Arts and Entertainment

The Week in Radio: Williams was quick on his feet, and willing to cover mishaps with self-deprecating humour

Terence Blacker: True driving force in energy debate is cash

In the week of the first ever Green Britain Day, I was fortunate enough to hear an exchange which captured, in an admittedly microcosmic way, the realities behind the energy debate. At a planning committee in Norfolk, one of two energy companies hoping to put up groups of wind turbines near Diss was applying for permission to erect a 60-metre wind-measuring mast. A councillor pointed out to the team of TCI Renewables that another firm, Enertrag Ltd, had recently erected a mast nearby. Was it not possible for the two firms to share the data?

Album: Iggy Pop, Preliminaires, (Reset)

Uninitiated TV viewers moved to investigate who that scary wrinkly man is pimping car insurance in the ad breaks will be doubly baffled when they find out that his latest album is a collection of understated French jazz, retro ragtime and neo bossa nova.

Iggy Pop’s insurer reverses decision on covering musicians

Swiftcover, the online car insurer that uses punk idol Iggy Pop to advertise its wares but refuses to insure musicians, has reversed its decision ahead of an Advertising Standards Agency ruling on Wednesday.

Iggy Pop insurer builds home cover

Swiftcover, the online car insurance group that brought us the curious sight of rocker Iggy Pop advertising insurance, is to branch out into home insurance in the next year.

The Kindly Ones, By Jonathan Littell, translated by Charlotte Mandell

This strange and often unwieldy novel arrives in English preceded by its massive reputation as a literary phenomenon and a bestseller across Europe. This reputation is all the more striking given the fact that it was written in French by a thirtysomething American resident in Barcelona, and it presents over 800 pages an unremittingly grim account of the course of the Second World War. This is history as a journey, trudging from the horrors of the eastern Front to the unspeakable massacres of the Final solution. It ends in the claustrophobic atmosphere of a wrecked Berlin, where the Russian hordes stand poised to lay waste to the mad Utopian fantasy of Hitler's dream of a German Empire. Most notably, and controversially, the novel purports to be the memoirs of an ageing but unrepentant Nazi. This is history told by the executioners and not the victims.

Probe into insurer's 'misleading' Iggy Pop ad

A car insurer admitted today it refuses to cover musicians - despite featuring Iggy Pop in its adverts.

Ron Asheton: Influential guitarist with Iggy Pop and the Stooges

Along with their fellow Detroit-area residents Alice Cooper and MC5, the Stooges pioneered a style of garage rock which didn't find much of an audience outside Michigan in the late Sixties and early Seventies but fed into the psyche of the next generation of musicians and is still influential today. The New York Dolls and the Ramones, especially, picked up on the two albums the original Stooges line-up of Iggy Pop (vocals), Dave Alexander (bass), Ron Asheton (guitar) and his younger brother Scott (drums) made for Elektra Records in 1969 and 1970 and which also inspired the first wave of British punk-rock groups in 1976.

Hit & Run: The faces don't fit

When a world-famous celebrity decides to endorse an insurance company, the chances are it's not because they've saved 100 quid on their home contents cover. More likely, they've been offered a considerably larger sum for approximately half a day's work. How else to explain Iggy Pop's bizarre appearance in a new advertising campaign for Swiftcover? In the television commercial, the perenially topless Mr Pop explains that his crazy life leaves him little time or patience for paperwork. Swiftcover.com, however, stores all his information securely online without him having to think about it: "Get a life!" he orders us, "Get Swiftcovered!"

Stooges guitarist dies

Guitarist Ron Asheton of The Stooges was found dead at home today. He was 60.

Indian stunner: Danny Boyle's Oscar winner?

Danny Boyle's latest film, set in the Mumbai slums, is his most exciting yet. And it's a hot tip for the Oscars, says Geoffrey Macnab

Ida Maria, Komedia, Brighton

'I'm sorry I haven't broken a rib yet," remarks Ida Maria, the Riot Grrl-esque punk-pop diva and, if you're seduced by the hype, Scandinavia's hottest new export. She is, of course, referring to an incident last year where, while trying to impress a gaggle of booking agents during a gig, she attempted a backwards somersault. It wasn't the first time she had emerged from a show with an injury. Another one ended in a bloody face as she tried to head butt a guitar. Thus Maria, who claims to have grown up wishing she was Iggy Pop, has created a problem for herself. Now her fans want broken bones or their money back.

Robert Smith - What becomes of the broken-hearted?

From Smashing Pumpkins to Edward Scissorhands, The Cure's Robert Smith has been influencing pop culture for decades. It's just a shame that the band's new album is a doom-laden swirl of angst and self-loathing. Please lighten up, urges Andy Gill

<a href="http://blogs.independent.co.uk/independent/2008/10/mixtape-a-few-w.html">MixTape: A few words with Iggy Pop</a>

Iggy Pop has been knocking the hell out of rock and roll with raw power for decades, but now, as he displays his more artful side with a documentary about his painting exploits, we had a quick chat with the great man.

Review: Persepolis

This stark and beautiful art-house cartoon is an animated coming-of-age story with a difference, set against the backdrop of war and revolution in Iran.

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There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
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Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
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File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
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Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
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Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
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Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
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Darrell Banks’s ‘Open The Door To Your Heart’
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Detective Tam Bui works for the Toronto Police force
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
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Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'