Arts and Entertainment

Despite my obsession with Game of Thrones and Lucy Worsley’s The First Georgians right now, I am still televisually smitten with MTV’s Catfish. The show that exposes online love fraudsters. The throwaway youth TV show that one’s mind just cannot throw away. Instead, one sits post- episode genuinely saddened that our human need to love and be loved is so destructive. Or that  the earth’s supply of gullible optimists may well be infinite.

Reginald Hunter

Booking of comedian Reginald D Hunter for PFA Awards defended by Gordon Taylor

The comedian regularly used the word 'n*****' throughout his performance

Postcard from... Italy

You’d think the people running things in Italy were deliberating over whom to vote for in the student union by their behaviour – not choosing the head of state in G8 country, which has failed to swear in a government two months after a general election.

Saturday night ratings battle: Britain's Got Talent versus The Voice

Simon Cowell: BBC 'to blame' for The Voice and Britain's Got Talent schedule clash

Britain's Got Talent (BGT) boss Simon Cowell said the BBC has no one to blame but itself for its Saturday night schedule problems.

Bradford & Bingley's public sell-off 'flawed'

Shareholders claim 2008 privatisation was contrary to democracy
Pier Bersani has been unable to form a government

Italy's would-be Prime Minister Pier Luigi Bersani says job is 'only for mentally ill'

Italy’s would-be Prime Minister has said that “only a mentally ill person” would want the job right now, as the eurozone’s third biggest democracy continues to tie itself in knots.

Postcard from... Rome

'I wish the Queen had died': Offensive Frankie Boyle jokes cut from BBC Comic Relief broadcast

Jokes made by Frankie Boyle about the Duchess of Cambridge and the Queen during a Comic Relief gig have proven too much for the BBC.

Beppe Grilloa, a charismatic 64-year-old comedian from Genoa whose anti-political non-party, the Five-Star Movement, has come roaring

Italy's anti-politician on the verge of election sensation

Hopes of a stable coalition emerging after today's vote have been upset by emergence of the comic turned would-be leader

Spare a thought for the comedians as the Pope gets on his horse

The moment news breaks Twitter has thousands of jokes in 140 characters

Chris Brown allegedly faked his community service

Down, down, deeper and Brown for Rihanna

Chris Brown continues to wow with his odious behaviour. This week it was alleged that the rapper faked some of his community service (part of his punishment for assaulting his girlfriend, Rihanna, in 2009) after prosecutors claimed his community-service records contained “significant discrepancies, indicating, at best, sloppy documentation and, at worst, fraudulent reporting”.

Frontrunners for this year's laftas

Fresh Meat, Frankie Boyle, Keith Lemon and Rylan in the front running for this year's Laftas

The 'good, the tanned and the ugly' up for this year's comic alternative to the Baftas

Question Time: Can't the BBC allow us one hour of unashamedly highbrow televison?

We no longer have reasoned arguments between people who know what they're talking about, interspersed with intelligent contributions from the audience

Super Bowl: San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver sorry for anti-gay remarks during media day

Culliver was talking in the build-up to this weekend's showpiece event

Psychoville

Sitcoms: Who got the last laugh?

TV critics, take note. You may have branded Mrs Brown's Boys "jaw-droppingly past its sell-by-date", but think again: the public voted it best sitcom at last week's National Television Awards. Nine million people watched the Christmas Eve special, making it the most viewed show that day. But how often do the critics get it right? We plot their opinions against those of the people for whom TV is actually made …

Gary the Goat with his owner comedian Jimbo Bazoobi

Nothing gruff about Gary the Australian goat after court victory

Every goat has his day, and today was Gary’s. He waited patiently outside a Sydney court as his owner, Jimbo Bazoobi, contested charges arising from Gary’s decision to snack on a flower bed outside the city’s Museum of Contemporary Art last August.

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Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine