Saturday, April 6

Fresh clippings: Gardening Australia’s Costa Georgiadis.FREE TO AIR

Gardening Australia, ABC1, 6.30pm

You just can’t make some people happy. I’m talking about the letter-writers complaining about Gardening Australia host Costa Georgiadis’ beard, his crusade for making better use of nature strips than as ashtrays, or the new opening-credit sequence. For the rest of us, however, the return of the ABC’s venerable gardening show is a moment to celebrate. Tonight’s episode illustrates the welcome shift in focus since Georgiadis took on the hosting role in 2012. There’s a segment on the oasis that the show’s researcher has created in her rented, inner-city house. Sophie Thomson presents a no-nonsense guide to fragrant plants and we meet a late-bloomer whose interest in gardening sprouted in his 60s.

Inspector George Gently, ABC1, 8.30pm

Tonight, Martin Shaw’s aptly named chief inspector and his hotheaded offsider Bacchus (Lee Ingleby) investigate the death of a young folk singer (played by Australian musician Ebony Buckle) who was left for dead in a car registered to an aristocratic, family whose lives unravel when the detectives rattle their gilded cage. Set to the backdrop of the May 1968 riots in Paris, the story is supposed to illustrate the new social order, but it’s let down by heavy-handed dialogue and portentous characterisations.

Lilyhammer, SBS One, 8.35pm

As a concept, the idea of dispatching Silvio Dante, Tony Soprano’s faithful and ruthless consigliere in the legendary HBO crime drama, to Norway is on a par with letting Kath and Kim run amok with handsome men in Italy or letting Mr Bean loose with Los Angeles’ jet-set. The appeal of this lightweight comedy largely depends on how amusing one finds Silvio as an oafish enforcer who, despite a new identity as Giovanni Henriksen, engages in much the same mischievous, tough-guy malarkey as Silvio did in six seasons of The Sopranos. The promising twist of Lilyhammer is that street-smart Giovanni/Silvio isn’t entirely out of place in the snowy backwaters of Norway, whose residents all have something to learn from the wise-guy (”treat the broad with respect”, he counsels). As a comedy, this plays to a fairly limited set of lowbrow gags, while as a mobster tale it’s too flat-footed and self-aware to elicit any tension.


Motor Racing, Seven, 11.45am

V8 Supercar racing from Symmons Plains Raceway in Tasmania 

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