Sunday 20 January 2019

Pick of the week: Katie

Tuesday, RTÉ One, 10.15pm, The comeback kid

Katie Taylor talks candidly about her life and career in Ross Whitaker’s film
Katie Taylor talks candidly about her life and career in Ross Whitaker’s film
Bowie
Will & Grace
Britain's Fattest People
Paul Whitington

Paul Whitington

As she proved once again last month with her comprehensive defeat of Eva Wahlstrom in Madison Square Garden, Katie Taylor is a brilliant boxer, arguably the greatest this country has ever produced. But being that good isn't easy, a simple message that Ross Whitaker's fine documentary constantly underlines. He followed Katie for 18 months, charting the lows of her Olympic disappointment in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, and the highs of her success in America once she decided to turn professional.

Born in Bray, County Wicklow, she fell in love with boxing at the age of six but soon found that all avenues to the ring were blocked in this profoundly sexist sport. Women were banned from boxing in Ireland, and she dressed as a boy to enter competitions, but that was just the first of many hurdles Katie would overcome on the path to greatness. She seems to thrive on adversity, and obstacles only seem to intensify her determination to succeed.

At one point Whitaker considered calling his film 'The Comeback', and Taylor's resilience and inner strength are impressive. So, however, is her honesty: she doesn't shy away from tough questions, and at one point talks candidly about her painful rupture with her father, which sent her into a psychological tailspin from which she would battle hard to emerge.

Intriguingly, it was at this lowest point in her life that she allowed Ross Whitaker and his cameras to follow her around, during a period that became a roller-coaster of setbacks and triumphs. She's a remarkable person, and Whitaker's film does her story justice.

 

3 to watch

Will & Grace

Monday, RTÉ2, 9pm

Just friends

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Will & Grace

David Schwimmer guest stars tonight, playing a spectacularly grumpy Twitter contributor who becomes a potential love interest for Grace.

Icons

Tuesday, BBC2, 9pm

20th century greats

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Bowie

In this documentary series, the public pick their favourites from a list of great 20th century figures, and tonight Kathleen Turner considers the impact of entertainers like David Bowie.

Shut-Ins: Britain's Fattest People

Wednesday, Channel 4, 10pm

Too fat to function

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Britain's Fattest People

Thousands of British people are so obese they can no longer leave their homes, and in this reality show we meet an overweight couple who are fighting to regain control of their lives.

Weekend Magazine

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