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Psychics say they can talk to the dead. Alex Clark has a few questions she'd like answererd
At the Wyllyotts Theatre, handily situated just round the corner from Potters Bar train station and a few minutes' drive from the M25, the auditorium is gradually filling to capacity. Predominantly female, predominantly upwards of middle-aged but with a visible smattering of far younger and far gigglier women, the Thursday-night crowd seems chatty and excited, and not particularly different from the audience you'd expect to see the following evening, when Cannon and Ball are due to hit Hertfordshire. There's little palpable sense of apprehension or emotional tension, certainly not enough to make you believe that those gathered here this evening are expecting to make contact with their dead loved ones.
"Lots of virgins in Potters Bar!" jokes Colin Fry, the spiritualist medium they've all come to see. He's just asked for a show »
- Alex Clark
Nearly 9% of the audience tune in to Channel 5 to watch Aaron Allard-Morgan win reality show
The final of Big Brother attracted 2 million viewers to Channel 5 on Friday, capping a successful first outing on the channel for the relaunched reality TV show.
Friday's live final of the 12th series of Big Brother, picked up by Richard Desmond after Channel 4 ended its long relationship with the Endemol-produced show last year, managed a respectable 8.9% share of all viewing between 9pm and 10.30pm, with Aaron Allard-Morgan emerging as the winner.
The verdict on ITV1's The Jury
After shedding 2 million viewers early on ITV1's courtroom drama The Jury managed to stabilise viewing as it reached its finale on Friday.
The last episode of the five-part drama, which stars Julie Walters and ran every night between Monday and Friday, brought in 4.5 million viewers and an 18.8% share of TV audience between 9pm and 10pm. »
- Mark Sweney
Friday's Big Brother final pulled in 2.06m viewers and a 9% audience share, overnight data has revealed. Aaron Allard-Morgan's victory attracted approximately half the viewers who watched Josie Gibson win Channel 4's last edition of the regular show last year. Later on Channel 5, Big Brother's Bit On The Side held on to 663k (7.6%) as the contestants were grilled by Emma Willis. Between the Big Brother shows, Tamara Ecclestone: Billion $$$$ Girl dazzled 750k (5%), while at 8pm Ice Road Truckers interested 1.29m (5.4%). Channel 4's Come Dine With Me guzzled 1.12m (4.7%), and Derren Brown tricked his way to 1.53m (6.4%) at 9pm. 8 Out of 10 Cats followed at 10pm with 1.2m (5.8%). All three shows performed strongly on timeshift, garnering audiences of 309k (1.3%), 440k (2.3%) and 318k (2.4%) respectively. ITV1's Wild Britain (more) »
- By Liam O'Brien
Art For Heroes: A Culture Show Special
This special episode is a gently enthralling contribution to pre-Remembrance Day programming. Tim Samuels examines the role of art therapy in the treatment and rehabilitation of service personnel suffering from the volatile and still improperly understood syndrome of post-traumatic stress disorder. He meets several veterans of Britain's wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, who explain how drawing, sculpting and painting are helping to alleviate what can be a genuinely terrifying condition. Andrew Mueller
Unreported World: Going For Gold In Gaza
7.30pm, Channel 4
In a graveyard, slap-bang in the middle of one of the world's major conflict zones, a team of disabled Palestinians are training to qualify for London 2012. They will, »
- Andrew Mueller, Ali Catterall, Ben Arnold, John Robinson, Phelim O'Neill
Long before Frankie Boyle cracked gags about Jordan's disabled son and Jimmy Carr joked about Gypsies, there was Jerry Sadowitz. Unkempt and brutal, with a Glaswegian accent and an unforgettable turn of phrase, he shook up the right-on values of the 80s alternative comedy circuit with his willingness to say the unsayable. "Nelson Mandela, what a cunt," began one of his most famous routines. "You lend some people a fiver and you never hear from them again."
His former manager, the late Malcolm Hardee, once recalled an engagement at the Deptford Albany Empire: "He was on for two nights, and on the second they picketed the place." Twenty-five years on, Sadowitz's shock tactics are part of the comedy mainstream, while the »
- James Kettle
Long time readers of the site will have seen this before as I’m reposting my love letter to Stephen Volk’s Ghostwatch on the occasion of Hallowe’en. A year shy of its twentieth anniversary it remains a landmark of paranormal drama and has just been reissued on DVD at a ridiculously low price.
Things have changed since the initial (and only) BBC broadcast. Reality TV has infected almost every aspect of television and Most Haunted and the recent Paranormal Activity films simply would not exist without it. Familiarity with the presenters may have made he suspension of disbelief a little difficult initially but nineteen years on there is no such problem.
Ghostwatch joins The War Game, Orson Welles’ Hallowe’en broadcast of War of the Worlds, and the Us TV programmes Special Bulletin and Without Warning as moments in broadcast history which signalled a shift in what was possible, »
- Jon Lyus
Andrew Park's videos, which are drawn from capitalism and education speeches, have received 46m YouTube hits
He started out making cartoons of Ernst & Young board meetings. Now Andrew Park's animations have gone viral, with Derren Brown and Bill Gates among his fans and more than 46m hits on his latest Royal Society of Arts series.
