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TV & Film

Gordon, Gino and Fred are returning with a ‘big fat Greek adventure’ Road Trip special this autumn

The boys are back on possibly their biggest adventure yet

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ITV

Everyone’s favourite cooking trio are making a much-needed comeback with an epic road trip across Greece set to air this autumn. 

The unlikely pals have travelled across various parts of the globe together as a part of their hugely successful ITV show – America, France and Italy, to name a few – and have experienced many weird and wonderful customs along the way.

And now, they are set to add the beautiful country of Greece to their growing list.

ITV

In Gordon, Gino & Fred Go Greek, the stars will be heading out to the country’s capital city of Athens and its many stunning islands – including the largest, Crete, which is where their journey will begin.

The trio will then move on in their trademark RV to other must-see Greek locations such as Santorini, Mykonos and Meteora, breaking up the driving with jet ski racing, shipwreck diving and fresh lobster hunting along the way.

ITV announced the show as part of its autumn programming, saying: This time their RV is hitting the beautiful Greek islands and historical city of Athens, for a big fat Greek adventure, together again behind the wheel on an epic odyssey like no other.

From island hopping on a catamaran, to jet ski racing and shipwreck diving, there will be bromance and bickering in equal measure.

ITV

Thanks to an abundance of fantastic food, including the freshest lobster, chefs Gordon and Gino will be looking to prove that Greece’s culinary credentials are up there with the very best of Europe.

The guys will begin their adventure in Crete, Greece’s largest island, before navigating their way to stunning Santorini, making their way to the party island of Mykonos and finishing their trip in the Greek capital Athens and the monasteries of Meteora.

Travelling together in the birthplace of civilisation, what could possibly go wrong?”

An official air date is yet to be announced. 

TV & Film

First Dates barman Merlin Griffiths diagnosed with bowel cancer

He has vowed to not let the disease ‘get the better of me’

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Channel 4

Merlin Griffiths, the popular barman from Channel 4’s dating show First Dates, has revealed that he has been diagnosed with stage three bowel cancer.

Griffiths, who is known best for his cocktails making skills and friendly chit-chat with contestants as they wait for their dates, opened up about his diagnosis last week, noting that he had started experiencing pain back in June.

Speaking to The Mirror, he admitted to initially dismissing the pain, believing it to be caused by an injury he suffered years ago at the age of twenty but, after the pain persisted, he eventually went to get himself seen by professionals.

There, doctors found a 4.5cm stage three tumour which he describes as ‘looking like an alien’. He said on the devastating moment: “I thought, as most people must when they get a diagnosis, ‘Oh f**k, I’ve got cancer’. When I saw my tumour on a screen I could see this big, alien-like fleshy constriction. The doctors said, ‘It looks like a malignant tumour’.

Channel 4

“I knew what that meant – it was still alive and growing. But I was also relieved. I’d spent three months telling doctors something’s wrong. No one could give me an answer until now.

“I also wanted to know, what are my chances of surviving? It’s terrifying – of course I want to live. I’ve shed a tear in private. But you can choose ‘to do’ or ‘not to do’. I chose to lead my life as normal, to stick to the facts about it, and to keep putting one step in front of the other.”

Griffiths also spoke of the difficult moment he broke the news to his wife, Lucile, and their seven-year-old Alix, noting they were both ‘incredibly upset’ but remaining positive of his chances of survival.

He recalled: “I said, ‘Dad’s got cancer’. She said, ‘Is that bad, Dad?’ I said, ‘Yes, it’s very serious but I think it should be okay. Modern medicine’s great and if anything changes I’ll let you know.’

Channel 4

“She understands that people can die but I told her cancer comes in different varieties and in different ways too – and that many people come through it.”

Griffiths has vowed to not be drawn on the deep emotional impact of the diagnosis, saying: “I want to stack the decks in my favour, which means I’m going to remain broadly positive and resilient. I’m just not a whimsical person, I stick to the facts.

“My oncologist said, ‘Your five-year outlook is 75% [chance of survival], but we aim to cure. Obviously that’s a lot lower than I’d want but I have so much faith in medicine and the NHS in this country, which is just so incredible.”

