Hello and welcome to The Week in HD – our guide to all the must-see high-definition TV shows, films, sports and Blu-ray releases to grace your screens over the next seven days.

Also, don't forget to check out our dedicated Playlist Twitter account @WHFPlaylist for all the latest news and reviews of our favourite music, movies, TV shows and games, as well as competitions you can enter for some shiny prizes.

So, without further ado...

MORE: Our favourite films of 2014

Blu-ray releases

Space Dandy - Blu-ray release of the week

Lucy

One of the surprise hits of last summer arrives on Blu-ray, and it's one that will divide opinions.

Starring Scarlett Johansson, director Luc Besson returns to the female-led action of The Fifth Element in Lucy, which sees Johansson forced to become a drug mule. When the drug she's carrying leaks into her bloodstream, it gives her access to the untapped potential within herself - and that leads to all manner of crazy situations.

Johansson anchors the film with her performance, and while the wacky and more serious elements don't always make for a potent mix, there's enough here to hold interest. It looks good and sounds great on Blu-ray, too.

MORE: Lucy - film review

Buy Lucy at Amazon

 

Space Dandy - Series 1

The latest anime from Cowboy Bebop creator Shinchiro Watanabe is a glossy, glitzy anime that hits the reset button at the end of every episode.

The premise is similar to Bebop and follows Space Dandy (voiced by Ian Sinclair), an exotic alien hunter searching for rare alien species so he can earn enough money to party at the space version of Hooters.

He's joined on his adventures by QT (a robot that looks like a vacuum cleaner) and Meow (an unsurprisingly lazy cat), while being pursued by a faction of the Gogol Empire for reasons that aren't revealed but hopefully will be in the second series. Dandy is a strange ride, but if you buy into the premise, it's a very fun one, too.

Buy Space Dandy at Amazon

 

Boardwalk Empire - Series 5

We bid farewell to Enoch 'Nucky' Thompson and his merry band of gangers of Boardwalk Empire, which comes to an end in its fifth and final series, now out on Blu-ray.

Leaving behind the glitz and glamour of the roaring twenties, we jump seven years ahead and plunge deep into the stricken end of the Prohibition era: the Great Depression. It's 1931, and with a Democrat president about to enter office, the alcohol ban soon to be repealed, and the threat of war, things aren't looking good for Republican Nucky's political hold or the bootlegging business.

Buy Boardwalk Empire at Amazon

 

Girls - Series 3

Things were meant to get better for Hannah (Lena Dunham) and her friends, but the third series of HBO's acclaimed comedy/drama Girls sees things get just that bit worse. Struggling at work and in her relationship with her boyfriend Adam (Adam Driver), Hannah is searching for meaning in a humdrum life. Marnie (Allison Williams), Jessa (Jemima Kirke) and Shossanna (Zosia Mamet) all have problems of their own to deal with (some very funny, others unexpectedly touching) in a season that places them in some uncomfortable situations.

Buy Girls at Amazon

 

Looking - Series 1

Something of an alternative to Girls, HBO's Looking follows three gay men in San Francisco as they look for love and try to find their way in the big city. Eight episodes means this is a brief series, but it leaves you wanting more (the second series should be arriving in February). Some great, naturalistic acting and a progressive look at gay life in the Bay Area makes this an illuminating series.

Buy Looking at Amazon

 

Monday 12th January

Broadchurch - Pick of the Day, 9pm

Broadchurch ITV HD, 9pm

The people of the small seaside Dorset town are still reeling for the murder and revelations of series one. The returning series continues to show how they're trying and, in some cases, failing to cope.

 

Girls Sky Atlantic HD, 10pm

Iowa. Series four of this HBO show begins with Hannah preparing for her big move to Iowa and the writer's workshop programme she's been accepted into. Her boyfriend Adam (Adam Driver, soon to be twirling a lightsaber in Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens), however, is freaking out.

