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WHAT TO WATCH 22-28 August

As the TV schedules begin to pick up ahead of the autumn schedule, this week sees the triumphant returns of Billie Piper, Mortimer and Whitehouse, Harry Hill and Famalam plus Natalie Cassidy's unmissable cameo in Diane Morgan's Mandy.

Here are 5 shows you can't miss this week...

1. Famalam

Sunday 23rd August on BBC Three, repeated Monday 24th August at 10.45pm on BBC One

There's often a misconception that in the UK, sketch shows aren't been made on television anymore, and whilst it's true to say that there aren't many, it's not true to say that there aren't any. The BAFTA-nominated Famalam returns this week for its third series and if at all possible, it's EVEN funnier!

Like all good comedy casts, the longer you work together, the better you become at your craft and you can definitely see that in series three. With a cast that boasts Danielle Vitalis, Samson Kayo, Vivienne Acheampong, John MacMillan, Gbemisola Ikumelo and Tom Moutchi there really is something in here for everyone to enjoy.

In the first episode of the new series, we find out how to make White People Chicken, pull back the curtain on Interracial Adverts and discover what happens when you try to reveal spoilers for a TV series.

Later on in the series the E19 Posse teach an important lesson, Detective Moses Mountree returns in more Midsomer Motherfuckin' Murders, Fat Sam goes in search of romance and everyone's favourite African Aunties are back for some more fun!


2. Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing

Sunday 23rd August at 8pm on BBC Two

Two comedy legends in their early sixties fishing almost doesn't have the right to be one of the most enjoyable, heart-warming and comforting show on television, yet that's exactly what Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing is and I for one am delighted it's back for a third series.

The series usually airs on a Friday but I think the move to Sunday night is even more fitting for the series which really is like a cosy blanket. If you've seen it before, you'll know why. With no format to stick to and no apparent interference by producer, Gone Fishing really is just two old mates having a chat whilst fishing. And thankfully we've been allowed to watch.

In this first episode, Paul and Bob return to Scotland to fish for salmon once more, this time on the mighty River Tweed. But after their agonising last-ditch attempt to catch a salmon on the River Tay in series two, will Paul manage to fulfil his promise to help Bob get his first salmon?


3. Harry Hill's World of TV

Sunday 23rd August at 8.30pm on BBC Two

Harry Hill is back! Now, before you look at the show's title and get too excited, Harry Hill's World of TV sadly isn't a new version of TV Burp, but it does borrow some of the best bits from that series - largely Harry's unique observations about telly.

Each week, Harry Hill will explore a different TV genre, picking his favourite clips, giving us a brief history of the genre and teaching us how best to make a show that suits that genre. Throughout the series he'll take an in depth look at medical dramas, police dramas, home improvement shows, historical documentaries, cookery programmes and in the first episode, soaps!

From 1954’s The Grove Family, to Crossroads and Albion Market, through to Coronation Street and EastEnders, Harry will be delving into what connects the lands of the TV Soap, showing us the scandalous devices and storylines used to keep people hooked - including flammable pubs and the very amusing way in which everyone who walks into the cafe in EastEnders orders the very same thing.


4. I Hate Suzie

Thursday 27th August at 9pm and 9.45pm on Sky Atlantic

Billie Piper returns to our screens this week in a series she co-created for Sky Atlantic with Secret Diary of a Call Girl writer Lucy Prebble. Bold new drama I Hate Suzie sees Billie play former pop star turned actor Suzie Pickles, whose life unravels after her phone is hacked and compromising pictures become public property.

Suzie is a sparkling, broken, smiley, depressive, unique every-woman and when we first meet her, she's living in an idyllic country home with her perfect husband and gorgeous son and has just been given a dream role in a Disney movie. But it was all too good to be true. After intimate photographs are stolen from her phone, Suzie has to try and hold her life, career and family together in the face of being exposed for who she truly is.

Helped by her long-time manager Naomi, played by Leila Farzad, the two best friends go into crisis management mode and the drama follows Suzie through eight stages, from Shock to Acceptance, as she tries to process the exposure, the trauma and the reflection of herself. Every step of her life, Suzie has happily worn whatever mask was required of her but when exposure comes this hard and fast, Suzie finds there isn’t anywhere to hide from herself.

With two episodes a week and all episodes available from launch, I Hate Suzie is the perfect binge watch. It's hugely enjoyable and Billie Piper plays the part brilliantly.

1-2/8 All episodes available

5. Mandy

Thursday 27th August at 9.30pm and 9.45pm on BBC Two

If you haven't been watching Mandy on BBC Two then where have you been? And what have you been watching? It's Diane Morgan's hilarious new comedy in which she plays Mandy Carter, a woman with big dreams and no luck!

Each episode is only 15 minutes long and they're all available now on BBC iPlayer, so you don't even have to wait until Thursday to watch. It's bonkers, it's brilliant and it's full of belly laughs. But it's episode six I really want you to watch.

Why? Because it includes one of the greatest comedy cameos of recent memory as Natalie Cassidy, yes Sonia from EastEnders, puts in an incredible turn as foul-mouthed East End gangster Donna Bell who asks Mandy to be a lookout on her latest job.



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