The Improbable Murderer to Space Titans: The Seven Best Shows To Air This Week | TV & radio


Choice of the week

The unlikely murderer

Stig in the dumps … The unlikely murderer. Photography: Netflix

Netflix, from Friday November 5
Stable and stoic Sweden seems an unlikely place for political assassination. But in 1986, the shooting of Prime Minister Olof Palme sparked one of the biggest police investigations in the country’s history – and for years it came to next to nothing. This dark thriller tells the story of the murder and the aftermath. Was the murder due to Palme’s opposition to apartheid? Why was a petty criminal initially convicted? Was the murderer hiding in plain sight from the start? Robert Gustafsson plays the devious and shy Stig Engström, a seemingly innocuous witness to the crime who rose to prominence because of his criticism of the investigation, but later became the prime suspect.


Angels of the North

Hair today ... Angels of the North.
Hair today … Angels of the North. Photograph: Paul Mari / BBC / Twenty Six 03

BBC Three, from Sunday October 31
Return to Gateshead for another series retracing the exploits of Sammyjo, Saffron and the other inhabitants of the Longlox super salon. There has been a pandemic since we last spent time with the crew but, based on their relentless buzz, you wouldn’t know. Tonight we meet Kallie’s boxing boyfriend, Ewan, who is training for his first big fight; Jade does her first piercing; and Sammyjo decided to build a Barbie doll as a tribute to his staff. “It didn’t quite go as planned,” she admits. “They look like domineers.


The premise

Moral labyrinth ... The Premise.
Moral labyrinth … The Premise. Photograph: Alyssa Moran / FX

Disney +, from Wednesday October 3
Creator BJ Novak (Ryan Howard of The Office US) describes this standalone comedy anthology series as “half-hour movies.” The idea is that everyone will explore – sometimes poignantly, sometimes with tortured awkwardness – modern moral dilemmas. In the opening episode, a deeply embarrassing sex tape appears, and she also accidentally captures an incident of police brutality against a black man. Will the star of the band allow his shame to be broadcast for the greater good? Lightweight, but not without some entertaining ideas.


Narcos: Mexico

Cartel wars ... Narcos: Mexico.
Cartel wars … Narcos: Mexico. Photography: Juan Rosas / Netflix

Netflix, from Friday, October 5
Nature hates emptiness. Especially when it comes to drug lords. Removing one ruthless criminal organization from circulation simply makes room for another. And so it is in the final season of this exalted criminal adventure – the guns get bigger and bigger and the illicit profits more and more extraordinary as Joaquín “El Chapo” Fuentes and Amado Carrillo Fuentes arrive on the scene. While still thrilling and visceral as ever, Narcos never fails to explore the moral corruption risked by law enforcement officers and journalists entering this brutal world.


Space titans

Rocket Man ... Elon Musk.
Rocket Man … Elon Musk. Photograph: Joe Skipper / Reuters

Discovery +, from Thursday 4 November
According to this documentary, “2021 will be the year billionaires went to space”. Well, that among a few other things. This film traces the SpaceX side missions of Elon Musk, Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin as they seek to explore (or colonize, depending on your perspective) space. The trio’s missions seem both comedic and deep, and Space Titans never really delves into the absurdity of rich men doing weird things just because they can. But he wonders about their motivations: are they altruistic efforts, vain projects or, as it seems most likely, a bit of both?


Dickinson

The writing stuff ... Dickinson.
The writing stuff … Dickinson. Photography: apple

Apple TV +, starting Friday, November 5
“Civil war ruins everything! The final season of this periodically successful but at times clumsy attempt to relocate Emily Dickinson’s life to the modern teen drama format finds the young literary icon (Hailee Steinfeld) struggling with family divisions and the traumatic convulsions of the Civil War. American. This chaos, however, helps loosen the corsets of her stifling domestic life: Emily soon has no choice but to embrace various forms of liberation. Sometimes too self-reflective for his own good, but unmistakably himself.


Gloria

Spy games ... Glória.
Spy games … Glória. Photography: Netflix

Netflix, starting friday
Netflix’s first Portuguese original drama is a tense, twisty spy thriller set at the height of the Cold War. From the small village of Glória do Ribatejo, an American broadcasting center known as RARET broadcasts Western propaganda to the Eastern Bloc. But is the institution fully secure? It turns out that a microcosmic version of the US-Soviet battle for hearts and minds is playing out within its walls, as KGB secret agent João Vidal (Miguel Nunes) secretly confronts CIA agent from Stephanie Vogt, Anne O’Brien Wilson.


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