Metro's new website offers something different from those of most newspapers.
It's not exactly a newspaper online, but it still provides something sufficiently diverting for an online audience. We particularly like its method of breaking the day into four parts and updating content to make it relevant for what you might be doing at that time. So we get puzzles and quizzes at lunchtime and a guide to evening entertainment later on in the day. The online version of Metro also manages to offer something extra to advertisers beyond the print editions, and content is relevant to the urban target audience.
CHANNEL 4'S SHIPWRECKED
A bit of light relief watching a group of university drop-outs bum around on an island, squabbling about stolen treats and how many times they should wash their hair, is just what the doctor ordered on a Sunday morning. The contestants' ridiculous monologues to camera, describing their erratic mental states, are hilarious. The group of half-naked men with a penchant for wood-chopping is hardly to be sniffed at. Highbrow, stimulating TV this ain't, but you can't beat a bit of reality TV in the sun on a dismal, depressing weekend in London.
As pay-day came around again, we hit the local Tesco to stock up on cheap DVDs and books. Batman Begins for £5.96 has to be one of the best deals around. Of course, all this is a false economy, because we end up spending money we wouldn't otherwise spend because it's so dirt cheap. Mind you, in the depths of an impoverished February, what better Valentine's treat is there for the ladies than a Dirty Dancing DVD at £5.86? We draw the line at its £7 jeans, though. Maybe that's taking it a bargain too far.
VANITY FAIR'S HOLLYWOOD ISSUE
Vanity Fair's annual Hollywood fest, timed to coincide with the Oscars, is usually the highlight of its year. And 2006 is no exception. The fashion designer Tom Ford has orchestrated the presentation of the Hollywood section and appears on the cover with a tastefully naked Keira Knightley and Scarlett Johansson. As if this isn't enough, there is also a long-overdue appreciation of Flashman, one of the great English literary heroes, by Christopher Hitchens.
AND ONE THING WE DON'T ...
The Independent on Saturday magazine
Last Saturday's edition was poor for so many reasons. Things started badly with the cover. It offered an interview with Abi Titmuss, who, as well as being a total never-been, is also massively wrong for The Independent's audience. After that, things didn't get any better. A tired design, an over-reliance on advertorials and a general lack of anything interesting make this a real turkey.