The Saturday miscellany: Missy Elliot vs MIA; Johnny Depp; Open East; Thomas Scheibitz
Culture clash: Female rappers
Missy Elliot vs MIA
By Gillian Orr
Missy Elliott overcame a youth blighted by poverty and abuse – and music world concerns that she wasn't bootylicious enough – to contribute a plethora of hits to hip-hop's canon ("Work It", "Get Ur Freak On"), while never relinquishing her beloved tracksuits, despite being in an industry that worships bare flesh.
MIA gained prominence by appearing at the 2009 Grammys, heavily pregnant, in a sheer dress with just three circles to preserve her modesty. She's created controversial videos (but you'll be hard pushed to name any of her songs besides "Paper Planes"; what was that ginger kids video again?). Also published an overpriced "art" book resembling the scrawlings of a child ODing on ADHD meds. Aside from a cringey Gap ad, Missy has spared us such embarrassments.
Winner: Missy Elliot
The deleted emails of... Johnny Depp (as read by John Walsh)
Sent: 10 July 2013
Subject: prickings of conscience
Jerry, Listen, I know it's kinda late to be bringing this up but – my character Tonto. I been thinking. I'm playing an American Indian, sorry Native American, as a comic turn, with raggedy trousers, stony face and a stuffed crow on my head? You got one of your assistants to watch Pirates of the Caribbean for you – you know how this trick goes.
But it just occurred to me: you don't think it might be seen as a tad... racist? Not to mention that I'm made up with white facepaint and black streaks.
Did you even SEE the TV show? Jay Silverheels, in fringed jacket, brilliantine and cool headband, looked like P fucking Diddy! And he was a Real Mohawk not a Kentucky White Guy!
Is it too late to have a word with Wardrobe? And Make-up? And Hair?
By Ellen E Jones
Q. A friend once told me the name she'd like to call her first-born. I'm now pregnant, can I steal it?
A. I can see your point of view; Judas is a lovely name, after all. Faux-innocently suggest the name and see if she protests. If you're lucky, she'll have forgotten it was her idea first.
By Charlie Cooper
Queen Elizabeth Olympic park will play host to Open East, a food and arts festival, on the anniversary of the Games. 27–28 July, Queenelizabetholympicpark.co.uk
The Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead hosts an exhibition by German artist Thomas Scheibitz. 26 July–3 November, Balticmill.com
Travel in comfort with this handmade cashmere pillow and silk-trimmed eye mask by Armand Diradourian. £185, mrporter.com
By Liam O'Brien
Nasa’s rover on Mars, Curiosity, is finally making its way to Mount Sharp to see if there was water on the red planet. It’s travelling at 40 metres per day.
Mount Sharp is 8km away, meaning it’s going to take 200 days – probably more – for Curiosity to reach it.
The rover, which is around the size of a car, cost $2.5bn to build, including development costs.
Nasa’s yearly budget is $17.7bn. In real terms, that’s around half of what it was in 1965 during the space race.
The UK space industry recorded a turnover of £9.1bn in 2010/11 and supports 30,000 jobs.
Major Tim Peake, 41, from Chichester, will become Britain’s first astronaut for two decades when he visits the International Space Station in 2015. He was picked as one of six astronauts from a possible 8,000.
Major Tim’s selection is thought to have been aided by a timely £16m donation by Britain to the European Space Agency in Paris.
Helen Sharman, a chemist for the Mars chocolate company, became the UK’s first astronaut in 1991.
North Korea launched a 200lb surveillance satellite into space last year. Within a week it was tumbling out of control and “most likely dead”.
Richard Branson is set to begin commercial spaceflights late this year. Justin Bieber and Ashton Kutcher have already paid their $250,000 deposits to Virgin Galactic.
In 2001, Dennis Tito from California became the first space tourist, paying £14m for an eight-day stay at the International Space Station.
- Curiosity Mars rover hits the road, BBC
- Mars Science Laboratory/Curiosity, NASA
- Nasa budgets: US spending on space travel since 1958 UPDATED, The Guardian
- 'Don't forget to look out of the window': Britain's first astronaut Helen Sharman's advice to Major Tim Peake, The Independent
- 2001: First space tourist blasts off, BBC
TV review Nick Hewer, the man whose eyebrows speak a thousand words, is set to leave The Apprentice
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Peter Lik: The self-proclaimed 'fine-art photographer' whose work sells for millions
The best underrated Christmas movies from Love, Actually to While You Were Sleeping
Grace Dent on TV: The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies was a beautifully shot, immensely considered drama
The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies, review: Jason Watkins is brilliant, but real victim Joanna Yeates is reduced to a footnote
Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking Lana Del Rey rape video
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food