Arts and Entertainment What a racket: Conor Woodman in 'Scam City'

It's not just that the National Geographic documentary series Scam City is a pointless programme, it's that it's also a uniquely irritating one. Whereas most consumer watchdogs investigate scams at the instigation of aggrieved parties, in Scam City presenter Conor Woodman, travels the world looking for trouble and – what's more pitiful – often fails to find it.

Chinese scientists 'increasingly confident' about invisibility cloak after making a cat disappear

The new technology was unveiled in June as Chinese scientist continue to explore the wider possibilities of invisibility

Pucker up: ‘Beautiful Stranger’ collection, NARS Guy Bourdin

Style File: New scents and make-up for Christmas

Bored with buying the same old scent? Opt instead for  glamorous packaging and luxurious formulations for  lovers of lotions and potions, says Kate Rose Morris

Nelson Mandela with Desmond Tutu

Archbishop Desmond Tutu salutes ‘magician’ Nelson Mandela who healed the nation

South Africa’s Anglican leader fondly remembers his good friend

Mandela on his release from prison in February 1990

Nelson Mandela life story: the long walk, the spirit, the legacy, the speeches, the friend and the tributes - read our unparalleled coverage

Contributions from Bill Clinton, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the late Walter Sisulu, Cyril Ramaphosa, and his official biographer Anthony Sampson

Commemorative special - an interactive e-book celebrating the life of Nelson Mandela

Contributions from Bill Clinton, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the late Walter Sisulu, Cyril Ramaphosa, and his official biographer Anthony Sampson

A scene from the Nutcracker at the Royal Opera House

The Nutcracker, The Royal Opera House: Review

ROH, London

All in the mind games: Derren Brown

Derren Brown still steals the TV magic show

Inside Television

Album review: Prefab Sprout, Crimson/Red (Icebreaker)

His first set of all-new material in 13 years finds Paddy McAloon working alone for the first time, writing and playing everything himself. Which may account for the slightly solipsistic tone, with many songs being about songwriters and, in "Devil Came a Calling", the Faustian pact of success which may have singed his sensibilities. "The Best Jewel Thief in the World" and "The Old Magician" portray composition as a stealthy process, while "The Songs of Danny Galway" and "Mysterious" offer loquacious homage to Jimmy Webb and Bob Dylan. But underpinning McAloon's exacting lyrics is music which suffers from similar deliberation and a pastel palette: even when scuttling nimbly, it's tasteful but a touch bloodless.

Pixies perform in New York

Music review: Pixies, iTunes Festival

The Pixies without bassist Kim Deal should feel like a jam sandwich cream without the sugar-coated jam. The best bit is surely missing and with it the warmth and the evocative, breathy vocals the charismatic Deal provides.

Sofie Grabol as Sarah Lund

Battle of the detectives: Sherlock Holmes v The Killing's Sarah Lund at National Television Awards 2014

Television’s top detectives are to go head to head for the title of “best detective” at next year’s National Television Awards.

Tweet and greet: the Twitter user who actually met his followers

Would you want to go out for a drink with every one of your Twitter followers? Probably not. But that’s exactly what one man from Glasgow has just done.

On the right wavelength: Richard Bacon

The week in radio: Richard Bacon's uplifting broadcast from the cancer ward

"Hear the inspiring story of the man with terminal cancer who achieved his goal as a magician and comedian," went the blurb for Richard Bacon's show on BBC Radio 5 Live. Oh God, I thought. Must we? You see, I had imagined, in a cynical moment, a kind of queasy Bucket List-style scenario in which a pale-faced man in surgical gowns and smothered in tubing is wheeled on to a stage in order to pull a rabbit out of a hat for the last time as the audience howl in tear-stained approval, possibly with choirs of angels looking on.

Maldives vote-rigging row after 'black magic coconut' is found near polling booth

The coconut was placed near a polling booth in an alleged bid to disrupt the upcoming elections

Society Rock suffered concussion after a fall on Sunday

Fanshawe’s Rock hits hard place and misses Haydock

Injured sprinter ruled out of rematch with Lethal Force, as Fugue is handed Irish option

My unsuccessful year of online dating

Plenty of fish? Not over 30. They're all tiddlers, shrimp, and squid

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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
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?