What to watch on RTÉ Player this week!

The RTÉ Player team share their top picks to watch on RTÉ Player this week.


What’s Trending?

Eavan Boland: Is It Still The Same?

To mark International Women’s Day last Thursday, 8th of March, RTÉ One screened a vivid portrait of writer Eavan Boland who has been called ‘the first great woman poet in the history of Irish poetry’.  The film explores Eavan Boland’s unusual background (her father was a distinguished Diplomat, her mother, an artist); her experience of early exile in London and New York; her struggle to find her place in the male-dominated poetry scene of Dublin in the 60s; her involvement in the Irish Women’s Liberation movement; her enduring marriage to writer Kevin Casey; her role as mother and grandmother; her long and sustaining friendship with former President of Ireland Mary Robinson and the discovery of her poetic voice and subject matter in the Dublin suburbs of the 1970s.  In addition to Mary Robinson, writers Paula Meehan and Tobias Woolf offer intriguing insights into Eavan Boland as a poet and colleague.  Above all, Eavan Boland sees herself, unambiguously, as an Irish woman poet. For Boland, each of those three words – ‘Irish’ ‘Woman’ and ‘Poet’ – bears equal weight, and this film is not only a celebration of one of Ireland’s greatest poets, but one of our greatest defenders of women’s rights.  Watch Eavan Boland: Is It Still The Same? Now on RTÉ Player.


What’s New?

Dermot Bannon’s Temper Tantrum

In the upcoming episode of brand new series of Room to Improve Irish architect, Dermot Bannon, arrives at the small seaside town of Portrane in North County Dublin to embark on his next project but not before taking some downtime to fulfill an architectural dream of his.  In the latest Room to Improve ‘behind the scenes’ clip on RTÉ Player, Dermot is excited to discover he is about to tick one major item off his architectural bucket list as he sets about Lambay Island, home of Lambay Castle designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, a hero of his.  The boat trip takes a turn for the worst, however, when Dermot learns the island is closed to public access and he will have to ‘make do’ viewing from afar.  What ensues can only be defined as a total temper tantrum as Dermot throws all of his toys out of the pram and folds his arms in a huff.  As Dermot embraces his inner child nothing will console him.  Not even a trip to see the cute seals.  Aw.  Watch the exclusive clip now on RTÉ Player.


What Not to Miss?

What Are You Eating?

The 6-part series What Are You Eating? is back for a new season on RTÉ One and this time the series will look at Veganism, Fish, Heart Healthy Eating, Treats, Food Waste and the Store Cupboard (spices, flavourings and condiments).  Having tried the Paleo Diet in Season 1 and a High Protein Gym Diet in Season 2, this season presenter Philip Boucher-Hayes takes on the challenge of trying the vegan diet for a month. Having got advice from dietician Aveen Bannon about protein intake and vitamin supplements, Philip gets into the diet by learning to shop differently and by joining the Vegan in Ireland Dublin walking tour run by Sivan Pardo Renwick  and her husband Scott.  In the kitchen, series chef, Hilary O’Hagan-Brennan, teaches him how to make a dish that satisfies meat cravings without using either real meat or fake meat. Not content to look at veganism as just another plant-based diet PBH teases out the ethical issues that inform its position on animal welfare by trying the Vegan Information Project’s virtual reality headset to get an immersive experience of the lives of intensively reared pigs.  Later he asks if humans are designed to eat meat or not by chatting with anthropologist and archaeologist Dr Bill Schindler who explains how humans first began to hunt for meat instead of scavenging.  At the end of his 28-day vegan odyssey Philip receives some shocking information about what’s happened to his body during his time on the diet but is this down to the diet itself or to his failure to balance his nutritional supplements?


Pick of the Week

The Works Presents …

The Works Presents returned this week with John Kelly talking to author Roddy Doyle.  Roddy Doyle’s compelling portrayal of the resilience of working class people facing up to life’s challenges is always faithful to his readers lived experience.  In a programme peppered with clips and quotes from the popular movies of his works.  Roddy talks to John Kelly about his recent book Smile who’s origin was an off the cuff remark by his teacher that has stayed with him for life.  Other guests in this new series include pianist John O’Conor, animator and filmmaker Nora Twomey, contemporary visual artist Colin Davidson and novelist Eimear McBride.  Watch the first episode of the new series now on RTÉ Player.