Britain’s Got Talent ITV1, Tuesday 7.30pm & 9.30pm
If last night’s instalment is anything to go by, the actual quality of the acts in this year’s BGT is well down on previous years. The only reason I’m listing tonight’s live semi-final is because the cast of Shrek: The Musical, including BGT judge Amanda Holden, will be performing a number from the show.
Lead Balloon BBC2, Tuesday 10pm
A new series of the deadpan comedy with Jack Dee as bad-tempered comedian Rick Spleen. All the regular supporting cast return, including the peerless Raquel Cassidy as Spleen’s long-suffering wife.
Roger & Val Have Just Got In Gold, Wednesday 10pm
Don’t think of this masterpiece from Hugo Blick (The Shadow Line), first shown on the BBC last year, as a sitcom — more an acutely observed play broadcast in six parts. It’s a portrait of a couple whose lives are haunted by a tragedy from their past. There are plenty of laughs, mainly from recognition of the sort of habits everybody picks up after years of living together, but it’s the realities of life that will suck you in. Wonderful performances from Dawn French and Alfred Molina make this unmissable if you haven’t seen it before.
Welly Telly - the Countryside on Television BBC4, Thursday 8pm
One of the things that BBC4 does well is navel-gazing at the history of television. Here, the subject is coverage of rural issues — currently undergoing a resurgence with Country File doing good ratings in a primetime Sunday evening slot.
Talking Funny Sky Atlantic, Thursday 10.15pm
Comedians Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Louis CK and Ricky Gervais discuss their craft. Personally, the first three sell it to me, while the fourth puts me off a little — but an intelligent discussion of working in the entertainment industry ensues which should be of interest to all.