When I found out ITV were releasing a DVD of their new drama series Chasing Shadows, I rolled my eyes (having seen 60 whole seconds of the show the week before). However, I was curious to give it a look from the start, not least because it stars three of my favourite actors, Alex Kingston, Reece Shearsmith and Noel Clarke.
Transparent, the much-anticipated new series on Amazon's Prime Video, has been met with substantial praise following its pilot release.
I cringed when I saw the name and promos for Black-ish. But, I tried to reserve judgment until I saw it. And sure enough, its premise and the actual show is as offensive as its name.
It's clear from the sheer magnitude of TV spending that the biggest screen is a persistent mainstay and high priority. However, changes playing out this year also hint of desire among marketers to stay more flexible in the way they approach TV.
Making a sweet fruit loaf may not initially seem like the hardest task in the world, but we're at the quarter-final stage of this year's Great British Bake Off, and things aren't as simple as they first seem. So, not only do our five bakers have to make their loaves with enriched dough - notoriously tricky to work with - but also have only two and a half hours in which to complete the task...
Successful TV shows are powered by conflict. The characters face difficult decisions, or impossible situations, both externally and internally, and we tune in to see how they grapple with them. The irony of The Mindy Project, a series about an eponymous New York based doctor, who, the website tells us, is 'a skilled OB/GYN trying (and failing!) to navigate her romantic life with dignity and grace', is that there is no sustained conflict.
I enjoyed watching Ken Burns' The Roosevelts: An Intimate History last week, keeping in mind that these PBS documentary series are usually a heavy bit of American myth-making. Still, there are a few things just too glaring to hide or treat with discretion in 2014, though Burns arrogantly thinks he can.
So I'm back in London now, jet lagged but ready for some good stand up gigs coming my way. And as you have guessed, I'm spending my evenings watching Forensic files on YouTube. If you have a morbid curiosity for murder and odd, moustached people from Texas, give it a whirl.
For the showstopper, or should I say, choux-stopper (totally copyrighting that pun), our brave, baking adventurers must make two dozen éclairs; twelve of one flavour and twelve of another. Kate, Luis and Chetna all decide to flavour their choux pastry, with Kate adding Greek basil to the dough that will form the base to her lemon meringue éclairs.
There was always talk that the fibbies looked the other way when it came to Bulger because he was an informant. But was he really? Based on what I saw in this documentary, the answer was no... or at least more no than yes.
Now in their fifth year, the International Screenwriters' Lectures, hosted jointly by BAFTA and the BFI, have cemented their worldwide reputation as the most prestigious forum for celebrating the peculiar genius of screenwriting.
Sooner or later, it had to happen. Nestled cozily in my inbox between an email from a grumpy opposing attorney and a bar association solicitation, there it was: NOW CASTING DIVORCED COUPLES FOR NEW NBC SERIES. Of course, I clicked.
Elizabeth Cook's guilty pleasure is Nashville. Better make that Nashville, the setting for an outrageous TV show with fictional country-western singers, songwriters and Music Row executives who play each other just as much as the music that made them famous. Maybe some truth lies inside that friction, though.
For the past six years we have recruited and worked with around 200 unemployed men, inviting them to build a rugby team and take part in a course that aims at improving fitness, social development and life skills with the end goal of obtaining a job. It's been a rollercoaster of emotions and worth every second.
Do you ever think that the people behind The Great British Bake Off might be running out of episode ideas? I only ask because episode six of the 2014 incarnation has as its theme 'European cakes', which sounds very much like a 5pm-on-a-Friday idea to me. Anyway, I can't be too concerned about that because my main concern is who is going to be my new baking hero following Norman's ignominious sortie last week.
I know a lot of folks think they're football fans without considering what has to be done to prepare for the upcoming season. For some reason, they think they can just wile away the summer and start their TV football viewing with no preparation. Serious fans, however, know that the key to successful sports viewing is preparation, lots of preparation.