Netflix documentary series Age of Samurai: Battle for Japan should probably come with an “unsuitable for vegetarians” sticker. Heads (lots of them) roll, guts are spilled and blood spurts as this gory show tells the tale of how arguably history’s most revered warriors rose from servants to slashers supreme, shaping what would become modern Japan along the way. But while the battlefield re-enactments are the show-stoppers in a production that sometimes thinks it’s a thriller, it is not all sport. Any dramatisation of the past that is comparable to the Discovery or History channel models requires scholarly input; accordingly, the talking heads featured here all make essential contributions. In this they are assisted by having such rich content on tap: it’s hardly surprising that samurai deeds continue to generate so much creative endeavour. There’s Oda Nobunaga, the vicious, sadistic warlord who wants to unite feudal, clan-ruled Japan under his own banner. Here’s Lady Tsukiyama, destined to make a spectacular, dead-end career move by trying to betray her warlord husband. And we have Japan’s battle-ready Buddhist monasteries – yes, really – formidable centres of military might that aren’t going to roll over for any opposing army, no matter how brutal. In this, the Sengoku era (1467-1615), warfare begins to take on an industrial dimension, with new technology (notably the arquebus long gun) helping to ramp up the slaughter. Which makes Age of Samurai all rather sobering. You probably won’t want to party like it’s 1569. Superman & Lois shows life isn’t always super-great for superheroes Life isn’t always super-great when you’re a superhero. Take Superman: super-nerd in his day job, made to wear his underpants outside his trousers when dispatching bad guys. (And they are not even trousers.) However, some superhero reinventions are better than others, which brings us to Superman & Lois from Warner TV (Now TV channel 510; new episodes on Wednesdays.) Benefiting this time round from significantly reduced embarrassment in the underwear department, the Man of Steel/Clark Kent can be found down on the farm in Smallville, Kansas. But all is not bucolic bliss, thanks in part to his teenaged twin sons, who began this 15-part first series convinced their father was a klutz; and because lay-offs at The Daily Planet mean he’s now out of any kind of meaningful job he can declare on his tax returns. From which we gather that redundancy is almost as enervating as kryptonite, and that even Superman has domestic problems. Who knew? As he’s struggling to adjust to post-Metropolis life back home in the sticks, Lois Lane – now Mrs Kent – tells him: “Your life falling apart doesn’t mean you’re special, it means you’re human.” (Gee, thanks!) And there we have the crux, or the rub, of this latest take on the Superman legend: while not exactly human, he is one of us after all. You’ll believe a man can cry (almost). Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch, as (super)man and wife, smoothly reprise their roles from the Arrowverse compilation of DC Comics’ superhero shows, to the point where homemaking seems as big a concern for the last son of Krypton as saving his adoptive world. How he must long to be taken away from such human-centric irritations as social alienation and an economy on the slide and given a disaster to avert. Cue his early intervention at a nuclear power station in mid-meltdown, which he cools with the help of what looks like a large floret of frozen broccoli. Every superhero naturally needs a nemesis, the series’ supervillain introduced while lumbering around in a clunky suit of armour. He, too, has a famous, comic-strip name – but giving it away here would just be spoiling things.