Best TV for August: for those on staycations there is some great TV

Do you remember when the summer months meant no decent TV? Not any more! August continues to deliver some great TV both on Tterrestrial and subscription channels.

BBC

A SUITABLE BOY | BBC (catch up on iPlayer)

BBC is premiering its first period drama with an entirely non-white cast, based on Vikram Seth’s lengthy (it’s one of the longest books ever published) yet revered 1993 novel, A Suitable Boy. In the six-part series, director Mira Nair (The Reluctant Fundamentalist) and screenwriter Andrew Davies (Pride and Prejudice) transport us to Brahmpur, a fictional town in 1950s India. The drama balances the tumultuous infancy of post-partition India with the coming of age of Hindu teenagers Lata Mehra (Tanya Maniktala), a university student falling in love with a Muslim, and Maan Kapoor (Ishaan Khattar), a politician’s son falling in lust with a courtesan named Saeeda Bai (Tabu). 

This is true to form Sunday night entertainment with all the glorious colour of India and if it is not true to those times it is still a glorious production that distracts and delights in equal measure.

MANDY |BBC2

Another comedy short getting the full series treatment comes from the mind of the hilariously deadpan Diane Morgan (Motherland), who writes, directs and stars as Mandy – a woman with “big dreams”, but plenty of hurdles to overcome before her dream of breeding Doberman Pinschers can become a reality. Based on a BBC iPlayer comedy short, the six-part series follows Mandy on a health kick, sees her rent out her small back room on Airbnb and attempt a series of short-lived jobs in the modern gig economy. It also stars Michelle Greenidge (After Life) as Mandy’s friend and confidante from the local nail bar, alongside guest stars Tom Basden, David Bradley and Natalie Cassidy

SITTING IN LIMBO | BBC IPLAYER

The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis ignited a storm of protests as the Black Lives Matter movement captured the imagination. Anyone who thinks race issues do not apply in the UK should watch this drama on iPlayer, dealing with one example of the Windrush scandal. It is the true story of a Jamaican-born British man whose life was shattered when the Home Office decided he was here illegally, in spite of his having lived, worked and paid taxes in this country for 50 years.

AMAZON PRIME VIDEO

42 – JACKIE ROBINSON THE BASEBALL PLAYER STORY | AMAZON

Found this 2013 movie on Amazon and can’t understand why we missed it.

In the still-segregated 1940s, Jackie Robinson made history by becoming the first African-American to compete in major league baseball in the modern era.

Imposing Chadwick Boseman (stepping into shoes previously filled on screen by Robinson himself) is well cast as the stoical hard-hitter whose presence on the field both inspires and outrages; while a scene of prolonged racist haranguing rattles and alarms, it’s the quieter institutionalised slights that really hit home. Harrison Ford gets to growl with avuncular gruffness as team leader Branch Rickey, the man calling the shots on Robinson’s ascent to greatness whose proclaimed desire to win hides a far more noble aspiration. It’s inspirational fare and such a remarkable story.

ALL 4

THE LAWYER | ALL 4

The smash hit WALTER PRESENTS: THE LAWYER is back for an even more explosive second season as young solicitor Frank attempts to move on from discovering who murdered his parents, but is haunted by his own conscience at another death…

After locking up Waldman and his daughter Therese, Frank and his adoptive sister Sara think that they have escaped harm’s way. Frank is now a proud father and happily settled with Patricia, although still wracked with guilt over planting drugs in Therese’s bag. But when new information crops up in the case surrounding Therese’s suicide, Frank must confront his old enemy Waldman, forcing the two to now work together against a force of even greater evil. Frank and Sara find themselves yet again entangled in the depths of the rotten Danish law system…

BAD BANKS | ALL4

Delve back into the high-stakes world of finance as WALTER PRESENTS: BAD BANKS returns six months after the Deutsch Global Invest bank was left on the verge of a financial crisis. In the wreckage, young talent Jana is working her way back up the ranks. But personal ambition comes with a price…

After the catastrophe ending in riots and a merging of the two lead banks, new players are stirring up the traditional system. Christelle Leblanc has finally landed her promotion as the head of investment, and, after convincing CIG to keep her on, Jana is set to manage a new sector that will nurture sustainable financial talent. However, she still has scores to settle with Leblanc and is secretly pursuing her own agenda. Having relocated to Berlin, there are now new regulations, new opponents and old flames for Jana to overcome…

NETFLIX

THE RAIN | NETFLIX

Years after the rain carrying a virus wiped out almost all of the population of Scandinavia, Simone (Alba August) and Rasmus (Lucas Lynggaard Tønnesen) find themselves split over how to save humanity. The virus can be stopped, but at what cost?  In the third and final season of the Danish post-apocalyptic series, Rasmus wants to infect everyone with the same beta version of the virus that turned him into a superhuman, while Simone is insistent that there must be a cure. Will they manage to put their differences aside in order to do the right thing? 

SKY

LITTLE BIRDS | SKY ATLANTIC

Inspired by Anaïs Nin’s collection of erotic short stories, this series from Sky follows troubled US debutante Lucy Savage (Juno Temple), the daughter of an arms manufacturer, as she arrives in Tangier in 1955 where her husband-to-be, Lord Hugo Canvendish-Smythe (Hugh Skinner) is waiting for her. After a disappointing wedding reception, Lucy discovers Cherifa (Yumna Marwan) – one of Tangier’s most scandalous characters – who captures her imagination and introduces her to the Interzone’s world of intimate secrets and sexual possibilities.

I HATE SUZIE | SKY ATLANTIC

Billie Piper (Secret Diary of a Call Girl) stars in a bracing drama about a woman who has her life upended when she gets hacked, and pictures emerge of her in an extremely compromising position. The series follows the unravelling of Suzie Pickles (Piper), as the event ricochets around every area of her life. Episode by episode we see her going through the stages of shock, shame and anger as Suzie and her best friend and manager Naomi (Leila Farzad) try to hold her life, career and marriage to Cob (Daniel Ings) together.

Happy Viewing….

And if you missed Best TV for July then click HERE as most programmes are still available to watch.