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The BBC ageist? Not with this roster of prime-time septuagenarians

3 hours ago

Of course Jon Snow isnt past it at C4 News. But if he did move to the BBC, hed be one of the youngsters

Now, what new charges can we bring against the BBC? What new ism goes with on-screen racism and sexism? David Attenborough (88) is just off and running with his new Life Story. David Dimbleby (nearly 76) asks questions beyond time. John Humphrys (71) is here Today and tomorrow, bright as a button.

Anne Robinson (70) snaps and snarls in Watchdog. And John Simpson (70) has a revised contract without end to roam the world and signal something really serious when he clambers off a plane. Somehow, mlud, I dont think this ageism case will stick.C4s Jon Snow is hardly past it at 67, despite a Tory MPs suggestion to the contrary. Indeed, hed have a bright future at Broadcasting House.

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- Peter Preston

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The X Factor 2014: week three as it happened

5 hours ago

It was movie madness week, and Stuart Heritage was there for all three incredibly long acts.

10.00pm BST

And, while Dermot locks into his three solid minutes of tedious number-reading, Im out of here. Thanks for coming along and joining in. Three things that you shouldnt forget:

1. You should come back here tomorrow night at 8pm for the X Factor results show liveblog, because the guests will be Ed Sheeran and OneRepublic and theyre apparently quite popular. Also: lets all hope that I remember to put the clocks back tonight, otherwise theres a pretty good chance Ill accidentally end up liveblogging that crap-looking Bradley Walsh gameshow instead.

9.58pm BST

All the judges are saying how nice Hank is. Youre A Monster, Stuart. A Monster. A Monster. A Monster.

9.56pm BST

Things I like about this performance: a load of green lights are pointing at Hank, and that makes him look »

- Stuart Heritage

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Doctor Who recap: series 34, episode 10 In the Forest of the Night

6 hours ago

Frank Cottrell Boyces episode had one of the greatest setups Doctor Who has ever known, riffing on the classic childrens story phrase, And they ventured into the forest

Spoiler Alert: This weekly blog is for those who have been watching the new series of Doctor Who. Dont read ahead if you havent seen episode 10 In the Forest of the Night

Read Dan Martins episode nine episode blog here

If you read almost any story a kid writes in primary school, it will say, And they ventured into the forest The forest is danger, isnt it? But Id never seen it in a dystopia, really. When youve had post-apocalyptic worlds in films, theyre always flooded, or cold, or barren, not invaded by forests. Also, the forest is a fairytale. That idea of children lost in the wood thats got a power going right back to Little Red Riding Hood, and further. »

- Dan Martin

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Strictly Come Dancing 2014: week five as it happened

7 hours ago

After Bargain Hunts Tim Wonnacott danced his last, the 12 remaining couples compete. Heidi Stephens watched all the action

8.17pm BST

So thats it for tonights show! Ill be back here tomorrow at 7.20pm for the results thank you to everyone who joined in, feel free to pop by on Twitter @heidistephens and tell me who you think is dancing off into the Strictly sunset tomorrow night.

Also, dont forget to make the most of the extra hour tomorrow. Hey, why not do a bit of Salsa whilst pressure washing your wheelie bins? Oh hang on, thats my plan. Keeeep dancing etc, and Ill see you tomorrow!

8.16pm BST

Its recap time, and the voting lines are now Open. Mark and Karen definitely my favourites tonight tough call on the bottom two, but Im going for Simon and Kristina and Thom and Iveta. Have a sneaky feeling both Scott and Judy »

- Heidi Stephens

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Grayson Perry: Who Are You?; Life Story; Grand Designs TV review

9 hours ago

Grayson Perrys subjects reveal all at the drop of a hat, while David Attenborough captures a different sort of life on the edge

Grayson Perry: Who Are You? (C4) | 4Od

Life Story (BBC1) | iPlayer

Grand Designs (C4) | 4Od

As he showed in the 2012 documentary series All in the Best Possible Taste, the straw-haired artist Grayson Perry is an astute observer of social class. Alive to the customs and curiosities of tribal membership, he is armed with an engaging mixture of empathy and irony.

