As the impact of lockdown starts to really show in the TV schedules, this week's must-see telly includes just five shows instead of the usual seven/sometimes ten. Never-the-less, E4's fond look back on Big Brother continues and the BBC launch a revival of Alan Bennett's Talking Heads.
Here are 5 shows you can’t miss this week...
1. Big Brother: Best Shows Ever
Sunday 21st - Thursday 25th June at 9pm on E4
If like me, you've enjoyed a week of revisiting some of the best episodes from Big Brother and Celebrity Big Brother then you'll be pleased to hear that Davina and Rylan are back with five more classic episodes from the archives.
We've already had Craig vs Nasty Nick, Nikki Grahame's diary room outburst, Jackie Stallone's iconic entrance, Ulrika Johnson and Verne Troyer's duet and Chantelle's secret mission and this week begins by another visit to CBB4 as George Galloway asks Rula Lenska "Would you like me to be the cat?"
Elsewhere we'll be reminded of how Jade Goody coped in Big Brother 3's rich/poor divide task, how Alex Reid destroyed a snowman at the command of a persuasive talking tree in Celebrity Big Brother 7 and how the housemates of Big Brother 6 coped with spending the day in cardboard boxes to see who could last the longest.
And to round of the series, Davina and Rylan will look back on Big Brother 2 as the romance between Helen and Paul unfold and Helen tells us how much she likes blinking!
2. EastEnders: Secrets from the Square
Monday 22nd June at 8pm on BBC One
For the first time in 35 years, there are no new episodes of EastEnders airing on television which means there's gaps to fill in the schedule until new episodes are available (looking like September). Alongside classic episodes on a Tuesday, Stacey Dooley is joined by every Monday by some of Walford’s biggest stars to relive classic scenes, share behind-the-scenes stories and reveal secrets that are normally kept under wraps.
Up first are Danny Dyer and Kellie Bright who'll be looking back on some of Mick and Linda Carter's classic scenes from the past six and a half years whilst teasing Stacey about another famous investigative journalist. During the episode, Kelly reveals an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction whilst Danny shows off his best ‘doof doof’ face.
Next week, Letitia Dean and Adam Woodyatt will join Stacey to look back on where it all began for them as teenagers. Whilst further weeks will see James Bye and Davood Ghadami, Max Bowden and Tony Clay and Diane Parish and Tameka Empson stop by for a socially distanced chat with Stacey.
3. I May Destroy You
Monday 22nd and Tuesday 23rd June at 10.45pm on BBC One
Michaela Coel's new twelve-part series about assault and consent continues this week as a tumultuous day finds Arabella reassessing a sexual encounter with Zain and opening up to Biagio about her assault, following a promising new lead in the investigation.
After a meeting with Susy Henny, Arabella threatens to break the internet when she goes off-script at a writing summit. Elsewhere, Kwame is prompted to report his own assault to the police.
In this week's second episode (episode six), Arabella attends a support group for rape and sexual assault survivors run by her and Terry's high school acquaintance, Theo - much to Terry's disapproval. In a flashback to 2004, teenage Arabella and Terry intervene when a resourceful, troubled young Theo attempts to flip the narrative on consensual sex gone sideways.
4. Talking Heads
Tuesday 23rd at 9pm and 9.30pm and Thursday 25th June at 7.30pm on BBC One
Reviving Alan Bennett's Talking Heads during lockdown is a genius move by the BBC. The original series of dramatic monologues first aired in 1988 and now ten of those monologues, along with two brand new ones, are being remade with a stellar new cast including Martin Freeman, Jodie Comer, Tamsin Greig, Lucian Msamati and Lesley Manville.
In Tuesday's first episode, A Lady of Letters, Imelda Staunton plays Irene Ruddock - a character originally played by Patricia Routledge - who dashes off letters with her trusty fountain pen. When she’s not writing, she’s keeping an eye on the couple opposite and a little girl with bruises. But when the police come by, it’s Irene who’s in trouble.
In An Ordinary Woman, a new monologue written by Bennett in 2019 and never seen on screen, Sarah Lancashire plays Gwen who thought there’d be something that gave you immunity so that you couldn’t fall for your own child. Michael’s only fifteen, but you wouldn’t know.
And in Thursday's episode Soldiering On, Harriet Walker plays Muriel - a character originally played by Stephanie Cole - who after the death of her husband is met with papers by her son Giles for her to sign. It turns out there’s a liquidity problem. Nonetheless, Muriel is determined to soldier on.
All twelve episodes will be available to watch on iPlayer from Tuesday. And if you think the sets look familiar, that's because the series was filmed during lockdown - adhering to social distancing guidelines - on the set of EastEnders!
5. The School That Tried to End Racism
Thursday 25th June at 9pm on Channel 4
In The School That Tried to End Racism, an ordinary class of 11 to 12-year-olds take part in a series of activities designed to challenge everything they thought they knew about race as a pioneering British school tries to help its students uncover and eradicate hidden racial biases.
More timely than ever, this two-part series will see students overcome awkwardness and embarrassment, as they open up about their own and others' attitudes and confront difficult truths. After being tested for racial bias at both the beginning and the end of the course, will the students be changed by the experience? And is it a programme that all schools should consider rolling out?
In the first episode, a white British student and his black Caribbean best friend are shocked to discover the level of unconscious bias they carry and a 12-year-old bi-racial girl is keen to find out what racial group she belongs in, white or black?
Both episodes will be available on All 4 from launch.