February viewing 2023

Our crocus are out, but may not survive the forecast cold snap.

Some friends have been discussing the way they have not renewed their TV licences  because they never watch BBC, in real time or via streaming services, and I was surprised. I wouldn’t have missed most of these programmes for the world! I also watch a lot of news and political programmes but mostly not on BBC.

Things I would recommend from my February TV:

Happy Valley season 3 ***** (BBC iPlayer) Excellent cop/family drama set in West Yorkshire, starring Sarah Lancashire who is brilliant in the role of Catherine Cawood and ably backed up by a stellar cast. This was always intended to be the final season but people are already hoping for spin-offs.

Doc Martin Seasons 1-10***** (BBC iPlayer)We binged watched the entire series over January and February and enjoyed it enormously. Think Last of the Summer Wine crossed with The Detectorists, add a large helping of House and set in a facsimile of Brigadoon, but in Cornwall.

The Magic of Mushrooms **** (All4) Richard Fortey and Patrick Hickey explore fungi. I knew most of what they said, but it was good to have it all put together in one place!

The boy, the mole, the fox and the horse.**** (BBC iPlayer) Animated film for children and adults first shown at Christmas and still available for the rest of the year. Interesting, and beautifully made.

Inside Our Autistic Minds ****(BBC iPlayer) presented by Chris Packham. Very well done and interesting, especially to our family with our autistic grandchild. Packham (who is autistic himself) explores the experiences of four people with very different expressions of autism and helps them make films explaining themselves to their families and to the world at large.

The World’s Most Scenic River Journeys. ****(My5). We watched the programme about the Mosel which the presenter insisted on calling by its French name, the Moselle. We know that part of Germany well by road and it was lovely to see it from a different angle.

The Impressionists: Painting and Revolution.**** (BBC iPlayer) I had already seen some of the programmes but it was interesting to watch them again.

Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice**** (BBC iPlayer). A look at the singer’s life including interviews with her. Interesting, and obviously full of lovely music. I hadn’t realised that she also flirted successfully with operetta.

Secrets of the Jurassic Dinosaurs**** (BBC iPlayer) The presenter followed palaeontologists recovering dinosaur fossils from a ‘dig’ where a lot of them died. It really brought home to me how far the Jurassic period was removed in time from the later dinosaurs such as T Rex.

And one I could do without…

The Wall (Canadian Noir on All4) Husband is still enjoying this but I’ve given up. The subtitles are frequently shown against snow and the Canadian French is not always clear to the foreign ear. The whole setting is stark  with blinding snow and gloomy interiors and whilst I know that’s probably realistic I wasn’t enjoying it. Added to that I found I didn’t care much about the police, the victims or the other characters.

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