Through his 14-part series of 10-minute animations drawn from speeches about education, economics and science, Park has become an unlikely internet success story.
The artist, who is based in Folkestone, Kent, was recruited by the Rsa in March last year, as the charity looked for a way to invigorate speeches by intellectuals including Evgeny Morozov and Sir Ken Robinson.Little did they expect more than 100,000 subscribers on YouTube – or a dedicated following in Kazakhstan.
"It's phenomenal really," says Park, who anticipated a couple of hundred views.
Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the Rsa »
- Josh Halliday
Since the mini first season there's been almost nothing but trouble behind the scenes for this show, with the firing of the entire writing team followed by the exit of showrunner Frank Darabont. Not that you'd know any of this from watching tonight's comeback; it's just about the most perfect episode yet. We're straight back into the action as the survivors hit the road, looking for a safe place to call home. But the going is tough, tense and very bloody. Great to see Andrew Lincoln and all the cast are still here, but don't get too attached, as it seems some of them won't be around for very long … Phelim O'Neill
Derren Brown: The Assassin
9pm, Channel 4
Who is Derren Brown? »
- Phelim O'Neill, Martin Skegg, David Stubbs, John Robinson, Julia Raeside
Lulu is undergoing hypnotherapy to help her remember her 'Strictly Come Dancing' routines. The 'Shout' singer - who is partnered alongside Brendan Cole - has struggled with her moves on the BBC One show and so has enlisted the help of TV hypnotist Derren Brown to use his skills on her. A source told the Daily Mirror newspaper: "Lulu struggled in the first week, then she and Derren got chatting. She asked him to her next session and he ran through some mind techniques to improve her memory for the complicated routines. "He also helped her deal with pre-show nerves. Last weekend was »
This week's hits and misses
Derren Brown: The Assassin
More bonce-based abracadabracity from fun-sized Abanazar
Dress-down Friday approach oomphs up hitherto cranially bankrupt formula
Celebrity Coach Trip
Sunburnt knobstones convert ceaseless Euro-gripes into Muchololz
Brave New World with Stephen Hawking
He'll take your brain to another dimension. He'll take your brain to another dimension. He'll take your brain to another dimension. Pay close attention
Joanna Lumley's Greek Odyssey
Be-sandalled aristo wafts like toothy mistral over Hellenic remit, smothering facts/fancies beneath pashmina of yawn
River Cottage Veg
Worzelian shill for militant carnivorousness conducts meatless lament amid apprehensive asparagus, suspicious celeriac etc
Nigel Slater's Simple Cooking
Habitual close-talker fogs up screen with with grub-related obfuscation. Nation: whither Listerine?
Embarrassing Bodies: Back to the Clinic
C4 buffs 24" plate; loosens belt; returns, wheezing, to bumhole buffet. This week: suppurating dinkles
guardian.co.uk © 2011 Guardian News »
- Sarah Dempster
Fright Night 3D
It’s probably getting as tiresome reading it as it is writing it but Vampires Are Fricking Everywhere (though fortunately not literally). Perhaps if I were a true journalist, rather than an unbelievably fortunate chancer who gets to go see films then write about them, perhaps I would offer a well-researched and thoughtful treatise on the socio-cultural reasons for this resurgence of interest in the undead over the last few years.
Perhaps I would lamely suggest that in these dark times of recession and corruption, we see our own society reflected in the vampires – a corruption of the human being, without soul or humanity, the strong few forming a parasitical relationship with the weak majority. Or perhaps I’d venture that we are currently enamoured with »
- Jack Kirby
Kicking off in 2000 in the humble Prince Charles CInema in the heart of London, Frightfest has been the burning bastion of horror and cult cinema in the UK for the past eleven years and is now in the lead up to it’s twelve come August bank holiday weekend.
During that time its been forced to relocate to larger and larger cinemas, resolving in a hostile takeover of London’s biggest cinema – the Empire a few years back which it stuffs full with passionate geeks, devotee film-lovers, hordes of critics and press and celebrity guests. It’s been called by Time Out London “The best thing to do all summer long” in our bustling city. But why does it garner such incredible praise and attendance?
It could be the insanely long list of incredible UK, European and even Worldwide Premieres it secures (Pitch Black, The Eye, Insomnia, Pan’s Labyrinth, »
- Al White
With the highly anticipated Disney/Marvel ensemble The Avengers (Joss Whedon, you are my God!) set to be released in 2012, I have been thinking over which of my squillion favourite Avengers heroes I want to see brought to life on the silver screen, and which ones should stay firmly on the page!
The fact is over the years there have been hundreds of members on the Avengers roster and whilst I will bring you a list in the near future of 10 Marvel heroes we do want to see in The Avengers 2, here’s ten that should never see the light of day. Disney/Marvel – please take notice of this list before work begins on the script for the sequel;
First appearance Amazing Adventures #1 (June 1961) Created by Stan Lee
A bad attempt to merge the mystical properties of Doctor Strange with the ancient religions of Britain, Doctor »
- David Hawkins
Join me from 8.30pm as the candidates create a free magazine – who will get spiked?
