The C&TH Culture Radar: What To Watch, Read and Listen To This Week

Culture /

What's new on Netflix and beyond

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Forever wondering what to watch on Netflix, BBC iPlayer and Amazon Prime? Always keeping your ears pricked for word of new podcasts? Can’t decide what to read next? Welcome to our culture radar, which we’ll regularly update with recommendations for what to watch, read and listen to each week.

This week we’re watching: Bloodlands, the gritty new BBC crime drama from Jed Mercurio, the man behind Line of Duty and Bodyguard.

What To Watch, Read and Listen To This Week


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  • The Wild Track by Peggy Reynolds

    READ: The Wild Track, Margaret Reynolds

    Looking for a personal, immersive read to get you through the last stretch of the toughest lockdown measures? This is it. Margaret Reynolds is a former BBC broadcaster, academic, writer and critic, and her new book The Wild Track is part memoir, part exploration of what drives a woman to become a mother.


  • Behind Her Eyes

    WATCH: Behind Her Eyes

    Netflix thriller Behind Her Eyes sees a single mother enter a world of twisted mind games when she begins an affair with her psychiatrist – while secretly striking up a friendship with his wife.


  • Bloodlands

    WATCH: Bloodlands

    Line of Duty writer Jed Mercurio is behind new four-part crime thriller Bloodlands, set in Northern Ireland and starring James Nesbitt and Charlene McKenna.




  • LISTEN: The Georgette Heyer BBC Radio Drama Collection

    Switch off the news and luxuriate in the release of over 50 Georgette Heyer titles in audio by Penguin Random House.


  • Under a White Sky

    READ: Under a White Sky, Elizabeth Kolbert

    Elizabeth Kolbert’s Under a White Sky examines whether humans’ interference in nature can reverse the damage they initially caused.


  • Free Britney

    WATCH: Framing Britney Spears

    The documentary everyone’s been talking about, Framing Britney Spears, debuts in the UK tonight. Produced by the New York Times, the documentary charters the singers meteoric rise to fame, looking at how the media has treated her and the #FreeBritney movement, which relates to her court-approved conservatorship.

    Available to stream on NOW TV

  • Soulmates

    WATCH: Soulmates

    Black Mirror meets Married at First Sight in new sci-fi series Soulmates, which imagines a future where new technology can identify your ideal romantic partner.

    Amazon Prime

  • Sarah Raven

    LISTEN: Grow, Eat, Arrange

    Up your gardening game with our erstwhile gardening columnist Sarah Raven’s new podcast.

    Listen here

  • The Travel Diaries

    LISTEN: The Travel Diaries with Holly Rubenstein

    Dreaming of distant shores? So too are Holly Rubenstein’s guests. This week it’s Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall talking about his travel diaries.

    Listen here

  • Milk Fed, Melissa Broder

    READ: Milk Fed, Melissa Broder

    Food, sex and God – this explosive thematic combination in Milk Fed results in a highly entertaining and blushingly candid read. Out March


  • News of the World

    WATCH: News of the World

    We’ve got Paul Greengrass on our podcast this week so it would be rude not to watch his latest film News of the World (and no, it’s not about the newspaper).


  • Mozart Week 2021

    LISTEN: Mozart Week Festival in Salzburg

    A previously unheard of Mozart piano piece was recorded at this year’s Mozart Week Festival in Salzburg.

    Listen here

    Image: ISM-WLienbacher

  • The Investigation, BBC

    WATCH: The Investigation

    The Investigation looks at the extraordinary story of the 2017 murder of Swedish journalist Kim Wall.

    BBC iPlayer

  • Ethan Hawke, A Bright Ray of Darkness

    READ: A Bright Ray of Darkness, Ethan Hawke

    As if Ethan Hawke wasn’t talented enough, his first novel in 20 years is an honest look at celebrity (warts ‘n’ all).


  • Power The Maxwells

    LISTEN: Power: The Maxwells

    And the Ghislaine Maxwell story rolls on – this time the focus is on her father in seven-part podcast Power: The Maxwells.


  • Call My Agent

    WATCH: Call My Agent

    Call My Agent is back for its final series on Netflix! Rejoice, one and all. This is the best thing on TV. Image from Netflix


  • Breathtaking, Rachel Clarke

    READ: Breathtaking: Inside the NHS in a Time of Pandemic, Rachel Clarke

    How does it feel to be on the frontline in the face of a pandemic? In her new book Breathtaking, Rachel Clarke gives us an unflinching account of what it’s like to work as a palliative care doctor during coronavirus.

    Little Brown

  • 76 Days

    WATCH: 76 Days

    MTV documentary 76 Days charts what life was like on the frontline across four Wuhan hospitals at the start of the pandemic.


  • Lupin

    WATCH: Lupin

    Omar Sy stars in this new French Netflix heist thriller, which retells the story of Arsène Lupin, the world-famous gentleman thief.


  • 38 Ways to Save the Planet

    LISTEN: 38 Ways to Save the Planet

    Get positive and bone up on BBC Radio 4’s 39 Ways To Save the Planet podcast: brilliant 15 minute episodes to help you feel empowered.

