Wednesday’s best TV: The Missing, The Great British Bake Off


It’s Tudor week in the tent! Photograph: Mark Bourdillon/BBC/Love Productions

The Great British Bake Off
8pm, BBC1

The weekly themes on the baking show have been a little bit off-beam this series, and following the contentious “batter” and the pretty tenuous “botanicals” categories, it’s Tudor week in the tent for this year’s quarter-finalists. Yes, that does mean recipes from 500 years ago, while Paul Hollywood’s goatee fits the bill perfectly. There will be pastry and upset along the way, as another baker prepares for the chop. Ben Arnold

The Missing
9pm, BBC1

An exhausted young British woman stumbles into a German town and collapses. Her reappearance after escaping from an abductor should be a cause for joy, but instead what follows is a taut psychological thriller that’s also a portrait of people falling apart. Pay attention, because the split narrative – with each story strand set in a different year – takes some following. It’s well worth the effort. Tchéky Karyo, David Morrissey and Keeley Hawes feature in a strong cast. Jonathan Wright

Horizon: The Lost Tribes of Humanity
9pm, BBC2

Professor Alice Roberts introduces us to some equally learned colleagues as she introduces this doc about the chap that anthropologists call “Modern Human”. It’s tempting to think that he, with his culture and capacity for abstract thought, walked the Earth alone; in fact, he shared the planet with others. The Neanderthal, meanwhile, has a reputation for slow-wittedness that, this film suggests, is somewhat undeserved. John Robinson

Aberfan: The Young Wives Club
9pm, ITV

The skyline of Aberfan, Wales, was dominated by a mountain and a colliery, until October 1966, when tonnes of coal waste washed down the mountain, engulfing Pantglas junior school. A total of 116 children and 28 adults died. After, housewives in the village met to provide mutual counselling, and these weekly rendezvous continue to this day. This is their story: a captivating human essay on lives lost and lives left to cope with almost incalculable loss. Mark Gibbings-Jones

30 Degrees in February
9pm, Sky Arts

At the end of last year’s first season of the sunny but melancholy Swedish saga, midlife crisis turned to life-or-death drama for the expats seeking a new start in Thailand: a tsunami-hit paradise already tainted by the eternal truth that emotional problems cannot be escaped by changing location. The new run picks up four years later. Did the best character, Majlis (Lotta Tejle), make it? Not everyone is going to survive this episode … Jack Seale

10pm, ITV Encore

More from the latest Scandi noir series, the bewildering quantity of which (as evidenced by the return of 30 Degrees in February can by now only cause one to wonder whether anyone in Sweden, Norway or Denmark is doing anything but making bleak TV serials. Tonight, principal protagonist Vera is beset by yet further reasons to wonder whether starting a new life in the titular hamlet was really such a good idea – specifically, a field full of buried bodies. Andrew Mueller

No Such Thing As the News
11.15pm, BBC2

After making their TV debut earlier this year, the QI researchers behind the award-winning No Such Thing As a Fish podcast return for a second series of topical analysis peppered with fascinating facts. The production values may be basic (“Like watching a hostage video,” suggested one fan), but the well-worn on-mic chemistry between Dan Schreiber, Anna Ptaszynski, Andrew Hunter Murray and James Harkin is infectious. Graeme Virtue

Film choice

Inside Llewyn Davis, (Ethan Coen, Joel Coen, 2013) Wednesday, 12.55am, Film4

Pre-Dylan, early-60s Greenwich Village is recreated in all its tatty glory in the Coen brothers’ beautiful, bittersweet musical drama. Oscar Isaac is downbeat folk singer Llewyn Davis, once half of a well-regarded duo but on the slide since the suicide of his partner. Now homeless and self-pitying, he trudges the streets in search of his star. The Coens move effortlessly from funny to melancholy in a pitch-perfect study of flickering hope not quite extinguished by imminent failure. Paul Howlett

The Time Traveler’s Wife, (Robert Schwentke, 2009), 1.15am, Channel 4

Eric Bana’s Henry doesn’t need a Tardis to travel through time; he does it via some peculiar genetic anomaly, allowing him to appear – stark naked – and vanish from the life of his sweetheart Clare (Rachel McAdams). It vaguely ponders the meaning of love, fate and meeting Mr Right, but this is basically a daft, enjoyable piece of hokum. PH

Live sport

Tennis: Shanghai Masters Coverage of the third day, featuring first- and second-round matches. 6am, Sky Sports 3

International Cricket: Bangladesh v England All the action from the final fixture in the three-match series. 8am, Sky Sports 2

International Cricket: South Africa v Australia Coverage of the fifth and final fixture of the five-match series at Newlands in Cape Town. 12.25pm, Sky Sports 1