THE week began with a mystery. Last year there was a hit drama called The Pact. It was about a gaggle of Welsh brewery workers who left their odious boss for dead in the woods. Hayley from Coronation Street was in it, alongside the always terrific Laura Fraser.

Now there’s a new series of The Pact (BBC1, Monday) which has a different cast, crew and story, save for the presence of Rakie Ayola. She was a copper called DS Holland in the first run and is Christine the social worker here.

By this point the completists among us will have been on iPlayer and rewatched the finale of season one just to check we were not missing something. I know, we really should get out more. Turns out the same actress is playing different characters in a drama of the same name. Or is she?

Christine and her children are still reeling over a death in the family when a stranger turns up and claims to be a long ago abandoned member of the brood. Rubbish, says Christine, who has been digging into the young man’s past. Or is it?

From the ease with which Christine is able to call in favours with the authorities it is possible she is a former copper and therefore the same character. Anyway, it’s as gripping as the first series, which we won’t mention any more unless we have to. Now there’s a pact to which we can all sign up.

The Handmaid's Tale (Channel 4, Sunday), back for a fifth series, opened with the chilling sight of a triumphant June (Elisabeth Moss) smiling. The only thing scarier than June smiling is June laughing. Bringing down the evil patriarchal dictatorship of Gilead has generally been no laughing matter, though the last series ended with the satisfying spectacle of Commander Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) running for his life.

From the bloodied appearance of his pursuers, it did not end well for Fred. Many a line has been crossed in the war between the handmaids and Gilead. This one feels more momentous than the others, with the enemy sure to come after Fred’s murderers. Should June and her fellow warriors risk all in taking the fight to Gilead, or stay safe in Canada? From such promising beginnings are 10-episode series born.

Moss, now directing as well as starring, shows there is mileage in June’s character yet, but it is the inaptly named Serena Joy, Fred’s pregnant widow (an eerily good Yvonne Strahovski) who looks like the one to keep an eye on. The icy queen’s number of devoted followers seems to be growing by the day.

Lost Worlds with Ben Fogle (Channel 5, Thursday) found one of our favourite travellers and scarf wearers in Detroit. The story of the Motor City’s rise, decline and plummet is a familiar one, though Fogle’s tone suggested much of it was new to him. It is not always a disadvantage to come at something with a fresh set of eyes; it certainly makes a change from the slightly wearied “been there, done that” approach of some filmmakers.

What made the documentary stand out were the scenes of devastation and Fogle’s reaction to them. It looked like the aftermath of a natural disaster he said, surveying the collapsed homes and gutted factories.

Fogle looked for hope among the ruins and found it here and there in community initiatives like the boxing gym that also offers literacy lessons, and the street makeover project run by a mother who had lost three sons in the mayhem that is urban Detroit. Fogle, shocked all over again, apologised if bringing up her loss was causing more distress. Unsure of what, if anything, to say, he asked if he could hug her. Not many presenters could carry this off. Fogle can.

Jimmy Carr, now there’s a naughty boy. It was not that long ago that he was offending the nation with a so-called “joke” mentioning the Holocaust. Now he was back in Jimmy Carr Destroys Art (Channel 4, Tuesday), pondering whether or not to destroy a painting by Hitler. Why he can’t just be like every other middle-aged man and buy a bike I don’t know.

The question was, can the artist be separated from the art? That old chestnut. Any pretence to be treating the subject seriously collapsed when the audience of London polo neck wearers was asked to choose which work should be torched, raked by paint guns, or, in the case of the Hitler piece, fed through a row of chainsaws.

The presence of Janet Street-Porter raised the tone, but even the unshockable JSP looked ill at ease when the burning started. “If this annoys just one neo-Nazi it will all have been worth it,” grinned Carr. Not big, not clever.

The producers should have pulled a sneaky one, used copies, and given the cash they handed over (£11,500 for the Hitler daub) to charity. But that wouldn’t get Jimmy in the papers, would it?