Wanted: ageing Scandinavian model...

Once deemed safe but frumpy, now it's gaining classic status. Suddenly, everyone wants a Saab, says Oliver Bennett

Quiddities: an interactive review of the oddities of the year

1. How many camels were killed in Britain by lightning in 1997?

CRIES AND WHISPERS: Spice up your life with a deodorant ... or a crisp ... or a lolly

Sorry to go on about the Spice Girls again, but if it wasn't me it would be someone else. As the album title rightly says, this is Spiceworld. There's nowhere you can avoid them. On every billboard in the land, they're waiting, grinning away, taking a breather from advertising their own products only in order to advertise someone else's. If you've got a furniture warehouse or a second-hand car showroom you want to publicise, give them a call. They posed for Channel Five, remember, so they must be just girls who can't say no.

Dilemmas: The day a hairdresser gave me the cruellest cut of all

Sara used to have lovely long hair until a week ago, when a hairdresser persuaded her to have it all cut off. Now she feels desperate when she looks in a mirror. She doesn't want to wear a wig, and she knows it'll grow back eventually, so why is she reacting as she does?

Ulrika has it. William and Nicola do not. Welcome to Middle Youth

It is 6am on Sunday morning and two people are leaving the Cross night-club in north London. One is 35 and one is 33. They have been up all night dancing. After a few hours' sleep they go to a garden centre. The are living the life of the Middle Youth.

Essay: Julie and Charlotte's new baby

The Modern Review is back, rejoining a gang of literary and political magazines with small circulations and high ambitions. Robert Hanks looks for the meat

TV stars to stage live shows

Cult television comedies Shooting Stars and The Fast Show are to stage a series of huge rock-style live events.

Vic and Bob's `Omnibus' treatment

Comedians Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer will be analysed in a forthcoming Omnibus, BBC1's arts documentary series.

John Simpson spoils for battle on home front

Distinguished BBC war correspondent John Simpson has put himself in the line of fire on the home front, with outspoken attacks on the corporation's director-general, John Birt, former colleague Martin Bell and "good news" fan Martyn Lewis.

Freddie Starr ate your mortgage

Real celebrities in advertisements don't come cheap, but often they're worth it. So says Ron Mowlam, but he would, wouldn't he? By Serena Mackesy

She's 51, but still the sexiest

In a poll calculated to hearten every middle-aged woman, the actress Helen Mirren has been voted the sexiest woman on television.

Phwoaar, look at the glass shelves on that!

TELEVISION

People in fashion: A knack for all trades

Fashion isn't just about clothes. Hester Lacey meets multi-talented design duo New RenaisCAnce

Mr Reeves' big afternoon out; Interview: Vic Reeves

He won't talk to the Press pack about his love-life, but he doesn't mind a nice one-to-one

Kentucky fried relaunch

No it's not just greasy scoff for after the pub, it's 'real food' for the discerning consumer. Yes, KFC is 're-branding'. Stop giggling at the back, says Stephen Armstrong
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