THE TRIP TO SPAIN, SKY ATLANTIC, 10pm
THE third series starts tonight, and while many fans will be disappointed that the show has moved from the BBC to Sky Atlantic, many more will be so desperate to see it that they’ll gladly fork out for a subscription.
Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon reunite for another gastronomic tour. This time they’re travelling the dusty back roads of Spain, stopping off in hilltop towns to dine at wonderful restaurants.
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During their many meals they gently bicker and nag. They play exaggerated versions of themselves in this series, and most of the brilliant chatter at the various dinner tables is improvised, throwing out brilliant gags, sarcastic wit and, of course, lots of impressions of Terry Wogan, Michael Caine and Alan Bennett. Mick Jagger also enters their repertoire. There is also a quiet sadness to their conversations, as they ponder middle age, career insecurities and their families back at home.
SHANNON MATTHEWS: THE MOTHER’S STORY, C5, 10pm
VIEWERS might have been surprised at the sympathetic portrayal of Karen Matthews in the recent BBC drama about her daughter’s disappearance, The Moorside. The tabloids and social media have condemned Matthews as evil, and it’s easy to believe she is, having arranged the kidnap and drugging of her own child in the hope of claiming the reward money when the girl was found.
But perhaps Matthews was also stupid, frightened, bullied and abused? This documentary tries to tell the awful story from her perspective, attempting to look behind the grotesque mask which is always placed firmly on women when their crimes involve children.
The show asks why she did it: was it simply for money, or did she crave attention and a way out of her hopeless situation and miserable relationship? She’s approached here as a damaged woman, not a waxwork horror.