Best on the Box highlights for Saturday, February 8th and its all about Quentin, Whitney and Charlie.

There’s more than one Whitney, as tonight it’s not about the EastEnders favourite on Channel 4. It’s Huston calling…


ONE TO WATCH: WHITNEY, CHANNEL 4 at 9pm

It’s the UK network premiere of Whitney, the movie-documentary produced in 2019.

Oscar-winning director Kevin Macdonald explores the life of the phenomenally popular American singer and actress Whitney Houston.

From her earliest days, Houston seemed destined for musical success: as a child singing gospel at church, her vocal talent stood out, and she couldn’t have wanted for better contacts in the music industry; her mother Cissy Houston was a backing singer to Aretha Franklin and Elvis Presley, and her aunt was the superstar Dionne Warwick.

But her fame was dogged by a parallel story of addiction and self-destruction, which ended with her tragic death in a hotel bath tub in February 2012, aged 48.

With unprecedented access to Houston’s family, friends and collaborators, Macdonald’s documentary tracks her rise and probes her private torment. Contributors include her brothers Michael and Gary; Cissy Houston; her record label boss Clive Davis; her ex-husband Bobby Brown; and actor Kevin Costner.

CASUALTY, BBC ONE at 9.15pm

Last week an anxious Charlie (Derek Thompson) feared the worst when he woke to an open front door and no sign of Duffy (Cathy Shipton). Heavy snow and cold conditions concerned him greatly, Duffy has been dealing with dementia for the past few years. In emotional scenes sadly by the time Charlie found his wife it was too late, and she died in his arms.

This week Charlie struggles to deal with those recent events and it takes the whole Emergency Department to pull together through a difficult time. Connie (Amanda Mealing) finds it difficult to hide her emotions, which doesn’t go unnoticed by Archie (Genesis Lynea). Could this bring the two closer together?

Also tonight Rash (Neet Mohan) finds himself in the middle of an intense and complex case when two friends are brought to the ED.

SIX NATIONS LIVE, BBC and ITV this afternoon

ITV brings us from 1.25pm Ireland v Wales. Joe Schmidt and Warren Gatland are both hard acts to follow, but incoming head coaches Andy Farrell for Ireland and Wayne Pivac for Wales will be hoping to make a strong impression in their debut Six Nations season.

Wales wrapped up the Grand Slam last year with a 25-7 win over Ireland in Cardiff and the core of that squad remain, with the inspirational Alun Wyn Jones still leading from the front. Ireland’s record at the Aviva stadium in the Schmidt era was formidable and new skipper Johnny Sexton and his side will be out to make amends for a disappointing World Cup campaign – which he says still keeps him awake at night.

Mark Pougatch is joined in the ITV studio by Brian O’Driscoll, Gareth Thomas and Jonny Wilkinson, with pitch-side reports from Martin Bayfield. Commentary comes from Nick Mullins, Gordon D’Arcy and Shane Williams.

BBC One from 4pm its Scotland v England. Scotland welcome the auld enemy England to Murrayfield Stadium in their second match of the 2020 Six Nations.

After losing eight straight matches against England, the Scots are unbeaten in their last two against the Red Rose. A famous 25-13 victory at Murrayfield in 2018 was followed up by an extraordinary 38-38 draw at Twickenham last year. Scotland need no further motivation when facing the English, but they will be keen to right the wrongs of what was a hugely disappointing World Cup for Gregor Townsend’s side.

Presenter John Inverdale is joined by Martin Johnson, Jeremy Guscott, Andy Nicol and John Barclay in the BBC studio. Commentary comes from Andrew Cotter, Brian Moore and Chris Paterson.

LOCKE AND KEY, now streaming on NETFLIX

Locke & Key on Netflix is the television adaptation of the best-selling comic book series by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodríguez.

After their father is murdered under mysterious circumstances, the three Locke siblings and their mother move into their ancestral home, Keyhouse, which they discover is full of magical keys that may be connected to their father’s death.

As the Locke children explore the different keys and their unique powers, a mysterious demon awakens — and will stop at nothing to steal them. From Carlton Cuse and Meredith Averill, the series is a coming-of-age mystery about love, loss, and the unshakable bonds that define family.

Locke & Key stars Darby Stanchfield as Nina Locke, Jackson Robert Scott as Bode Locke, Connor Jessup as Tyler Locke, Emilia Jones as Kinsey Locke, Bill Heck as Rendell Locke, Laysla De Oliveira as Dodge, Sherri Saum as Ellie Whedon, Thomas Mitchell Barnet as Sam Lesser, Griffin Gluck as Gabe, Coby Bird as Rufus Whedon.

THE NAKED CIVIL SERVANT, TALKING PICTURES TV at 10.40pm

The Naked Civil Servant stars John Hurt as flamboyant Quentin Crisp.

This Thames Television produced biographical Drama is directed by Jack Gold and stars along with Hurt in the lead role Liz Gebhardt and Patricia Hodge. Based on the autobiography of Quentin Crisp (1908-1999), the story follows events across his life from youth to middle age, the key moments of a man who lived openly gay in an intolerant era.

Produced in 1975 for ITV Hurt won the BAFTA for Best Actor in 1976 and the production also won the 1976 Prix Italia. In 2000, the film was placed fourth in a poll by industry professionals to find the BFI TV 100 of the 20th century.

The final years of Quentin’s life were not documented until 2009 when Hurt reprised playing the real-life extrovert in An Englishman in New York, which covered the latter years of Crisp’s life spent in Manhattan.

John Hurt as Quentin Crisp in The Naked Civil Servant.


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