DESPITE a galaxy of channels to choose from, the TV reviewer cannot live by flat screen fare alone. Sometimes we take a walk on the wild side. That’s right, Radio 4.

It was there, while listening to the Dead Ringers Decade Special, that Louis Theroux (or rather an ace impersonator of him) made an appearance. “Hello,” he declared, I’m Louis Theroux, famous for putting weirdos at their ease by being slightly more weird.”

These days, Theroux prefers harder journalism to the celebrity encounters with which he made his name. Louis Theroux: Selling Sex (BBC2, Sunday) looked at prostitution in the internet age. Theroux’s subjects were a single mother, a student, and a woman who had been married for 44 years. Each insisted it was their choice. The student, Ashley, said it was empowering and like going on a date but with no commitment.

The more Theroux hung around, excusing himself when necessary, the more depressing the film became. The truth behind the talk of empowerment began to emerge. He heard about past abuse, of leaving home early, of low to no self-esteem. What did choice mean in those circumstances? Last word went to the mum of four. For all the work had helped her achieve a standard of living for her children that they might not otherwise have had, she would not want the life for her daughter. Nothing here was surprising but it was still worth saying.

Cold Feet (ITV, Monday) was back to cheer us up, though it did not look that way at first. The ninth series began with Jenny (the terrific Fay Ripley) finishing her main treatment for cancer. She was delighted to be heading home to family and friends, even if the latter had still not come to terms with Adam and Karen (James Nesbitt and Hermione Norris) getting together. Adam was also in trouble at work for dodgy comments he had made to women. Men, what are they like?

It was agreed that differences between Adam and Karen’s ex should be resolved over a pub quiz. You can imagine how that went. Nothing like a car park brawl for lifting the January blues. “Same time next week, then,” said the continuity announcer as the credits rolled. Same time, same faces: that’s the show’s appeal.

Monty Don’s American Gardens (BBC2, Friday) was a tonic, not least because he had filmed it in summer. Just by watching you could feel the vitamin D levels soaring (not really, a non-doctor writes; for that you will need a supplement).

Monty, in his trademark baggy trousers and linen shirt, sweated his way from Missouri to New York, Long Island and Philadelphia, taking in formal and informal Edens. In one stunning location the head gardener said the biggest problem was people taking selfies rather than losing themselves in nature. Suppose it beats stealing cuttings. Next week Monty is in steamy Florida. Dread to think what his hotel laundry bill is going to be by series end.

Being Gail Porter (BBC Scotland, Tuesday) made for tough, occasionally frustrating, viewing. At first it seemed a good idea for the former Top of the Pops presenter to take a daunder down memory lane to recount her mental health problems. Professional advisors were listed in the credits, so one assumed guidance had been sought. But seeing how upset Porter became you began to wonder how wise it was to be back at the hospital where she was sectioned, or the park where she had slept rough one night. One wanted to shout “Stop!”, pull her out the telly, and give her a hug.

Sometimes the roots of her problems were plain to see; at other points we were in the dark, either because she chose not to discuss certain things (understandable but frustrating), or there was no obvious cause, as can be the way (a non-psychiatrist writes). What was never in any doubt was her courage and determination to keep going. She did not want to be labelled as this, that or the other ailment. “I’d rather just be Gail. Quite happy with Gail.” All power to you, kid.

Time for Crackerjack (CBBC, Friday). All together now, “CRACKERJACK!” Can you believe Crackerjack (“CRACKERJACK!”) was first broadcast in 1955. Or that they have brought Crackerjack (“CRACKERJACK!) back for the youngsters of today? Whose crackers idea (“CRACKERJ … Oops, too soon) was that?

I’m delighted to say the flashy 2020 version was just as spectacularly naff at heart as the old show. The Double or Drop game had been altered. Instead of carrying toys and cabbages it was just cabbages, and the young contestants, wearing safety helmets, dropped through trap doors on to a pile of foam bricks. Blooming health and safety.

The children in the audience were laughing, but not as hard as their parents and grandparents. Next thing the little darlings will be listening to Radio 4.