Grace Dent

Grace Dent writes about television for The Independent

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A Chelsea Pensioner walks among red poppies at the Tower of London’s moat yesterday

Sombre TV moments filled a day when we were reminded of how war’s lessons are never learnt

There was so much dignity in the generation that endured this horror

Grace Dent on TV: The Stuarts doesn't give light, sideways glances. These are history lessons

As the good people of Scotland mull over independence, it’s worth taking some time to work out how we ended up in this curious, often unsatisfactory four-way group hug at all. Until I watched the rather marvellous The Stuarts on BBC2 this week I can’t say I was wholly certain myself. My fuzzy A-level history recall is of Elizabethan Scotland and England, chalk and cheese, forever battering each other in Berwick and forming hollow alliances with France, or Spain, to keep the other country nervous. I don’t remember Wales being mentioned at all. Then at one point we appear to have joined forces, all as one observing a baggy pact with a swaggering name: “Great Britain”.

Grace Dent on TV: Kirsty Young in a Whistles frock emoting controlled disgust at paedophiles on Crimewatch

For many years Nick Ross told us, “don’t have nightmares”, in the closing moments of BBC1’s Crimewatch. It was a chipper little phrase which we all enjoyed, although it did little to assuage the bleak mental remnants of 60 televised minutes of man’s inhumanity to man. Violent muggings, bank clerks from Rugby – always Rugby – tied up and tormented in vaults, the random unexplained murders and that bit midway through about missing, beloved antiques that no one gave a stuff about. Oh, you lost a vase? My heart bleeds for you, we’ve just watched news of a series of unfortunate events happening to an innocent mother-of-two in a parochial commuter-station car-park.

Are we politely looking the other way when it comes to Kate, the ever-shrinking Duchess?

There’s a small chance we’re turning a blind eye to what many Americans feel is a big fat fact

Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

No one ever says it about men, so why say it about women?

Nick & Margaret: Too Many Immigrants?

Grace Dent on TV: Nick and Margaret: Immigration Gain or Drain transpired to be rather illuminating television

One thing the Brits all shared was utter conviction about their specific anti-immigration bugbear

Novelist David Mitchell has published a short story on Twitter

Twitter is no place for novels. Unless you're David Mitchell

Bravo to him for discovering the site and then achieving anything at all

Well done Cheryl Cole for marrying after only three months

Why have your wedding day ruined by the slow drip of reality?

Ian Thorpe

Is Ian Thorpe gay? Does anyone care?

Sexuality is a fluid, ever-fluttering concept, so let's finally accept that there’s no point in these public declarations of 'in' or 'out' at all

Grace Dent on TV: If only British intelligence had done as good a job as this Samantha Lewthwaite documentary

If Samantha Lewthwaite was using her evident powers of tenacity and charm for good, rather than jihad, her story – which we learned during this week’s BBC1 documentary The White Widow – Searching for Samantha – would be an inspirational ditty to tell girls.

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