When a space-salvage team ingests the time machine, Clara is trapped inside. Stephen Thompson wrote this above-par episode, "Journey to the Centre of the Tardis".

Rupert Murdoch: Battle with Britain

Sunday 9pm BBC2

Steve Hewlett takes a fresh look at "the Dirty Digger" (Private Eye, passim) and – taking us through Murdoch's life and times, or Times (saved from closure by the Australian press baron) – suggests that he was the agent of change that post-war Britain desperately needed. But is the British Establishment now biting back?

Crash for Cash

Tuesday 9pm Channel 4

This Cutting Edge film tells how, in recession-hit Britain, more people are tempted by the lure of insurance money. Injury claims have shot up 60 per cent, much of it down to criminal gangs, but also due to individuals staging fake car crashes. Cameras follow insurance investigators at work, while we learn why drivers in County Durham are all paying £100 more each in premiums.

The Genius of Marie Curie – the Woman Who Lit Up the World

Friday 9pm BBC2

Geraldine James plays Marie Curie in this docu-drama biopic of the Polish physicist and chemist who became the first woman to win the Nobel Prize after discovering two elements and coining the term "radio- active". Tragically, of course, Curie died from prolonged exposure to such material.

The Repo Man

Thursday 9pm Channel 4

"Meet the men battling on the front line on behalf of the finance companies..." Ooh, our heroes. This depressing missive from debt-laden Britain follows the bailiff Sean James as he parts non-payers from their (or rather the finance company's) property. "Too softly, softly and you may as well stick your head up your arse," he says, relieving a teary woman of her Honda Civic.

Nelson's Caribbean Hell-Hole: an Eighteenth Century Navy Graveyard Uncovered

Wednesday 9pm & 2.45am BBC4

The Caribbean island of Antigua was not always the holiday brochure paradise of today, inspiring Horatio Nelson to dub it "an infernal hole". One reason for Nelson's distaste lay revealed in 2010, when flooding exposed 200-year-old human remains just under the beach. Dr Sam Willis explains.

Arts and Entertainment

Great British Bake Off
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

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

    Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

    Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

    But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
    Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

    Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

    Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
    Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

    Britain's 24-hour culture

    With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
    Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

    The addictive nature of Diplomacy

    Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
    Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

    Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

    Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
    8 best children's clocks

    Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

    Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
    Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
    Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

    The Arab Spring reversed

    Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
    King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

    Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

    Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
    Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

    Who is Oliver Bonas?

    It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
    Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

    Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

    However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
    60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

    60 years of Scalextric

    Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones