Bear Grylls and Stephen Fry come together.
Bear Grylls and Stephen Fry come together. Photo Discovery Channel Australia

More action off pitch

IT'S that time of year, when there's nothing on TV except the cricket.

If test cricket and the Big Bash League aren't your cup of tea, then there are a few hidden gems worth checking out this weekend.

If you're a Stephen Fry fan like myself, then you'll get a few chuckles out of the QI host's Wild Weekend adventure with survival expert Bear Grylls on the Discovery Channel tomorrow night.

The intelligent and charming Fry would make the perfect dinner party guest - he's sophisticated, funny, cultured - but how will he go abseiling down a cliff and riding the skids of a helicopter when he himself admits he hasn't even stepped foot in a gym in three years?

"Oh Bear Grylls; Edward George bloody Grylls, what have you done?" Fry exclaims after a helicopter drops them on the snow-capped peaks of the Italian Dolomites.

But it's the personal details the two share about themselves in between their physical challenges that are the most revealing.

Also airing tomorrow night is an interesting documentary on SBS about the surprising extent of the scoliosis suffered by King Richard III, the last English king to die on the battlefield.

The filmmakers were given exclusive access to the research, which followed the discovery and exhumation of King Richard's bones two years ago.

Tests in the lab even reveal what the deformed king was eating in the years leading up to his death.

Peacock a delicacy? Sounds gamey to me.

If you missed last night's premiere of the Doctor Who Christmas special never fear, Aunty is replaying it today at 11.30am. This year's instalment guest stars Nick Frost (Black Books, Shawn of the Dead) as Santa Claus and sees Peter Capaldi come full circle since taking over the role of Time Lord from Matt Smith, 24 years his junior.

With his first series of the long-running show under his belt, Capaldi has been praised by TV critics for making the role his own and bringing a dark complexity to the Doctor.


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