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WHAT TO WATCH 13-19 May

This week is packed full of great television including three brilliant new dramas from Russell T Davies, Shane Meadows and Sally Wainwright and a brand new comedy from Samson Kayo.


Here are 7 shows you can’t miss this week...


1. Back to Life

Monday 13th May at 10:35pm on BBC One


In the penultimate episode of Daisy Haggard's fantastic series, Miri sets about mending her friendship with Billy, after his terrible reaction to the truth of who she really is.


An encounter with his wife Anna takes a dark turn and as she returns to work at Nathan’s Fish & Chip shop, she finds that the shop is no more and instead, Nathan is now running a food truck.


Elsewhere, Caroline is determined to relight the fire between her and Oscar having ended her relationship with Dom and Mandy continues o try her best to connect with Miri who refuses to give her a second chance.


Read my interview with Daisy Haggard here.

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2. Years and Years

Tuesday 14th May at 9pm on BBC One


As Britain is rocked by unstable political, economic and technological advances, Russell T Davies' new six-part drama Years and Years follows the Lyons family as their complex lives converge on one crucial night in 2019. Then, over the next 15 years, the twists and turns of everyday life are explored as we find out if this ordinary family could ever change the world.


Years and Years is about family and how we survive, set against the backdrop of a political world in which you can’t tell right from left and each episode propels us a year or two ahead, following the lives of Daniel (Russell Tovey), Stephen (Rory Kinnear) and Celeste (T’Nia Miller), sisters Rosie (Ruth Madeley) and Edith (Jessica Hynes), Gran Muriel (Anne Reid) and the family’s children, as they navigate a world made unstable by politics, the economy and technology.


When the Lyons gather for Muriel’s birthday they’re interrupted by a call from their missing sister, Edith. But she brings extraordinary news, and life for the Lyons is about to change forever...


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3. Nadiya: Anxiety and Me

Wednesday 15th May at 9pm on BBC One


If you've been anywhere near Twitter this week you will have seen the onslaught of abuse from trolls that Bake Off 2015 winner Nadiya Hussein has wrongfully received just from the trailer for her one-off documentary which sees her open up about her anxiety.


Since childhood, Nadiya has been living with debilitating anxiety and panic attacks and now she's sharing her journey through her first course of therapy. For a long time, Nadiya has kept her anxiety a secret but after years of struggling in silence, she is ready to find out where her anxiety comes from and how to treat it.


Nadiya hopes her openness will inspire others to seek help and fight the stigma associated with mental health issues. Having seen the documentary I have no doubt that it will.


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4. The Virtues

Wednesday 15th May at 9pm on Channel 4


This week Shane Meadows returns to Channel 4 following This Is England, with The Virtues which has been co-written with Jack Thorne and tackles themes of repressed memory, apocalyptic revenge and the hope of redemption.


Stephen Graham plays Joseph, a barely on-the-wagon alcoholic whose precarious reality is knocked for six when his ex-partner moves abroad with their young son, from Liverpool to Australia, for a better life.


With no immediate family to live for, he's haunted by a past he has tried, for decades, to forget, if not actively obscure with drink and drugs. Suffering the hangover from hell, he walks away from his present life and boards a boat bound for Ireland to confront hazy, fear-inducing memories from a childhood spent in the care system that he’s had to forget.


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5. Mum

Wednesday 15th May at 10pm on BBC Two


They say that all good things must come to an end... but I really wish Mum, starring the magnificent Lesley Manville, didn't have to.


As the series returns for its third and final series, things are a little different as Cathy and family decamp to the English countryside to celebrate Derek’s birthday.


Each episode observes a different day of the week as Cathy takes a final step towards her future.


If the first episode leaves you wanting more, then the good news is that the rest of the series will be available to watch on iPlayer straight after the episode has aired. Warning. You will need tissues.


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6. Sliced

Wednesday 15th - Friday 17th May at 10pm on Dave


2019 has delivered some fantastic comedy so far and it looks like that's not about to end anytime soon as man of the moment Samson Kayo brings his very own sitcom Sliced to our screens this week on Dave.


Co-written with Phil Bowker, the man responsible for PhoneShop, Sliced is a three-part comedy which offers a window into the life and world of two pizza delivery drivers and best friends Joshua and Ricky, played by Samson and Theo Barklem-Biggs.


Along the way they encounter counterfeit money, vindictive call centre staff, hopeless security guards, hedonistic pensioners, aggressive teens and a rather adult party!


Read my interview with Samson Kayo and Theo Barklem Biggs soon.


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7. Gentleman Jack

Sunday 19th May at 9pm on BBC One


Sally Wainwright's latest drama Gentleman Jack stars Suranne Jones as Anne Lister who in 1982 returns to Halifax from Hastings, to Shibden Hall, having discovered that her would-be companion and lover, the aristocratic Vere Hobart, has accepted a marriage proposal from a man.


Despite her affection for her elderly aunt, Anne is frustrated by the shabbiness of her ancestral home and finds her father and long-suffering sister difficult to live with. A visit from her ex-lover Mariana Lawton compounds Anne’s fear that she is destined to be alone.


However, when Anne discovers that her land is rich in coal, her plans to transform the estate soon provide a welcome distraction from her broken heart. On the neighbouring estate, Crow Nest, shy heiress Ann Walker is quietly delighted to hear that charismatic Anne Lister is back.


Also stars Sophie Rundle, Gemma Whelan, Timothy West, Gemma Jones and Lydia Leonard.


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