Supermarket-based comedy Superstore is starting to look a little long in the tooth, as most sitcoms are by the time they get to their fifth season. While not as regularly roll-off-my-sofa funny as it used to be, though, it’s still capable of plenty. The characters are brilliantly-drawn, the cast is fantastic, the humour (both visual and otherwise) is barbed and still occasionally hilarious, and the writing, while lighthearted on the surface, is quietly brave and determined, with issues like unionisation, health care, maternity rights and immigration deftly woven in to the fabric of the show. The s4 episode with the ICE raid just about broke me. I’m not sure ITV2 are as fond of it as I am, given the consistently contemptuous way they’ve always scheduled it, though. The past few seasons and the first half of season 5, it’s been tucked away at 8.30pm every weeknight where only the very determined can find it and record it (ITV player only keeps the eps for 7 days so that’s as useful as a chocolate teapot as well) but ITV2 have obviously decided even that’s too dignified for the second half of s5, so we’re up to 2 episodes a night, starting tomorrow (Tuesday) at 8pm, and taking a break on Friday, because why not? Will it be on next Monday? Or start on Tuesday again? Who knows. Anyway, repeats of s5 eps 9 and 10 are on tonight (8pm and 8.30) if you want to remind yourself of the lovely, yet crushing way the first half of the season ended, before we find out what happens next tomorrow.
From one less than respectful scheduling decision to a couple of equally speaking ones, meanwhile, although they’re not saying quite the same things. Lockdown and the pause in new production has meant the BBC digging into its vaults and pulling out a lot of its vintage jewels for everyone to have another look at instead. This is sometimes a little bittersweet: I mean, BBC2 has started re-running season 1 of Heroes in double-bills on Sunday nights. And s1-4 are all on the iPlayer. OMG. Save the Cheerleader, Save the World! Remember how awesome and how popular that show was at first? And remember how things changed? If we’re looking for pointed scheduling decisions, the series finale (I don’t recognise that Reborn business and nobody can make me) going out as a double bill very late on a Saturday night after the snooker tells you all you need to know about that. But if remembering how high Heroes soared before its plummet from grace is a little sad for those of us who might still carry a torch for Peter Petrelli, early adopters of Jed Mercurio’s police corruption drama Line of Duty are in a much happier position. Starting out on BBC2 in 2012, it’s only become more and more popular. It’s not like it’s difficult to get hold of, either. The fourth and fifth seasons made it on to the hallowed screens of BBC1. Seasons 1-4 are on Netflix. And every single ep ever made is on iPlayer at the moment. But if the BBC want to give the first season a lap of honour on Monday and Tuesday nights on BBC1 (starting 9pm tonight), who am I to tell them no? They might even get Jed to watch it.