TV tonight: our highlights for Friday 14th May

(Image credit: Atsushi Nishijima/Amazon Studios)

The Underground Railroad is just one of the gems on TV tonight…

There's hard-hitting drama coming to Amazon Prime in The Underground Railroad, Gregg Wallace is on a Big Weekend Away in the Greek capital and there's singing and dancing galore as the second series of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series drops on Disney+. Here’s what you shouldn’t miss on TV tonight. 

  • Our hand selected recommendations for what's on TV tonight include three TV shows, a film, live sport and the latest trending need-to-binge-on-now box set 
  • Keep up to date with the latest soap spoiler storylines on TV tonight with our daily soap synopsis 
  • For more information about what’s on TV tonight see our TV Guide 

What's on TV tonight 

Our expert TV journalists have picked the best things on TV tonight... 

Best TV shows on TV tonight

The Underground Railroad, Amazon Prime Video

Cora (Thuso Mbedu) escapes from a Georgia plantation (Kyle Kaplan/Amazon Studios)

Cora (Thuso Mbedu) escapes from a Georgia plantation (Kyle Kaplan/Amazon Studios) (Image credit: Kyle Kaplan/Amazon Studios)

In 19th-century America, the ‘underground railroad’ was a network of secret routes and houses that helped slaves flee from the South. In this series, it is a real-life subterranean system of trains on which slave Cora (Thuso Mbedu) travels after escaping from a plantation in Georgia, with bounty hunter Ridgeway (The King’s Joel Edgerton) in hot pursuit. The story, based on an award-winning novel, has been brought to TV by Oscar-winning Moonlight director Barry Jenkins, and episode one offers an unflinching look at the brutal treatment meted out to slaves, before Cora’s journey takes a more fantastical turn. 

★★ IM

Gregg Wallace's: Big Weekend Away, 8pm, C5

Gregg Wallace enjoys the history (and food!) of Athens

Gregg Wallace enjoys the history (and food!) of Athens

Frankly, we're still excited by a half-hour trip to Lidl, but Gregg Wallace is off on one of his Big Weekends again. He begins this new series in Athens and he's so keen to explore its 5,000 years of history that he starts pointing out Corinthian columns from his hotel balcony. But as well as finding out what the Greek capital did to shape modern Europe, regular viewers will know what's coming next: 'You can bet I'm going to get stuck into some really good food,' beams Gregg. 

★★★ JP

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series, Disney+

The East High Wildcats return for a second series of this feel good and fun Disney+ drama

The East High Wildcats return for a second series of this feel good and fun Disney+ drama

Following the hugely successful first season in 2019, those East High Wildcats are back in this all-singing, all-dancing second season. Ricky (Joshua Bassett), Nini (Olivia Rodrigo), Kourtney (Dara Reneé), E.J. (Matt Cornett), Big Red (Larry Saperstein) and the gang are expecting High School Musical 2 to be the spring musical - that’s when Miss Jenn (Kate Reinders) drops the bombshell they’ll be performing Beauty and the Beast for the chance of winning a prestigious student theatre competition. With humour, drama and lots of toe-tapping song and dance numbers, this second outing is just the thing to fill us with much-needed joy.

★★★★ VW

Best box set to watch on TV tonight

Peaky Blinders, seasons one to five, BBC iPlayer/Netflix

TV tonight Peaky Binders

The late Helen McCrory as Aunt Polly

Helen McCrory, who died on 16 April, aged 52, is phenomenal in this superb gangland drama, set in Birmingham in the 1920s, as Polly Gray, the formidable matriarch of the Shelby crime family and aunt to the leader of the Peaky Blinders, Tommy (Cillian Murphy).

Best film to watch on TV tonight

Long Shot, 10.45pm, BBC1/BBC iPlayer

Charlize Theron and Seth Rogan star in Long Shot (Lionsgate Entertainment)

Charlize Theron and Seth Rogan star in Long Shot (Lionsgate Entertainment) (Image credit: Lionsgate Entertainment)

A feel good romantic comedy with Charlize Theron and Seth Rogen. An out-of-work journalist (Rogan) secures employment writing speeches for glamorous US Secretary of State Charlotte Field (Theron), who is shortly to run for office as the first female president. Opposites attract and a very unlikely romance soon develops during an international campaign to champion environmental issues.  

★★★★ NP

Live sport

  • Premier League Football: Newcastle v Manchester City 7.30pm (k-o 8pm), Sky Sports Premier League/NOW TV
  • Gallagher Premiership Rugby Union: Bath v Sale Sharks 7pm, BT Sport 1

Soaps on TV tonight

If you watch just one thing on TV tonight… 

Don't miss The Underground Railroad on TV tonight – a brilliant but brutal depiction of life as a slave in 19th century America.

Not found anything you want to watch on TV tonight? Check out our TV Guide. 

Happy viewing!

Joanne Lowles
Freelance writer and editor

Joanne Lowles has been writing about TV since 2002. After graduating from Cardiff University with a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism, she worked for All About Soap magazine covering the ups and downs of life on the cobbles, the square and the Dales. 

Next came nearly 10 years at TV Times magazine as a writer and then deputy features editor. Here she spent many happy days interviewing the biggest names in entertainment and visiting the sets of some of our most popular shows including Downton Abbey, Call the Midwife and Strictly Come Dancing

With a love of nature and wildlife she’s also interviewed the leading experts in this area including David Attenborough, Chris Packham and Steve Backshall. She’s also travelled the world visiting Mongolia, Canada and South Africa to see how the best in the business make the most brilliant natural history documentaries. 

Freelance since 2013, she is now is a digital writer and editor for What to Watch, previews the best on the box for TV Times mag each week and loves being constantly surprised, entertained and informed by the amazing TV that she is lucky enough to watch.