Sally-Anne Stewart’s TV Preview: 09.09.11

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IT seems unbelievable that the 9/11 attacks took place 10 years ago. I’m sure everyone can remember where they were when the news came through.

A fresh-out-of-university Gossip Girl was about to leave home for a job interview in London, and was engrossed in the TV coverage when the taxi arrived to take me to the station.

Standing on the platform, people were glancing at each other uneasily, while those as yet unaware of what had happened had an entirely different demeanour.

I’ll always think of it as a post-university wake up call – welcome to the real world, where truly awful things can happen.

Coverage of the anniversary this weekend comes in a variety of forms. 9/11 Conspiracy Road Trip (BBC3, Friday September 9, 8pm) sees comedian Andrew Maxwell meeting five Brits who subscribe to the conspiracy theories born from the attacks.

He takes them on a tour of the sites targeted on that fateful morning, in an attempt to convince them that the blame really does lie with Al-Qaeda.

Newsnight: The 9/11 Decade (BBC2, Friday September 9, 10.30pm) sees Kirsty Wark in New York to examine the legacy of the terrorist atrocity, meeting political and cultural figures who give their views on the past decade.

Children of 9/11 (Channel 4, Sunday September 11, 9pm) looks to be the big tear-jerker, though.

It follows 11 children who lost parents in 9/11, with the youngsters sharing their memories of what happened that day, and talking about what it’s been like growing up in the shadow of the attacks.

> On to lighter things now. I don’t know much about Doris Day, but during a late night drive home from somewhere or other not so long ago, I was transfixed by a song I heard on Radio 2, which turned out to be one of her hits.

I can’t remember what the song was, but the quality of her singing has stayed with me.

Legends: Doris Day: Virgin Territory (BBC4, Friday September 9, 9pm) is a profile of the star, whose films included Calamity Jane and Pillow Talk.

It’s followed by The Doris Day Special (BBC4, Friday September 9, 10pm), her 1971 variety show in which she performs a selection of her hits, with special guests.

> And back to the gloom. Tsunami: The Survivors’ Stories (BBC1, Monday September 12, 8.30pm) sees Paul Kenyon visiting Japan six months on from the earthquake and tsunami that devastated parts of the country.

He meets people returning to visit the homes in the area surrounding the Fukushima nuclear plant.

> As the French aren’t renowned for being fond of us, it must be pretty galling to have 20,000 English folk living in the Dordogne region

Little England (ITV1, Monday September 12, 8pm) is a new 12-part series following the lives of the ex-pats, which include a couple who run a mobile fish and chip business.

> If the luxury that the royal family live in really gets you riled, perhaps you’d better not watch this next pick.

The Queen’s Palaces (BBC1, Monday September 12, 9pm) sees Fiona Bruce getting the lowdown on the royal residences. She starts with Buckingham Palace (which I personally think is a rather unattractive lump of a building) exploring its history which apparently includes a home for camels and elephants.