A new Channel 4 drama airing tonight will be shining a light on the undervalued carers who worked valiantly throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
Help, written by Jack Thorne, will be telling the tale of Sarah, played by Jodie Comer, a newly appointed carer who strives to protect her patients in a fictional Liverpool care home throughout the 2020 lockdowns. This is England star Stephen Graham plays one of the care home’s residents who is suffering from early onset Alzheimer’s.
An official synopsis reads: “A determined Sarah goes to extraordinary lengths to protect those in her care, whose conditions make their suffering and isolation all the more traumatic. But the staff’s unwavering commitment, compassion and heroic efforts can only do so much, and Sarah is pushed into a dark corner and desperately looks for a way out.”
A large part of the film will focus on a daunting night shift in which Sarah is left to run the care home alone and tend to patients struggling with the side effects of Covid, something that many care workers across the country will have had to endure.
Speaking of the particular scene at the show’s BFI launch, Comer said: “I think that big sequence was probably the most difficult for us all.
And Marc [Munden, the director] really pushed me on that, I remember there was a moment, we’d done this whole take and I was so in my own head and I was like, ‘I think we’ve got it,’ and Marc was like, ‘No, we’re going to do one more,’ and I was like, ‘Uhh, okay.’
“And we did it again, and the moments we got in that second take we never would have got in the first. And I think Marc was phenomenal at that, knowing when to push you that little bit more. That was probably the most difficult for all of us, because we had to huddle together and act as a team.”
Graham also noted that his role helped him to see carers in a different light, with him saying: “It takes a special kind of human being to be a carer. I’ve had children, had to change my children, wash and bathe them, that’s one thing. But to do that for an older person, someone who’s coming maybe towards the end of their life, you’re trying to make their days as comfortable as can be.
“For someone to do that day in, day out, and not just the practical but the humane aspect… You’re their source of the outside world, their communication. And this is what’s so beautiful about our story, we see [Sarah] come alive. Maybe she wasn’t the most gifted academically, maybe she wasn’t going to change the world with her brain, but she’s changing somebody’s life.”
Help airs tonight on Channel 4 at 9pm.
New Boiling Point series starring Stephen Graham already leaving viewers feeling ‘stressed’
One viewer said it gave them ‘heart palpitations’
The new BBC series Boiling Point is already leaving viewers feeling ‘stressed’ as they took to social media to share their thoughts on the tense Sunday night viewing.
The four-part series, starring Stephen Graham, kicked off last night (October 1st) and is a sequel to the 2021 feature film of the same name.
The story followed an ‘emotionally scarred London chef’ Andy Jones (Graham) as he struggled to get his team through a night of hell on the last Friday before Christmas. It ended with him collapsing on the floor.
Viewers watched on as it returned to screens last night in the spin-off, where tension in the kitchen already began to grow at the high class eatery, bubbling away like a pressure cooker set to high.
Original cast members were joined by new ones with Graham returning as Andy Jones. Meanwhile, Vinette Robinson reprised her role as Carly, Andy’s former number two.
The series picks up about six to eight months later with the pressure of running a kitchen now being on Carly – now head chef of her own London restaurant, Point North.
After having a heart attack, Andy loses his restaurant and is seen sitting at home swigging beer and moping around.
But Point North is where the tension-filled kitchen drama took place, as one viewer joked then tension was enough to give them ‘heart palpitations’.
The BBC said of the new Boiling Point series: “Carly, who was the sous chef for Jones & Sons is now the head chef and co-owner of her brand-new restaurant called Point North. She’s brought most of the team from Jones & Sons with her.
“The series touches on social issues and things that are going on in the world, but it also really hones in on these individual characters and what they’re going through.”
Rushing to social media – apparently after a ‘lie down’ – viewers shared their levels of stress just from watching the first episode.
One person said: “I’m having to lie down. That first episode was bringing on palpitations. High stress, brilliant show.” Another wrote: “Wanting to watch Boiling Point but know it will cause stress, trailer was intense – wow!”
A third added: “Too manic for a Sunday night, may watch another time but trying to relax after long day at work (in hospitality) then that’s making you stressed just watching it. Back to the nature programmes for now.”
While a fourth typed: “BBC Boiling Point is most definitely not light Sunday viewing. I feel stressed just watching – maybe the news will be more relaxing!”
