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The week in UAE TV: June 21-27

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It’s this time of year that you remember why you have a TV in the house. Settling down with this lot for an evening is way better than another trip to the mall.

The Series: True Detective (season 2 episode 1)
When: Monday 22, 23:00
Start of the second season of the acclaimed series and hit of last summer, showing at the same time here as it does in the US. We’ll have a brand new story and new cast, led by Vince Vaughn and Colin Farrell, investigating a violent crime with asides of dark cod-philosophy (“we get the world we deserve”) and brooding stares. Even if it’s only half as good as last year’s it will still be twice as good an anything else on TV this week.
Channel: OSN First

Reality TV: Is Your Dog a Genius? (episode 2, Doggy See Doggy Do)
When: Tuesday 23, 21:10
Short answer, no. Longer answer, still no. But this is a weirdly fun programme about canine intelligence and while the first episode was all explanation and set up, this second instalment has little tricks to help train a dog. We doubt your pet will become a genius as a result but there’s some genuine science here as to why your canine does certain thing and how you can train them to be a bit smarter. Or just stop chewing your trainers.
Channel: NatGeo Wild

Classic film: The Shawshank Redemption
When: Wednesday 24, 23:00
Of all the films listen on the IMdB website, this has the highest user rating (9.2) so can lay a decent claim to be the most beloved film of all time. For a film that’s often considered a feel-good movie it’s far darker and more violent than most people remember and you have to get through a lot of Shawshank before you get to the Redemption, but the payoff is beautiful and delivers an emotional punch even on repeated viewing.
Channel: MBC Max

Series: Backstrom (season 1, episode 1)
When: Wednesday 24, 23:00
The first episode of a new comedy/drama series with Rainn Wilson (Dwight from The Office) as a grumpy detective in Portland, Oregon. It’s based on the Swedish book series – as many detective shows tend to be these days – but there are only 13 episodes in total, so if this pilot episode grabs you it won’t be a long journey and it’s a diverting take on the tired genre backed with some lovely scenery and witty put downs.
Channel: OSN First

Comedy: Stewart Lee Comedy Vehicle (episode 3, Political Correctness)
When: Friday 26, 00:00
It’s worth staying up until midnight on Thursday to see Stewart Lee talk about political correctness. For many, he’s the most “right on” comedian on the circuit with a take-it-or-leave-it style, but this treatise of being PC is not only funny it’s the brilliant rebuttal to all those who have ever said something is “PC gone mad”. Intelligent, knowing and perceptive, this burst of righteous invective is an example of why he’s a social commentator as much as a comedian.
Channel: BBC Entertainment

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