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.

Discover Ben Target, Underbelly, Edinburgh

Ben Target (pronounced Tar-jay) has clearly taken the original spirit of the Fringe to heart in this show, which attempts to create a kind of ‘happening’ in the space of an hour-long comedy gig.

Tim Vine: “I took part in the sun tanning Olympics – I just got Bronze”

The Fringe funnies

Q: What do you call a joke about Posh and Becks? A: Edinburgh's best

Tim Vine: “I took part in the sun tanning Olympics – I just got Bronze”

Q: What do you call a joke about Posh and Becks? A: Edinburgh's best

Nick Clark reports on the competition to find the finest Fringe funny

Stewart Francis: “You know who really gives kids a bad name? Posh and Becks”

Francis usurps Vine as the king of the one-liners

David and Victoria Beckham are no strangers to comedians' barbs – and now one jibe aimed at the celebrity pair has earned comedian Stewart Francis the honour of the best joke at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Edinburgh Diary

Comedian recalls useful advice that started him on the path to glory

COALITION: Comedians Phill Jupitus and Jo Caulfield help chart the final days of the coalition government in late 2014: the Conservative PM and his Lib Dem deputy have not spoken for months. Co-written by Robert Khan, a Labour councillor in Islington, north London, the show premieres at Edinburgh's Pleasance Dome in August

Low ticket sales are nothing for Edinburgh to laugh about

The Olympics and a wider economic malaise have seen stand-ups playing to audiences numbering in single figures. By Nick Clark

Adam Johnson fights for the ball with Italy’s Federico Balzaretti

Plenty of Olympic spirit but passion is in short supply as England defeat Italy

Football should change to reflect the edifying attitude evidenced at London 2012, but England's friendly against Italy last night should be a warning not to over-sanitise a game built on tribalism and passion.

More than just Essex jokes from Alan Davies

More than a decade has passed since everyone's favourite "dunce" from QI last flexed his stand-up muscles, so he has some catching up to do.

For straight-up stand-up, Felicity Ward's 'The Hedgehog Dilemma' at Underbelly will be difficult to beat this year

Edinburgh comedy: Got a hedgehog complex? Send for Felicity Ward!

Most comics making their Edinburgh debut would be grateful for a packed house, but not David Trent.

Mark Watson: The Information, Assembly George Square, Edinburgh

This latest offering from the breathless, neurotic nerd Mark Watson, known for, among other things, his “non speaking roles” on Mock the Week, constantly suggests that it is going to amount to something more than it is.

Watson casts the net a bit too wide

This latest offering from the breathless, neurotic nerd Mark Watson (known for, among other things, his "non-speaking roles" on Mock The Week) constantly suggests that it is going to amount to something more than it is.

David Trent: Spontaneous Comedian, Pleasance Courtyard, Edinburgh

Eighteen months ago David Trent, a 40-year old junior school teacher, performed some of his video-assisted routines in front of hundreds of people at the Hackney Empire New Act of the Year award.

Somalia: Comic shot dead after mocking Islamist militants

A popular Somali comic and playwright who mocked Islamist militants for brainwashing children and killing civilians has been shot dead.

British rower Steve Redgrave carries the flag of his delegation in 1996

Chris Hewett: Steve Redgrave the same class act on the airwaves as he was on the water

Critic without a ticket: Britain's finest Olympian has an anti-BS antenna and is incapable of not telling it like it is

North Greenwich Arena, one of the Olympic venues

London 2012 Inside Track: Let the fun and Games begin!

From our right-royal new Bond girl to canapé-munching ministers and cyclists caught short, Matt Chorley takes a light-hearted run at Olympic life

Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them altogether

Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them

Jonathon Porritt sounds the alarm
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on