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BBC PRIME (article first published : 2004-02-9)

BBC Prime has a line-up of great programmes on the DStv channel.

Thursday nights offers a brand new series of Changing Rooms at 20h00 - Carol Smillie has thrown in the dustsheet and handed the reins of the evergreen home-makeover show over to the flamboyant Laurence Llewellyn-Bowen as the 14th series rolls onto BBC Prime in February.

At 20h30 the fashionistas with attitude are back with the third series of What Not to Wear. Trinny & Susannah continue to prod, pinch and cajole a brand new group of ladies and some gents into their new wardrobes.

At 21h00 is the African premiere of the hottest new show on British television. Wife Swap has pulled in massive audiences, created headlines and been the talking point around every water-cooler in every office in the land. The format is simple. Two families from very different backgrounds swap wives for two weeks (They naturally stay in guest bedrooms). In the first week the visiting wives run the household based on a manual drawn up by the departed wife, but in the second week they can change the rules and that usually means trying to re-acquaint the slack dad with his kitchen, washing machine and sometimes even his children. Expect tears, tantrums and raised voices as the wives clash with their new families. At the end of the two weeks the two couples get together to share their experiences. Most come away from the Wife Swap with a new perspective on the power relationship in their marriage. Itís riveting TV and has become the appointment to view on UK TV. Hopefully this not-to-be-missed programme will mean that Thursday nights will also be marked up as BBC Prime night in African diaries from February 12th.

Ex-Monty Python and intrepid traveller Michael Palin turns his global attention to Africa this month on BBC Prime as he explores Sahara. In this fascinating 4-part travelogue he ventures across this amazing desert landscape from the Straits of Gibraltar through Morocco, Mauritania, Mali and beyond. Meanwhile BBC Science explores the amazing growth in gene technology and looks at How To Build a Human.

Saturday Night with the Stars welcomes some new celebrities to its fold. Ruby Wax is back with another series of Ruby Meets where she hangs out with Tom Hanks, Sharon Stone and Helen Mirren, while the Dead Ringers team follow in the footsteps of Alistair McGowan with yet more hilarious impressions of the stars of today.

Thereís love in the air this Valentines Day on BBC Prime. Watch singletons try and find romance in 3 episodes of Would Like to Meet back to back on February 14th. This sets off an extended run of this innovative series in which individuals are given expert advice and tips to find that perfect partner.




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