    BBC Radio 4

  • It's a Sin, Channel 4

    WATCH: It’s A Sin

    Former Doctor Who showrunner Russell T Davies has created a new show for Channel 4 which explores the lives of a group of gay men affected by the AIDS crisis of the 80s.

    Channel 4

  • Luster, Raven Leilani

    READ: Luster, Raven Leilani

    One of this year’s most highly anticipated debuts, Luster follows Edie, a 23-year-old black woman who finds herself entangled in the marriage of an older white couple.

    Out 21 Jan, Pan Macmillan

  • Finding Alice, ITV

    WATCH: Finding Alice

    ITV’s new six-part drama stars Keeley Hawes stars as grieving wife Alice Dillon, who discovers a web of secrets and debt after her husband dies in a tragic accident.


  • Pieces of a Woman, Netflix

    WATCH: Pieces of a Woman

    Vanessa Kirby excels in heart-wrenching new Netflix film Pieces of a Woman, which tells the story a home birth ending in unimaginable tragedy.


  • The Missing podcast

    LISTEN: The Missing

    Mourning your weekly dose of Pandora Sykes? You’ll find her hosting new podcast The Missing, which looks into the cases of long-term missing people.


  • History of Swear Words

    WATCH: History of Swear Words

    We’ve probably been doing a lot of it lately. Now, Nicholas Cage tells us where our swear words come from.


  • The Living Sea of Waking Dreams, Richard Flanagan

    READ: The Living Sea of Waking Dreams

    Booker Prize-winning Richard Flanagan’s new novel The Living Sea of Waking Dreams is a magical realist tale set in Australia’s bushfire season.


  • The Great, Channel 4

    WATCH: The Great

    Loved The Favourite? Check out the latest venture from the film’s co-writer writer Tony McNamara, The Great. The Channel 4 comedy drama is loosely based on the story of Catherine The Great (Elle Fanning) as a 19-year-old newly married to Peter, Emperor of Russia (Nicholas Hoult). Image: Instagram.

    Channel 4

  • The Serpent

    WATCH: The Serpent

    New BBC series The Serpent documents the crimes of con man Charles Sobhraj, the chief suspect in the unsolved murders of up to at least 12 Western travellers across India, Thailand and Nepal through 1975 and 1976.

    BBC iPlayer

  • The Red Shadows, Channel 4

    WATCH: The Red Shadows

    Loved Line of Duty? Try Channel 4’s new French drama The Red Shadows, which stars Nadia Farès as a police officer trying to hunt down her missing sister.

    Channel 4

  • Crisis What Crisis

    LISTEN: Crisis what Crisis

    Ex editor of The News of the World Andy Coulson spent five months in jail. His podcast Crisis what Crisis talks to an impressive rollcall of guests about how they coped with their own disasters.

  • The Vanishing Half

    READ: The Vanishing Half

    The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett, published this year, is the fascinating story of identical twins who choose to tread very different paths.

    Little Brown Book Group

  • Selena

    WATCH: Selena: The Series

    This new biographical drama explores the life of Selena Quintanilla, the Queen of Tejano Music, documenting her journey to becoming the most successful female Latin artist of all time.


  • Bridgerton

    WATCH: Bridgerton

    Still dream of the Gossip Girl glory days? Downtown Abbey devotee? We’ve got just the ticket for your December calendar. Bridgerton is being dubbed a cross between the two iconic shows, starring none other than Julie Andrews as the scathing narrator.


  • Cordelia

    WATCH: Cordelia

    Adrian Shergold’s Cordelia is an intriguing and powerful two-hander (basically) between a deeply traumatised girl and the strange man downstairs.

    Apple TV and Amazon Prime

  • Mr Wilder & Me

    READ: Mr Wilder & Me

    Jonathan Coe’s latest novel since Middle EnglandMr Wilder & Me, sees the man whose book, What a Carve Up! gained huge plaudits on the virtual stage, is back at the top of his game.


  • Hunting Ghislaine Maxwell podcast

    LISTEN: Hunting Ghislaine Maxwell

    Still obsessed by the Jeffrey Epstein affair? New six-part LBC podcast series Hunting Ghislaine Maxwell with John Sweeney is your latest must-listen.


  • Hilbilly Elegy

    WATCH: Hillbilly Elegy

    See an unrecognisable Amy Adams and Glenn Close give star turns in Hillbilly Elegy, a modern exploration of the American Dream.


  • Greenlights

    LISTEN: Greenlights

    Matthew McConaughey’s new book Greenlights sounds all the better when read aloud in his mellow Southern drawl.


  • Industry

    WATCH: Industry

    Five trainees start out in the cut-throat world of investment banking. Find out how they fare in HBO and BBC2’s Industry.

    BBC iPlayer


  • Dearly, Margaret Attwood

    READ: Dearly, Margaret Attwood

    In new collection Dearly Margaret Attwood returns to her poetic roots for the first time in over a decade.

    Vintage Publishing

  • His Dark Materials

    WATCH: His Dark Materials

    Series 2 of His Dark Materials, with the excellent Dafne Keen as the feisty Lyra Silvertongue, recently launched on BBC1.

    BBC iPlayer


Royal & Historical Dramas To Watch Now / The C&TH Reading List