The best TV to watch tonight

Your indispensable guide to the best things on the box...

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Little Boy Blue 

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9pm, ITV

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Colin Firth’s strength is his ordinariness and he uses it here to great effect in fashion designer Tom Ford’s assured directorial debut. Presenting a façade of dull and unemotional respectability as the eponymous single man, an English academic living in Los Angeles, he’s seemingly your average Joe. However, in reality, he’s struggling to come to terms with the death of his gay partner (Matthew Goode) at a time (the early 1960s) when attitudes were very different from what they are today. The impetus of the film concerns Firth’s contemplation of whether life is worth living without his lover – he buys bullets for an old gun – so there is a kind of suspense as he seemingly prepares to end his anguish. Will the attempts of a male student (Nicholas Hoult) to break through his reserve or an evening spent with boozy best friend Charley (Julianne Moore) change his mind? Ford directs with panache and style, alluding mischievously to Hitchcock, both visually with a poster of Psycho and musically with Abel Korzeniowski’s score echoing the great director’s best-known composer Bernard Herrmann. It all adds to the drama and turmoil within Firth’s beautifully realised character.

MasterChef

7.30pm, 8.30pm, BBC1

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Two courses of the cookery competition today as MasterChef sandwiches tonight’s episode of EastEnders. The remaining 14 contestants are split into two groups and asked to cook something inspired by their family or childhood. 

In the past there have been some remarkable creations but it’s an understatement to say John Torode is impressed by one of tonight’s dishes. “Delicious, superb, fantastic, extraordinary, wonderful and beautiful, all at the same time,” he gushes, “It’s dreamy!” So you like it then, John? 

Gregg Wallace is just as enthusiastic. “The presentation is good enough to wear as jewellery,” he says.

Another contestant recreates a trio of desserts encompassing both sweet treats from their childhood and the dessert they had at their wedding. It raises both smiles and eyebrows from the judges.

Trump’s first 100 Days

9pm, BBC1

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The first 100 days under any new leader are subject to intense scrutiny, but can anything have left politicos, journalists, and laymen alike with more to scratch their heads over than Donald Trump’s presidency? In this documentary, Jeremy Paxman heads to the USA, to examine Trump’s first three months, crossing the country to meet ordinary Americans – both pro Trump, and ardently against – adjusting to the new administration. 

He hears Arab-American experiences of the travel ban at North America’s biggest mosque, looks at the abandoned factories in former industrial capital Detroit, and dissects the “fake news” phenomenon. He also meets senior figures from across the political spectrum in Washington DC, to assess what the world will look like after four years under Trump. Paxman is as wry as usual, in a film that’s by turns fascinating and horrifying.

Girlboss

Netflix

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Netflix’s new comedy is based on the true story of anarchic 22-year-old Sophia Amoruso (Britt Robertson) who went from misfit to millionaire by selling vintage clothes on eBay. Adapted by Charlize Theron, this millennial tale of tantrums and triumphs is brash, fun and witty.

A Single Man

5pm, AMC

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Colin Firth’s strength is his ordinariness and he uses it here to great effect in fashion designer Tom Ford’s assured directorial debut. Presenting a façade of dull and unemotional respectability as the eponymous single man, an English academic living in Los Angeles, he’s seemingly your average Joe. However, in reality, he’s struggling to come to terms with the death of his gay partner (Matthew Goode) at a time (the early 1960s) when attitudes were very different from what they are today. The impetus of the film concerns Firth’s contemplation of whether life is worth living without his lover – he buys bullets for an old gun – so there is a kind of suspense as he seemingly prepares to end his anguish. Will the attempts of a male student (Nicholas Hoult) to break through his reserve or an evening spent with boozy best friend Charley (Julianne Moore) change his mind? Ford directs with panache and style, alluding mischievously to Hitchcock, both visually with a poster of Psycho and musically with Abel Korzeniowski’s score echoing the great director’s best-known composer Bernard Herrmann. It all adds to the drama and turmoil within Firth’s beautifully realised character.