TV & radio: what to tune in to next week (28 October-3 November 2017)

Can't decide which shows to watch or listen to next week? Here are 10 programmes you won't want to miss...

The Balfour Declaration. (Image Credit: BBC/Oren Rosenfeld)

The Balfour Declaration. (Image Credit: BBC/Oren Rosenfeld)

 
Gunpowder
BBC One
Saturday 28 October, 9.10pm
 
In the second instalment of the historical drama, the king's network of spies close in on Catesby and Wintour as they attempt to raise an army for their plot across mainland Europe. This episode follows Catesby as he assembles his men, arriving in London with Guy Fawkes to plan an assault on their target: the opening of Parliament on 5 November.
 
 
 
Harry Potter: A History of Magic
BBC Two
Saturday 28 October, 9.00pm 
 
As an exhibition of the same name arrives at the British Library, this standalone episode goes behind the scenes of the exhibits, exploring the real-life history and inspiration behind JK Rowling’s fantastical world. Expect Elizabethan invisibility spells and the real-life search for the Philosopher's Stone, with interviews and insight from Rowling herself, as well as cast members from the films.
 
 
Harry Potter: A History of Magic. (Image Credit: BBC/Tom Hayward)
 
 
When Greeks Flew Kites
Radio 4
Sunday 29 October 1.30pm
 
The October edition of the history series sees Sarah Dunant taking a contemporary anxiety as a starting point for a journey into the past. At a time when lengthening life-expectancy brings increasing pressure on our modern society and the older generation searches for a place within it, Dunant considers the age-old question of old age.
 
 
 
The Last Post
BBC One
Sunday 29 October, 9.00pm
 
The penultimate episode of the 1960s-set drama. The NLF want to make a trade. Alison watches over Ed, feeling conflicted over their marriage. Yusra smuggles a coded message to Armstrong, and Joe goes against his orders.
 
 
 
Comedy Club: 40 Years Of The News Quiz
Radio 4 EXTRA
Sunday 29 October 10.00pm
 
A look back at the funniest, most controversial and downright delightful moments from the last 40 years of The News Quiz. Miles Jupp presents.
 
 
 
Living with the Gods
Radio 4 
Tuesday 31 October, 9.45am
 
Neil MacGregor’s latest series continues, considering artefacts that shed light on humanity’s quest for meaning. In Tuesday’s episode, MacGregor focuses on how societies and communities seek to protect the newly-born and their mothers. Other topics this week include our relationships with the natural world and the dead.
 
 
Gunpowder. (Image Credit: BBC / Kudos)
 
 
Composer of the week: Edward Elgar
Radio 3
Monday 30 October, 12.00pm
 
Donald Macleod explores the life and career of Edward Elgar through the lens of his muses - his love interests, and some of his greatest friends. In the first episode of five, Donald explores the impact that Elgar's family, his family friends and Helen Weaver - an early love interest - had on his life and his work. 
 
 
 
Elizabeth I's Secret Agents
BBC Two
Monday 30 October, 9.00pm
 
Who were the spies that ran Elizabeth I’s secret network to destroy her enemies? Considering a world of ruthless manoeuvres and battles for control in the royal circle, episode two examines the rival network that has been established by the Earl of Essex, who is trying to oust Cecil as Elizabeth's spymaster as the sun begins to set on the queen’s reign.
 
 

Pick of the week

The Balfour Declaration: Britain's Promise To The Holy Land
BBC Two
Tuesday 31 October, 9pm
 
A programme to mark the legacy of the Balfour Declaration, the first time the British government endorsed the establishment of ‘a national home for the Jewish people’ in Palestine. BBC reporter Jane Corbin has watched the declaration’s legacy unfold over the last 30 years, charting conflict on both sides. She also shares her personal connection to the history; one of her own ancestors, Leo Amery, a British politician and cabinet minister, played a key part in drafting the original declaration.
 
 
 
Eight Days that Made Rome
Channel 5
Friday 3 November, 9.00pm
 
As the series continues, Bettany Hughes recalls eight pivotal days that defined the Roman Empire and its establishment as the world's first superpower. The main focus of episode two is the Spartacus revolt, exploring the context for this uprising and examining the shocking realities of Roman slavery.
 
 
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