The telly-watching week got off to a poor start on Sunday with the over-hyped Babylon. Danny Boyle and the writers of Peep Show combined to make a limp comedy-drama about the Metropolitan Police that managed to make a storyline about a sniper killing spree dull and re-tread the same satirical ground as The Thick of It, only minus the good jokes. At least this week there's one decent police drama (thankfully minus the 'comedy-') to get stuck into...
Must watch... If, like me, you missed the first series of Line of Duty (BBC Two, Wednesday, 9pm) then don't be put off. The way the opening episode panned out suggests prior knowledge of the established characters or previous storyline isn't essential. DI Lindsey Denton, played by newcomer to the show Keeley Hawes, heads a botched operation that leads to multiple fatalities. The fictional AC-12 anti-corruption unit gets to work trying to find out why things went so badly wrong. Aside from the occasional miss-step (a risible funeral scene in which the assembled characters share a variety of knowing looks), this opening episode is a strong start to the series. It's engrossing, detailed and occasionally brutal.
Maybe watch... Apparently The Big Reunion was such a success that ITV deemed it necessary to scrape with even more vigour at the bottom of the barrel to come up with a group of pop stars more low rent than the first time around. The Big Reunion 2014 (ITV2, Thursday, 9pm) started last week featuring, among others, Damage, Eternal, and Girl Thing, a girl band that nobody, not even members of Girl Thing, can remember. Obviously it's appalling, but at least the Twitter-baiting voice over is mildly amusing ("Gareth Gates may not have beaten off Will Young") and if – and it's the biggest 'if' possible – you're a fan of Dane Bowers then you are definitely going to love it.
Don't bother... Jamie and Jimmy's Friday Night Feast (Channel 4, Friday, 8pm) is a hideous mixture of all the things that make a Jamie Oliver show so annoying. Amid the cooking there's the awkward celeb appearances, spurious campaigning, and, of course, Jamie's special brand of shit banter. One of the biggest tragedies of the current stormy weather is that the caff set up for the series at the end of Southend Pier hasn't been washed into the sea. At least this week's instalment is the last in the run, so it will all be over very soon.
Film of the Week... A chance to marvel at the talent of Philip Seymour Hoffman, who was at the top of his game in Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (Channel 4, Friday, 12.55am), a taut thriller from veteran director Sidney Lumet. Hoffman and Ethan Hawke play a pair of brothers who hatch a plan to commit armed robbery on their parents' jewellery store. Things, as I'm sure you've guessed, don't go according to plan.
Catch up... I love The Undateables and I don't care who knows it. Catch up with Series Three here.
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