[rt/A; {jail/ix. AGATHA CHRISTIE: A LIFE IN PICTURES BBC2, Thu 23 Sep, 9pm 0000

lollomng on from last

year 's acclarrned deprctron of (-3eor‘ge (N‘s/(2H. thrs latest A l rfe //l Pictures deals zvrth crrrne wrrler suprerne Agatha Christie, and does so rn an astonrshrngly assured and accornplrshed rnanner. lhrs fully dr'amatrsed, frlrnlength deprctron of Chrrstre's Irfe rs hased entirely on true accounts from herself and those who knew her and If reveals a strong- wrlled, cornplrcated woman far removed from the popular vision of a dowdy matron dodderrng ahout rn a rose garden.

The pivotal perrod of Chrrstre's lrfe was her own mysterious disappearance after a car crash rn 1926. the subsequent natronwrde hunt and the psychiatric problems that surrounded her at the tune. The cornplexrtres of Chrrstre's character are portrayed superth by Olivia Willrams: the script and drrectron of Richard Curson Smith are exemplary and create a wonderful atmosphere and the production values all round are absolutely top notch. A thoroughly excellent and engagrng piece of work. (Doug Johnstoner



Scottish, Fri 24 Sep, 11pm 000

Can you learn to be a stand-up in the way yOu can a plumber. rerner or candlestrck-maker’? Glaswegian novelrst Jack Dickson rs quretly pessrmrstrc. Drckson. who suffers from a

'r e'tml fear stream ’1 fl‘. {ml/.1, irtr’l Jr' easrorrgr start river, ".a‘ ’,f,ll"’: ill) .‘.’lll‘. a": ';"’_}.f‘.(’1‘ and 'rraso’lrrstrr, rrretrrwj of corrfrentrng hrs consternation: attending a srx .veek comedy cor rse. 'I don't .‘lant fr; he lying there .‘thh rn, last lrreath sayrng yvrsh I'd done that fuckrn‘ stand up coursef he grr//les,

At first Jack and classmate Graham

Dodds. a trarnee vet. rarse scarcely a trtter wrth therr so~so rnater'ral and non (l(}||‘.’(2l‘,. As luck would have rt. gurus Raymond Mearns (whom Jack rnrtrally drsrnrsses as an ‘ohnoxrous fat cunt) and Nigel Buckland are on hand to offer up some wordy analysrs hefore the frrst grg. Drckson makes a refreshrngly no- nonsense gurnea pig. even rf. at half an hour. the programme rs too short to he much of an (Eye-opener.

(Allan Radcliffe)


THE DIRTY WAR BBC1, Sun 26 Sep, 9pm 00

There are two schools of thought on the alleged terrorist threat and the urgent government advice that recently fluttered onto the nation's coconut mats. The frrst assumes that when are encouraged to hoard trnned food and take shelter under the starrs rn the event of the homh being dropped. Armageddon rs approaching. The other supposes that. as our democr'acr, rs guarded by men rn fancy dress carryrng sw0rds. the

rrtfo ant. ter" f.‘ " rrrz’:asure~. "3: :"e r "lll'lfi l; N”! will: v‘ lor‘rrlrrrr. it: i." Atrrcar‘s. dtrlrrousl.:r'trt1.;astt2w ‘."lll£tlll‘, of the prw o,- As dratt‘a. the rrrecr-r elurrrsrl, scrrrrtel. nart heartedl,’ trerfr inner: a'rd ’lrtlar’ilr’ Bet to have rrrade a


strarglrttorx'xarrl docunrentar‘, exposrnr; the '.'./oefullr,’ rnarleguatv resources azarlal rle rn the event of such a r‘arlrr>lo<_;rr:a| attack herng carrred out

