Bringing You the Daily Dispatch

The Man With 1000 Kids to Bluey: the seven best shows to stream this week
Culture TV and Radio

The Man With 1000 Kids to Bluey: the seven best shows to stream this week

Pick of the week

The Man With 1000 Kids

There is, at times, a gruesomely tragicomic aspect to this tale of a private sperm donor gone rogue: one recipient recalls him “jerking off in a public bathroom”, another remembers self-inseminating in the back of her car. But at heart, this is a bleak story of manipulation and desperation. The facts are staggering – over several years, Dutch scam artist Jonathan Meijer travelled the world, hoodwinking hopeful mothers into having his children, and it is estimated that his total number of progeny runs into over a thousand. Over three episodes, this series speaks to many of his “customers” and ponders his motivations, which he claims were philanthropic.
Netflix, from Wednesday 3 July


Bluey.View image in fullscreen

The recent, elongated special of this funny, wise Australian cartoon elevated it into the realms of genuinely great children’s TV: life lessons imparted with heart but without sentimentality, displaying real emotional acuity and delivered with exquisite lightness of touch. Many fans feared that the end might be in sight, but here are some ultra-short episodes, clocking in at one to three minutes each. After the comparative weight of the longer story, they emphasise everyday pleasures – honing in on tiny moments of humour and playfulness. As ever, perfectly judged.
Disney+, from Wednesday 3 July

Owning Manhattan

Ryan Serhant with Owning Manhattan.View image in fullscreen

Netflix’s portfolio of insufferable yet grotesquely compelling property-based hate-watches continues to evolve. This time, we’re in New York: famously one of the most unaffordable cities on Earth, and therefore the logical next stop on this grim journey. The overall effect is some sort of unholy cross between Love Island and The Wolf of Wall Street, but much worse than that sounds. A bunch of self-absorbed greed-bags, working for property magnate Ryan Serhant, close enormous deals and nurture their even more enormous egos. Yuck.
Netflix, out now

Star Trek: Prodigy

From left: Jason Mantzoukas, Brett Gray, Rylee Alazraqui, Ella Purnell and Angus Imrie in Star Trek: Prodigy.View image in fullscreen

Exciting times for Trekkies: originally on Paramount, this animated sci-fi adventure has moved to Netflix and new episodes are available to binge. There’s a callback for long-term fans: the crew (formerly to be found on board the USS Protostar) will now be travelling on the familiarly-named USS Voyager-A under the command of Kathryn Janeway. The story itself, however, isn’t nearly as comforting – the mother of all time-travel conflicts looms as the crew traverse eras in order to try to prevent the decimation of the Vau N’Akat people from the planet Solum.
Netflix, from Monday 1 July

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

Asha Banks and Emma Myers in A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder.View image in fullscreen

An engaging adaptation of Holly Jackson’s hugely successful YA novel series, this drama stars Emma Myers as Pip Fitz-Amobi, a teenager haunted by an apparent murder-suicide involving two of her schoolmates several years earlier in the rural town of Little Kilton. Pip is a true-crime enthusiast and to her, something about the case doesn’t smell right. Is her teenage imagination running away with her or might a killer still be at large? Myers is an excellent lead – bookish, shy and slightly vulnerable but also admirably resourceful and determined.
BBC iPlayer, from Monday 1 July

Not Dead Yet

Hannah Simone and Gina Rodriguez in Not Dead Yet.View image in fullscreen

The central conceit of this comedy – that Gina Rodriguez’s fortysomething journalist Nell can see ghosts – isn’t quite enough to invest it with any real energy. It’s pretty generic in every other way: Nell isn’t where she wants to be in life and as she flits from job to job and in and out of unsatisfactory relationships, her supernatural powers act as a sort of mirror to her various disappointments and dilemmas. In the second series, Nell finds herself writing obituaries (you can probably see where this might be going) and considers freezing her eggs.
Disney+, from Wednesday 3 July

Inspector Ricciardi

Lino Guanciale in Inspector Ricciardi.View image in fullscreen

The slightly crumpled (and supernaturally gifted) Neapolitan police inspector returns. As we rejoin Luigi Ricciardi (Lino Guanciale) he’s in mourning. He’s lost someone close to him, and for someone with psychic abilities, this has interesting consequences. He deals with his trauma by throwing himself into his work – an investigation into a death in a lottery office points Ricciardi in the direction of a count and his glamorous wife. It’s ripely melodramatic and utterly implausible but it milks its 1930s setting with style.
Channel 4, from Friday 5 July

Source: theguardian.com