BBC Four unveils Autumn highlights

And about time too, you might say, seeing as though we’re nearly in October. But let’s not quibble, it looks like there are some fabulous dramas, comedies and documentaries (including ones on the arts of all things – imagine that!) coming up on what is quickly becoming one of TVScoop’s favourite channels.

The centrepiece of the Autumn schedules is an Andrew Davies-penned adaptation of the John Cleland novel Fanny Hill. Davies is the go-to guy for period dramas, and while you might think it would do the genre good to branch out a little, the fact is he’s *brilliant*. Bleak House was a massive hit with audiences and critics alike, and he wrote the only truly enjoyable adaptation – of Northanger Abbey – during ITV’s recent Jane Austen season. The drama will be supported by two documentaries, The Curse Of Success and The Age Of Excess which will look at the author and his times.

BBC Four is also bringing some fabulous imports to the UK: New Zealand comedy Flight Of The Conchords and Mad Men, written by The Sopranos’ executive producer Matthew Weiner. It’s set in the 1960s (always good for making a TV show look fantastic) and follows the big-wigs at Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency. Gotta be worth a watch.

Onto documentaries, and the channel is advertising The Genius Of Photography as “one of the most significant arts series anywhere on British television this year”. Storyville will look at democracy, there are various programmes concentrating on theoretical science (but the exciting kind – parallel worlds and stuff!) and pop music will be ‘put on trial’ in a collaboration with Radio 2. The successes of Folk Britannia and Jazz Britannia will be followed by series looking at Pop and Dance.

Add to all this a couple of potentially fascinating shows from comedians Russell Brand (following Jack Kerouac’s ‘On The Road’ trip) and Rob Newman (charting history backwards) and you’ve got a season of programmes that we’ll all be clamouring to review. [annawaits]

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