Feet up! 7 sizzling new releases to watch this week
Banish the blues with Muddy's master list of what to watch and stream this week, from comic murder mysteries to Julian Fellowes' new big-budget period drama. We feel better already.
PICK OF THE WEEK: The Afterparty, Apple TV, 28 Jan
Impressive comedy creds behind this new Apple TV murder-mystery: produced by the teams behind 21 Jump Street, The Lego Movie, and Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse, it stars a who’s who of recent sitcom stars (Parks and Rec‘s Ben Schwartz, Broad City‘s Ilana Glazer, plus the omnipresent Dave Franco, to name just a few). The premise sees a famous pop-star murdered at his own high school reunion afterparty, and each guest recounting the night to the police in the style of a different movie genre. If you liked Only Murders in the Building, it has a similar feel.
The Responder, BBC1, 24 Jan
Sure, TV these days has more police dramas than you can shake a stick at, but this one offers the chance to obsessively analyse Martin Freeman’s Scouse accent. (It’s good. But you just can’t shake the feeling he’s about to mess it up.) Gritty, edgy stuff involving corruption, therapy, crises — you know the police drama drill.
The Gilded Age, Sky Atlantic, 25 Jan
Corsets on! Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey) is bringing us an all-new period drama series set in the Gilded Age of New York (that’s roughly 1870-1900, if you slept through History GCSE). Following the clash of old and new money, it’s a large ensemble story with plenty of love troubles, social battles, and ballooning skirts.
Jay Blades — Learning To Read At 51, BBC1, 26 Jan
The Repair Shop’s Jay Blades faces his own dyslexia and speaks to other under-literate adults in this gently done, honest film. Having made it through life thus far by chiefly relying on tech and other people, Blades meets young people receiving the help that was never available to him. It’s quietly powerful stuff.
The Mind Of Herbert Clunkerdunk, BBC2, 26 Jan
If you’re in need of some distractingly weird comedy this week, there’s no better offering than this second series about the cartoonish, fictional actor Herbert Clunkerdunk. It is, to put it mildly, a mad show (The Mighty Boosh-esque) that plays fast and loose with the rules of reality, and so makes for a great escape.
Survivors — Portraits Of The Holocaust, BBC2, 27 Jan
Marking Holocaust Memorial Day, this documentary centres on seven Holocaust survivors, now in their nineties, whose portraits were commissioned by the Prince of Wales. With the completion of the paintings having taken nearly two years, there are some touching friendships to witness between painter and sitter, as well as the expected, quieting stories of survival. The finished portraits are to be displayed at Buckingham Palace.
The Woman in the House Across the Street from the Girl in the Window, Netflix, 28 Jan
A nice, punchy title. Kristen Bell stars in this dark comedy thriller series about a woman with an alcohol addiction who sees a murder take place across the street. Or does she? Loosely parodying Netflix’s 2021 film The Woman in the Window, the miniseries aims for being both a tongue-in-cheek send-up and a genuinely scary psychological thriller.