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Ripley to Sugar: the seven best shows to stream on TV this week
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Ripley to Sugar: the seven best shows to stream on TV this week

Pick of the week


The 1999 film has come to be seen as the definitive adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s novel The Talented Mr Ripley. But this intriguing version, which stars Andrew Scott, has a distinctive, ominous vibe of its own. Tom Ripley has been sent to coastal Italy to persuade trust-fund loafer and aspiring artist Dickie Greenleaf (Johnny Flynn) to return to the US. But Ripley soon insinuates himself into Greenleaf’s life in less wholesome ways, with devastating results. It’s shot in stark and rather beautiful black-and-white, with Scott both magnetic and sinister as the resourceful misfit whose obsessiveness leads him to murderous lengths.
Netflix, from Thursday 4 April


Colin Farrell in Sugar.View image in fullscreen

John Sugar is an impressive LA private investigator who specialises in finding missing people. He can drink indefinitely without getting drunk. He is kind to serving staff and homeless people. And he speaks four languages fluently in the opening episode alone. This noirish drama starring Colin Farrell sees Sugar tasked with locating the troubled granddaughter of famous film director Jonathan Siegel. However, as he digs into Siegel’s family history, he unearths some awkward secrets. It’s slightly too slick but there are intriguing signs of personal fragility to Sugar that hint at hidden depths and dangerous flaws.
Apple TV+, from Friday 5 April

Files of the Unexplained

Files of the Unexplained.View image in fullscreen

“Over the years, 21 feet have come ashore.” This and many other intriguing sentences are enlarged upon in a new series exploring a variety of perplexing and sometimes inexplicable phenomena across the US. From unknown gelatinous substances suddenly covering towns to people claiming to have been taken onboard spaceships, most of these stories sound like cases for Mulder and Scully. The air of mystery surrounding the tales is ramped up to a melodramatic, often amusing degree, but there’s enough genuine uncanniness to keep things interesting.
Netflix, from Wednesday 3 April

Crime Scene Berlin: Nightlife Killer

Crime Scene Berlin: Nightlife Killer.View image in fullscreen

Another of the streamer’s seemingly inexhaustible supply of true-crime documentaries; this one has the virtue of illuminating a case that went underreported at the time, possibly because it mainly affected Berlin’s LGBTQ+ community. In 2012, three young men were murdered while a fourth victim barely survived a similar attack. Who was drugging, robbing and killing men in gay clubs? This three-parter, (created by Joe Berlinger, who was behind the Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich series) tracks the investigation and also the chilling effect it had on a previously vibrant subculture.
Netflix, from Wednesday 3 April

Star Trek: Discovery

Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham in Star Trek: Discovery.View image in fullscreen

“It has been a hell of a journey,” says Sonequa Martin-Green’s Capt Burnham. “But everything ends some day.” This fifth series of the rebooted sci-fi is also the last – the crew, who have gone to new places in casting (prominent LGBTQ+ characters and a female Black lead), bid farewell by hunting for the greatest treasure in the galaxy. But, of course, they aren’t alone – this ancient power is drawing less benevolent forces towards it too. It’s the usual mixture of spectacular action and strong moral messaging, this time with added emotional heft as the end approaches.
Paramount+, from Thursday 4 April

Parasyte: The Grey

Parasyte: The Grey.

The premise of this hysterical horror thriller is far from subtle: the larvae of a parasite have been infiltrating human brains all over the world. After a short gestation period, they’re ready to make themselves known. But this Korean series benefits from a maximalist approach – soon, victims are sprouting grotesque new heads, developing blades for hands and going on bloody rampages. It’s a feast of wild CGI and overheated action. Very occasionally it resembles a dramatically refitted take on The Day of the Triffids, but it’s much less nuanced than that.
Netflix, from Friday 5 April

Alex Rider

Alex Rider.View image in fullscreen

The teenage spy thriller, adapted from Anthony Horowitz’s YA novels, returns for a third season. Things are getting personal for Alex. Criminal network Scorpia have broken cover again, touting a new super-weapon, Invisible Sword, which they’re using to extort the British government. But as Alex embarks on a mission to foil them, he starts to learn a few uncomfortable secrets about his family and their links to certain organisations. It’s not without spy fiction cliche but Otto Farrant is disarming as the unusually gifted teen who also struggles with universal adolescent problems.
Freevee, from Friday 5 April

Source: theguardian.com