Autumn and winter has seen TV up its game for the cold nights. Laura Mulqueen lets you know what’s worth watching.

“Girls” and “Game of Thrones” are still a few months wait away while True Blood has just concluded its story.  So what now? For those of you who are particularly opposed to Saturday nights of “The X Factor” and “Strictly Come Dancing”, there is no need to fear. There are plenty of shows on air at the moment that may interest you.

For those of you already pining for Nidge and Fran’s antics in Love/Hate, “The Fall” is a relatively new BBC crime series filmed in Belfast that begins its second series on RTÉ next week. The series follows the police force in Northern Ireland as they investigate homicides. Caught between repulsing and intriguing viewers, “The Fall” has proven itself a certifiable competitor this winter. Sexual sadism, murder and investigation are three key words for this show. Also the lead actor, Jamie Dornan, will be playing Christian Grey in the upcoming “Fifty Shades of Grey” movie, which may prove a draw for some viewers…

“American Horror Story: Freak Show” kicked off a few weeks ago to the applause of horror lovers who are thrilled with the bizarre cast of characters. This season has exploded with much enthusiasm, coupled with a success in numbers this year. “Freak Show” is the running theme, where a circus of freaks, featuring conjoined sisters and a three breasted intersexed woman,  park in a small American town for the entertainment of the community. The glory of this TV show is that each season starts anew with different characters, meaning newbies do not need to spend a week hibernating in their house catching up on any plots. But be warned, non-lovers of horror may find this show difficult to stomach.

On a lighter note, for any I.T. inept what-is-streaming-and-where-can-I-do-it people, the wait is over. “The Big Bang Theory” begins its eighth season this Wednesday at 7 p.m. on RTÉ 2. The gang of social misfits return with witty pseudo-scientific dialogue and nerdy references.

A must for any college student is “The Republic of Telly”. From the skit of Irish culture and comedian Kevin McGahern’s brazen look at current politics and headline stories during the week, the ensemble cast will have students in stitches. What’s more, their new series has just kicked off on RTÉ two. If, like many of us, your budget doesn’t quite stretch to a telly and a Saorview box, then you can catch “The Republic of Telly” on RTÉ player. Many of their sketches pop up on Facebook timelines and Youtube gaining thousands of views, too, so it’s easy to get hooked. 

There’s loads on offer on RTÉ and beyond at the moment, with most of it available online. Waiting for January won’t be so difficult with this selection at hand, hang in there!