Laughs can be found in the funniest places. Take, for example, The Larkins (STV, Sunday), back for a second series.

An adaptation of The Darling Buds of May, it is set in an idyllic corner of England just before the 1960s start to swing. All is right in this world, and if it is not the ever genial Ma and Pa Larkin will make it so with a cheery word or a cheeky bit of daring.

It ought to be exactly the kind of feelgood telly required of a Sunday evening in October, yet the summer days spent in the company of the Larkins leave me stone cold. Why? Something to ponder as Ma and Pa (Joanna Scanlan and Bradley Walsh) set about selling an overpriced crumbling pile to some Hooray Henrietta and her ghastly husband.

The Larkins is stuck firmly in the past in every sense. From character to comedy the broadest of brushes is employed. Subtlety, never mind irony, has yet to be invented.

The toffs, for instance, are called Mr and Mrs Jerebohm (at least someone had the good grace to spell it differently), while the handsome young vicar goes by the name of Reverend Candy, 'cos he’s good enough to eat. If Mrs Brown and her boys turned up one week I wouldn’t be at all surprised.

It’s a pity because with a little more effort The Larkins could have been a lot better. Instead it settles for “good enough” when it really isn’t.

Greta Thunberg: Amol Rajan Interviews (BBC2, Tuesday) did not, on the face of it, promise much in the way of giggles. Grumpy teenager talks about the death of the planet for 45 minutes. Haud me back TV at its worst. Yet it wasn’t like that at all.

Sure, if you wanted to know what she really thinks about nuclear energy, or how she would pay for free local transport, you would have been disappointed. She doesn’t do specific issues, you see, finds it distracts from the bigger picture. (Try that one next time you are in trouble with the boss.)

Rajan wisely pushed the hype and the politics to one side and spoke to Thunberg as what she was – a young woman who had been through an extraordinary experience since she first went on strike from school to save the planet. This Greta was smart and cool and had a keen eye for the absurd. And she liked to laugh. Boy did she like to laugh.

She found her interviewer funny in the way kids at a wedding find dad’s dancing hilarious. At one point her answer to one of Rajan’s clever-clever questions made him snort with laughter. I can see it now: the Greta and Amol Show.

Aldi's Next Big Thing (Channel 4, Thursday), being a competition to win a contract with the supermarket giant, was a blend of The Apprentice, Dragons’ Den, Bake-Off, and almost every other programme of its kind.

The contestants, including an Italian family from Glasgow who thought their meaty pasta sauces would fly off the shelves, came up against the same problems: price (all too high for Aldi) and capacity (could such small firms handle Aldi-sized orders?). The pies won. Well of course they did. One significant step for the winner, one giant advert for Aldi, and sure to be a hit.

There is something odd going on with Channel 5’s dramas. Last week we had Maxine, a three-parter about the Soham murders that would have had most viewers switching over as fast as the remote control would allow. This week it was The House Across the Street (Channel 5, Monday-Tuesday), a strange tale set in a housing estate where a girl had gone missing.

Shirley Henderson played Claudia, the nurse at the local primary school. Claudia cut a sad figure though it was not clear exactly why. There had been health problems, a broken marriage, but nothing to explain why the case becomes such an obsession. The other neighbours are an odd lot too, especially the one with the doll collection.

We are now at the halfway point, with a conclusion to come next week, and I have no idea what is going on. You can only hope there is a good reason to put viewers through the wringer again.

There was more creepiness on parade in The Watcher (Netflix), but this time, mercifully, the based on a true story tale was a tongue in cheek look at property envy.

Naomi Watts and Bobby Cannavale play a New York couple (he's Wall Street, she's in ceramics) desperate to get the kids out of the city. So they buy a big house in the burbs that they can’t really afford, only to find out the neighbours are nuts and someone is stalking their house, and by extension them (no building-related pun intended).

The story eventually pushes its luck too far, but it’s enjoyably creepy while it lasts and the cast is superb. My favourite crazy neighbour has to be Pearl Winslow, a true American Gothic played by Mia Farrow no less. Now there’s someone who knows a thing or two about nuisance neighbours.