Ellen E Jones

Ellen is The Independent's TV critic. She writes a daily review of Last Night's TV and a weekly 'Inside TV' column for the i paper, as well as a column on general topics for the main paper most Wednesdays. Ellen is a former Hollywood correspondent and a contributing editor to Little White Lies, she's written on TV, film, lifestyle, travel and politics for publications including the Guardian, The Times, The Sunday Times, Esquire and Total Film.

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Leading light: Rose Leslie in 'Utopia'

Utopia, Channel 4, TV review: Dennis Kelly's conspiracy thriller makes perfect start

No far-fetched conspiracy theories are necessary to explain the return of Utopia. Channel 4's acid-toned paranoid thriller got off to a disappointing start ratings-wise, but soon built a detail-orientated fanbase whose obsessiveness was almost a match for the show's own graphic-novel nerds. In February, David Fincher announced he'd be directing a HBO remake, scripted by Gone Girl author Gillian Flynn. That's no small compliment, so it says something about the originality of Utopia's writer-creator Dennis Kelly that his second series is still the more exciting prospect.

Brief encounter: Gillian Taylforth, with her partner Geoff Knights (right), arriving in court in 1994 for her libel trial with ‘The Sun’

Ellen E Jones: The Weekend's TV from The Trial of Gillian Taylforth to From Scotland with Love

Misogyny in the dock features in this salacious re-creation of a soap star’s humiliation

Magaluf remains a popular party destination for British holidaymakers, despite a growing reputation for street violence in recent years.

What happens in Shagaluf no longer stays there

People don't intend to treat their holiday destinations like a toilet bowl, and yet responsible tourism is still a long way off
Channel 4's conspiracy thriller Utopia will continue its interest in how genetic science might save or damn the human race

Inside Television: Sci-fi series set out to answer questions - and could deliver plausible theories

"Science fiction," said Ray Bradbury, “is the most important literature in the history of the world, because it's the history of ideas.” If that’s true, then TV drama has lately been shirking its responsibilities and indulging instead in escapist genres like fantasy (Game of Thrones) and period drama (Mad Men, Downton Abbey). Now, sci-fi is back in a big way. So does that mean we’re once again ready to engage in some serious thought?

Space oddity: Halle Berry stars in ‘Extant’

Extant, TV review: Slick sci-fi series has an intriguing plot, but the characters aren't quite out of this world

If you're yet to sign up for an online streaming service, then Extant, the glossy new Steven Spielberg-exec produced sci-fi series, may be the one that lures you in. Episodes will be available on Amazon Prime Instant Video one day after they're first broadcast in the US.

Champneys, TV review: It's rather hard to discern what makes this spa hotel so special

There's nothing futuristic about the 90-year-old spa hotel and subject of ITV documentary Champneys.

In the dark: Eva Green and Josh Hartnett in 'Penny Dreadful'

Penny Dreadful, Sky Atlantic - TV review

Unconventional posthumous options were available in the concluding episode of Sky Atlantic’s gothic horror series Penny Dreadful. Billie Piper’s character Brona Croft, the consumptive Irish prostitute may have died a gruesome death, but that doesn’t prevent her from involvement in series two. Not if Victor Frankenstein (Harry Treadaway) has anything to do with it. After treating Brona on her deathbed, the young doctor gave this chilling reassurance to grieving Ethan (Josh Hartnett): “Don’t worry... I’ll take care of the body.”

No beating around the bush: Germaine Greer featured in 'Rebels of Oz'

Rebels of Oz, BBC 4 - TV review: A fascinating culture clash with Howard Jacobson and the wizards of Oz

Germaine Greer, Robert Hughes, Barry Humphries, Clive James; feminist, art critic, comedian, polymath. These are the four subjects of Rebels of Oz, the two-part documentary made by Independent columnist Howard Jacobson, which concluded on BBC4 last night. For Jacobson, who moved to Sydney in 1964, the connection between these four Aussie exiles must be almost intuitive, but he’s aware that the rest of us require further justification.

All-new couples 'Come Dine With Me'

Couples Come Dine With Me, Channel 4, review

Channel 4 has added a moreish new ingredient to the reality TV recipe

The 100, E4

The 100, E4, review: TV’s take on the dystopian teen fiction

The 100, E4’s new sci-fi series, is set in the future, 97 years after human civilisation was destroyed by a devastating nuclear war.

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Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star