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- Andrew Anthony

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Lead roles for Latin actors as Us television notes shift in social and economic power

12 hours ago

Two new sitcoms aim to build on a growing TV interest in Latin actors and their roles

The rise of Latina women is well represented in pop music with Jennifer Lopez and Shakira, Selena Gomez and Ariana Grande, while in politics New Mexico governor Susana Martinez is a 2016 vice-presidential ticket possibility for the Republican party. But with the exception of overwrought telenovelas, Colombian sitcom superstar Sofía Vergara and Desperate Housewives Eva Longoria they hardly figure at all on American television.

That will soon change if Us TV executives succeed in building an audience for two new comedy series that aim to expand the representation of Latina life to the mainstream.

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- Edward Helmore

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Rome: the Worlds First Superpower review when in Rome, dont faff around

20 hours ago

Larry Lambs breathless account of the history of the Eternal City did away with the nuances and was all the better for it

Sometimes you just dont want any fannying about. Sometimes you want big chunky facts marking a wide, boldly slashed path through the thickets of your ignorance and to worry about the details later. And if you can find a cheerful guide to accompany you, so much the better.

So it was with the opener to Channel 5s new three-part series Rome: the Worlds First Superpower. It hacked and slashed its way through the first three-and-a-half centuries of the Eternal Citys history, gladly accompanied by actor Larry Lamb, whose undisguised enthusiasm and joy at the prospect of a journey through Italian time and space was well, just smashing, really.

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- Lucy Mangan

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Behind the scenes at Daily Brunch pulled pork, brand synergy and 'bongocam'

21 hours ago

Peter Robinson goes behind the scenes of Channel 4s phenomenally successful cooking show

In a recent interview, Julian Casablancas explained that his decision to leave New York was based on the ludicrous volume of people eating brunch. Its fortunate he didnt relocate to London, where sightings of one specific type of brunch have just exploded by 600%. For the next couple of months, Channel 4s phenomenally popular Sunday Brunch will also be Daily Brunch, leaving only Saturdays untouched by the charms of its hosts, Tim Lovejoy and Simon Rimmer. While the Sunday edition lasts three hours (though appears to span several millennia), the new weekday show lasts just one, which feels more manageable than the black hole of hangover viewing with which many viewers may already be acquainted. Regular Sunday Brunch viewers will be sad to hear that time constraints have put the kibosh on the celebrated playlist feature usually an »

- Peter Robinson

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Catch-up TV guide: from Detectorists to Working

21 hours ago

Detectorists | SHOWstudio | The Archers | Hack Into Broad City | Working

As unobtrusive and gentle as its rural metal-detecting characters, Mackenzie Crooks BBC4 comedy has surreptitiously become indispensable viewing. The hobby-based friendship between Crook and Toby Joness Andy and Lance may seem trite but theres a wealth of acutely observed detail and subtle humour, and the performances are finely judged.

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- Rachel Aroesti, Gwilym Mumford & Simon Wardell

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Life Is Toff: the Fulfords are back

21 hours ago

Theyve made a career as TVs hapless aristocrats but, try as you might, its impossible to resent them

Arthur Fulford, heir to the Great Fulford estate, lays his cards on the table: If anyone turns around and tries to judge me for being in this amazing position, then frankly they can fuck off.

