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TV Tonight: our highlights for Thursday, Sept. 30

Patricia Hodge as dog-loving Mrs Pumphrey.
Patricia Hodge as dog-loving Mrs Pumphrey. (Image credit: Channel 5)

On TV tonight, Patricia Hodge joins the cast of All Creatures Great and Small on Channel 5, there's a fascinating documentary on BBC2 called Don't Exclude Me, and Si and Dave continue their travels in The Hairy Bikers Go North on BBC2. 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

All Creatures Great and Small season 2, 9pm, Channel 5

TV tonight Tricki Woo the Pekingese.

Tricki Woo the pampered Pekingese causes chaos with the vets. (Image credit: Channel 5)

James has a tough case when he desperately tries to help struggling farmer Phyllis Dalby (a moving performance by guest star Amy Nuttall) after her cows get sick. The prospect of a date with Helen puts a much-needed smile on James’s face, however, but not all goes to plan. Meanwhile, Miranda star Patricia Hodge joins the cast as she takes over from the late Diana Rigg to play Mrs Pumphrey, the adoring owner of spoilt Pekingese Tricki Woo, who stays with the vets when the pampered pet’s owner goes to London – and quickly causes mayhem! 

★★★★ CC 

Don't Exclude Me, 9pm, BBC2

TV tonight Marie and Oscar reading together

Behavioural expert Marie Gentles helps the children of Milton Hall Primary School. (Image credit: BBC)

Pupil exclusions in primary schools have reached a worrying level, and like many others, Milton Hall in Southend-on-Sea is struggling to manage extreme behaviour. In this two-parter, the school has allowed cameras into the classes which are repeatedly disrupted, and has also welcomed behavioural expert Marie Gentles. Can her practices help – and save Oscar, 6, and Jack, 8, who both face permanent exclusion? 

★★★★ JP

The Hairy Bikers Go North, 8pm, BBC2

TV tonight Si and Dave join seaweed farmer farmer Jamie

Si and Dave join seaweed farmer farmer Jamie. (Image credit: BBC)

Expect the unexpected when Si and Dave travel to Yorkshire. From the coast to inland, they discover international fare at Scarborough Market, French macarons in the county’s food capital, Malton, and a pioneering seaweed farm granted by the Queen. The bikers also meet winemakers in Aike, who are treated to a vineyard meal of mussels and Dave’s perfectly made triple-cooked chips (take note!). Things get fishy when the pair whip up the ‘best- ever Marie Rose sauce’ for langoustines at Robin Hood Bay. 

★★★★ SO

Best box set to watch on TV tonight

Foundation, season 1, Apple TV+

TV tonight Jared Harris stars in Foundation.

Jared Harris stars. (Image credit: Apple TV+)

Adapted from the novels by Isaac Asimov, this big-budget series stars The Crown actor Jared Harris. Set in a galactic empire ruled by clones, the 10-part series features Harris as scientific guru Hari Seldon, who has used his new predictive science of ‘psychohistory’ to foresee the fall of the empire in 500 years time. The empire’s rulers are understandably furious and he’s banished into exile. In order to preserve civilisation, Hari and his followers venture to a far-off region of the galaxy to establish a new society – The Foundation – on the planet Terminus. It’s a place where they hope to preserve mankind’s science and knowledge, but there are enemies on other planets who they must also outwit…

Best film to watch on TV tonight

Bridge of Spies, 6.15pm, Film4

Tv tonight Tom Hanks and Mark Rylance star

Tom Hanks and Mark Rylance star. (Image credit: Film4)

This gripping Cold War tale is based on a true story. It tells of lawyer Tom Hanks defending Soviet spy Mark Rylance in the 1950s. After staving off a potential death penalty for his client, Hanks is then sent to Berlin to trade with the Soviets: Rylance in exchange for captured US citizens. The script is a touch heavy-handed at times, but the performances, combined with the direction of Steven Spielberg, ensure this is a classy endeavour. 

Live Sport

  • County Championship Cricket,10.30am, Sky Sports Main Event/NOW
  • UEFA Europa League, West Ham United v Rapid Vienna, 7.30pm, (k-o 8pm), BT Sport 1

Soaps on TV tonight

If you watch just one thing on TV tonight…

Don't miss All Creatures Great and Small on TV tonight – Patricia Hodge is a great addition to the cast.

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

Happy viewing!