Get the Abbey habit ...

Downton Abbey is back
Downton Abbey is back

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

(Sunday, stv, 9.00 p.m.)
Get the butler to pour you a decent-sized port, have him draw the blinds and sit back and enjoy - Sundays were surely made for Downton.

I still think of it as ‘Upstairs Downstairs’ for the iPad generation - confusingly it’s also being shown at weekends on one of the wee satellite stations and I find myself tuning in to see how Mrs Bridges is doing with those meals that probably wouldn’t cut it on ‘Masterchef’ these days.

But back to Downton. It’s now into the 1920s and His Lordship ain’t happy that there’s a Labour government, and he’s also got some falling-out to do with his pal.

There are more secret relationships to come tumbling out which will keep all Downton-ites glued to the box this autumn ... enjoy!

Our Girl

(Sunday, BBC1, 9.00 p.m.)
If period drama isn’t your thing then Plan B has to be this new action series from the beeb starring the always watchable Lacey Turner, proving yet again she was far too good for ‘Eastenders’.

This started life as a one-off drama about an aimless young woman joining the army, and now it has its own series to flesh out the dramas and pain she faces while serving her country.


(Thursday, BBC2, 9.00 p.m.)
A drama based on a true life story that is simply remarkable.

Toby Jones stars as Neil Baldwin who has learning difficulties but whose life has been full of accomplishments and adventure.

How? Well, he simply goes up and asks people about their work and business.

As a result he has worked in the circus, been the kit man with Stoke City FC - my greatest signing, said Lou Macari - met the great and the good, and achieved more than most folk do in a lifetime.

And those who don’t respond to his questions?

Well he simply moves on and asks someone else... what a wonderful outlook!

Strictly Come Dancing

(Friday, BBC1, 9.00 p.m.)
After all the introductions and hype, we now get down to see who can actually do a mean hot shoe shuffle along the fabled dance floor.

Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman co-host as the first couples try to impress the judges.

Expect the usual dramas, outbursts, hissy fits and some cool moves ...


(Friday, Channel4, 9.00 p.m.)

A new series of the show which watches folk watching telly.

Afraid the appeal of ‘Gogglebox’ passed me by the first time round, and nothing much has changed for this new series.

Sure, it’s spawned a reality show contestant, but not sure that’s really a badge of honour these days.

Ramsay’s Costa Del Nightmares

(Thursday, Channel4, 10.00 p.m.)
Old sweary heid, Gogs Ramsay, kick-starts one last series under the ‘Nightmare’ banner.

He’s kinda run out of anything new to do, so the format is the same - only the location has changed as he heads to the Costa Del Sol to bring his own sergeant major style of motivation to some slack, wayward kitchens.

Ramsay’s appeal is limited - and the swearing is utterly tiresome.

Funny how he managed to tone that down for the USA version.

The Driver

(Tuesday, BBC1, 9.00 p.m.)
More new drama with the excellent David Morrisey in the lead role as a taxi driver stuck in a rut who makes a catastrophic career change.

He picks up a fare which turns out to be an old mate out of jail, and swaps the drudgery of his job for a being a getaway driver.