Cooking up the same old recipe

Masterchef returns

Masterchef returns

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Allan Crow takes a look at this week’s TV highlights

(Daily, BBC1, 9.00 p.m.)

Brace yourself for another series of cooking which goes slightly further than slapping a ready-made meal in the oven a 180 for 20 minutes.

The format is tried and tested and clearly the great British public just cannot get enough of cookery shows no matter how pretentious they get or the fact they used ingredients that leave you going ‘‘huh?’’

I’d rather drown in a vat of jus, drizzled in truffle oil and have my scallops pan seared by James Martin than sit through yet another show watching people cook.

So, permit me to surrender control of the remote and leave you to it while I go knock up a quick stir-fry and then uncork a wee red to go with it..

Ingredients: Chicken, and some chopped up stuff. Onions and peppers, if remember to buy ‘em.

How to make: Bung in pan, fry, add sauce. Serve. Job done.

Dead Famous DNA

(Wednesday, Channel4, 9.00 p.m.)

You may recall Mark Evans as the TV presenter who clambered all over chopped up whales for some icky but quite fascinating programmes ... well, now he is back and this time he’s on the trail of DNA.

Not anyone’s DNA - but the celebrity kind which, presumably, will be ready for its close up.

Evans hunts down what’s left of famous names such as Marilyn Monroe and Napoleon and sees what new information he can extract using the latest breakthroughs in scientific research.

We Need To Talk About Kevin

(Saturday, BBC2, 10.30 p.m.)
The book by Lionel Shriver was compelling - and stunning. The film ... hm, maybe less so.
Shriver asks the basic question of how far can a mother’s love go when faced with her teenage son carrying out a high school murder on the scale of Columbine.

Tilda Swinton stars in this film adaptation which I didn’t think lived up to the novel.

You’ve Been Framed: Top 100 Shockers

(Saturday, stv, 6.00 p.m.)
I know, you’re thinking the same .. 100 shockers? That many? Really!

This show ran out of steam about the same time as VHS videos, but still the ‘hilarious’ clips continue to pour in.

This special lasts an hour. You have been warned ...

Greatest Kids Shows ... Ever

(Saturday, Channel5, 9.10 p.m.)

How to fill three hours of telly on the cheap!

Channel5 takes Channel4’s great love of pointless compilations and raises the bar with this feast of kids’ shows complete with all the names to rekindle childhood memories - Johnny Ball, Chris Tarrant and the giants of Blue Peter., John Noakes, Peter Purves and Valerie Singleton.

As for the top 50 if it doesn’t include Worzel Gummidge, Rentaghost and the Double Deckers then I shall be filing a formal complaint ...

Killing Spree

(Wednesday, Channel5, 8.00 p.m.)
Channel5 loves crime - the gorier the better, with serial killers top of the table.

This new series of documentaries looks at famous cases which made the headlines.

Whether it brings anything new to the table or simply rehashes the lurid headlines is open to debate ...

Dangerous Dogs

(Thursday, stv, 9.00 p.m.)
Part two of the documentary featuring far too many unfit owners and poor pets who suffer at their hands.

The flipside is the work done to enforce the Dangerous Dogs Act to keope people safe from some pretty vicious beasts who clearly shouldn’t be in the hands of people with no comprehension of their responsibilities.