UK TV programmes to watch this week : 12/10/2013

Dogs: Their Secret Lives (Channel 4/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Monday 14th October 2013)

Our lives have radically changed in the last 50 years and so have those of our dogs. Man’s best friend is spending more and more time home alone. Using hidden cameras and a ground-breaking new study from the world’s leading dog scientists, this documentary reveals what our dogs get up to while we’re out. Footage from dozens of homes shows sleepy, active, howling and fretful dogs. Infrared cameras reveal what’s happening inside Bruno the boxer/Rottweiler cross’s head, while a dog vocalisation expert analyses Max the Alsatian’s howling to understand what he’s trying to communicate. Mark Evans, former chief vet at the RSPCA, investigates what it all means for the 21st-century dog owner. He discovers whether new technology allowing dogs to make phone calls and watch TV is the key to keeping our canine companions happy in the modern British home.

999: What’s Your Emergency? (Channel 4/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Monday 14th October 2013)

This series reveals modern Britain through the eyes of the emergency service that gets to know us most intimately, following ambulance staff across the country who know that every 999 call they race to could be a matter of life or death. Paramedics and call handlers speak powerfully and frankly about the challenges they face, and the Britain they see, while patients and their loved ones reveal the stories behind their calls for help. This episode demonstrates the shocking effects of alcohol. In the UK, 1.6 million people are dependent on alcohol, and alcohol misuse directly costs the NHS £3.5bn a year, with admissions to hospital due to drinking doubling in the last ten years. Up to a fifth of ambulance call-outs are alcohol-related, but one paramedic reports that some weekends three-quarters of his patients are affected by booze. Sometimes ambulances are called simply because the patient is too drunk to remember where they live or want a taxi ride home.

Stephen Fry: Out There (BBC2/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Monday 14th October 2013)

The gay writer, actor and broadcaster travels discovers what it means to be gay in different corners of the globe, as well as meeting some of the most notorious homophobes on the planet to try to understand the origin of their hatred. In the first episode, Stephen reflects back on how much has changed for gay people during his lifetime. He meets Elton John and David Furnish, the couple who inspired Stephen to be open about his sexuality as well as many others. Stephen also travels to Uganda, where the government is considering a new law that would make homosexuality a capital crime – putting gay people to death for their sexuality. Stephen also travels to the USA to explore ‘reparative therapy’, which claims to offer a ‘cure’ for being gay. Whilst in the states, he looks at how Hollywood deals with the gay issue by talking to Neil Patrick Harris, an openly gay man who continues to land leading roles.

The Great British Year (BBC1/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 16th October 2013)

Documentary series showing Britain’s changing look over the course of a year. Whilst the human population of Britain kicks back, summer is boom time for the animals. More sun means more food, but animals are arriving from afar to share, and competition is high. Hunters time their arrival from Africa to feast on the huge glut of flying insects, hobbies race after dragonflies, and thermal cameras reveal nightjars on a Dorset heath. Will the weather hold? One day harmful UV rays force sea urchins to cover up; the next, thunderstorms bring out hordes of hungry snails.

Stephen Fry: Out There (BBC2/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 16th October 2013)

The gay writer, actor and broadcaster travels discovers what it means to be gay in different corners of the globe, as well as meeting some of the most notorious homophobes on the planet to try to understand the origin of their hatred. In the first episode, Stephen reflects back on how much has changed for gay people during his lifetime. He meets Elton John and David Furnish, the couple who inspired Stephen to be open about his sexuality as well as many others. Stephen also travels to Uganda, where the government is considering a new law that would make homosexuality a capital crime – putting gay people to death for their sexuality. Stephen also travels to the USA to explore ‘reparative therapy’, which claims to offer a ‘cure’ for being gay. Whilst in the states, he looks at how Hollywood deals with the gay issue by talking to Neil Patrick Harris, an openly gay man who continues to land leading roles.

Grand Designs (Channel 4/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 16th October 2013)

A young couple decide to turn an average 1950s house into an architectural masterpiece. After a year of searching London for somewhere exciting to live with their young girls Lola and Sylva, Ben and Rachel Hammond stumbled upon a house on a unique plot, buried within the leafy depths of a beautiful south London park. The only problem is the house itself: an ugly, inefficient and uninspiring red brick property.

Waterloo Road (BBC1/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Thursday 17th October 2013)

School-based drama. Nikki has a tough decision to make when her estranged daughter shows up at Waterloo Road. Elsewhere, the staff and pupil’s mourn Grantly, and the school’s sponsored clean goes awry, worsening Christine and Simon’s relationship.

The Railway: First Great Western (Channel 5 | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Thursday 17th October 2013)

Documentary series following the staff of First Great Western, one of Britain’s largest train operating companies. At Paddington a major service disruption erupts on Meet the Manager day, a fitter has to repair a faulty peak-time train full of passengers, Charlbury station springs to life for the Wilderness festival and there’s a look at Brunel’s last engineering masterpiece, the Royal Albert Bridge, which connect Devon and Cornwall.

All TV guide information taken from DigiGuide — www.getdigiguide.tv/?p=1&r=15119.

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