Alan Yentob admits he inspired W1A bicycle plotline

26 May 2015 13:26
Peter Florence, Caroline Michel, Alan Yentob and Rosie Boycott at the GQ party

With the BBC’s self satire W1A proving to be one of the corporation’s most popular shows, much has been made of whether the comedy is too close for comfort given that… Continue reading


Sandi Toksvig makes Hitler jibe about Nigel Farage

26 May 2015 8:29

Sandi Toksvig disclosed last month that she has given up her role on Radio 4′s The News Quiz in order to focus on launching the Women’s Equality Party. Appearing at the… Continue reading


The white-knuckle terror of being driven by a dopehead

25 May 2015 16:36
Frear and Loathing spreads from Las Vegas to South Yorkshire

‘Hidden menace of the drivers high on drugs,’ says the headline in today’s Daily Mail, revealing that – according to police – six out of 10 motorists are failing a… Continue reading


Peter Hitchens lets his election thoughts be known

25 May 2015 14:41

Given that Peter Hitchens’ weekly column was absent from the Mail on Sunday the week before the general election, Mr S was glad to have the opportunity to hear his thoughts… Continue reading


Revealed: Stephen Fry’s brush with the law over James Rhodes injunction

24 May 2015 13:20

Last week James Rhodes won a legal battle to publish his memoir Instrumental: A Memoir of Madness, Medication and Music. This judgement came after his ex-wife took out an injunction through… Continue reading


George Osborne kissed Lynton Crosby after election promise backfired

24 May 2015 12:48
Lynton Crosby

It isn’t the type of kiss-and-tell story Mr S is used to reading in the Sunday papers, but Lynton Crosby has today spoken about an election smooch he shared with the Chancellor of… Continue reading


There’s one obvious reason why this image could only be of Shakespeare

24 May 2015 10:56
A face that Country Life claims to be of Shakespeare featured in the 'Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes'. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

Professor Stanley Wells writes that the newly identified picture of Shakespeare on the title page of Gerard’s Herball (1597) is ‘obviously not Shakespeare’ but neither he, nor Mark Griffiths, the botanist… Continue reading


Revealed: Lithuania, not Sweden, was Britain’s real Eurovision choice

24 May 2015 2:26
Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 02.20.51

So when Nigella Lawson popped up on television to give Britain’s results, what had Britain decided? The UK vote is a 50/50 split between jury and televoting – and the… Continue reading


How to break Britain’s Eurovision curse

24 May 2015 1:32
Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 01.24.05

“Over the past five years, Britain has produced some of the biggest chart-topping acts on the planet from Adele to One Direction, Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith. But in nearly two decades, it… Continue reading


Gay marriage will split the Catholic Church

23 May 2015 23:49
Image: Getty

Ireland, for so long the most overtly Catholic state in Western Europe, has voted for gay marriage by a stupendous margin – 62 per cent. Never before has a country legalised the… Continue reading


Is Matthew Richardson set to ‘unresign’ from Ukip?

23 May 2015 11:30

After Nigel Farage resigned as the leader of Ukip following his defeat in South Thanet, he hastily ‘unresigned’ days later. Not everyone was pleased by the quick turnaround, with Ukip MEP Patrick… Continue reading


Spectator competition: An update on Belloc’s kiddie delinquents (plus: write a poem celebrating a modern-day blot on the landscape)

23 May 2015 9:30
Image: Getty

The call for an update on one of the children in Cautionary Tales who lived to tell the tale attracted a large and excellent entry. Belloc’s gallery of kiddie delinquents… Continue reading


Ed Balls won’t rule out an appearance on Strictly

22 May 2015 17:22

Former Labour MP Ed Balls has appeared on BBC news today in his first interview since he was ousted from his seat by the Tories. While he discussed Ed Miliband and the… Continue reading


A sugar tax is simply a tax on the poor

22 May 2015 16:41

Why is it that whenever anyone proposes a tax on the wealthy all hell breaks loose, but when someone proposes a tax on the poor there is no more than… Continue reading


A tax on sugar won’t work, as the shipwreck of the Danish ‘fat tax’ shows

22 May 2015 15:10
Image: Getty

Bad ideas die hard in the world of ‘public health’, especially when the government can make money out of them. The shipwreck of Denmark’s notorious ‘fat tax’ should have served… Continue reading


Will Theresa May allow Muhammad Salah to enter the UK?

22 May 2015 15:05

Unencumbered by the regressive Liberal Democrats, the new government has already managed to start taking extremism seriously.  The counter-extremism legislation which the Lib Dems managed to stall will be included in… Continue reading


This ‘new image of Shakespeare’ is obviously not Shakespeare – but I’ll tell you who it might be

22 May 2015 13:39
A face that Country Life claims to be of Shakespeare featured in the 'Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes'. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

In its issue dated 20 May, Country Life has published a long article by the botanical historian Mark Griffiths claiming that a figure on the magnificent title page of John… Continue reading


Cameron’s seven-day GP service is a mad promise straight out of ‘Yes, Prime Minister’

21 May 2015 19:42

I love the series Yes, Minister and Yes, Prime Minister for many reasons, among them the timeless, elegant dialogue that can be applied to today’s politics. Hearing the pledge emanating from… Continue reading


Dennis Skinner wins Westminster turf war against the SNP

21 May 2015 19:00

Of all the MPs to pick a fight with, Dennis Skinner is not high on Mr S’s list. Still, that hasn’t stopped the new SNP intake from spending their first… Continue reading


Another child abuse memoir. Why can’t the past be private?

21 May 2015 17:17
James Rhodes has won the right to publish an autobiography telling of his abuse as a child (Photo: Getty)

I feel torn on pianist James Rhodes’ victory at the Supreme Court yesterday. On one hand, the lifting of the legal injunction preventing him from publishing his child-abuse memoir is… Continue reading


Which London mayoral hopeful has a ‘plethora of erotic art’?

21 May 2015 16:27

With Ivan Massow currently vying to be the next Mayor of London, the businessman released a campaign video this week explaining who he is and why he is running. In… Continue reading


Revealed: Taxpayer foots £4,820 bill for doorkeepers’ new overcoats

21 May 2015 10:50
Police Around The Houses Of Parliament

With the government planning £30 billion of further cuts in a bid to clear the deficit, even Parliament has had to reduce its spending in recent years. However, while a… Continue reading


Game of Thrones has always been a vacuous banquet of sex and violence. Why are people suddenly outraged by it?

20 May 2015 16:27
Sansa Stark, star of Game of Thrones

If you’ve never watched Game of Thrones, it is a twee fantasy show in which men and women discuss politics at length, dance in Austen-like balls, and drink small amounts of wine by streams. Characters… Continue reading


The free market is still the greatest force for reducing prejudice

20 May 2015 15:20
After one bakery declined to make this  cake, another agreed to do it (Photo: QueerSpace Belfast/Facebook)

I suppose if you’d told someone in Northern Ireland 25 years ago that the most contentious issue come May 2015 would be a gay cake they would have taken that future.… Continue reading


Introducing David ‘London’ Lammy and John ‘Flashy’ Whittingdale

20 May 2015 13:50
John 'Flashy' Whittingdale Photo: PA.

Given that a horde of new MPs have recently descended on Parliament, it’s understandable that staff may have some difficulty remembering everyone’s name. Still, Mr S would have thought that any confusion… Continue reading