Cops galore on the box

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Cops on TV seem a little busy at the present moment, as can be seen in the schedules.

That’s more than obvious as Nicola Walker, and her sidekick, Sanjeev Bhaskar, check out suspects from 40 years ago after a body is found in the foundations of a house in Unforgotten (ITV1, Thursday) while, over on BBC1, Ms Walker is both alive, and dead, playing the current, and deceased, partner of a downbeat London detective in River (Tuesday), played by Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgard.

Away from the capital, cops, past and present, are flitting between Manchester and the Outer Hebrides in From Darkness (BBC1, Sunday) as bodies are unearthed from a building site, a localised investigation that is dwarfed by the Europe-wide patch patrolled by a mix bunch of law officers in the addictive Crossing Lines (Alibi, Tuesday).

With this heavy caseload, it’s not surprising that there wasn’t a more thorough vetting of the last bunch of wannabes on The Apprentice (BBC1, Wednesday) who appear “dodgy, devious or deluded.”

The shakedown of the 18 original entrants continues apace tonight as the teams are split between Kent and France where, under Lord Sugar’s instructions, they have to find nine offbeat items at the best price.

There’s another sort of invasion with a new line-up of “in it to win it” team heading to the screens tomorrow as the medieval epic The Last Kingdom starts on BBC1.

This eight-part adaptation of Bernard Cornwell’s Saxon Stories turns the history pages back to Northumbria in AD866 as the Saxons come under siege from Viking warriors as they leave their Danish homeland to cross the North Sea in another land-grab mission.

Matthew MacFadyen as the embattled Saxon king Lord Uhtred heads a big-name cast who bring the past to life in a hard-hitting and memorable way, which could easily pass muster as an “olde-style” Strictly Come Pillaging expedition.

Eleven centuries on and we are back with latest Strictly, ie Come Dancing, which fastfoots its way across the floor, even if it’s littered with an overdose of adjectives and adverbs thanks to Claudia (“huge congratulations”) Winkleman.

Away from the grammar gremlins, keep an eye out for former All Saints’ RC School student Jay McGuinness, of The Wanted, whose perfect “10” surely puts himself in the winning straight.