- 20 Apr 20
From basketball documentaries & sci-fi cop romps to Trinity College romances & the bloodiest gangland drama since The Sopranos, these are the hottest series on the planet!
If there's an upside to spending so much time at home it's the opportunity to gorge on the fantastic TV shows that are coming at us from all angles!
If you've already ticked Tiger King, Unorthodox , Ozark, Star Trek: Picard, Save Me Too and Home Before Dark off your list, here are some new arrivals to binge on or - how last millennia is this?! - watch each week as new episodes become available.
Normal People (RTÉ One, April 28)
We're counting down the hours until Lenny Abrahamson's small-screen telling of Sally Rooney's Trinty College romance makes its Irish bow.
With Rooney doing the adapting herself, Marianne and Connell are exactly as we imagined them in our mind's eye. If you happen to have access to the BBC iPlayer, you can binge on all twelve episodes from Friday.
The Last Dance (Netflix, first two episodes)
It's been rave reviews all round - not least from Magic Johnson who calls it "fantastic" - for this documentary telling of how Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls took basketball to glorious new heights during their 1997-'98 championship season. With a thumping soundtrack and Barack Obama and Justin Timberlake among the talking heads, it'll have non-sports fans jumping through hoops too.
After Life (Netflix, April 24, all episodes)
Ricky Gervais returns as grieving widow Tony in this blacker than black comedy, which also includes Roisin Conaty, Mandeep Dhillon and Ashley Jensen among its impeccable cast. Acting honours are ultimately stolen though by Brandy the German Shepherd who guilts Tony into not cashing his own chips in quite yet...
Code 404 (Sky One, April 29)
Slain Detective Inspector John Major is brought back from the dead to become the world's first A.I. cop. He's supposed to be better than ever, but his partner Roy Carver soon suspects that something is amiss. Written by Horrible Histories man Daniel Peak, the series is a reminder that Stephen Graham does rib-tickling comedy as brilliantly as he does gut-wrenching drama.
Gangs Of London (Sky Atlantic, April 23)
Joe Cole - the Skins, Peaky Blinders and Black Mirror star, not the former attacking West Ham midfielder - nails it as the young hardnut seeking vengeance for his father's killing. Colm Meaney stars as his expired Mr. Big dad - yep, there's a lot of flashing back - with Hollyoaks and The Fall's Emmet J, Scanlan further upping the Irish quotient. It's very, very violent and very, very good.
Van Der Walk (ITV, April 26, 8pm)
From the makers of Inspector George Gently and The Missing comes this reboot of the Amsterdam detective drama, which was a massive ratings hit during its original 1972 to 1992 run. Whilst the characters remain the same, we're told the new storylines are much grittier - sex, drugs, gangsters, illegal trafficking - with Flack and Beecham House's Marc Warren playing the lead.
Run (Sky Comedy, all episodes)
Having previously made us laugh and cry in equal measure with Fleabag, Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Vicky Jones bring us this comedic thriller about Ruby and Billy who make good on a 15-year-old pact to run away and travel across America together if their future lives turn out to be boring. The chemistry between reunited college lovers Merritt Wever and Domhnall Gleeson is amazing.
Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt For The Bone Collector (Sky Witness, April 20)
Previously played on the big screen by Denzel Washington, Harlan Coben's NYPD cop turned paraplegic forensics expert is back on the trail of a serial killer who's almost (but not quite) as smart as he is. The Bone Collector, AKA Peter Taylor, is played with delicious menace by Mullagh, Co. Cavan's Brian F. O'Byrne. Grieving Sopranos fans will be delighted to see Christopher, Michael Imperioli, risen from the proverbial as Detective Rick Sellito.
Fraggle Rock: Rock On! (Apple TV+, new episodes free to view every Tuesday)
Spurred on by the Covid-19 crisis, the Jim Henson Company have brought Gobo, Red, Boober, Mokey, Wembley and Uncle Traveling Matt back for a new set of adventures shot entirely on iPhone 11s. They've had us grinning like eejits all week.
The Other Mother (Channel 4, May 3, 11pm & then available to freestream on the Walter Presents strand of Channel4.com)
Psychological dramas don't come any more twisted than this tale of a French youngster who suddenly claims that his doting mother is an impostor. The investigating police are faced with an awful dilemma; risk allowing the boy to stay with the wrong parents, or trust the word of a child and ruin a family’s life forever?