Sunday October 21

Arthur Miller: Writer

9pm, Sky Atlantic

This wonderful portrait of the towering American playwright, who died in 2005, has a particularly personal tone: its director is Rebecca Miller, who, as well as being an acclaimed documentary-maker, is also the writer’s daughter. The spine is a series of private interviews she conducted with her father over the last 25 years of his life, in which he discusses the personal experiences that fed his greatest works, Death Of A Salesman and The Crucible, as well as his feted relationship with Marilyn Monroe, and subsequent 40-year marriage to Rebecca’s mother, Magnum photographer Inge Morath. Fleshed out with evocative archive and interviews with family members and directors including the late Mike Nichols, it’s an intimate piece, but candid, and doesn’t shy away from some of the difficult areas in Miller’s life and career.

Monday 22

Black Earth Rising

9pm, BBC Two

Another stunning episode as Kate (Michaela Coel) returns to the UK from Rwanda, hoping to track down the item that is mysteriously missing from the old case file her murdered mother Eve compiled against the war criminal Patrice Ganimana. All she has to go on is its file number – but we have already seen the enigmatic padded envelope she’s looking for, being passed between several of the key players. Meanwhile, others are hunting for this crucial evidence too, for different reasons, and are prepared to go to murderous lengths to get their hands on it. As the momentum begins to build, some long-buried, very disturbing, and inconveniently complex truths are about to come out, including a revelation that leaves Kate questioning almost everything she ever thought she knew, about herself, and the friends and family around her.

Tuesday 23


9pm, BBC One

Sharply written, beautifully directed, littered with unexpected details, and boasting a cast firing on all cylinders in every role, this excellent thriller is one of the best and most relevant series British TV has produced in recent years. Having been coerced into cooperating with counterterrorism cops Gabe (Paddy Considine) and Holly (Bel Powley), Raza (Nabhaan Rizwan) is thrown into the deep end when he’s ordered to get close to Dadir (Roger Jean Nsengiyumva), who he previously met in police cells. But there are two things Raza doesn’t know: Dadir is the brother of Gabe’s other informant Yousef – and Gabe and Holly have just found Yousef murdered. So a new face on Dadir’s patch is hardly going to be welcomed with open arms. Meanwhile, we learn more of Gabe’s troubling past, and glimpse more ominous fragments from the flashforward that frames the action.

Wednesday 24

My Dinner With Hervé

10.05pm, Sky Atlantic

Hervé is the late French actor Hervé Villechaize, best known for his memorable weekly cry of “De plane! De plane!” in the late-1970s TV hit Fantasy Island. A passion project for both its star, Game Of Thrones’s Peter Dinklage, and its director, Sacha Gervasi, this by turns fascinating, tawdry and tragic biopic is based around the events of an interview Gervasi, then a young journalist, conducted with Villechaize in LA in 1993 – a week before the actor committed suicide. Jamie Dornan plays Gervasi’s stand-in, Danny Tate, a newly sober reporter who finds his appointment with Villechaize (Dinklage) turning into a much longer, deeper, and wilder night than expected. Meanwhile, the struggles of Villechaize’s life – from his childhood to the demeaning stereotypes foisted on him by film and TV – and the complexity of his character begin to emerge.

Friday 26

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina


Netflix’s Halloweentatstic new teen horror comedy is based on the same comic-book source as Melissa Joan-Hart’s fondly remembered 1990s sitcom Sabrina The Teenage Witch – but this ain’t your mama’s Sabrina. Revamped by Riverdale’s Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, there’s still sparky fun, but the show is infinitely darker, with genuinely scary moments, and surprising amounts of Satanism. Kiernan Shipka (aka Mad Men’s Sally Draper) plays the teenage half-witch who, on the eve of her 16th birthday, must decide whether to stay with her mortal buddies and boyfriend, or go fully over to the dark, magical side. Set in a stylised, retro-tinged present, it’s like Harry Potter meets Rosemary’s Baby, via Tim Burton. Salem the talking cat is back, but it’s the inimitable Michelle Gomez who steals scenes as the demonic spirit who possesses Sabrina’s favourite teacher, Mrs Wardell.

Saturday Oct 27
Black Hollywood: They’ve Gotta Have Us
9pm, BBC Two
In this third and final instalment, director Simon Frederick’s excellent overview of the history of black cinema in the west attempts to look ahead to the future for black filmmakers. Has the impact and success of mainstream hits like Black Panther and the Oscar winning Moonlight finally brought an end to the notion that black actors and directors are somehow not bankable? Included is an examination of the current generation of talent in the UK, headed by directors like Steve McQueen, and a wave of actors including David Oyelowo and John Boyega. You know, time was, the BBC would have complemented a series like this with a carefully curated season of movies, but that was back in the days when TV channels had less time and resources.