Well, you didn’t expect it to go quietly did you? While it might not actually be on television at the moment, this is going to be a bumper week for Downton. On Thursday, a select bunch of journalists and TV critics will get to see the first episode of the new series which goes out in the autumn and before that Bafta is holding a special shindig for the cast and crew to toast its phenomenal success.
The Tribute Award will be filmed in front of a live audience and the event will be broadcast later in the year as part of the show’s swan song. Creator Julian Fellowes, who has been tight-lipped about what is in store, but has said that this series will be the last in the Downton saga which has been a global hit.
However, if ITV struggles to find an equally successful replacement our money is on a reboot.
Forget the Premiership, this week the football focus will be all about Salford FC. Out of the football league and competing in the distinctly less glamorous Evo-Stick North competition, the North West club was thrown an unlikely lifeline when it was bought last year by Nicky Butt, Ryan Giggs, Gary and Phil Neville and Paul Scholes.
Graduates from Manchester United’s unstoppable Class of ‘92, the Red Devils quintet’s aim was simple - to drag Salford out of obscurity. They also invited the TV cameras in and this week will see the premiere of Class of 92 - Out of their League, which follows the five as they take their first faltering steps as club owners rather than players.
Get ready to play A-level bingo. This year’s results will be announced on Thursday and there are some things which are almost guaranteed. Score yourself one point for every photograph of attractive teenage girls hugging and clutching their results, add another for every story about falling standards, how exams are getting easier and the gender divide.
Bonus points are awarded for identical twins who are both heading to Oxford with at least a dozen A grades between them as well as any child genius who will end the week with an A-level in Further Maths before most of his classmates have even learnt to read.
Man From U.N.C.L.E
Guy ‘Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels’ Ritchie returns to cinema screens this week with his adaptation of the old TV series.
Henry Cavil and Armie Hammer star as agents Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin, their mission to track down an unknown criminal organisation with ties to the Nazis which claims to have built an atomic bomb. The rights to the series were first optioned back in 1993 and since then more than a dozen scripts have been written and rejected, so much is riding on Ritchie’s version.
Also expect a nod to his ex-wife Madonna this week, as the Queen of Pop celebrates her 57th birthday on Sunday.
VJ Day Commemorations
Saturday sees the 70th anniversary of the day in 1945 that Japanese forces surrendered to the Allies after almost six years of war. The breakthrough came after the US dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki devastating the two cities.
Much of the official commemorations will be focused on London with a ceremony on Horse Guards Parade, attended by senior political and military representatives from the UK and other Allied countries during the campaign, veterans and their families.
Current members of the Armed Forces will then lead veterans and their families in a VJ Parade down Whitehall, past the Cenotaph, and the statue of Field Marshal Lord Slim.