Alan Dee’s guide to the pick of next week’s TV


Doctor Who (BBC One, 7.20pm)

It’s the end of an era, and time to say goodbye to Rory and Amy, who have travelled with the Time Lord off, and mostly on, for the past three years.

The stars of the show are the Weeping Angels, those silent but deadly villains who are wreaking havoc in New York and even take poor Rory captive. Can he be found before something terrible happens to him?


Downton Abbey (ITV1, 9pm)

Despite being born into privilege and wealth, life was never going to be easy for Edith.

She’s the middle sister, without the looks or charm of either of her siblings, but what she does have in abundance is determination and pluck. So when she set eyes on Sir Anthony Strallan and knew he was the man for her, she decided to get him, no matter what anybody else thought. Bless.


Monroe (ITV1, 9pm)

James Nesbitt’s hit drama about a charismatic brain surgeon impressed millions when it debuted last year.

This new series opens 18 months after series one, and there are quite a few changes at St Matthew’s hospital.

While Gabriel Monroe (Nesbitt) has moved into his new bachelor pad, Shepherd (Tom Riley) and Bremner (Sarah Parish) are proud parents to baby Louis.

Alistair Gillespie (Neil Pearson), the hospital’s new head of clinical services, soon makes his presence felt with a few controversial decisions, though it looks like Lizzie Clapham will also set the cat among the pigeons as she offers support for neuro and cardiac patients.

Monroe believes that if anyone is talking to his patients, it should be him.


Ian Hislop’s Stiff Upper Lip 
– An Emotional History of Britain (BBC Two, 9pm)

Broadcaster, panel show wit and Private Eye editor Ian Hislop reveals that, in days gone by, we were far more touchy-feely as a nation.

So when did our upper lip get so stiff?

Ian explores how and why such stoicism emerged in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, in a country which was until then awash with sentimentality.

In the course of his voyage of discovery, Ian finds himself playing cricket on the Champs-Élysées, discovers some 200-year-old merchandising David Beckham would be proud of, and reveals why we have the great British Bulldog, and not the British Cock, as a national symbol.


Mrs Biggs (ITV1, 9pm)

We’re now reaching the final stage of a story which has seen Charmian marry train robber Ronnie, and move to Melbourne to start a new life with him.

As the final episode begins, the couple are living apart – she’s still in Australia, using money she gained by selling their story to the media to buy a house for herself and their sons.

Ron, meanwhile, is in Rio, turning to drink, drugs and womanising to ease his pain.


Hunted (BBC One, 9pm)

Melissa George stars as Sam Hunter, an operative for the elite private intelligence and security firm Byzantium back on the job after a mission went wrong, and trying to get back on track. It’s not easy, though – her life is full of complications galore.

A top-drawer cast also includes Adam Rayner (Mistresses), Stephen Dillane (Game of Thrones) and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (him of Lost fame).


Strictly Come Dancing 
(BBC One, 9pm)

At long last, the competition is about to start in earnest, with half of the group of celebrities taking to the dance floor for the first time; with the remainder making their debuts on Saturday. But who is going to impress the judges?