And a firth penned: “This so far has been 43 minutes of too much stress.” Another viewer added: “Getting stressed out just watching the kitchen staff in Boiling Point.”
You can watch Boiling Point now on BBC iPlayer.
Paul O’Grady wins posthumous National TV Award six months after his passing
A well deserved win
Comedian Paul O’Grady has won a National Television Award after passing away six months ago.
The late star was given the posthumous award at the ceremony, held on September 5th, for his popular show For the Love of Dogs.
The beloved TV personality, who was famous for his alter-ego Lily Savage, won over Clarkson’s Farm, Sort Your Life Out and The Martin Lewis Money Show Live, in the factual entertainment category.
Battersea Dogs and Cats Home representatives accepted the award on O’Grady’s behalf.
They were accompanied by a rescue dog, who even gave its own hilarious tribute to the star as it began barking during the acceptance speech from Shaun Opperman, Veterinary Director at Battersea.
Mr Opperman said: “I would like to thank Paul, of course, and the ITV team… for shining a light on the care that we’re able to provide for the 100 or more dogs and cats that come to Battersea every week.
“I know that Paul cared deeply for each and every one of those animals. I think that something about their plight and their vulnerability really struck a chord with Paul. He often referred to Battersea as his second home.”
In a post on O’Grady’s Instagram page, a representative for the late star from Birkenhead wrote: “We wanted to take a moment to extend our heartfelt thanks to everyone who voted for ‘Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs’ at the NTAs.
“Your support means the world to us, and it’s a true testament to the incredible work @paulogrady has done for dogs and all animals.
“We couldn’t have done it without your unwavering support. It’s a moment of celebration not only for us but for all those furry friends who benefit from Paul’s dedication and passion.
“So, here’s to @paulogrady and his tireless efforts in making the world a better place for our beloved animals. We raise a glass in his honor and look forward to continuing our mission to help those in need.
“Thank you once again for your votes and for being a part of our journey.”
Everyone’s favourite duo Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly, aka Ant and Dec, won the best TV presenter accolade for the 22nd consecutive time.
The pair said they are the ‘luckiest two men on telly’ in their acceptance speech, with McPartlin adding that they will continue to present together for ‘as long as you want us to’.
Hit BBC series Happy Valley, written by Sally Wainwright, was among the other big winners on the night. The hit three-part series bagged the returning drama prize.
Star of the show, actress Sarah Lancashire, also won best drama performance for her portrayal of Sergeant Catherine Cawood, ahead of her co-star James Norton, as well as Queen Charlotte’s India Amarteifio, Vera’s Brenda Blethyn and Call The Midwife’s Judy Parfitt.
Speaking to the audience, Lancashire said she ‘adored every scene’ of Happy Valley and ‘will never forget it’.
Married At First Sight UK reveals start date for brand new series
This looks like a good one!
The new series of Married At First Sight is returning to TV screens this month.
Fans of the E4 reality show can have their fill of the popular dating show which is set to return to screens sooner rather than later, on September 18th.
Fourteen brides and grooms will head to the altar in the hope of meeting their perfect match.
The new group of singles agree to marry a partner chosen for them by a team of relationship experts, Charlene Douglas, Paul C Brunson and Mel Schilling.
Set to be the longest running series yet, there will be an added six shows for fans to indulge in all the drama for a bit longer.
And if that’s not enough, this year will see a star from Geordie Shore as well as the first transgender contestant taking part in the search for marital bliss.
From Geordie Shore to MAFS UK, Nathaniel Valentino, 36, an events marketing manager with a jet-set lifestyle, is always on the move.
Perhaps a difficult one for the experts to match, Nathaniel says: “I don’t trust anyone but myself, but I hope they’ve done a good job that’s all I can say.”
Ella Ding will make history for the show being its first transgender bride.
Ella, 29, who lives with her nan, says they make the dynamic duo everyone needs.
Hopeful in meeting ‘the one’, Ella said: “This experiment is so much more than just me getting married. I see this as a big deal for someone who has transitioned.”
After the ceremony and celebrations are over, true love is well and truly put to the test, as the newlyweds will embark on a luxurious honeymoon, before moving in with each other AND their fellow couples.