rAllan Radclrffer

S()(LlAl [)f X)! lMl N l/«ttv JEWISH LAW Channel 4, Mon 27 Sep, 8pm 0000

Thrs rntrrgurng documentary .s the frrst rn a three part look at the rules governing the hues of ultra Orthodox .Jews. focusrng on the 30,000 strong communrty rn Manchester. Therr every action rs dictated hy ancrent hrhlrcal texts. and there rs a mammoth set of laws on food alone, They can't eat darry rn the same meal as meat. kosher fish must have fins and scales. and rt's strrctly forhrdden to consume ".rrhole' rnsects rthough. perplexrng partral rnsects are permittedr. Any krnd of hlood is a major none. The frlrn follows the work of the Beth Dllt. a rahhrnrcal court that provrdes relrgrous gurdance to ensure food supplrers are kosher. It's all compellrng. despite the inspector .ve follov.’ soundrng drstractrngly

lrke Chris Euhank. Future

eprsodes '.'.rrll look at other aspects of Orthodox lrfe. and ‘.‘.'III hopefully address the ".vhys' rbeyond the belref that kosher food elevates the SOLllr rather than Just the 'hovrs' tnat thrs one does. Lovely stuff nonetheless. Ashley Da‘.'l€S>

DIRTY FILTHY LOVE Scottish. Sun 26 Sep, 9pm 0...


A bleak but blackly comic tale of illness

In Stephen Frears‘ The Deal, Michael Sheen played a fidgety, goggly, partially neurotic Tony Blair, tentatively feeling his way round the political machine. In Dirty Filthy Love, Sheen goes several steps further to play an all-out wreck, a once successful architect whose life has tipped upside down and is now encumbered by a heady cocktail of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Tourette‘s Syndrome: barking at dogs, swearing at bosses, that kind of thing. Discovering that he‘s not alone in his wired world, he meets fellow victim Charlotte (Shirley Henderson) who runs a self-help group and they begin a tentative relationship.

As you'd expect from something co-written by an OCD-sufferer (Ian Puleston-Davies), the minute details of the effects of GOD and Tourette‘s are all there: the inadvertent facial ticks and throat noises, the inability to climb stairs without having to go back on yourself or wash your hands without making them bleed through excessive scrubbing. For anyone who remembers the story of John Davidson, the Tourette‘s-inflicted Scot whose troubled teenage life was made into a BBC documentary in the late 805, such stories are bleak yet undeniably infused with comic potential.

When Charlotte giggles at Mark's wonkier habits, she is merely recognising the ludicrous nature of their shared experience. And surely no one can watch a businessman yelping at a Spaniel without feeling the funny bone tingle a little. So, don't feel too bad about having a laugh at Dirty Filthy Love. Just make sure you pull your TV plug out of the wall when you finish watching. Once should do it. (Brian Donaldson)


Five, Mon 27 Sep, 9pm .0.

Only rn LA could such thrngs happen. chhard Sandrak rs. to put rt hluntly. an t 1 year old freak. Wrth a trod; lrke a scaled down :ersron of Arnold Sch.'.'ar'/ertegger. only .vrth more muscles. the poor iaddre rs propath one of the ‘.'.«'errdest hurnans ,ou'll ever hare tne n‘rsfortune to clap eyes on. and tnrs predrctalrl‘, sensatronalrst docunrentarj, reneals hov.’ the wee fella got that way.

To sum up rn two words: push, parents. Sandrak's ll‘tlll‘ and dad tl‘O‘.’€‘:(l to the States from the Ukrarne .vhen he was two and have encomaged lTllT‘. to hodyvourid to the point of obsession euer since. feeding hrn‘ on du'orous

'supplerrrents' and forhrddrng hrrn to have any kind of normal chrldhood at all. Sandr‘ak rs currently Hi the process of enrulatrng hrs hero. the

af'rrerrrentrorrerf (,alrforrrrarr governor, l), rno‘xrng ficrrr rrrst l‘ra.'rr:g a ripped set of aim to rraxrrrg .r upped set ’ll :rlrsrnthe'r‘ovre‘.

rl)oug .Jolrr‘mtoner