TV PICKS OF THE WEEK
By Lisa Jewell
Make a date or set your DVR for our top telly choices this week
Documentary – Chris Packham: Asperger’s and Me
Monday 23 October, 11.15pm, BBC Two
After a warm reception last week, the Beeb has quickly put on a repeat of this very personal and honest documentary from wildlife presenter and author Chris Packham. If you’re of a certain vintage, you grew up watching the spiky haired presenter on The Really Wild Show. Or you may have caught him more recently on Springwatch or Autumnwatch.
From the get go, Chris explains that he’s autistic and that for 30 years, he’s pretended that everything was normal on the telly when, in fact, he felt that his brain was wired very differently.
He speaks very touchingly about how being bullied as a youngster and feeling like an outsider pushed him to make connections with nature and animals (he’s particularly passionate about birds, their welfare and conservation). The documentary gives a real insight into what it’s like to struggle with social situations and relationships. It explores whether there are any treatments for conditions like Asperger’s and whether Chris would ever want those treatments, given that Asperger’s has very much been a part of his personality and life.
Documentary – Mattress Men
Thursday 26 October, 10.15pm, RTE1
If you missed this at the cinema, here’s the perfect chance to catch this quirky and heart warming documentary about the legend that is Mattress Mick and his pal Paul. Mick is Michael Flynn and his long time friend and part time employee is Paul Kelly. Together, they decided to buck the recession and get more customers into Mick’s business. Mattress Mick soon goes viral through a series of YouTube videos but as recognition rises, are the two pals on the same page when it comes to what to do next?
Drama – The Good Doctor
Friday 27 October, 9pm, Sky Living
This drama series – based on a South Korean series from 2013 – is fresh to our screens after a lot of acclaim in the States. The talented Freddie Highmore stars as Shaun Murphy, a young paediatric surgeon with autism and savant syndrome who successfully interviews for a job in St Bonaventure Hospital, in San Jose.
He clearly brings huge intelligence to his new role but how will his autism bear on his future career and relationships with patients and colleagues? Richard Schiff, Nicholas Gonzalez and Antonia Thomas also star. Some US reviews have said it borders on being overly sentimental but it clearly has made its mark amongst viewers there, recently beating out the consistently popular The Big Bang Theory.