Our boys set to do battle for prestigious British telly gongs
WHEN it comes to quality television, it seems you just can't beat the Irish. Our own homegrown stars Graham Norton, Louis Walsh and Dara O Briain lead the nominations for this year's National Television Awards in the UK this month.
Period hit Downton Abbey will take on Doctor Who for the title of top drama at the ceremony.
ITV1's saga about the Crawley family has been shortlisted for the awards for the first time and is up against Merlin and last year's winner Waterloo Road, as well as Who, for the title.
Doctor Who stars are up for two further awards with Matt Smith, who plays The Doctor, up for best male performance, while Karen Gillan (Amy Pond) is up for the female equivalent. Ant and Dec will be hoping to take the top entertainment presenter prize for an 11th consecutive year. The Geordie duo line up against X Factor host Dermot O'Leary, Keith Lemon and Michael McIntyre.
Comedian McIntyre is up for a further prize with his Comedy Roadshow, which competes for the best entertainment programme title, along with Take Me Out, Dynamo: Magician Impossible and Harry Hill's TV Burp.
Britain's Got Talent is in the running for top talent show, alongside X Factor, Strictly Come Dancing and Dancing On Ice.
Gillan goes up against Torchwood's Eve Myles, Jaye Jacobs (Waterloo Road) and Suranne Jones (Scott & Bailey) for the acting honours. And Smith faces competition from Martin Clunes (Doc Martin), John Barrowman (Torchwood) and David Threlfall (Shameless).
The awards will be presented by O'Leary from London's O2 Arena and broadcast by ITV1 on January 25.
Competing for the top reality show prize are Come Dine With Me, I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, The Apprentice and The Only Way Is Essex.
Jonathan Ross goes up against Graham Norton, Alan Carr and the Loose Women team for the best talk show category. Votes can be cast at www.nationaltvawards.com.