The best TV shows to watch in July

From Andrew Garfield’s starring role in a 1980s true-crime drama to a revealing new Rolling Stones documentary; here are the best things to watch on tv July 2022


The undeclared war (Channel 4, currently showing)

What did you do on the first day of your first internship? In C4’s six-part thriller The undeclared war, GCHQ worker Saara Parvan (Hannah Khalique-Brown) prevents a cyberattack that threatens to plummet the national economy and change the course of the 2024 national election, earning applause from Conservative Prime Minister Andrew Makinde (Adrian Lester). Written and co-directed by Peter Kosminsky, who’s in serious form when it comes to this sort of thing, the show promises a tough look at national security issues (it’s been researched over a three-year period) and a fast-paced thriller designed around cunning conceit: Parvan’s cybersleuthing is visualized, Creation-style, like a series of gravity-defying sets.

My Rolling Stone Life (BBC Two, July 2)

Screening as part of a season on the BBC celebrating the band’s 60th anniversary, My Rolling Stone Life promises to revive the legend of the greatest rock band the world has ever seen. How do you do that with a story as relentless as the Stones? Perhaps, as this first episode seems to suggest, by exposing the business acumen involved in transforming a group of snotty-nosed blues lovers into a pop culture juggernaut worth an estimated 1.5 billion – “a nexus between the 1960s counterculture and the commercial, modern world”. The band’s manager, Andrew Loog Oldham, was crucial in this transformation, which encouraged their sex- and drug-fueled antics to counter the Beatles’ impeccable image – a marketing masterstroke that Keith Richards can laugh about now. “The Beatles were exactly the same as us,” laughs the band’s guitarist and self-proclaimed, “dirty pig!” outlaw figure.

Under the banner of heaven (Disney+, July 27)

Andrew Garfield has a little trouble keeping up with acclaimed roles in Tick, tick… Boom! and Tammy Faye’s eyesso we’re excited to see what he brings to Under the banner of heavena crime drama based on Jon Krakauer’s tale of a double murder that rocked a small town in 1980s Utah. real detective abound in the trailer, with its prodigious whispers of an ancient evil at work in the murders, and generous helpings of existential desperation from Garfield, as a Mormon cop whose work on the case leads him to hand over questioning his faith.

Surface (Apple TV, July 29)

Having survived an apparent suicide attempt with no memory of her past, Sophie (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) faces a dilemma: accept the official version of events that she herself threw off the boat, or start investigating. her husband (Oliver Jackson-Cohen, bolstering his creepy credentials after his role in The invisible Man) to see if it might have contributed to its near demise. It might be a bit of a jaw-dropping premise, but San Francisco’s lavish setting and candlelight connivance make it look like, perhaps, a West Coast response to big little lies.

paper girls (Amazon Prime, July 29)

Amazon Prime is hoping for some stranger things‘retro-tweeny magic rubs off on paper girls, a sci-fi comic book adaptation that may give older viewers flashbacks to The girl of tomorrow. The familiar ingredients quickly fall into place, from the obligatory 1980s setting to the aggressive and relentless needle drops (The Bangles! New Order! Uh, Marie Davidson?) and hastily sketched high school archetypes, but the plot which jumps back in time, which finds a group of paper girls embroiled in a conflict between warring bands of people from the future, sounds like a blast.

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