INDIA is always somewhere I’ve wanted to visit, but I’ve been put off by friends who’ve returned with stories of just how shocking the poverty is, and of the heart-wrenching sight of tiny children begging on the street. I think this old softie would return with an overdraft that had trebled in size.
So I’m going to do some more armchair travelling with India on Four Wheels (BBC2, Friday August 26, 9pm). In the second part of this documentary, Anita Rani is in Mumbai – home to both the stars of the country’s glitzy Bollywood industry, but also some of the world’s largest slums. Justin Rowlatt explores the effect that fossil fuel use is having on India’s environment, before meeting up with Anita at their final stop, the huge port of Chennai.
> They provided the soundtrack to a thousand seductions, but with the era of hairy chests and medallions long gone, it’s hard to imagine anyone trying to woo a laydee with this sort of music nowadays. Kings of 70s Romance (BBC4, Friday August 26, 10.50pm) looks at the hits of Barry White, Leo Sayer and Gilbert O’Sullivan,
While teenage girls were screaming for Donny Osmond and David Cassidy, these alternative heart-throbs enabled millions of female fans to escape the drudgery of everyday life. With contributions by Gloria Hunniford and Martha Kearney.
> The little-known story of the Jewish lawyer who cross-examined Hitler during the trial of a group of Nazi thugs in 1931 - and paid the ultimate price is told in Hans Litten v Adolf Hitler (BBC 2 August 27, 8-9pm). The documentary asks what drove a young prosecutor with his whole career ahead of him to challenge fascism so directly and force the future leader of Germany to account for his actions and politics. Including archive interviews with Litten’s friends and family, plus contributions from legal experts and historians.
> Still with World War II and actor David Jason examines wartime escapes that inspired films and TV dramas in David Jason’s Great Escapes (ITV August 28, 8-9pm). He begins his journey in Germany at Colditz Castle, where William Neave tells how his father Airey fled dressed as a German soldier. Jason then heads to Poland to visit the setting for The Great Escape, where former Stalag Luft III internee Ken Rees describes how he helped dig the tunnel immortalised on the big screen. In France, David meets a woman who sheltered an escaped Briton - and learns how a love story developed.
> More nostalgia, but this time Fearne Cotton and Reggie Yates introduce coverage of the main stage performance by recently re-formed Britpop stars Pulp in Pulp@Reading (BBC3 August 27 (8.45-10.30pm). Having split in 2002, Jarvis Cocker and his band - including violinist Russell Senior, who had left in 1996 - reunited to play a series of gigs earlier this year, and their Reading set is rumoured to feature several of their most popular songs from throughout their career.
> The excellent Bill Nighy stars as Johnny Worricker, a long-serving MI5 officer whose boss and best friend dies suddenly, leaving behind a file that threatens the stability of the organisation in Page Eight (BBC2 August 28, 9-10.40pm). Meanwhile, a seemingly chance encounter with Johnny’s political-activist neighbour Nancy Pierpan seems too good to be true, and he is forced to walk out of his job to uncover the truth. Spy drama written and directed by David Hare, also starring Rachel Weisz, Michael Gambon, Ralph Fiennes and Judy Davis.
David Jason’s Greatest EscapesSunday 28 August
8:00pm - 9:00pm
The actor examines wartime escapes that inspired films and TV dramas. He begins his journey in Germany at Colditz Castle, where William Neave tells how his father Airey fled dressed as a German soldier. He then heads to Poland to visit the setting for The Great Escape, where former Stalag Luft III internee Ken Rees describes how he helped dig the tunnel immortalised on the big screen. In France, David meets a woman who sheltered an escaped Briton - and learns how a love story developed.
The Field of BloodMonday 29 August
10:15pm - 11:15pm
Part one of two. Lowly newspaper employee Paddy Meehan dreams of becoming an investigative reporter, and spots a chance to prove herself by getting to the bottom of a high-profile murder case. However, she discovers her cousin is the prime suspect and is forced to choose between her ambitions and her family. Adaptation of Denise Mina’s thriller, set in Glasgow in 1982, starring Jayd Johnson, Jonas Armstrong, Peter Capaldi, David Morrissey and Ford Kiernan.
Soho Blues Monday 29 August
9:00pm - 10:00pm
1/6, series 2
New series. Return of the series following police and paramedics in London’s West End. Officers raid a suspected fraudster’s luxury penthouse flat, a methadone user’s belongings are stolen and the `booze bus’ - an ambulance that deals solely with drunk people - patrols the streets looking for revellers who have partied a little too hard.
Donor Mum: The Children I’ve Never MetTuesday 30 August
10:35pm - 11:30pm
The story of one of Britain’s first anonymous egg donors as she ponders whether to make contact with the recipient, who went on to have twins, and considers the likely consequences. Having discovered the identity of the children’s mother through a newspaper report, she has been distressed to see them grow up as strangers, even though they are genetically hers.