As British Class History For Beginners or, as its sometimes known, Downton Abbey has been carefully explaining over four years, things arent what they used to be for aristos. Where once serfs bowed, scraped, and toiled away in the turnip field for the honour of living under the rule of someone with a coat of arms, the few landed gentry that remain tethered to their enormous draughty piles in modern Britain have to think on their feet. Francis Fulford, current custodian of the Fulford estate, toff, advert for genetic diversity and previous star of How Clean Is Your House, »

- Filipa Jodelka

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The new Sse orangutan advert

21 hours ago

Nowhere do we see an old lady reading her utility bill and then solemnly turning off her electric blanket

I dont know about you, but nothing says energy company to me like a painstakingly rendered, hyper-realistic CGI orangutan. Three cheers, then, for Sse, which spent 10 months and an its-probably-best-not-to-know-actually amount of money creating Maya, the orangutan that isnt really an orangutan, star of its latest series of adverts and billboards. In the 90-second TV spot, Maya travels from the jungles of Sumatra to a busy urban environment to watch from afar as we human beings waste the absolute arse out of some energy.

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- Joel Golby

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How I Get Ready: Lorraine Pascale

21 hours ago

Normally my place is spotless, it looks like no one lives there. But when I start getting ready the room turns into a tip

I dont have any fairytale process of getting ready. No music or candles. Its usually just me rushing around in a messy room. Normally my place is spotless it looks like no one lives there. But when I start getting ready the room turns into a tip, while Im choosing the right shoes and underwear. I try to tidy up before I leave, but then I dont want to be late so I end up having this internal battle and stress myself out.

If I havent picked my outfit already, I need three hours. I have a shower, do a face and body scrub, and, if Ive got time, a quick face mask to bring a bit of vitality to the skin. I then get my »

- Abigail Radnor

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Lauren Laverne: More charisma than any woman presenter of her generation

24 October 2014 11:40 AM, PDT

The former Kenickie frontwoman has overcome accusations of triviality to become one of Britains best-loved radio DJs

Lauren Lavernes big break came when Bob Stanley stumbled across her band Kenickies single in a record shop, loved what he heard, and called the number on the sleeve. Laverne was the bands lead singer and, this being the mid-1990s, it was her home phone number. She was very cool about it and not acting shocked when I rang, says Stanley, a journalist and musician with the band Saint Etienne, who at the time was running a small imprint of the record label Emi. But I think they were quite excited about Emi calling up. Obviously she lived with her parents at the time they were only 16 then.

Two decades later, Laverne is a wife and mother, an enthusiastic user of social media, the author of a novel for young adults, a »

- Esther Addley

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Doctor Who Experience gets Capaldi makeover

24 October 2014 10:47 AM, PDT

Cardiff-based sci-fi attraction relaunches with new filmed sequences and guest appearance from fan favourite Lalla Ward

The BBCs Doctor Who Experience an immersive adventure located in a purpose-built venue next to the TV shows production HQ in Cardiff has been relaunched with new filmed sequences featuring Peter Capaldi, the 12th Doctor.

There will also be a cameo by fan favourite Lalla Ward, who played Romana alongside the fourth Doctor, Tom Baker, in 1979-80.

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- Dan Martin

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From Honey Boo Boo to Bristol Palin: when reality TV gets a little too real

24 October 2014 8:52 AM, PDT

TLC have cancelled the reality show after news that its main character was dating a convicted paedophile. But for the subjects of reality TV, there is no off switch

On Thursday, news broke that Mama June Shannon, the unexpected matriarch of TLCs runaway reality hit Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, was in a relationship with a new man. Such news was unexpected, given Shannons recent split from common law husband Mike Sugar Bear Thompson, father of the series star, Alanna Honey Boo Boo Thompson, a former child beauty pageant contestant from Georgia who first found fame on the previous TLC reality show Toddlers & Tiaras. (The split came about after Shannon discovered Thompson searching for women on online dating site plentyoffish.com ironically, the previous season had focused on Thompson and Shannons impending commitment ceremony.)

However, this latest development in Mama Junes romantic life is giving TLC and the shows legions of fans pause for concern. »

- Jennifer Gerson Uffalussy

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The Flash: are there too many superheroes on TV?

