What’s available on-demand on Freeview? Keep up-to-date with our weekly catch-up TV column, including reviews of shows on ITV Hub, new releases on All 4 and a guide to My5.
(For BBC TV reviews and round-ups, see our weekly Best of BBC iPlayer column. Or for reviews of the shows on All 4’s Walter Presents, click here.)
SAS: Who Dares Wins (All 4)
“Every human is breakable,” declares ex-Special Forces soldier Ant Middleton at the start of the third season SAS: Who Dares Wins. “We’re looking for those are hardest to crack.”
It’s a mission statement that has been put to the test fully by Channel 4’s reality TV show, which grabs a bunch of willing manly male men, whisks them away to Morocco’s Atlas mountains, and puts them through a recreation of the SAS’s brutal selection process. It’s a test of physical, psychological and emotional strength. The show is reliably gut-churning in its pursuit of examining the former – it makes I’m a Celebrity… on ITV look like the fluffy celebrity fest that it is – but this third run sees the latter becoming a growing focus. In an age where masculinity has turned toxic in so many regards, this is an important study of what many perceive to be the core of masculinity: toughness and resilience. What a rewarding, and moving, sight it is, then, to see one of the series’ contestants, Dan Cross, open up and talk about the traumatic death of his wife several years ago. Toughness and resilience doesn’t mean burying feelings – here’s hoping SAS: Who Dares Wins increasingly rewards those who dare to remind us of that.
Available until: 6th March 2018 (Episode 1)
This military drama from The History Channel first aired at the start of 2017, taking almost exactly 12 months to arrive on British shores. With Channel 5’s Spike now picking up the rights in the UK, it’s easy to see why it took so long to find a home. The show follows the lives and missions of SEAL Team Six, a fictional counterpart to the Navy SEALS. We begin in Afghanistan, with a promising action sequence that introduces us to the team, led by Rip Taggart (Walton Goggins). Fast forward two years, and Rip is working for money in Nigeria, only to find himself part of a kidnapping by Boko Haram that targets a small school, its pupils and a teacher. It falls to the rest of Rip’s team to band together and rescue him. Of course, there’s history between all of these men, after a questionable decision by Rip all those years ago, and the show does well to portray the solidarity, trust and frustration that goes into a tightly-knit armed force. But while the series’ direction is adept in the field, the script fires blanks when our boys are back home, sabotaging the whole mission with a damaging payload of poorly written personal drama, generic characters and cheesy cliches – a little less conversation and a little more action, and this could be an entertaining, if undemanding watch. As it stands, SIX is closer to a THREE.
Available until: 18th February 2018
Yianni: Supercar Customiser (UKTV Play)
Wrapping is an increasingly popular for car owners looking to give their vehicle a new look without making the leap into permanent paint job territory – literally wrapping the car in vinyl, it’s a reversible, but no less vivid, way to mix up your car’s colour. Kind of wrapping? That just might be Yianni Charalambous. The car customiser is something of a social media and YouTube star, and now, he makes the jump to traditional TV with a new show on Dave. We follow him and his team, as they race to meet tough orders and even tougher deadlines, from one car dealer who needs a blue BMW i8 turned from blue to dragon red, to another who wants her Ferrari given an extra touch of black to give it some attitude. The fact that she’s a returning customer is telling in itself, and Yianni spends as much time making sure that her order is turned around within her required 24 hours as he does push his team to meet the week-long timeframe for his new customer – as a dealership owner, someone who can also become a source of repeat business. The programme uses that deadline to give the whole thing a slick pace, careful not to outstay its welcome at under 30 minutes. The result is 2018’s answer to Pimp My Ride, an intriguing insight into what it takes to rework a supercar – particularly for petrol-heads, this show’s target audience – but also a look at what it takes to be a social media star in the modern age: dedication, a commitment to customer satisfaction and a healthy dose of charisma. Episodes air weekly on Wednesdays, but the full box set is all available to view now.
Available on UK TV Play