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tv picks

What to watch on TV this weekend

All of the telly you need to watch this weekend. rounds up the TV shows that you’ll be tweeting and talking about this weekend.



A Date for Mad Mary (Virgin Media Three, 9pm)

Seána Kerslake, (who you may know from Can’t Cope Won’t Cope) stars in one of the loveliest films made in this country over the last decade. The coming-of-age drama follows Mary, who struggles to readjust to life after a stint in prison, because everything seems to have changed while she was inside. With her best friend having moved on from their days as young troublemakers, and now engaged to be married, maid of honour Mary sets out to prove the bride-to-be wrong, when she alleges that Mary will not be able to find a date for the wedding. 

Women’s Six Nations Live (RTÉ 2, 6.30pm) 

Daire O’Brien is joined by Eddie O’Sullivan, Jenny Murphy and Lyne Cantwell for Italy v Ireland from Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi di Parma. Commentary by Hugh Cahill and Fiona Coghlan. Kick-off at 6.45pm. 

The First Brit: Secrets of the 10,000 Year Old Man (Channel 4, 7pm) 

Documentary following the UK’s most ambitious and cutting-edge ancient DNA project to date. For the first time, a team of top scientists at the Natural History Museum and University College London have analysed the DNA of Britain’s oldest complete skeleton. Known as ‘Cheddar Man’, this human male fossil was originally unearthed over 100 years ago in Gough’s Cave in Cheddar Gorge, Somerset. Building on the advanced genetic testing of his 10,000-year-old bones, two of the most acclaimed paleontological model makers in the world, Dutch identical twins Adrie and Alfons Kennis, have recreated Cheddar Man’s entire head to give his skeleton a real identity for the first time.  




Dermot Bannon’s Incredible Homes (RTÉ One, 9.30pm) 

Ireland’s best-known architect Dermot Bannon showcases some of the world’s most amazing homes and explores how people live around the globe. Dermot travels to Sweden, visiting a lodge and a hotel in Swedish Lapland and various houses and palaces in and around Stockholm. He discovers that rather than fighting against the darkness and the weather, Swedish design embraces them both, to enlightening results. 

Mark Kermode’s Oscar Winners: A Secrets of Cinema Special (BBC Four, 8pm) 

As the red carpet season reaches its climax, Mark turns his keen eye and sharp wit on past winners of the most prestigious awards of all in this documentary. What gave them the edge over their rivals? Mark shows, despite their apparent differences, that Oscar-winning films have more in common than you might think. Certain kinds of film recur – such as war, social justice and the all-singing, all-dancing extravaganza. However, Mark explains that it’s not just the choice of subject that counts, but how you treat it, and how that’s been the case since the Oscar’s early days until now. 

Allianz League Sunday (RTÉ 2, 9.30pm) 

Joanne Cantwell is joined by Brendan Cummins, Colm O’Rourke, Jackie Tyrell and Tomás Ó Sé for highlights and analysis of the weekend’s Allianz Football and Hurling league action. 


Or flick over for…


  • Ireland’s Got Talent (Virgin Media One, 7.20pm) The second series of the talent contest continues with host Lucy Kennedy supervising proceedings as more hopeful entertainers audition for judges Denise Van Outen, Jason Byrne, Michelle Visage and Louis Walsh.
  • Ireland’s Got Mór Talent (Virgin Media One, 8.20pm) Glenda Gilson and James Kavanagh present the extra show that supplements Ireland’s Got Talent. 
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past (RTÉ 2, 9pm) Sci-fi adventure in which the X-Men must fight across two periods of time to save the world from destruction. 
  • The Voice UK (Virgin Media One, 8.50pm) Emma Willis hosts and coaches Olly Murs, Tom Jones, Jennifer Hudson and sit in the famous red chairs.
  • The Greatest Dancer (BBC One, 7.10pm) It’s the final and time for the four finalists to take to the stage last time, before viewers at home vote for the £50,000 winners.


  • Nina Simone – Live at Montreux 1976 (TG4, 11pm) A powerful performance from Nina Simone, filmed in 1976 at the Montreux Jazz Festival. 
  • Attenborough and the Sea Dragon (RTÉ 2, 8.30pm) Documentary following David Attenborough as he attempts to animate the life of the ichthyosaur, whose 200-million-year-old fossil remains were found on Britain’s jurassic coast. 
  • A Wild Irish Year (RTÉ 2, 7.25pm) Series taking a view all across the country, from Ireland’s wild coasts, mountains and woodlands to farms, towns and cities.
  • The Syndicate (Virgin Media Three, 9pm) Drama series following a group of people who win a lotto jackpot in a syndicate. 
  • The Snapper (Virgin Media One, 9pm) Roddy Doyle’s very personal view of Dublin comes to screen once more with the story of 20-year-old Sharon Curley, who is taken advantage of by a neighbour while drunk, and finds herself pregnant as a result. 

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