WE know it's really hard to keep up with all the TV that's available to watch across the various streaming platforms.
But don't worry, as The Sun's TV Mag has produced a handy guide to what you should be using your precious free time to watch this week.
Sex Education – Netflix
September means only one thing: it’s back-to-school time! And those loveable but dysfunctional pupils of Moordale Secondary School return for a third series, promising yet more awkward fumbles and embarrassing stumbles towards adulthood.
Last time we hung out with the gang, socially awkward Otis (Asa Butterfield) had finally managed to confess his love for Maeve (Emma Mackey) – in a voicemail she never received. Meanwhile, reformed bully Adam (Connor Swindells) had publicly committed to Eric (Ncuti Gatwa) and Otis’ uninhibited sex-therapist mum Jean (Gillian Anderson on spellbinding form) had discovered she was pregnant.
As the new term begins, Otis is attempting to move on by having casual sex, Jean is trying to come to terms with her unexpected news, Aimee (Aimee Lou Wood) has discovered feminism and Eric and Adam are love’s young dream. And there’s a new headmistress at Moordale, Hope Haddon (Jemima Kirke), while Jason Isaacs joins the cast as former head Mr Groff’s more successful and boastful brother Peter and the school has a new non-binary student, Cal (Dua Saleh).
Just as glossy, smart and jaw-droppingly funny as before, Sex Education doesn’t pull any punches, and the show’s willingness to gleefully approach any issue around sexuality means it isn’t for everyone. But some fantastic, nuanced performances from the cast, coupled with some witty and sensitive scripts ensure that, when it comes to school-set TV shows,Sex Education remains top of the class.
Available from Friday
Schumacher – Netflix
Eight years after the skiing accident that left him with severe brain injuries, Michael Schumacher is still loved and revered in the world of Formula 1. So, any film claiming to be the ultimate documentary about the racing icon needs to be able to back up its boast. Fortunately for fans, this new portrait manages it.
For a start, it’s the only documentary that has the backing and participation of the stricken driver’s parents, his wife Corinna and their children. On top of that, it features rare interviews and archive footage, some of it never seen before, and never shies away from exploring the insecurities and self-doubt that seven-times World Champion Michael experienced.
Anyone with even a passing interest in motorsport will find it fascinating.
Available from Wednesday.
Everybody’s Talking About Jamie – Amazon Prime
It’s already been a West End smash and now the feel-good musical about a teenager who dreams of one day making it as a drag queen has been turned into a spectacular and joyous new film. Max Harwood stars as Sheffield youngster Jamie, who battles ignorance and prejudice to make his ambition come true, while Sarah Lancashire plays his devoted mum and Richard E Grant dazzles as local drag legend Miss Loco Chanelle.
With Sharon Horgan and Ralph Ineson also involved, and some memorable songs, it’s star-studded, uplifting fun, made all the more enjoyable by the knowledge that it’s based on a true story.
Available from Friday.
The Morning Show – Apple TV+
Anyone who loved the headline-grabbing drama of Piers Morgan sensationally walking out on Good Morning Britain live on air needs to wake up to wonderful US series The Morning Show, which is back this week for a second season.
Following the trials and tribulations of the presenters and production team of a fictional breakfast news programme called The Morning Show, it’s a slick and stylish affair, packed with power struggles, betrayals and over-inflated egos. The cast is pretty spectacular too, boasting Jennifer Aniston and Reece Witherspoon as star news anchors Alex Levy and Bradley Jackson, Steve Carell as disgraced former presenter Mitch Kessler and Billy Crudup as Cory Ellison, a high-powered exec at the channel that broadcasts the show.
The first series ended with Alex and Bradley – whose relationship continues to blow hot and cold – exposing a sexual misconduct scandal at the channel, live on air. This time round, matters of quality and race take centre stage, while Cory tries desperately to persuade his star presenters to help him rebuild the channel’s tattered reputation.
With more intrigue and infighting than ever, plus the addition of former ER and The Good Wife star Julianna Margulies as powerful news anchor Laura Peterson, surely even Piers at his most petulant couldn’t match The Morning Show for ego-driven drama.
Available from Friday.
Jack Whitehall: Travels With My Father – Netflix
Over the last few years, Jack Whitehall and his father Michael have visited America, Australia, Europe and Southeast Asia. For their fifth and – sob – final journey, they’re staying closer to home by heading off on a road trip around the UK.
Along the way, the pair stop off in Wales, Scotland, the Lake District and London, immersing themselves in local customs and generally driving each other a little crazy. From flying in Spitfires and playing the bagpipes, to being fed by Gordon Ramsay and trying out sheep farming, it’s an epic jaunt, with Jack as jovial as ever and Michael his usual endearingly deadpan self.
“We’ve had a great time,” says Michael in an unusually moving moment towards the end of their trip. “I’m sure we’ll do lots of other things together. Just no more travels.”
Available from Tuesday.
Dr Death – Starzplay
Former neurosurgeon Christopher Duntsch is notorious in the US for having killed two of his patients and maimed many more during the 2010s. This chilling new drama series tells the story of Duntsch’s horrendous crimes and the efforts of appalled colleagues to bring him to justice.
Starring Joshua Jackson as Duntsch, who was dubbed ‘Dr Death’ by the US media, and Alec Baldwin and Christian Slater as whistle-blowing fellow doctors Robert Henderson and Randall Kirby, it’s undeniably riveting if disturbing stuff, boosted by magnetic performances from all three of its charismatic leads.