Griffiths has started his first round of chemotherapy and his oncologist hopes to remove the tumour in three months’ time, with more treatment to follow.

Channel 4

Following his diagnosis, he has urged those with bowel concerns to go to the doctor, saying: “I’m not the type to normally, but I knew something wasn’t right. It’s easy, especially with embarrassing cancers, to brush it under the carpet.

“But we must all trust our instincts.If you are worrying about something, then get it checked. I’m keeping that positive outlook, but I’ve a morbid sense of humour. I tell people, ‘I have colorectal cancer… it’s a real pain in the arse!’.”

Despite his health issues, Merlin is still set on filming another First Dates this year, with strict Covid protocols and a room to shield in.

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TV & Film

Stephen Graham and Jodie Comer tipped for Bafta wins after ‘powerful’ Help performances

‘Yeah so Jodie Comer and Stephen Graham need to win every award going for these performances’

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Stephen Graham and Jodie Comer have been tipped for Bafta wins following their ‘powerful’ performances in Channel 4’s film Help.

Help, written by Jack Thorne, tells the tale of Sarah, played by Comer, a newly appointed carer who strives to protect her patients in a fictional Liverpool care home throughout the 2020 lockdowns. Graham plays one of the care home’s residents who is suffering from early onset Alzheimer’s.

However, when the pandemic hits and staff members fall ill from the virus, Sarah finds herself running the care home alone during a night shift, dangerously low on PPE and desperate to save the lives of her residents, many of whom are struggling from the symptoms of Covid.

Channel 4

Since airing last night, both Comer and Graham have received acclaim among viewers for the roles they played in the story, with many hailing them as worthy of winning ‘all the awards’.

One person wrote on Twitter: “Jodie Comer & Stephen Graham are literally national treasures. Their level of acting is second to none.”

Another commented: “Yeah so Jodie Comer and Stephen Graham need to win every award going for these performances.”

Writer Jack Thorne came up with the idea for the film when he ‘saw care homes getting squashed and battered by the government’ throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said, as per Metro: “Hearing the stories of those at the frontline, having people break down in tears on Zoom in front of us has been incredibly moving and galling.

“Getting the story right will be incredibly important, we are aware of the pressure upon us, this has to be written and made with anger and precision. We hope we do it justice.”

Help is now available to watch on Channel 4.

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TV & Film

Gogglebox’s Marina pays emotional tribute to her ‘dearest friend’ Mary Cook

Mary sadly passed away last month

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Channel 4

Gogglebox star Marina Wingrove pulled on the heartstrings of fans far and wide this week with an emotional tribute to her friend Mary Cook.

Mary, who sadly passed away last month at the age of ninety-two, became a staple part of the reality series with Marina, whom she befriended in a retirement home ten years prior. 

A statement issued by Channel 4 and Studio Lambert on behalf of Mary’s family confirmed the news, saying in a statement: “We are extremely saddened to share that Gogglebox star Mary Cook passed away in hospital this weekend at the age of 92 with her family by her side.

Channel 4

“Beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and dear friend to many, Mary, who worked in the hospitality trade, had been married and widowed twice.”

And now, ahead of the return of the new season tonight, Marina has issued her own message via Gogglebox’s Twitter account.

Writing alongside a clip of the pair attempting to take a selfie together on a flip phone, her statement read: “A tribute from Marina to Mary. ‘My dearest friend Mary, treasured memories will last forever.

“Our laughs and giggles and our ups and downs will forever be in my heart. Deepest sympathies to Mary’s family. Love Marina.”

Fans of the show were quick to flood the post with messages of love and support, with one person writing: “Aww Marina what a beautiful and touching tribute to our dear Mary. Hope you can find the courage to come back into our lounge Marina.”

Another commented: “I absolutely adored these two together. Constantly showing that you can have fun at any age. Such lovely ladies. May Mary rest peacefully.”

Gogglebox is back on tonight on Channel 4 at 9pm.

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