BBC2 takes wraps off lineup


LONDON -- BBC2 head Roly Keating is putting daytime television, the law, health and the glamorous lives of twentysomethings under the microscope as part of the channel's winter-spring lineup announced Monday.

Comic actress Jennifer Saunders returns to the channel to star as a confessional daytime television agony aunt in "The Life and Times of Vivienne Vyle."

Co-written by real-life television psychologist Dr. Tania Byron, the show will see Saunders take on the big issues when faced by such contemporary dilemmas as women who complain "my son calls the wrong man Daddy."

In a new format from "Wife Swap" creator RDF Media, a panel of celebrity jurors take on a fictional rape case, presided over by a real judge and real lawyers. Stripped across four nights, the "trial" sees the jurors confronted with a top-league soccer player accused of rape. It will follow them through the court case and into the jury room, providing hitherto unseen access to the deliberation process.

"This is a hugely ambitious project that brings the law to life in a completely new way," Keating said. "It will be fascinating to follow the twists and turns of the case, see the dynamics and pose struggles within the jury, learn about the jury system and engage with the whole experience," he added.

In "The Truth About Food," celebrity presenters including Olympic sprinter Colin Jackson, newsreader Fiona Bruce and comedian Vic Reeves take viewers on a journey of discovery about the science of food while using the latest technology to show how it can directly impact them.

Drama highlights include NBC superhero ratings smash "Heroes" and "Party Animals," a new drama about love, sex and ambition set against the backdrop of the House of Commons.

From the makers of "This Life," "Animals" stalks the corridors of power, following a power-hungry group of twentysomethings as they get their first taste of politics and ambition.