I forgot to write about it last week, but its not too late to catch the first episode of The Spoils of Babylon tonight at 9pm on Fox. An illustrious cast including Tobey Maguire, Will Ferrell, Tim Robbins, Kristen Wiig, Val Kilmer, Jessica Alba and Michael Sheen, this is a spoof epic TV miniseries in the same vein as The Thorn Birds, or Dallas. This plot is thus: Patriarch Jonas Morehouse shepherds his daughter Cynthia and adopted son Devon from meager beginnings in the oil fields of Texas to powerful boardrooms in New York City. Cynthia and Devon, entwined in undeniable love, stumble through war-torn battlefields, blazing mansions, filthy drug dens and velvet-sheeted bedrooms on their quest for power and influence. Despite Jonas’s best efforts to intervene, Cynthia and Devon’s merciless love sets into motion a wave of destruction that crashes down on Devon’s graceful wife Lady Anne, his daughter Marianne, his colleague and lover Dixie, Cynthia’s hen-pecked husband Chet, her evil son Winston, the scheming Generals and far beyond. That sounds right up my alley.
Room 101 returns to BBC 1 at 8.30pm on Friday, with Frank Skinner hosting. And Joan Blakewell, Roisin Conaty and Richard Osman trying to off customer service surveys, greeting cards filled with fake emotion and those bizarre animal species you’ve never heard of in Tayto Park.
If you’ve recently watched 12 Years a Slave and want to know more about the director, Steve McQueen or how cinema has historically treated slavery, then Mark Kermode is hosting a Culture Show special on BBC 2 at 11.05pm Steve McQueen: Are You Sitting Uncomfortably.
A documentary that peeked my interest is Growing Up Downs on BBC3 on Tuesday at 9pm. It tells the story of a group of amazing actors from the Blue Apple Theatre in Winchester, England, who set out to create a touring production of Hamlet. Filmed in their homes and in the theatre for over a year, the young actors come of age as they grapple the play, their lives and their relationships with each other. The film sets out to dispel a lot of myths surrounding Downs Syndrome, the depth of emotion, intelligence, complex inner lives and incredible potential to achieve great things of the people living with it.
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