The other girls are also finding their way into proper adulthood, with Marnie giving her music career a go, and finding herself growing closer to Desi. 

Tuesday 13th January

Supernatural - Pick of the Day, 10pm

FA Cup Replay: West Ham v Everton BT Sport 1 HD, 7.45pm

West Ham and Everton return to do battle in the FA Cup after Romelu Lukaku's injury-time equaliser rescued Roberto Martinez's men.

The Hammers had the better of the match, but Everton's draw against Man City should mean they come into it with confidence - despite the defensive problems they've had throughout the season.

 

Supernatural E4 HD, 10pm

Devil May Care. The Winchesters may have the King of Hell locked up in their basement and is forcing him to cooperate, but Crowley's rival (Alaina Huffman plays a brilliantly evil Abaddon) sets an irresistible trap for them. 

Ezekiel proves useful, while Kevin Tran searches for a spell to help their cause.

More after the break

Wednesday 14th January

Film 2015 (Whiplash) - Pick of the Day, 11.05pm

Transformers E4 HD, 9pm

Remember when Transformers used to be good? No, me neither.

But the first instalment of Michael Bay's cash cow franchise for robots and explosions was an entertaining near-three hours. Shia LeBeouf was still funny, there was a decent story and good action, while 80s kids got all excited about seeing their favourite Autobots and Decepticons transform on screen. Also, Bumblebee was ace.

 

The Incredible Hulk SyFy HD, 9pm

The eagerly anticipated Avengers: Age of Ultron is just over three months away, and we're in the mood for watching Marvel's series all the way from its inception.

This reboot sees Edward Norton don the purple trousers and have problems with managing his anger. It proves difficult, as he has to evade the US military who want his blood to kick-start the super soldier program that we eventually saw in Captain America: The First Avenger.

Like most of Marvel Studios' villains, The Abomination is a lukewarm adversary, with Tim Roth's engaging Emil Blonksy giving way to a CG monster. It's not unanimously loved, but The Incredible Hulk is a good start to what's becoming the biggest show in town.

 

Film 2015 BBC One HD, 11.05pm

First episode of BBC's Film reviews series for the new year. Claudia Winkleman and Danny Weight start off the conversation with the acclaimed hit Whiplash, starring Miles Teller as a jazz drummer accepted into the most prestigious music school in United States, under the tutelage of a feared and respected jazz maestro.

Also reviewed is Reese Witherspoon's Wild, a biographical film about Cheryl Strayed's solitary thousand-mile-long hike of the Pacific Crest Trail along the American west coast.

Thursday 15th January

Suits - Pick of the Day, 10pm

Death in Paradise BBC One HD, 9pm

A surfer is killed, and DI Goodman is convinced that the death was anything but accidental.

With Fidel gone, Dwayne now has to work on impressing the new sergeant - will she succumb to the famous Dwayne charm?

 

Brooklyn Nine Nine E4 HD, 9pm

Comedy hit Brooklyn Nine Nine is back on TV screens for a second series that sees Andy Samberg's Jake Peralta return from his successful stint as an undercover cop in the mob. There is a problem, however: one missing mobster. To find him he'll need Boyle's (Joe Lo Truglio) help. 

 

The Dark Knight ITV 2 HD, 9pm

Arguably the best of Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy, on the strength of the late Heath Ledger's incredible performance as The Joker.

Chaos hits Gotham City as there's a new player in town who doesn't play by any rules, which messes with Bruce's plans to retire the Batman mantle.

 

Suits Dave HD, 10pm

The lawyers with sharp suits and even sharper tongues are back for a fourth series. When we last saw them, Mike Ross had left to become an investment banker, worried that his fraudulent Harvard education claim will keep endangering the firm.

Troubles ensue when his new firm goes up against Jessica and Harvey, and Mike has to decide where his loyalties truly lie.

Louis Litt, the only person left in the world who doesn't know Mike's secret, is hell bent on becoming a named partner - will he back Jessica into a corner when he finally finds out?

