Thursday 14 December 2017

Staying in tonight? Here's what to watch on the box

Jules Coll
Jules Coll
A "fugitive" attempts to avoid detection in Channel 4's Hunted Photo: Channel 4
Helene Murchance, Zack Murphy, Aoife Murphy and Dr. Orla Franklin
Under the Skin

Losing weight in an unusual way, a new social experiment and a final visit to the wards in Crumlin are among tonight's highlights


RTE2, 9.30pm

At the age of 19, writer Jules Coll began to struggle with her weight, ending up tipping the scales at 19 stone. With a psychiatrist unable to find any emotional reason for her eating, she was given the go-ahead for gastric bypass surgery. This engaging documentary follows her journey as she learns to live with the aftermath and the realities of this major operation. Nice, at least, to see a documentary about being overweight that doesn’t end up drowning in its own tears.




A "fugitive" attempts to avoid detection in Channel 4's Hunted Photo: Channel 4

A genuine social experiment, this, and also utterly gripping, not to mention unsettling. Friends Stephen Hardiker and Martin Cole use canal towpaths to travel almost 100 miles on foot and bicycle to a caravan in Wales. Along the way, IT manager Martin comes up with an ingenious way to stay in touch with their loved ones, but will the cyber team crack their code? Meanwhile, 25-year-old Adam Young plans to use survival skills learned from his father.



RTE1, 10.15PM

Helene Murchance, Zack Murphy, Aoife Murphy and Dr. Orla Franklin

The documentary, going behind the scenes at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital Crumlin, focuses on the dermatology and plastic surgery departments, where staff treat complex and rare conditions or diseases, some of which have no known cure. They include the removal of birthmarks, which in rare cases can be life-threatening, the treatment of a boy whose ear has not fully developed, and a baby having surgery to correct a cleft lip. This is the final episode of a series that, while sometimes difficult to watch, as are all programmes about sick children, has been a valuable and deserved showcase for the most valuable people working in our overstretched health service. More, please.





New series. Action-packed game show, with commentary from none other than homegrown comedy duo The Rubberbandits. Ten contestants are given 50 lives to take on a series of tricky challenges. The aim of the game is to complete five of them without losing all of their lives. Might be fun, might not.



FILM4, 10.45pm

Under the Skin

(2013, Science fiction) About as unusual as a science fiction film as you’re ever likely to come across. Scarlett Johansson as a pallid alien seductress who prowls the mean streets of Glasgow (not your regular SF setting) in search of men to take home and... well, do stuff neither they nor the audience were probably expecting. The fact that some scenes feature ordinary passers-by, who had no idea they were being filmed, just adds to the otherworldly feeling. Haunting, erotic and visually stunning.

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