Monday 14th November at 9pm on BBC Two (CH 102)
Why you should watch: It’s a major one-off drama about life, work, relationships, friendship, class, race, and pretty much everything else that’s important.
What’s it actually about?: Two childhood friends whose lives have taken very different turns, and how that tests their bond.
Why’s it called NW?: It’s the London postcode, because that’s where the women are from.
Impressive literary adaptation alert: It’s based on the acclaimed novel from the perpetually hip Zadie Smith.
Also: Two characters in the cast list are simply called “Male Swinger” and “Female Swinger”, so expect things to get rather raunchy. Or funny. Or both.
Monday 14th November at 9pm on National Geographic (CH 266)
Why you should watch: Because who isn’t fascinated by the frozen, other-worldly landscape of Antarctica?
Is it a cheesy sci-fi drama about scientists excavating aliens in the ice?: No.
Is it a serious, mind-blowing documentary about the real Antarctica?: Yes.
But are there scientists?: Several teams of scientists, in fact, doing things like studying volcanoes and gazing in wonder at vast white wilderness.
Moment to make jaws drop: The bit where they find an iceberg the size of France.
Pope Vs Hitler
Tuesday 15th November at 8pm on National Geographic (CH 266)
Why you should watch: It’s got the best title in the history of TV programme titles, that’s why.
What’s the gist?: This docudrama tells the secret story of how Pope Pius XII secretly worked to take down Adolf Hitler. Really.
But wasn’t he pro-Hitler, or something?: That’s the myth that will be debunked in this film.
What to say: “This should help restore the reputation of a Pope often seen as a dithering weakling during World War Two.”
What not to say: “Meh, it’s no Mega Shark Vs Crocosaurus.”
Wednesday 16th November on Netflix
Why you should watch: It’s a big new action-thriller about a crack sniper who unravels a plot to assassinate the US president.
Sounds familiar: That’s because this is a reboot of a film starring Mark Wahlberg.
Who is Mark Wahlberg now?: Mark Wahlberg is Ryan Phillippe now. And you thought only Time Lords could regenerate.
Best unlikely character name of the week: Our sniper protagonist is called Bob Lee Swagger. Which is even more macho-sounding than Jack Reacher.
Look out for: Cynthia Addai-Robinson, aka Amanda Waller in Arrow.
Shooter is available to watch on Netflix from Wednesday 16 November.
Wednesday 16th November at 9pm on Universal (CH 101)
Why you should watch: It’s a brand new medical drama, but with a shiny high-tech spin on things.
What’s the gist?: Internet billionaire teams up with cocky, risk-taking surgeon to set up a new hospital specialising in bizarre/brilliant treatments.
Example treatments: They use a computer to read patients’ minds, and repair someone’s legs with spider silk. Even Gregory House would be impressed.
Likelihood of unfeasibly hot doctors: 100%.
Does the world need a new hospital drama?: Only if it’s got mind-reading computers, which this one does.
Thursday 17th November at 9pm on Sky Living (CH 112)
Why you should watch: It’s season two of the uber-cool drama about a mysterious, heavily tattooed, kick-ass super-soldier gal.
Where are we at?: Well, our protagonist Jane Doe has been freshly tortured by the CIA for three months, expect her to be mighty miffed.
Why it’s awesome: Complex back-stories, juicy conspiracies, and some real sweet tattoos. What’s not to love?
Twists ahoy: This season opener will have revelations about Jane’s family.
Watch if you like: The Blacklist, Quantico, Tattoo Fixers.
Bob And Roberta’s Excellent Protest
Thursday 17th November at 9pm on BBC Four (CH 107)
Why you should watch: Artist Patrick Brill – better known as “Bob and Roberta Smith” – explores political protests are all the rage in 2016.
Patrick who?: He hit the headlines last year for running against Michael Gove in the election.
Protests covered: The programme delves into issues like Brexit and Black Lives Matter to the anti-fracking movement.
Look out for: Wrinkly rebels Noam Chomsky and Billy Bragg.
Why this is more relevant than ever: Did you miss the whole US election thing?
Friday 18th November at 7.30pm on E4 (CH 144)
Why you should watch: It’s the new season of the hit American comedy about a posh African-American family dealing with life in our identity politics-filled times.
What’s happening?: The new run begins with the family’s young son getting gutter-mouthed in a school talent show. And the teachers ain’t happy.
Also: We’re about to discover the perils of being an eco-warrior. With great power comes great responsibility.
Look out for: Laurence Fishburne, stealing every scene as the granddad.
High praise alert: One US reviewer has called it “one of the only new network comedies worth watching”.
Children In Need
Friday 18th November at 7.30pm on BBC One (CH 101)
Why you should watch: Because it’s Children In Need, darn it! (Though it’ll be so weird without Sir Terry fronting things. Sob.)
Bits to look out for: Eddie Redmayne being funny and the cast of EastEnders taking us back to the 1980s.
Also: Craig David is singing the official Children In Need song, because Craig David is a thing again. Strangely.
Bonus reason to watch: Oh, only a sneak preview of the new Doctor Who Christmas special. That’s all.
By the way: Don’t forget to donate, people! (The comma there is important)
Sunday 20th November at 9pm on TCM (CH 415)
Why you should watch: It’s season five of the series about TV’s second-favourite person called Walt. (Walter White being the first favourite, obvs.)
Walt who?: Walt Longmire, of course – our ruggedly handsome Wyoming sheriff who rocks a hat like no one else.
80s nostalgia alert: The show also stars Lou Diamond Phillips, who’ll make anyone of a certain age yearn to watch Young Guns again.
Watch if you like: Um. There’s not much else like this on TV. But if you like No Country For Old Men, you’ll be just fine.
Best watched while: Chomping on beef jerky.
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