Independent Plus

Album: American Aquarium, Burn. Flicker. Die. (Blue Rose)

Fronted by songwriter BJ Barham, American Aquarium are a heartland rock band from North Carolina with a serious Springsteen habit and, by the sound of it, serious anxieties about the lives they're living.

Dame Julie Andrews: The Sound of Music star lost her vocal range after surgery

Julie Andrews tops poll of Christmas telly

Julie Andrews has been crowned the Queen of Christmas television in a new poll to find our festive favourites.

This week's wackiest web stories: Batmobile for sale plus was Churchill the first hipster?

Mohamed Morsi on Planet of the Apes and a follow up story on the regrettable Romney face tattoo

The Wizard of Oz has become one of television's best-loved Christmas traditions

The $480,000 dress : The Wizard of Oz dress is sold in a Hollywood auction

Couture ballgowns regularly sell for thousands of pounds, but those dresses are made to measure from expensive fabric and sewn with extreme attention to detail. The blue gingham dress from The Wizard of Oz is a rather more humble affair.

The 'blue marble' shot from Apollo 17

Watch the entire history of the planet in under two minutes

Curious about the history of our planet, but quite busy today? Internet artists melodysheep have the solution. They've edited together various pieces of footage and some lovely music to create a visualisation of the entire history of our planet in under two minutes.

John Clive: Actor who also wrote thrillers

Early years in Liverpool gave him the perfect voice for John Lennon in the animated ‘Yellow Submarine’ film

Are all beautiful women boring? Samantha Brick strikes again

As a recent study claimed that attractive people tend to conform, and hence are more likely to be boring, Samantha Brick has offered her beautiful opinion on the topic.

A macabre makeover: This is a golden age for horror on the small screen

From zombies to sadistic nuns and reboots of everyone from Hannibal Lecter to The Munsters, Sarah Hughes reports (from behind the sofa)

Here, in case it's, our hero is in a fountain, adding 'blue steel' to an already string-heavy bow

Doing the 50: (Please don't) come dine with me

Sheffield third-year James Ashford is determined to do all 50 things The Independent once foolishly suggested all students should do before they leave uni. The results are... churlish and asinine.

Scholarship Sheffield style. He isn't even carrying any books!

Doing the 50: 'I don't like to talk about my charity work...'

Sheffield third-year James Ashford is bored of the student existence. His Philosophy degree unfulfilling, he was tired of doing nothing. Then, he discovered The Independent's ultimate list of 50 things to do before leaving uni. Now he's a man with purpose, and today he's five steps closer to 50.

90-second clip of Adele's Bond theme 'Skyfall' leaks online

Whether it was a genuine leak or a marketing teaser, James Bond fans today had their first taste of the latest blockbuster’s theme tune as sung by British golden girl Adele.

Editorial: 24/7 Bond? Even 007 needs a break sometimes

It is not that the release of Skyfall is unworthy of fanfare, particularly given that it coincides with the 50th anniversary of James Bond's first ever outing (in Dr No). BSkyB's decision to launch an entire channel dedicated to the exploits of 007 and his Walther PPK is, however, rather missing the point.

Pink Panther star Herbert Lom dies

Herbert Lom, the Czech-born actor best known as Inspector Clouseau's long-suffering boss in the "Pink Panther" movies, died Thursday, his son said. He was 95.

'The Departed' tops poll of best film remakes

Martin Scorsese's Oscar-winning film The Departed has been named the best movie remake in a poll of film fans.

Elvis undies, unwashed, the latest celeb pants up for sale

A pair of underpants that once belonged to Elvis Presley are expected to fetch £10,000 when they go up for auction in Manchester next month. An added bonus for the would-be buyer is that the light-blue boxers come unwashed and with genuine Elvis stains, which came when he wore them underneath a white jumpsuit, during a show in 1977.

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newsAnother week, another dress controversy on the internet
Life and Style
Scientist have developed a test which predicts whether you'll live for another ten years
health
Life and Style
Marie had fake ID, in the name of Johanna Koch, after she evaded capture by the Nazis in wartime Berlin
historyOne woman's secret life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
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news... and what your reaction to the creatures above says about you
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Jihadi John
newsMonikers like 'Jihadi John' make the grim sound glamorous
News
Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
businessUber, Snapchat and Facebook founders among those on the 2015 Forbes Billionaire List
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Homer’s equation, in an episode in 1998, comes close to the truth, as revealed 14 years later
science
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people
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Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn