The Weekend's TV: Catherine Tate’s Nan (BBC 1)

This spin-off character could easily hold her own in a full series

Food for thought: Josie Long, comedian

Josie Long is an award-winning comedian and writer. She will perform with Robin Ince in Nine Lessons and Carols for Godless People at London’s Bloomsbury Theatre (10-22 Dec) and also on tour in Robin and Josie’s Shambles.

Now That's What I Call Music's first album cover
Ed Miliband told Kirsty Young his relationship with brother David was 'healing'

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: From easy listening to tough love for Castaway Ed Miliband

The choices must have been his own rather than some party adviser’s because of the borderline naffness of some of them

Andy McSmith's Diary: Another not-so-Happy Hour for down-with-the-music-public Dave

David Cameron really ought to stop parading his knowledge of 1980s music. First there was Paul Weller, whose reaction on hearing that Cameron had listed “Eton Rifles” as his favourite tune was to exclaim: “Is he thick? He probably thinks ‘Eton Rifles’ is a song about him and his mates at school.”

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Rev Paul Flowers tops the agenda – not to Labour a point

A new Prime Ministerial human shield is born! Len McCluskey is so last week! Enter the colourful, substances-prone, Labour-friendly Rev Paul Flowers, lately of the Co-op. Allotted the first question at Prime Ministers Questions, Conservative Steve Brine declared: “MPs across the House will have grave concerns about the nightmare unfolding at the Co-operative bank.” This was not quite accurate, since Tory MPs were ecstatic.

Dev Hynes is now firmly established as one of the most innovative and exciting musicians around

The Playlist: Blood Orange / Ghost Mutt / Barnaby

The songs that are hot on our playlist this week

Review: Da Lata, Fabiola (Agogo Records)

If this world-fusion outfit had opened their long-awaited new album with the ghastly third-rate funk-rock track that closes it, your reviewer would have instantly pressed the eject button and you wouldn’t be reading this.

Loadsatalent: Sting, Paula Yates and Jools Holland on the set of ‘The Tube’

Now that's what I call music...

A raft of tantalising comebacks and a new radio show are testament to the fact that we're finally recognising the Eighties for what it was: a decade of peerless pop, says Pierre Perrone

Pop video to ‘save’ brother from wedding goes viral

Most brothers of the groom use their best man’s speech as an excuse for some mild teasing and emotional childhood tales.

X Factor judge Gary Barlow in Glasgow.

Gary Barlow offers to light up Blackpool after Danny O'Donoghue pulls out

X Factor judge Gary Barlow has offered to step in and perform at the turning on of the Blackpool Illuminations after The Voice star Danny O'Donoghue and his band pulled out.

Music review: David Byrne & St. Vincent, Roundhouse, London

St. Vincent - Annie Clark, a young American singer-songwriter and virtuoso guitar player - introduces the Love This Giant band, who stamped a clear sound on the album of the same name she recorded with David Byrne last year; the tour also, she notes, “features a whole hell of a lot of brass” (eight players within a ten-man band). As for Byrne? Well, he’s just introduced as “The archangel of absurdity”.

Album: White Lies, Big TV (Fiction)

Like one of Alan Partridge's chemically enhanced chickens, thinking "Why am I so massive?", White Lies were bred for bigness. Following a Number One debut album (2009's To Lose My Life …) and a Number Three follow-up (2011's Ritual), the Ealing band's third album is as epic in scale as either of its predecessors.

Indyplus Video: The soundtrack to 'Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa'

The soundtrack to Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa, which receives its world premiere in Norwich on Wednesday, will deliver an unexpected sales boost to a collection of one-hit wonders, 70s novelty hits and soft rock obscurities hand-picked by the spoof DJ, created by Steve Coogan.

Listen to the first 10 songs of Alpha Papa's soundtrack:

Pet Shop Boys singer Neil Francis performs on stage at the 02 Arena in London

Music review: Pet Shop Boys bring cornucopia of hits to London's O2 Arena

Chris Lowe has never revealed much of himself to his audience. As usual, he’s on stage behind his keyboards with his signature baseball cap pulled over his forehead and huge bug-eyed sunglasses covering his face. Even better for Lowe – one imagines - the Pet Shop Boys take to the stage for their first London gig in two years behind a giant screen projecting giant graphics.

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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
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor