TV highlights: Thursday, January 17

BIG FOOD RESCUE

★★★½

The volunteers on Big Food Rescue try to get wholesome surplus food to those who need it most.

8.30pm, SBS Food

Did you know people are turning up in British hospitals suffering from malnutrition, rickets and scurvy? That's just one of the disturbing facts tossed into this engaging documentary about the efforts of one charity to get fresh, wholesome surplus food to those who need it most. There are lots of thought-provoking and sometimes appalling statistics, but there are also lots of wonderful characters volunteering to distribute food and to prepare it, and of course the incredibly varied crew who consume it.

THE CONNERS

★★★

7.30pm, Ten

The terrific trio of Laurie Metcalfe, John Goodman and Sara Gilbert is boosted even further by some very fun ongoing guest stars. There's Juliette Lewis, of course. Jay R. Ferguson (clearly having a ball) as Darlene's boss and now love interest. And best of all Matthew Broderick, reminding us what a great comic actor he is as Jackie's new beau, the erudite but decidedly shady Peter. He gets all the best lines, and does the most with them.

ESCAPE FROM THE CITY

★★★

7.30pm, ABC

If this local remake of Escape to the Country has a major flaw, it's the overenthusiasm of the hosts. It's one thing to be warm and friendly, quite another to be the kind of shouty, touchy-feely over-sharer you avoid at parties. Tone it down, guys. Elsewhere, though, there's plenty to enjoy as Amanda goes searching for a tree change in Daylesford (Victoria's small-town answer to San Francisco) with the help of her best mate Elissa.

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