Quick bites

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Television Free To Air - Lyn­dall Crisp

Doc Martin

Satur­day, 7.30pm, ABC1

Things go from bad to worse in this last episode of the sea­son. Martin is be­ing even more of a pain in the neck than usual so Louisa sets off with baby James to spend time with her mother in Spain. Amaz­ing she’s lasted this long. But Martin finds some­thing nasty on her CAT scan and races to stop her board­ing the plane. His aw­ful mother con­fesses she’s broke and needs money so Martin, of course, throws her out. Obese Bert, a heart at­tack wait­ing to hap­pen, and Jennifer run into a few prob­lems at their en­gage­ment party.

Ice Age Gi­ants: Land of the Sabre-Tooth

Sun­day, 7.30pm, ABC1

Host Alice Roberts — an English anatomist, os­teoarche­ol­o­gist, an­thro­pol­o­gist, pa­le­opathol­o­gist and au­thor — is pro­fes­sor of pub­lic en­gage­ment in sci­ence at the Univer­sity of Birm­ing­ham. Her pas­sion for the Ice Age in this three-part se­ries is con­ta­gious. Us­ing real­is­tic com­puter-gen­er­ated im­ages and amaz­ing land­scapes rich with an­cient bones, she builds a pic­ture of a world be­fore ice de­stroyed it 2.5 mil­lion years ago. In this first episode, Roberts take us south of the reaches of the ice waste to “the por­tal of a lost world” — Los Angeles. Yes, even back then it was home to celebs — mega fauna such as the sabre-tooth cat that roamed the fer­tile hunt­ing grounds.


Sun­day, 8.35pm, ABC1 It’s his fourth siege but Cleaver Greene (Richard Roxburgh) doesn’t es­cape this one un­dam­aged. Af­ter he bravely leads the hostage wed­ding party out of the church, mad Roger (Martin Sacks) ac­ci­den­tally shoots him in the der­riere. Re­cu­per­at­ing in hospi­tal in the down­dog po­si­tion, he’s vis­ited by his three exes who for some rea­son still re­gard him fondly. But then Cleaver must work out how to save his son Fuzz and Fuzz’s girl­friend, Pa­tience Mwamba, from se­ri­ous jail time as di­a­mond mules. This re­ally is a very clever show; a witty script and good act­ing work.

Down­ton Abbey

Sun­day, 9pm, Seven

Gawd what a house­hold. Up­stairs or be­low stairs no one seems to be hav­ing much fun in this mag­nif­i­cent stately home. If they’re not un­der­min­ing each other they’re telling porkies. Be­low stairs, Mr Bates forces Mrs Hughes to tell him why Anna has re­jected him — but the wise house­keeper lies about the rapist’s iden­tity. He’s guessed any­way. Up­stairs, Mary is not short of gen­tle­men call­ers but won’t com­mit and “up­pity chauf­feur” Bran­son wants to take baby Sy­bil to Amer­ica be­cause he feels he doesn’t fit in at DA. Who would, with this lot?

Aus­tralian Story

Mon­day, 8pm, ABC1

“Tele­vi­sion” may as well have been Adam Boland’s mid­dle name; he lived and breathed it from a young age. By 26 he was ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer of Seven’s flail­ing Sun­rise show. Within two years it was a win­ner. Cre­ative, ob­ses­sive and po­lar­is­ing, he had many ad­mir­ers in the TV game, and some crit­ics. Last year he had a break­down, was di­ag­nosed as bipo­lar and left Seven. Then he an­nounced he was go­ing to ri­val Ten. But ill health made him quit, never to re­turn to the in­dus­try he loved. Well, not yet. As Ten’s Peter Meakin says: “It’s like Willy Wonka’s been eaten by the choco­late. I don’t think the fi­nal chap­ter’s been writ­ten yet.”

The Moodys

Wed­nes­day, 9pm, ABC1

This week quite a few suc­cess­ful shows end, at least for now. In the fi­nale of this very funny se­ries about a dys­func­tional Aussie fam­ily, a wed­ding — the cou­ple plans to marry in a hot-air bal­loon on a Tues­day (cheaper rates than a weekend) — brings out the worst in some guests. But it’s the bride and bride­groom’s plans that go up in the air when a baby ar­rives early and ev­ery­one ends up in the ma­ter­nity ward in­stead.


Wed­nes­day, 9.30pm, SBS One

In the eighth and last episode of the sec­ond sea­son of this hi­lar­i­ous Scan­di­na­vian crime drama, Robert con­vinces Frank that he should go to New York to elim­i­nate Frank’s old Mafia boss Aldo Delucci. A bit late to tune in if you haven’t seen this show about a crook (Frank) who re­lo­cates to the Nor­we­gian city af­ter giv­ing ev­i­dence against Delucci, but it’s well worth keep­ing an eye out for re­peats. It’s orig­i­nal, clever and funny. Steven Van Zandt ( The So­pra­nos) as Frank is pure ge­nius.

Janet King

Thurs­day, 8.30pm, ABC1

The good news is that Marta Dus­sel­dorp will re­turn in sea­son two of Seven’s A Place to Call

Home soon. Here she’s pros­e­cu­tor Janet King, back at work af­ter ma­ter­nity leave, hav­ing given birth to twins with her gay part­ner. She’s hav­ing a rough time fol­low­ing the dis­ap­pear­ance of Steven Blakely (John Howard), who she pros­e­cuted over the death of his ter­mi­nally ill wife. His body is even­tu­ally found buried on a beach. Now it ap­pears he could have been in­volved in pornog­ra­phy and the woman King suc­cess­fully pros­e­cuted for his mur­der looks more in­no­cent by the day.

The Es­cape Artist

Thurs­day, 9.35pm, SBS One

David Ten­nant stars as Will Bur­ton, a bril­liant ju­nior crim­i­nal de­fence lawyer who gets a psy­chopath, Liam Foyle, off a mur­der charge. Bur­ton leads a charmed life with the per­fect fam­ily, per­fect house and per­fect dog. When his per­fect wife, Kate, goes to their coun­try cot­tage who should be wait­ing for her but Foyle. Hooroo Kate (talk about shades of Psy­cho), Bur­ton de­cides to con­duct his own in­ves­ti­ga­tion to prove Foyle’s guilt.

Happy Feet

Fri­day, 7.30pm, GO!

There can’t be too many Aus­tralians who haven’t caught this film but it’s worth see­ing again. Made in 2006 at Fox Stu­dios in Syd­ney and di­rected by Ge­orge Miller, its an­i­mated char­ac­ters are voiced by Robin Wil­liams, Hugh Jack­man, Ni­cole Kid­man, Hugo Weav­ing, Steve Ir­win, Miriam Mar­golyes and Anthony LaPaglia. The plot fol­lows Em­peror pen­guin Mum­bles who can tap dance but can’t sing — a ne­ces­sity if he’s to at­tract a mate.

The Doc­tor Blake Mur­der Mys­ter­ies

Fri­day, 8.30pm, ABC1

Stu­dent Vanessa Mackay is found with her throat cut in the Bal­larat Art Gallery. When Blake (Craig McLach­lan) vis­its the gallery he’s trans­ported back to a time when he was there as a boy with his mother, Genevieve. A paint­ing is stolen from the gallery but later found dumped in an al­ley — it hung where an­other paint­ing used to hang, one by Genevieve. When it turns out the mur­der and his mother’s paint­ing are linked, Blake’s par­ents’ se­cret past comes to light.

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