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"The Real Michael Barrymore"
(Ch4, Wed 9pm) The country's been in such an uproar against the BBC about Barrymore over the last few weeks, what with the rumours he was going to present the Generation Game, and the publishing (or not) of his autobiography, that Channel 4 managed to sneak this in almost unnoticed. Except from me. Bad Channel 4, no biscuit!

"The Real Bad Girls" (ITV, Wed 10.30)  Is there a "The Real..." theme going on this week?  Not by choice I promise. Anyway, didn't the BBC do this about 3 years or so ago?  About the same time as the first series of Bad Girls? Called Jailbirds? (I must get out more).  Ah well, all the good ideas seem to come round again. But not normally with such a patronising voice-over.

"The Essential Will Smith" (BBC2, Sun 10.00)  About time too!  It might not be the best thing in the world to admit, but I'm a huge Fresh Prince fan (hands up if you know the words to the theme tune?)  So it follows that I'm going to be fairly interested in most things Big Willy related. Yet despite the fact the Fresh Prince has barely been off BBC2 in about the last 12 years, and being a huge film star and recording artist, he manages to keep a
surprisingly low profile. Even after this, there's no real revelations, just a parade of a few people who've worked with him over the years, and a few more who haven't making gushing comments about breaking boundaries, commitment to family and being an all-round success story.

"Never Mind The Buzzcocks" (BBC2, Mon, 9pm)  I'm in mourning over Sean Hughes' decision not to go back for another series. Seriously. But I do like Bill Bailey, in a slightly overweight, balding sci-fi fan sense. After some of the facial expressions in the Intros round I'm not sure I'd want to meet him on a dark night though. And I'm afraid it's time for another neighbour apology. The sounds of screaming throughout were me in fits of laughter, not the ritual disembowelling of the neighbourhood cats. Expect more of the same over the next few weeks.

"Coupling" (BBC2 Mon 9.30) Another new series. The "British Friends" does "Sliding Doors".  Following on one minute from the end of the last series, a fully split screen half hour of lap-dancing and 1471. I don't quite remember when I stopped being vaguely irritated by this show and started actually liking it, but it was before the Mariella Frostrup episode. The split screen idea was really quite impressive, an odd concept, but some great comic moments, good timing and editing, but a bit too confusing for a regular thing. I could have done with a repeat of the last episode of the last series to get my bearings, but on the whole, Mondays have just got good.

As for White Teeth (Ch4, Tues 10.00) I think I need to read the book first. Repeat it in 6 months and I might be more interested.


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