 

Never Mind the Buzzcocks BBC Two HD, 10pm

A compilation special that looks back at the highlights of series 28, which has been dubbed 'the series that changed the world.'

Er. We're not sure the appointment of Rhod Gilbert as the new host counts as world-changing, but we could be wrong.

Friday 16th January

Murder in the First - Pick of the Day, 10pm

The Musketeers BBC One HD, 9pm

The Good Traitor. Colin Salmon stars as a Spanish general who offers to give away the secret formula for a new type of gunpowder in exchange for the safe return of his kidnapped daughter. The Musketeers are on the case, although Porthos gets kidnapped in the middle of their mission.

 

QI BBC Two HD, 10pm

Long Lost. Jimmy Carr, Claudia O'Doherty, Suggs from Madness and Alan Davies join Stephen Fry in discussing things long lost.

 

Murder in the First Fox HD, 10pm

Brand new murder mystery set in San Francisco, following two homicide detectives investigating two seemingly unconnected deaths.

As Terry English (Taye Diggs) and Hildy Mulligan (Kathleen Robertson) dig deeper, they discover that both victims have ties to Silicon Valley upstart Erich Blunt (Tom Felton, a.k.a. Draco Malfoy from the Harry Potter films).

With plot twists and secret relationships worthy of an Agatha Christie story (on paper, at least), this promises to be a slick, savvy show that will have you guessing till the end.

Saturday 17th January

Armageddon - Pick of the Day, 9pm

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Syfy HD, 2pm

Conversations with Dead People. A chilling, beautifully-written episode that confronts the Scooby Gang with The First - the final seventh season's Big Bad - and the scope of its evilness.

Willow is visited by a former student, Buffy talks about her feelings with psychology-student-turned-vampire in a graveyard, and Dawn is haunted by her mother's ghost - but all are not what they seem.

 

Armageddon BBC Three HD, 9pm

An asteroid is heading for earth - who ya gonna call? Bruce Willis and his motley gang of deep-sea oil drillers, that's who.

Easily one of Michael Bay's better movies, it's full of great visual effects (thrusters, especially), humour, and has an unexpected emotional punch. How we miss this side of Mr. Bay.

With a fabulous cast (Steve Buscemi, Michael Clarke Duncan, and Liv Tyler, to name a few), and a cracking soundtrack by Aerosmith and Z Z Top, we could rewatch this blockbuster countless times.

Sunday 18th January

Call the Midwife - Pick of the Day, 8pm

Masters Snooker Championship BBC Two HD, 12pm & 7pm

After a week of play we come to the final of the Masters. We'd expect the usual names to be in the mix, but there's always room for an upset.

 

Barclays Premier League: Manchester City v Arsenal Sky Sports 1 HD, 4pm

We're into the second half of the domestic season and every point counts. Arsenal will be preparing for their spring run for third place while City have eyes on the title. But with Chelsea creating a gap at the top, they can't afford to lose many more points.

 

Call the Midwife BBC One HD, 8pm

BBC's Award-winning period drama set in 1950s East London returns for a fourth series. An encounter with an impoverished child forces Trixie (Helen George) to see the murky side of life, while Poplar welcomes a new resident - nurse Barbara Gilbert (played by Charlotte Ritchie).

The first episode starts with an emotional bang, as Rev Tom Hereward has a surprise in store for Trixie.

 

'Til next week...

Comments

fizban_UK's picture

Correction.

Incredible Hulk - "good start to what's becoming the biggest show in town." no - Iron Man was the start of what is now known as the Marvel Cinematic Universe, beating this film to release by a month (at least in the US).

Kob Monney's picture

Hi fizban_UK

Hi fizban_UK

Yes, we know, but as both films were in production at the same same time we grouped them as part of the beginning of the MCU and not necessarily in terms of which film came first (which, as you write, would be Iron Man).