Tuesday, 10 January 2012

What I watched this week: 1st-8th January 2012

As part of my new year's plans to spread my journalistic wings in 2012, I am aiming to introduce a weekly TV blog. Whether or not I will keep up with this, only time will tell, but here goes:

Of course the big TV news of the week was Pat's death in Eastenders. In a bizarre seventy miunte long episode, the long standing matriarch of Albert Square passed away amongst her nearest and dearest, and Janine and her son David. The peaceful manner in which she died was somewhat unexpected,and definitely out of character-when her impending death was announced a few months back, fans of the show were surely imagining explosive death scenes to match the ferocity of the character. Yet somehow the quiet and sudden passing made it all the more poignant-the infamous closing credit 'duff-duffs' were even toned down to mark the occasion.Following this episode was the inevitable Goodbye Pat special. The rest of the week's episodes were devoted to Pat's family, Denise and Phil's feud and the Amira-Syed-Christian love triangle, which is getting a bit old now.

Next up was Absolutely Fabulous, the second of the three specials. The start lacked humour, but this was soon rectified by a combination of Bubbles' impressions of Liz Hurley and Patsy threatening to "have you clapping between movements for the rest of your life" (not sure how they got away without any complaints to Ofcom for that one). Further intrigue grows around the subject of Saffy's daughter in Africa-we don't yet know how old she is, or even if her name is Lola or Jane...will we meet her in the third of the three specials, centred around the olympics? The comedy timing was, as always, spot on throughout. The only complaint is that these episodes are only 30 minutes each.

Hacks was a bizarre, but not entirely successful, satirical take on the News of the World phone hacking scandal, although of course all characters and plotlines were entirely fictitious etc.

Eternal Law was of particular interest, being filmed in York. It's hard to be objective about a TV programme when you're spotting all the places you know whilst watching it, but other than the interest of familiarity, there was not much gripping about this airy fairy (or should that be angelic?) drama. The opening scene was reminiscent of Doctor Who, but it went downhill from there. It was hard to feel anything towards the characters, as they were just not developed enough in this opening episode. That said, the second episode is probably worth a watch, to see if it improves at all.

Hustle was meant to be broadcast on Friday night, but hasn't appeared on iPlayer. Anyone know anything of it's whereabouts?

Wild at Heart regraced our screens on Sunday evening, but this most heartwarming of dramas has a new, chilling factor. With two scenes of trailing blood, a dead body floating in the water and a rogue tiger. this is not the family drama we used to know and love. Combine the horror scenes with the predictability of the storylines, such as Danny lying about his new job and Alice finding out, you realise it's only the humour of Fatani's fear of being at Leopard's Den at night, reminiscent of an episode of Sccoby Doo, that saved the episode. Bring back the whole family and make it back into the show it was!

The Queen's Bodyguard is the new sitcom featuring David Jason as a blundering protection agent for the royal family. More of a guilty pleasure than a must see drama, it's occasionally funny, but mostly cringeworthy and highly predictable. Plus it's hard to shake off the character of Del Boy while you're watching David Jason playing a similarly bumbling character.

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