TV tonight: Ruby Wax’s obsession with an awesome 42-year-old female Victorian explorer

She joins Mel B and Emily Atack in the Rocky Mountains as they follow in the footsteps of Isabella Bird. Plus, The Pact comes to a devastating close. Here’s what to watch tonight

Trailblazers: A Rocky Mountain Road Trip

9pm, BBC Two

Sending a comedian, an actor and a Spice Girl in the footsteps of convention-breaking Victorian explorer Isabella Bird might seem a random concept – and it is, but it actually makes for an endearing, inspiring and very funny adventure in this three-parter. Ruby Wax and her two companions, Mel B and Emily Atack, travel through the Rocky Mountains to Longs Peak, while telling the awesome story of the gutsy 42-year-old single woman who did the same journey in 1873 and fell for a one-eyed desperado called Rocky Mountain Jim. Hollie Richardson

The Pact

9pm, BBC One

Gamechanging secrets are revealed in tonight’s devastating finale, as the Rees family’s saga comes to an end in dramatic (if slightly overblown) fashion. The origin of Liam comes to light as the troubled siblings come ever closer to finding out the truth, while Christine reckons with decisions made in her past. Sammy Gecsoyler

We Are Not Alone

9pm, Dave

We Are Not Alone: Declan Baxter as Stewart, Vicki Pepperdine as Trater, Mike Wozniak as Gordan and Joe Thomas as Greggs.
We Are Not Alone: Declan Baxter as Stewart, Vicki Pepperdine as Trater, Mike Wozniak as Gordan and Joe Thomas as Greggs. Photograph: Vishal Sharma/©UKTV

What if alien invasion classic V was set in Lancashire? That, broadly, is the premise of this gag-filled feature-length sci-fi about a loafer (Declan Baxter) strong-armed into doing PR for the conquering Gu’un empire. Amid an impressive ensemble, Joe Thomas stands out as the sweetest (and stupidest) alien. Graeme Virtue

The White Lotus

9pm, Sky Atlantic

“I was gone one fucking night and you did molly with hookers!?” The fifth episode of this dark Sicilian comedy-drama sees secrets unearthed. As Ethan Spiller (Will Sharpe) confesses to a sordid night in his wife’s (Aubrey Plaza) absence, Tanya (Jennifer Coolidge) takes a cultural excursion to see Madame Butterfly. Danielle De Wolfe

Secrets of Playboy

10pm, Channel 4

“It was a beautiful world – it looked that way … but it was really ugly.” Hugh Hefner’s ex, Sondra Theodore, joins insiders such as Jennifer Saginor, who grew up in the Playboy Mansion, in this series about Hefner’s empire. All episodes go on All 4 tonight. HR

The Holiday Swindler

10.30pm, BBC Three

Most travel agents are clearly wonderful individuals who merely want the best for their sun-starved clients. On the other hand, some, such as the Brazilian travel agent profiled here – who left lots of miserable tourists in their wake – are anything but. Here’s how a “trip of a lifetime” turned out to be nothing of the sort. Ali Catterall

Film choice

The Wife, Monday, 11.15pm, BBC Two

Jonathan Pryce and Glenn Close in The Wife, 2017.
Jonathan Pryce and Glenn Close in The Wife, 2017. Photograph: Graeme Hunter/Sony Pictures Classics/Allstar

“Bad husbands of cinema” is a category with almost unlimited choice, but it’s nice to home in on one particular wrong-un. Jonathan Pryce’s here is an all-time git; a needy writer with wandering eyes who, after efforts to write a novel end poorly, suddenly becomes a bestseller. Part of what makes Pryce so insufferable is the way that “the wife” – Glenn Close – plays off him, rolling in wave after complicated wave of care and jealousy and loathing for the dismal man she married. Of all the Oscars Close should have won, she should have won this one the most. Stuart Heritage

Sport

FA Cup football third-round draw Mon, 7pm, BBC Two
The lower-league teams find out if they get a plum Premier League tie.

Contributors

Hollie Richardson, Sammy Gecsoyler, Graeme Virtue, Danielle De Wolfe, Ali Catterall and Stuart Heritage

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