"I'm just a bitch with money and power … but I do make it look good." Those are not words you might expect to hear from a pretty young princess, but Eleanor, with her fetish for mascara and nose candy, is not your typical royal. Or maybe she is; perhaps that is exactly how a young girl born into royalty thinks.
Set in modern-day England, The Royals (above; Star World, Tuesday at 8pm) follows the lives of a fictional family whose wild world of opulence and hedonism is marred only by the burden of duty and intense public scrutiny. And along with her playboy twin brother, Prince Liam (William Moseley; The Chronicles of Narnia), Eleanor (Alexandra Park; Home and Away) provides plenty of fodder for the tabloids, with a lifestyle largely dedicated to sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. Forget the Kardashians, this is anarchy in the monarchy, the original celebrity family.
After the sudden death of his older brother, eligible bachelor Liam is thrust into the spotlight as next in line to the throne, but when King Simon (Vincent Regan; 300) announces that he is considering abolishing the monarchy, his manipulative queen (Elizabeth Hurley, at her glamorous and glaring best) sets about doing whatever she can to remain in power.
The Royals doesn't pretend to be high-brow dramedy - the mere mention of Hurley should have told you that; it's intentionally trashy and happily outlandish. Heck, even Joan Collins turns up in later episodes, as the queen mother! Steamy and scandalous, this soap opera of the upper crust is riotously funny one minute and embarrassingly crass the next. Oh, how the other half live, eh?
For such a hunky hero, Captain America was somewhat overshadowed in his 2011 film, The First Avenger, by the classy and charismatic bomb-defusing agent Peggy Carter. Against her sharp quips and stiff upper lip, Steve Rogers (the Captain's alter ego) never stood a chance.
Peggy is deservedly the first female Marvel character to have her own show, Agent Carter, the second series of which starts with a double episode on Wednesday (on Fox, at 9pm).
The first series, set in America at the end of the second world war, saw our titular heroine (Hayley Atwell, a regular in the Marvel cinematic universe, having appeared in the Captain America and Avengers movies as well as last year's Ant-Man) take on a dangerous undercover assignment on behalf of billionaire inventor pal Howard Stark (Iron Man's father, played by Dominic Cooper), in a bid to prove he was innocent of treason. She enlisted the help of Stark's butler, Jarvis (James D'Arcy; Broadchurch), and their warm rapport brought a certain charm to the show.
With its slick comic-book noirish style, Agent Carter bristled with an exuberant energy; a refreshing blend of comedy, action and snappy dialogue. D'Arcy and Atwell turned in star-making performances, proving it doesn't always need to be about superpowers and special effects.
With nothing much on Netflix yet, what more could you ask for on a Wednesday night than another round of the curvaceous kick-ass dame fighting sexism and shadowy bad guys with ice-cool aplomb?