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BBC forced to take on £600m cost of free TV licences – Politics live

5 hours ago

Rolling coverage of all the day’s political developments as they happen

No 10 lobby briefing - SummaryLunchtime summarySimon Danczuk says child abuse campaigning made him depressedWhittingdale’s confirms BBC should fund cost of free TV licencesWhittingdale’s statement - SummaryAfternoon summary

5.42pm BST

The situation risks going from bad to worse. Britain will be affected the longer the Greek crisis lasts and the worse it gets. There is no easy way out but even at the 11th hour, we urge the eurozone leaders and Greece to find a sustainble solution. Meanwhile, here in Britain we must redouble our efforts to put our house in order.

5.29pm BST

The BBC Trust has released the text of a letter from Rona Fairhead, its chair, to George Osborne and John Whittingdale about the BBC settlement. She says the trust accepts the decision, but objects to the way it was taken, because licence fee payers were not consulted. »

- Andrew Sparrow

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Decoding Kit Harington's Wimbledon locks: celebrity haircuts as spoiler alerts

9 hours ago

Jennifer Aniston, Bryan Cranston and Christina Hendricks all changed their style as soon as they had left long-running TV roles. So Game of Thrones fans were surprised to see Harington in the Wimbledon crowd with a shaggy do just like Jon Snow’s – could this be a hair-raising spoiler?

Warning: don’t read this if you aren’t completely up to date with Game of Thrones, because it deals with some pretty big season-five spoilers. And, for that matter, don’t read this if you are completely up to date with Game of Thrones either, because it’ll probably end up ruining season six for you.

Now, for the two remaining readers, here’s a potted history of Kit Harington’s hair. First, Kit Harington had short hair. Then, Kit Harington was cast as Jon Snow in Game of Thrones and found himself contractually obliged to grow his hair out. »

- Stuart Heritage

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Toby Stephens’s favourite TV

11 hours ago

The Black Sails man on why he digs Better Call Saul and his lifelong love of all things Star Trek

Better Call Saul. It’s very different in tone and style from Breaking Bad and yet has some continuity. It starts off incredibly slowly, but it builds, and once you get it, it’s really satisfying. It really exploits that seedy side of the legal system in America, which – as we all know – is totally corrupt. I love the way that it ironises all of that.

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- Gwilym Mumford

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Catch-up TV guide: from True Detective to Insane Fight Club 2

14 hours ago

Moody crime drama True Detective has switched cities on Sky On Demand while over on the iPlayer it’s a welcome return of Grado in Insane Fight Club 2

You marvelled at Matthew McConaughey’s scenery-chewing, were thrilled at the six-minute tracking shot, and had your brain scrambled by all of that “time is a flat circle” business. Now it’s time for season two of the crime drama, which, er, features none of those things. Instead, we’re in La with Vince Vaughn, Colin Farrell and Rachel McAdams on either – and, in one case, both – sides of the law as a murder investigation gets underway. There’s been some criticism of the rather hokey set-up and characterisation in its early episodes, but you write True Detective off at your peril.

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- Luke Holland, Kate Hutchinson & Gwilym Mumford

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A Song for Jenny review – Utterly believable exploration of grief after 7/7

16 hours ago

Frank McGuinness’s adaptation of the book by Julie Nicholson portrays the anger and grief of a bereaved mother

One of the extraordinary things to happen after the recent mass shooting in a church in Charleston, South Carolina, was the forgiveness for the murderer expressed by the families of some of the victims. Was it a Christian thing, or something cultural – were they expected to forgive Dylann Roof? To me, non-Christian, non-American but a parent, it didn’t make any sense. If someone had killed my child in a random act of hatred, I would find it impossible to forgive, certainly not immediately, probably ever.

Related: Frank McGuinness on BBC1's 7/7 drama A Song for Jenny: 'I broke down'

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- Sam Wollaston

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Monday’s best TV

17 hours ago

The Met ends by looking at the circle of life; the against-the-odds story of Welsh boxer Lee Selby; and a return to Srebrenica 20 years after the genocide of 8,000 men and boys in the Bosnian town

A series that has sometimes felt like an advert for the Metropolitan Police ends by looking at the circle of working life: while one nervous new recruit goes through his passing-out parade at training college and lightly walks the beat for the first time, a retiring detective says he’s glad to pass the stress and distress on to someone else. His final investigation, of a four-month-old allowed to starve to death by her mother, ends up as an unimpeachable picture of a hard and sickeningly sad task. Jack Seale

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- Jack Seale, Jonathan Wright, Ali Catterall and Andrew Mueller

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When David Attenborough met Tony Abbott. No wait, that never happened

17 hours ago

It’s just as well the octogenarian naturalist spent his birthday at the White House, not Parliament House, or the ABC might be copping fresh criticism

The phrase “TV event of the week” seems to have pointlessly malleable applicability. Assemble a good-looking dessert or sing a song slightly better (or worse) than most people could, and TV executives feel entitled to out-hyperbole the internet. Heaven forbid someone in the middle of a karaoke session should knock out a decent crème brûlée: it would probably be met with more excitement than the sodding moon landing.

Related: Barack Obama turns tables in David Attenborough climate change interview

Related: Does Australia have a workable climate change policy? – podcast

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- Jazz Twemlow

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Yael Stone on Orange is the New Black: 'I wasn’t Sapphic enough to play Nicky'

19 hours ago

Much has been made of Ruby Rose’s arrival on the Netflix show, but there’s been another Aussie in Litchfield since day one – and she brought her own lipstick

Orange is the New Black: everything you needed to know in one infographic

Yael Stone was 10 and performing in a school competition when she recited Robert Browning’s Porphyria’s Lover, a poem about a man strangling a woman, as fellow students sang pop songs and gave Bible readings. At 15, she filmed her first sex scene, partnered on-screen with a much older man in the Australian miniseries, The Farm. She had not yet had sex in real life.

When friends and grandparents gathered to watch the show at the family home in Rozelle, Sydney, it hadn’t occurred to Stone they would be watching her – this virgin teenager – simulating sex. Her art-loving parents – an architect father and nurse mother »

- Steve Dow

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True Detective season two, episode three recap – Maybe Tomorrow

20 hours ago

There are revelations from Paul’s military past and some unexpected dental work, and e-cigarettes come in for more stick

Spoiler alert: this blog details events in the third episode of the second season of True Detective, which airs on Sunday nights on HBO in America, and Mondays in the UK on Sky Atlantic at 2am and 9pm.

For the first season of True Detective click here.

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- Gwilym Mumford

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