Television

Toby Young: I’ve been unmanned by a tennis brute in bright pink

27 January 2018 9:00 am

As regular readers will know, Caroline has developed a fanatical interest in tennis and is currently captain of the ladies…

What on earth was The Prisoner all about?

16 December 2017 9:00 am

Now, if someone were to spray stun gas through the keyhole of my front door, and I were to collapse…

Lovely to look at but irritatingly pious: The Miniaturist reviewed

16 December 2017 9:00 am

BBC1’s The Miniaturist (26/7 December) is a lavish two-part adaptation of Jessie Burton’s bestseller. It’s also further proof that almost…

The idiot box

28 October 2017 9:00 am

How to sum up David Frost? The lazy writer’s friend, aka Wikipedia, calls him ‘an English journalist, comedian, writer, media…

The dwarves of death who control your TV

30 September 2017 9:00 am

My own fault, I suppose, for turning on the television. Not an action I undertake very regularly these days, because…

Real life

22 July 2017 9:00 am

Two months after I cancelled Sky, a strange letter arrived in the post. ‘We are writing to you because we…

Smokers are paying for your pension

28 May 2016 9:00 am

Axa will no longer invest in the tobacco industry: the French insurance giant will sell €184 million of shares and…

Michael Dobbs’s diary: Talking House of Cards with President Xi

30 April 2016 9:00 am

I’m a lucky man. My novel House of Cards transformed my life, yet I wrote it almost by accident nearly…

Sir Ian Botham is a hero – and a fool

28 November 2015 9:00 am

In 1981, when I was ten and Ian Botham was 26, I thought he was God. Now, the week after…

Barry Humphries’s diary: My war with ‘Wow!’

29 October 2015 9:00 am

I’m counting ‘Wows!’ Suddenly everyone is using this irritating expletive expressing incredulity, amazement and nothing at all. I’ve heard it…

Socrates and Galen on the Great British Bake Off

17 October 2015 8:00 am

As the national girth expands by the second, Auntie, never backward about lecturing us on the topic, continues to glory…

Robert Peston has got it all wrong about ties —viewers want broadcasters to look humbly respectful

3 October 2015 8:00 am

When Robert Peston, the economics editor of the BBC, interviewed George Osborne on television in an open-necked shirt with collar…

Just how tough a sentence was 14 years for Libor-rigging?

8 August 2015 9:00 am

Rogue traders Former UBS trader Tom Hayes was jailed for 14 years for rigging the Libor market. How long could…

Turn the licence fee into a digital currency – and save more than just the BBC

1 August 2015 9:00 am

What follows is a proposal for reducing the BBC licence fee and improving the corporation’s output while saving the British…

Tony Hall’s diary: the Proms, my walking obsession, and why the BBC is like James Bond

25 July 2015 9:00 am

There’s nothing quite like a First Night — and last Friday we launched the Proms, the most celebrated classical music…

Roger Mosey and the questions you don’t ask at the BBC

27 June 2015 9:00 am

There was a remarkable scene in one BBC Today programme morning meeting in about 1995, as all the producers gathered…

A political history of The Clangers

20 June 2015 9:00 am

Dropping the Clangers The Clangers made a comeback on BBC television. Some Clanger facts: — The actors doing the voices…

Why I won’t be going on Celebrity Big Brother — despite being tempted

23 May 2015 9:00 am

Why I had to say no to Celebrity Big Brother

How the other half of the press parties – a war correspondent’s letter from Washington

9 May 2015 9:00 am

This week has been all about the election, the US presidential election that is. It is 18 months away but…

Make no mistake: the Top Gear brouhaha is cultural warfare

28 March 2015 9:00 am

It’s a famous quote by F. Scott Fitzgerald, one that Elton John should ponder (when he’s not out shopping, that…

What Samsung’s new TVs owe to Jeremy Bentham

14 February 2015 9:00 am

Watching brief Samsung warned users of its voice-activated televisions that what they said in front of the TV could be…

My moment of mortification with Saint Joan Collins

14 February 2015 9:00 am

My time with Joan Collins was wonderful – except for one mortifying moment

EastEnders wanted to show Thatcher’s Britain. These days it would make Maggie proud

14 February 2015 9:00 am

How EastEnders became a positive reflection of Tory values

From Umbrella Man to the Coughing Major, the truth is often very strange

14 February 2015 9:00 am

Are you sitting comfortably and wearing your tinfoil hat? If so, open YouTube and watch a full-screen version of the…

How Alex Brooker made political interviews interesting again

7 February 2015 9:00 am

The other night on Channel 4, I watched the best political interview I’ve seen all year. It was with Nick…