HD Heads-Up: August 15-21

TV3 is rejuvenating its three-hour Thursday night factual block with three newcomers in HD, including Kevin McCloud’s latest grand redesign.

In Kevin McCloud’s Escape To The Wild (7.30 Thursday), the Grand Designs guru ventures further beyond suburbia to follow the (mis)fortunes of British families who have gone bush.

It will be followed by the premiere of Child Genius and the two-part Supersize: Saving Britain’s 70 Stone Man.

“If you want to live out there, you’ve got to be a little bit out there,” McCloud says of the families who swap the comforts of home for roughing it in the wild

“You’ve got to be slightly touched, enormously resilient and prepared to knit your own clothing.”

The Independent dubbed his latest series “a sobering reality-check for desk-bound daydreamers … It’s challenging enough to build your own home in the UK; imagine if the building materials were limited to some coral and a few palm trees.”

“Good news: hilariously intelligent kids,” said The Guardian of the junior Mensa contest, Child Genius.

“If there’s something a teeny bit wrong about being amused by intelligent kids, then it’s certainly better than being entertained by stupid ones, or fat ones, or poor ones.

“Plus Child Genius is nicely non-judgmental and sympathetic. And of course it’s really more about the parents than it is about the kids.”

Concurred The Independent: “Child Genius gets away with its potentially exploitative, point-and-laugh-at-the-poindexters premise, by being as much about the parents as it is about the kids.”

The Telegraph called it “a compelling and sober warning about the dangers of introducing a timer to family holiday games of Scrabble.

“And for those of us whose childhood achievements mostly involved sticking crayons up our noses, that was very reassuring.”

Supersize: Saving Britain’s 70 Stone Man follows 70-stone Keith Martin as he is mentored by one of the country’s top obesity-treatment teams in a doomed attempt to lose 30 stone and achieve his ultimate ambition to take his dog for a walk.

Season finales include Kangaroo Dundee, House Hunt, Gadget Man, This Town and Hotel of Mum and Dad while returning are Blue Bloods (S3, TV3, 8.30 Saturday) and Hart of Dixie (S4, TV2, 6.00 Sunday).

After mounting a heroic multi-season catch-up of The Good Wife, TV3 needs to do the same for fans of Blue Bloods given S6 starts in the US next month.

The bad news for Hart of Dixie diehards is S4 is not only the final season but also the shortest: 10 eps instead of the standard 22.

TV2 also will start to repeat double eps of The Walking Dead’s fifth season (12.30am Monday) in the run up to S6’s premiere in October.

The week’s only network movie premiere is The Internship (TV3, 8.30 Sunday).

Other coming attractions in HD for that week include A Cinderella Story (TV2, 7.00 Saturday), How Do You Know (TV2, 8.55 Saturday), The Social Network (TV2, 11.15 Saturday), Girl In Progress (TV2, 1.40am Sunday), What To Expect When You’re Expecting (TV2, 8.30 Sunday), The Caller (TV2, 10.40 Sunday), Greenberg (TV3, 11.00 Sunday), Pretty Woman (TV2, 8.40 Tuesday) and The Bourne Legacy (TV3, 8.40 Wednesday).

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