24 October 2014 5:00 AM, PDT

Do we really need to see another doofus who moonlights as a crimestopper? Two writers argue the toss

Barry Allen, Aka the Flash, is the fastest man alive, zig-zagging across Starling City at inconceivable speeds. But despite his impressive nippiness, Bazza feels a little late to the party. TV has finally cracked the comic-book code, or at least jemmied the floodgates open: The Flash joins existing adaptations such as Arrow, Agents of Shield, The Walking Dead, Gotham and Constantine. In a few months, well also have Agent Carter, featuring plucky Hayley Atwell in tales of Shield-related derring-do during the second world war. Thats not to mention Preacher, Daredevil, Powers, Supergirl, Teen Titans, Scalped and even the slightly rubbish Hourman all comics properties at various stages of TV development. Weve reached peak Spandex, or whatever futuristic material superheroes wear in 2014 to look cool. And it feels really good, like some colossal »

- Graeme Virtue & Andrew Mueller

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John Hannah: My family values

24 October 2014 5:00 AM, PDT

The actor talks about his early memories of his grandparents and coming to terms with not being encouraged to work hard at schoo

My family lived in a little terraced council house in East Kilbride, Scotlands first new town, and it was a brilliant place to grow up. The street was full of parents with young children the same age. My childhood memories are like everyone elses in the late 60s and early 70s endlessly playing football in the street and being at each others houses. I dont remember school at all I remember summer holidays and endless sunshine. There probably wasnt any sunshine, but it feels like there was.

My dad is a retired tool maker. Hes called John too and my grandad was also called John. But I wanted to give my son something completely different so we called him Gabriel. My mum, Susan, worked at the Schweppes factory nearby. »

- Interview by Busola Evans

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Psychobitches series two: Anna Nicole Smith, Elizabeth I, Audrey Hepburn and more exclusive trailer

24 October 2014 4:50 AM, PDT

The Sky Arts sketch show, starring Rebecca Front as a psychiatrist and a load of comedians playing dead women from history, is back for a second run. See a taster here

Series one had the bickering Bronte sisters, Mary, mother of Jesus, Beatrix Potter, Julia Davis as a Sylvia Plath/Pam Ayres hybrid and even Jack Whitehall playing Diana, Princess of Wales. Now the outstanding Sky Arts sketch series Psychobitches, which portrays dead women from history in therapy sessions with Rebecca Fronts psychiatrist, is back for a second run.

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- Guardian TV

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Jacqui Oatleys persistence challenges Arsène Wenger and men with mics | Richard Williams

24 October 2014 4:37 AM, PDT

By turning fans gripes about Arsenal into questions and refusing to accept evasions, a female football reporter did more than just belie the common criticisms of women in the sporting media

October 2012: Jacqui Oatley interview on her career battles

To put it crudely, Arsène Wenger is the reason Premier League players no longer eat steak before a match and why the biggest clubs now have training centres equipped like teaching hospitals. In other words, he has made a difference, although some may feel that, after 17 years in England, the power of his influence has waned. But last Saturday evening, quite unwittingly, he did something that may have marked an even bigger step into the future.

Caught by the television cameras in the tunnel at the Emirates, he responded to Jacqui Oatleys questions in a tone so patronising and belittling that you could not believe he would have directed it »

- Richard Williams

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Information Age: All you need is love (and three satellites)

24 October 2014 3:32 AM, PDT

In 1967, The Beatles and a BBC executive called Aubrey Singer managed to unite the world, albeit briefly, with the first global satellite broadcast

Information Age: Six Networks That Changed Our World at the Science Museum, London, opens on Saturday 25 October

Two hundred years of technology have transformed how we talk to each other, share our lives and learn about the world. On Saturday, the Science Museum in London opens Information Age: Six Networks That Changed Our World, a new permanent gallery of more than 800 objects that tell the story of the information revolution.

To mark the event, this week we have been hosting five fantastic Science Museum videos that reveal some of the greatest breakthroughs in the communications era.

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- Guardian Staff

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