Good evening, and welcome to The Apprentice Week 7 liveblog! Tonight our teams are diving headlong into the world of publishing, developing ideas for a new free magazine. Just based on that summary, it's clear that the number of things that could go wrong with this task is on an unimaginable scale, so huge that even Professor Brian Cox couldn't define it without expansive hand gestures and gratuitous airmiles. Is everyone ready?
We're down to just nine contestants now – five girls and four boys, all prepared to do whatever it takes to make it into the final eight. Thankfully there is no casting couch, but instead we can expect plenty of back stabbing and machiavellian boardroom tactics. As discussed here earlier, I'm very much hoping this series is about to move into a new gear, so let's see what tonight brings. »
- Heidi Stephens
Sky Living star Psychic Sally Morgan has claimed that she "feels sorry" for psychic cynics like Derren Brown. The TV star said that she accepted she would always face criticism for her career choice "until the day I die", but argued that high-profile acts such as Brown should be able to appreciate that she is good at what she does. "I don't know what he calls himself. He's a magician or something. That's his bag and he has to try and do that," Morgan told Digital Spy. "Derren Brown is not a spiritual person and the work I do has a big spiritual side. I totally understand why he would poo poo it. "But we are really lucky we have freedom of speech in this country and that's brilliant. I think Derren is fantastic at what he does. The fact he can't say I'm fantastic at what I'm dong, I »
- By Alex Fletcher
Derren Brown has said that he was not allowed to show his planned twist on How To Win The Lottery. The illusionist appeared to predict the winning numbers of the National Lottery in 2009 and gave a claim that he was aided by the "wisdom of the crowd". At the time, it was claimed that further footage had been shot but not screened, which featured Brown predicting the numbers a year earlier and a second explanation. Asked if he would do anything differently in his career, Brown told Metro: "The show that followed the (more) »
- By Mayer Nissim
One of the movies I'm very excited to see this summer is Matthew Vaughn's X-Men: First Class. Everything I've seen from it so far looks great, and now the first reviews for the film are in. So far there is a lot of positive buzz. Here are what some of the other movie blogs are saying...
First Class contains some of the briskest and most efficient storytelling I’ve seen in any recent blockbuster. An awful lot happens, and awfully quickly at times, but it’s all clear and while some nice moments might be over in the blink of an eye, this can only reward repeat viewers.
There’s a sequence later in the film, from which much of the material for the “character trailers” was gathered, that actually uses split screen to crack the pace up one more notch. This film does not hang around »
Note: These are our initial thoughts and our complete review of the film will be posted on Wednesday, 25th May.
Fox’s X-Men franchise has become a little tarnished of late. After two very good movies, that used superpowers as a background to themes of isolation, discrimination and acceptance, we had two less good films, let down by poor storytelling, and bad CGI. It’s rather pleasing then, that X-Men: First Class takes the series back to its roots, both figuratively, in terms of the character-focused drama, and literally, as we open with an almost shot-for-shot recreation of the beginning of Bryan Singer’s first X-Men film. In doing so, the film makes itself instantly familiar, and also, instantly engaging.
That sense of engagement carries throughout, as the story covers much less familiar territory. After an expansion on young Erik’s experience in the death camp, and a brief introduction to a young Charles Xavier, »
- Ben Mortimer
Paddy Considine's new drama The Suspicions Of Mr Whicher premiered with almost 6 million viewers on Monday evening, outperforming Masterchef on BBC One, according to the latest audience data. The Suspicions Of Mr Whicher, starring Considine as inspector Jonathan Whicher, averaged 5.97m (26.2%) for ITV1 between 9pm and 11pm, along with 177k (1.2%) on ITV1+1. The drama proved too strong for Masterchef: The Final Three, which had 4.7m (18.3%) on BBC One in the 9pm hour. It also outperformed Derren Brown: Miracles for Sale's 1.62m (6.7%) on Channel 4 between 9pm and 10.30pm. An additional 380k (2.3%) watched the show on +1. Earlier, Bang Goes The Theory educated 2.62m (11.7%) on BBC One from 7.30pm, while The Dales entertained 3.82m (15.5%) on ITV1 from 8pm and 104k (0.4%) on +1. Kate & William: A Royal Love Story (more) »
- By Andrew Laughlin
Less detail and more drama make The Suspicions of Mr Whicher even better than the book
Kate Summerscale's 2008 prize-winning book about the Road Hill House murder of three-year-old Saville Kent was as much an examination of a Victorian cause célèbre that challenged traditional assumptions about middle-class values and the purity of childhood and turned detectives into public figures (Jack Whicher was the inspiration for Inspector Bucket in Bleak House and Sergeant Cuff in The Moonstone) as it was whodunnit. Inevitably, much of the breadth and detail of the original was lost in reducing The Suspicions of Mr Whicher (ITV1) to two hours, or 100 minutes if you don't count the ad breaks; perhaps, surprisingly though, it gained a lot in drama.
The 1860 Road Hill House murder was the prototype of the country house murder genre, complete with a squire, Samuel Kent, who was disliked by the village and was thought to »
- John Crace
1-20 of 30 items from 2011 « Prev | Next »
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