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TV Review: Criminal shortage of jokes in cop caper

Top Coppers on BBC 3. Just needs some genuinely funny jokes

Reviewed:  Top Coppers (Wednesday, BBC3); The Gleneagle (Sunday, RTÉ One); Madam Secretary (Thursday, Sky Living); Soccer Republic (Monday, RTÉ2)

It may be on TV's equivalent of death row, but BBC 3 continues to be the test lab for new comedy on the Beeb. Most of them don't get any further than getting viewed by friends, family and the odd straggler before heading directly to TV Heaven without passing through BBC One or Two, but notable exceptions include Little Britain, Gavin & Stacey, Two Pints . . . , The Mighty Boosh, Him & Her and Russell Howard's Good News.

A couple of ...

On the Box - Weekly TV Preview

Jon Voight and Liev Schreiver in Ray Donovan

John Byrne’s TV choices for the week ahead (Dates covered: Saturday Aug 22-Friday 28)

It's hello to Marvel's Agent Carter, The Strain and Resistance, and goodbye to The Gleneagle, Witnesses and Melissa & Joey as the summer season continues to wind down.

Pick of the week

Ray Donovan, Wednesday, Sky Atlantic

This hard-boiled drama has really taken on a life of its own in this dizzying third season. What started out as the latest Sopranos wannabe has developed its own unique tale and at times it's as good as anything else on that wonderful box we call ...

TV Review: Saturday night's alright but angry animals lack bite

Cilla Black

John Byrne checks out a new US drama about killer animals, a history of Saturday Night TV, a Cilla Black compilation, and the latest comic offering from the BBC.

Reviewed:  Zoo (Sunday, Sky 1); The Saturday Night Story (Saturday, UTV Ireland); Cilla at the BBC (Sunday, BBC 4); Mountain Goats (Friday, BBC One)

Pilots can be incredibly misleading. I remember watching the first episode of The River, the 2012 paranormal/horror/found-footage drama starring Bruce Greenwood as an explorer looking for magic in the Amazon. It was amazing, but the second episode was poor. By episode four it was a ...

The Rose of Tralee host Dáithí O Sé

On the Box - TV Preview

John Byrne's TV choices for the week ahead (Dates covered: Saturday Aug 15-Friday 21)

The race is on to find this year's Rose of Tralee

Live Blog: Rose of Tralee

Join us later this evening for all the fun and madness from this year's Rose of Tralee as it happens.

Colin Farrell in True Detective

TV Review: True Detective bows out with a whimper

John Byrne looks back on the season two finale of True Detective, a new post-apocalyptic US comedy, and surrenders to a Frank Sinatra double bill on BBC 4.

It's goodbye to Glee and Lea Michele

On the Box - TV Preview

John Byrne's TV choices for the week ahead (Dates covered: Saturday August 8 - Friday August 14)

Ripper Street stars Jerome Flynn, Matthew Macfadyen and Adam Rothenberg

TV Review: a mixed bag of three dramas from the Beeb

It's a BBC drama special as John Byrne checks out the return of Ripper Street, the latest Agatha Christie adaptation and a new thriller as it reaches its conclusion.

Ripper Street is back!

On the Box - Weekly TV Preview

Got the summertime blues? Here are John Byrne's TV choices for the week ahead (Dates covered: Saturday Jul 25-Friday Jul 30)

Ray Donovan's Jon Voight and Liev Schreiber

TV Review: Ensemble tour de force and Porkies for posh people

The LA underbelly, cynical consultants, an incompetent private eye, a golf geezer, Jerry Lee Lewis and ageing ballroom dancers - it's been a busy TV week for John Byrne.