Every woman should be allowed to spend one day of her life as Nigella Lawson. Can we get that sorted? I can be available for a shift in London or, even better, abroad. As we saw in Nigella's Amsterdam Christmas (BBC1, Thursday), the dominion of the original and best domestic goddess knows no earthly bounds.

Last week it was Mary Berry telling us her heart was in the Highlands at Christmas, and now Nigella was going one better. At first I wondered if the canal boat interior was real or a studio set. But it seemed genuine, and those were definitely shots of Nigella wafting along the cobbled streets.

It was “half a lifetime” ago that she fell in love with Amsterdam at Christmas. You could see why from the food shops alone. In one emporium she was fed slivers of gouda (pronounced howda) by some handsome young chap. Howda heck do I get that job?

Let’s face it, there is only one Nigella. Who else could get away with lines like, “The key to so much in life, I find, is butter”, and “Don’t worry if there’s a crack or two on the surface. That’s baking, that’s life.” She sounds more like Eric Cantona every day.

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At some point in the hour-long programme she put together an amazing three-course meal to serve at a party. There was so much booze sloshing around, in the dishes and accompanying cocktails, that if you were tasting along you would have been spark out after 15 minutes. There was one solid gold takeaway from the evening: the sight of Nigella, in curlers, at the stove. You and I would look like Hilda Ogden. Not her. I’ll withdraw my application to be Nigella for a day.

Vanishing Act (STV, Monday-Wednesday) was one of those “inspired by real events” affairs. This one concerned Melissa Caddick, an Australian fraudster who took her clients’ money and treated it like her own, splashing out on fast cars, luxury holidays and designer clobber.

Playing out over three nights, it was a flashy, slightly trashy number, with Kate Atkinson, as Melissa, doing most of the heavy lifting on the acting front. Some of the others in the cast could have popped in on their way back from the set of Neighbours.

The writing was iffy early on, as when Melissa recalled seeing Bernie Madoff on television being arrested and deciding that running a Ponzi scheme would be just the ticket for her. You might have thought the sight of someone on a perp walk would have put her off.

The script and performances got better once her house of credit cards began to fall down and friends and family realised they had been betrayed. Given we knew her fate from the off, the sometimes bleakly comic tone would not have been to all tastes. At times Caddick reminded me of the Nicole Kidman character in To Die For. Pity it didn’t have that film’s running time; three hours for Vanishing Act was one hour too much.

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If you wanted more of the tale the drama was accompanied by a documentary about the case, The Real Vanishing Act: missing millionairess. As ever, the reality was more mundane, the protagonists more humdrum, than anything the dramatists had confected.

Watching Michelle McManus: After All This Time (BBC Scotland, Friday) you couldn’t help but think those in charge of selling Scotland had missed a trick. Who knew so many Scots had triumphed in TV talent competitions? Why isn’t this shouted from the rooftops? There was no figure to show that Scots were disproportionately successful, but there was enough of them to make this enjoyable documentary.

The central story was that of McManus, who won Pop Idol 20 years ago. She actually was a waitress in a cocktail bar, as per The Human League song, when she entered the competition. When the 23-year-old from Baillieston walked away with fame, money and a number one single on the way, it seemed an unalloyed Good Thing. “Things like that just didn’t happen to people like me,” she said.

The reality was different. She was attacked in the press for her weight in ways that would rightly be called out today for the bullying it was. After her second single “limped” to number 13 in the charts she was dropped. A taxi back to obscurity called.

McManus’s story, however, turned out better than she could have imagined. A born trouper, she picked herself up, dusted herself down, and eventually wrote another script for herself.

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Among those she visited for the film was Susan Boyle, who told her she was “a bit like myself - a wee bit misjudged but brilliant”. Best of all was a sit-down with Robbie Williams. McManus had met him at some event. He was on the up escalator of fame, she was heading for the exit, but he sought her out and a long talk followed. He didn’t need to do it, just as he didn’t need to do this interview, but you thought infinitely better of him for doing so.