Monday, 7.30pm, Seven It hasn’t been the ratings bonanza Seven hoped for, but then House Rules, a home renovation series from the makers of the very successful My Kitchen Rules, competes with The Block Sky High for limited space in the hearts of viewers. You see, I have this unprovable theory that people will invest in only one genre series at a time, especially when they are being asked to tune in five or six nights a week. Also, House Rules comes on a half hour later to compete, on Mondays at least, with ratings killer The Voice. Still, nobody can say House Rules isn’t a worthy contender. It is fast moving, great to look at, flows smoothly and features a stunning twist: the competing couples must renovate each other’s homes without consultation. My goodness, that should make the reveals of the finished houses well worth watching. strong: provide a compassionate think tank to observe as effectively as detectives for clues, hidden motivations and emotional blackmail. In this debut episode, meet Ian, a man who has been turned into a virtual slave to his family’s farm in the Cotswolds at the hands of his blathering, old and next-to-useless uncles, who know everything and do nothing. It is a bit of a transformation myth, with the far too nice Ian, 48, in the Cinderella role. The uncles are well intentioned but don’t realise the burdens they place on Ian’s shoulders. Trust me, tears will be shed. hardcore spies are jeopardised. There is one other slight problem: while Elizabeth’s loyalty to Russia is unwavering, Philip is beginning to think that maybe the US isn’t so bad. The Americans has all the intensity and drama of Homeland, which it resembles in many ways, but with lovely comic and romantic moments. Flashbacks to the 60s in the motherland slowly flesh out the characters’ motivation. A long action sequence at the beginning of this debut episode is accompanied by an extended version of Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk. Convincingly, it is the 80s. Excellent.