Lost Land of the Tiger, Angle of Attack, The Secret of Crickley Hall – best TV on tonight

We've narrowed down our top telly picks tonight Saturday 5 July


Lost Land of the Tiger – 7pm, BBC4


Alan Rabinowitz, Gordon Buchanan, George McGavin, Steve Backshall and Justine Evans travel to the far-flung corners of the Himalayas in search of tigers, snow leopards and clouded leopards, on an expedition aimed at helping the survival of these creatures. The team gets to work by tracking elusive tigers and setting up remote-controlled cameras to film the animals in action. Despite the title, don’t expect much footage of actual tigers in this series. In this case, we’re in Bhutan and the loudest whoop of delight comes when entomologist George McGavin finds a dung beetle.

Angle of Attack – 8pm, PBS America

The first of a two-part documentary charting the 100-year development of naval aviation in the US, focusing on the period from Eugene Ely’s attempts to achieve a shipborne take-off and landing in 1911, to America’s victory in the Pacific at the end of the Second World War. Yes, this may seem an obscure thing to recommend but when schedules are swamped with cycling, football and tennis, resolute sportophobes need to take their alternatives where they can find them. In fact, once you get over the occasionally jingoistic Top-Gun-ish tone, there is fascinating stuff here.

The Secret of Crickley Hall – 9pm, Drama

If you’re a sucker for haunted house mysteries, then this 2012 adaptation of James Herbert’s novel will transport you into dark delights. Everything is packed in, every horror trope, every shock tactic – a lightning storm, mysterious footsteps, doors opening by themselves, disembodied voices, the lot. It even has wildly over-the-top, spookily discordant music that will make you involuntarily jab the air like Norman Bates’s knife-wielding “mother”. 

Suranne Jones and Tom Ellis play Eve and Gabe Caleigh, a couple tormented by the disappearance of their five-year-old son, Cam. As the first anniversary of his abduction approaches, the Caleighs take their two remaining children to Crickley Hall to escape – they hope – bad memories. 

But, as we see in a parallel story, Crickley Hall is a troubled place, once home to a Second World War orphanage run by a sadistic brother and sister. And some of the unhappy children haven’t left.


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