What’s on the telly?

Mastermind – Friday, August 10, BBC Two, 8pm

What’s It All About? In case you’ve missed this show over the past 40 years, it’s one of the simplest quizzes on the box. There are no flashing lights, gimmicks and in-your-face special effects. Just a black chair, a spotlight and a question master. It’s a winning, streamlined formula that has touched a chord with millions over the decades, and should leave many of us hooked here as well.

For the first of a new series, specialist subjects are the Completed Novels of Jane Austen; the Life and Times of Elizabeth I; Fawlty Towers, and the Savoy Operas of Gilbert and Sullivan.

Host John Humphrys will be introducing the four brave contestants who hope they have what it takes to reach the finale.

Look Out For: The winner of course. Millions of us will be perched on the edge of our seats as the final scores are announced.

However, don’t expect Mr Humphrys to be on the receiving end of some other question master’s line of enquiry. (He once answered questions on himself for a tabloid interview and admits he “still didn’t get all the answers right”).