Sharp: Cameron Daddo as Howard Arthur in <i>The Dr Blake Mysteries</i>.

Sharp: Cameron Daddo as Howard Arthur in The Dr Blake Mysteries.

FREE TO AIR

Seconds from Disaster, ABC2, 7.30pm

On December 3, 1984, 3000 citizens of the Indian city of Bhopal died when clouds of toxic gas exploded from the Union Carbide plant, suffocating them. This series uses interviews with witnesses, survivors and experts to piece together the moments just before this catastrophic event. Others in the series include the terrorists attacks in the US on September 11, 2001, and the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.

The Dr Blake Mysteries, ABC1, 8.30pm

Dr Blake is massively on-trend with his sturdy beard, isn't he? He reminds me of a young barista who rustled up my flat white recently. This week, he's certainly up to his beard in it. Who killed rock'n'roll singer Bobby Lee? Was it his bandmate, jealous of the attention Bobby Lee's been getting; an over-enthusiastic fan; one of the Ballarat bible bashers (including Cameron Daddo, looking very sharp) who think rock'n'roll is the devil's work; or Elvis himself, peeved that someone else has cashed in on his act? So far Blake has little to go on. There's the mark on Bobby Lee's pinkie finger that shows his ring has been violently pulled off, and an over-eager junior copper who is spending more time arresting fans and less time looking for evidence. Come on, Dr Blake. Think, man. Think.

Secret Location, 7Two, 9.30pm

Quite what the interest for Aussies is in this show is anyone's guess. The premise is a couple who are sick of looking for a new home to buy near Edinburgh, and have contacted a TV show to finish the job for them. Enter Sunita Shroff, who, as a property finder (that's a job?) plans to look beyond the couple's original search area to find them their perfect home. She drives them in a blacked-out car so they haven't a clue where they are, the idea being they fall in love with the home and forget the importance of the location. Tonight's couple, Zoe and Chris, live near Edinburgh. He's a 134-kilogram Royal Marine and she giggles a lot. They love motorbikes and cars. ''We're looking for a garage with a nice house,'' says Chris, as Zoe giggles in the crook of his arm. Compromise is the name of the game with these shows, as well as the host saying: ''I've got my work cut out for me.'' Will they find a home with floors strong enough to accommodate Chris's weight, with walls thick enough to soundproof him from Zoe's laugh?

KATE DUTHIE


PAY TV

Long Island Medium, Discovery Home & Health, 8.30pm

Teresa Caputo is a Pigasus Award-winning medium. What are the Pigasus Awards? They're annual honours bestowed by the James Randi Educational Foundation for ''the most egregious examples of flim-flammery'' in the fields of pseudoscience and paranormal claptrap. It's hard to argue with Randi, veteran debunker of psychics and swindlers, when he says Caputo's supposed supernatural talents amount to nothing more than cold reading. Cold reading, millions seem not to know, is a simple technique in which you ask someone vague questions and allow them to fill in the details - and to convince themselves that you got those details from a supernatural source. Tonight's Long Island Medium has many depressing lowlights; prominent is the scene in which Caputo tells a woman whose young daughter died that the cat glancing aimlessly around the room is watching the dead girl's gallivanting ghost. ''That's amazing,'' the woman says. ''That validates that she's here.''

South Africa: The Massacre that Changed a Nation, BBC Knowledge, 9.40pm

A sad but compelling documentary in which British MP Peter Hain, who grew up in South Africa, looks into the 2012 police massacre of striking miners.

BRAD NEWSOME


MOVIES

Monte Carlo (2011) GO!, 7.10pm

Valentine's Day rarely brings out the best in filmmakers or television programmers. Tonight there is a choice between the mistaken-identity Monte Carlo and a character-mosaic, Valentine's Day. They score 5.7 and 5.8 respectively on IMDb.

Let's go first for the underdog, Thomas Bezucha's Monte Carlo, the tale of two half-sisters forced together on a one-week holiday to Paris, along with a friend. They come from deepest Texas, so it is no surprise that this is a trio of innocents abroad.

There is good material here for a comedy, but it's played as inanely as possible (Paris restaurants allow you less than 10 seconds to eat a steak frites; tour groups stride faster than Olympic walkers), made doubly unpleasant by an American sneer at all things French. It is a major relief to finally meet a charming Parisian saleswoman in a trinket shop. It is also a relief to head for Monte Carlo, the girls deciding to abandon their visit to the City of Lights.

However, they only do this after a ludicrous plot twist whereby Grace (Selena Gomez) is mistaken for a filthy-rich and painfully snobby Englishwoman, Cordella Winthrop Scott (also played by Gomez). This happens in a luxury Paris hotel that is clearly located in Budapest. Monte Carlo is one of hundreds of films largely shot in Prague or Budapest, but pretending to be somewhere else. Are there really any filmgoers left who are capable of being duped?

Still, if you can tolerate a Monte Carlo filled with Hungarian architecture and a surfeit of dreadful French accents, there is some pleasure to be had travelling with this naif threesome and experiencing the people they meet, including the now-almost-obligatory Aussie (Luke Bracey).

Valentine's Day (2010) Nine, 8.30pm

Clearly inspired by Love Actually, Garry Marshall's Valentine's Day tells intertwining stories of love in the City of Angels, but it is flat and forced, a souffle that never rises.

SCOTT MURRAY