Special mention should also go to Grace Gummer – Meryl Streep’s daughter – who is sensational as Duntsch’s former PA Kim Morgan. Tense and terrifying.
Available from Sunday.
HERE’S WHAT TO WATCH WHEN YOU’RE IN THE MOOD FOR A QUIRKY SITCOM:
Black Books – All4
The grumpiest business owner since Basil Fawlty, Bernard Black (Dylan Moran) runs a bookshop but hates it when anyone comes in to buy something. Rude and usually a little sozzled, Bernard still somehow manages to hold on to his loyal and forgiving friends Manny (Bill Bailey) and Fran (Tamsin Greig).
Mandy – BBC iPlayer
Hapless, hatchet-faced Mandy (created and played by Motherland’s marvellous Diane Morgan) might not be the sharpest tool in the box, but her absurd adventures, which tend to involve her drifting disastrously from one dead-end job to another, are often unexpected and always funny.
Flowers – Netflix
Any sitcom that stars Olivia Colman, Julian Barrett, Will Sharpe and Loki’s Sophia Di Martino is guaranteed to be good, and so it proves with Flowers, a deliciously dark and original series about a dysfunctional and uptight family driving each other mad in a rambling country house.
Jerk – BBC iPlayer
Tim Renkow’s boundary-pushing comedy – about a man with cerebral palsy who uses his condition to get what he wants – is as shocking as it is amusing. Constantly poking fun at political correctness and the ways that people with disabilities are viewed, it’s uncomfortable but laugh-out-loud funny.
Vigil – BBC iPlayer
There was no way a drama set on board a nuclear submarine and starring Suranne Jones was ever going to sink without trace, yet surely even the makers of this murky yet majestic new six-part thriller didn’t expect it to be such a huge hit.
Telling the story of fearless detective DCI Amy Silva (Jones), who’s brought in to investigate the suspicious death of a crew member on armed-to-the-teeth sub HMS Vigil, it’s taut, tense and claustrophobic, and keeps viewers impossibly tangled up in its net of conspiracy and suspicion. Start from the beginning on iPlayer.
Into The Night – Netflix
When the first season of this hit Belgian sci-fi thriller was unleashed last year at the height of the pandemic, its apocalyptic storyline – about a mysterious cosmic event that had turned sunlight deadly – was perfectly suited to such world-shaking times. The second series finds the crew of survivors, led by former military pilot Sylvie Dubois (Pauline Etienne), forced to leave the safety of their military bunker in Bulgaria and head for the Global Seed Vault in Norway, after their food supply is permanently wrecked. With echoes of shows like The Walking Dead and Lost, it’s nerve-shredding stuff.
LuLa Rich – Amazon Prime
This staggering four-part investigative documentary series from the people behind Fyre Fraud delves deeply into the scandalous LuLaRoe pyramid scheme, which promised young women the chance to make big money selling leggings from home but left many deeply in debt and saddled with defective stock. Featuring jaw-dropping, buck-passing interviews with LuLaRoe’s co-founders, DeAnne and Mark Sidham, as well as former employees and members of the public caught up in the scheme, what unfolds is genuinely shocking and infuriating.
Come From Away – AppleTV+
Filmed live at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theater in New York in front of an audience of 9/11 survivors and front-line workers, this multi award-winning musical is based on the story of 7000 people who were left stranded in a small town in Newfoundland, after all flights to the US were grounded after the September 11th terrorist attacks. Miles from home and desperately worried about what’s going on back in the US, the passengers are welcomed with open arms by the locals and unlikely bonds are soon forged. Stirring, heart-warming and filled with memorable songs.
Walter Presents: When The Dust Settles – All4
The Walter Presents strand has an incredible knack of digging out the very best dramas Europe has to offer. When the Dust Settles is yet another cracker, centring around eight different people in Copenhagen during the days before and after a terrible terrorist attack rocks the city. From a couple whose wedding anniversary is cut short when their son takes a drug overdose, to the Minister of Justice Elisabeth, who’s fighting to keep both her career and marriage intact, it’s a spell-binding study of how even the smallest choices can have huge consequences.
15 Storeys High – BBC iPlayer
When the brilliant Sean Lock died from cancer at the age of 58 last month, dozens of fellow comedians rushed to pay tribute. As well as applauding his inspired appearances on panel shows such as 8 Out Of Ten Cats, many took the chance to lavish praise on Sean’s criminally ignored sitcom 15 Storeys High.
The show ran for two series, between 2002 and 2004, and centres around reclusive, miserable swimming instructor Vince (played by Sean) and his put-upon unemployed student lodger Errol (Benedict Wong). The pair live on the – you’ve guessed it – 15th floor of a south London tower block and spend their days getting up to some very odd and often grubby adventures, like getting addicted to energy drinks or drunkenly stealing a large, antique plough.
Intentionally gloomy-looking and drained of colour, each episode sparkles with clever, unexpected jokes and gloriously unpredictable plots that reflect Sean’s remarkable comic ingenuity. There’s also a host of big name guest stars, including Bill Bailey, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Peter Serafinowicz and Toby Jones. It really is a mystery why it remained unavailable for so long.
“My showbiz pal, Roisin Conaty and I had a massive love up about Sean Lock yesterday,” tweeted Kathy Burke, days after Sean’s death. “He was such a fantastic bloke. We’d love to see the absolutely brilliant 15 Storeys High put on the @BBCiPlayer please. We’re not asking for much.”
Thankfully, the BBC obliged and now everyone can wonder at the towering majesty of Sean’s comic genius.
The Sun's TV Mag is available every Saturday.
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