Higher channels

January 8, 1999

John Davies focuses on radio and television programmes likely to be of use to THES readers. (All times pm unless stated.) Pick of the week Archaeology is doing well: last week both BBC2 and Channel 4 began series following digs. BBC2's Meet the Ancestors (Thursdays) concentrates on human remains - this week, it is a wealthy 4th-century Roman buried in Winchester. The longer-established Time Team (Sundays C4) is this week in a Cumbrian back garden full of Roman pottery. Meanwhile, its spin-off History Hunters (Saturday 4.10 C4) ends its series with a look at Burton Abbey, Staffs. Both are with Tony Robinson.

FRIDAY January 8 The World at War (4.00 History Channel). This rerun of Jeremy Isaacs's 25-year-old series about the second world war continues every weekday afternoon until the end of the month. Worth catching - and contrasting with Isaacs's current cold war series, due to resume in February.

SATURDAY January 9 What Makes Us Tick (6.50 BBC2). How our bodies perceive time. Part of BBC2's Time Season, which the same night also looks at time management in How to Beat the Clock (10.00) and Wells Cathedral's medieval clock in Clockwatch (10.00).

Cutting Edge Special: Trimble (8.00 C4). Documentary following the UUP leader through 1998.

The Brains Trust (8.55 R3). Visual arts professor Ludmilla Jordanova and theologian Angela Tilby join Theodore Zeldin, Ian Stewart and Joan Bakewell.

SUNDAY January 10 Time Team (5.30 C4). See above.

Victoriana (5.40 R4). Hull academic Theo Hoppen on the legacy of the Victorian class system.

Arthouse: Loving Lenin (7.30 C4). Angus McQueen's documentary examines the Lenin myth.

Hostage (8.30 C4). First of three-part series on the Beirut hostage crisis, including interviews with Terry Waite, Brian Keenan, John McCarthy, British and US diplomats and major figures in Hezbollah.

Shooting the Past (10.10 BBC2). Stephen Poliakoff's three-part drama, based on the Picture Post picture library, bought and later sold by the BBC.

The Sky at Night (1.40 am BBC1; 1.50 in Northern Ireland, 12.10 am in Wales). Patrick Moore talks to Ian Morison, co-ordinator of Britain's SETI (search for extra-terrestrial intelligence) efforts.

MONDAY January 11 Rosa Rust (11.00 am R4). Daughter of Daily Worker editor Bill Rust on living in Kazakhstan during the war.

Digital Planet: Cybertalk (7.00 BBC2). Second of series on how technology is changing the world.

In Business (8.30 R4). More cyberstuff. Here, Microsoft thinker Nathan Myhrvold talks to Peter Day.

Postscript: The Red Flag and the Red Mask (9.20 R3). In five post-concert programmes this week, Paul Neuberg considers the relationship between communism and the arts this century.

TUESDAY January 12 University Challenge (8.00 BBC2).

Perfect Babies (8.00 C5). First of three-part series looks at prospects for "designer babies", with Robert Winston and Harvard's Lee Silver.

Rat (9.0 C4). Film about the relationship between man and rat in New York.

Someone to Watch Over Me (10.40 ITV). Documentary about Munchausen syndrome by proxy.

Nightwaves (10.45 R3). Profile of English poet Geoffrey Hill, now a professor at Boston University.

WEDNESDAY January 13 Murder, Magic and Medicine (11.0 am R4). Series exploring medicine's "herbal and historical" roots.

THURSDAY January 14 Case History (8.00 R4) Roy Porter's medicine-meets-political-history series considers the part Anthony Eden's health played in the Suez Crisis.

Meet the Ancestors (9.00 BBC2). See above.

Fat Files: Fixing Fat (9.30 BBC2). The second of three Horizons about obesity and dieting looks at various drugs and "nutraceuticals" devised to help fat people lose weight - with unpleasant side-effects.

Nightwaves (10.45 R3). Includes preview of Darwin lectures in Cambridge, whose theme is the body.

E-mail: Davieses@aol.com

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