Most talked about Guardian stories

BBC News staff dance round Christmas tree live on TV

theguardian.com — Viewers of the BBC News channel could be forgiven for thinking they had enjoyed a little bit too much of the festive spirit on Christmas Day. But no, that really was a bunch of BBC staff dancing around a Christmas tree as the camera swooped across the corporation's newsroom in the channel's familiar credits sequence.
Dec 26, 2014

BBC News staff - rockin' around the Christmas tree live on TV gu.com/p/44etd/stw

Dec 26, 2014

In case you missed this yesterday … BBC News staff dance round Christmas tree live on TV bit.ly/1rnHEd3

Abdication rumours help Queen claim Christmas Day TV ratings throne

theguardian.com — In the end there was no abdication but the unlikely speculation that the Queen was about to step down from the throne helped the monarch's traditional message to the Commonwealth to the top of the Christmas Day ratings.

Our debt to history’s radicals, right, left and centre

theguardian.com — Christmas Day may be over, but there is still time for a seasonal quiz. The task is to pick the person who most deserves to be celebrated in this country's radical history. Who, in short, is your radical hero? There is a good reason why this question is freshly topical today.
Dec 26, 2014

RT @holland_tom: Like @MartinKettle, I think Manchester's People's History Museum is a wonderful idea that needs & merits support: http://t…

Dec 26, 2014

Our debt to history’s radicals, right, left and centre | Martin Kettle gu.com/p/44d56

Londoners miss out as homes built as ‘safe deposit boxes’ for foreign buyers

theguardian.com — The control of plans for tens of thousands of new homes in London is now in the hands of foreign investors who are increasing their grip on the capital's prime property assets, figures obtained by the Guardian have revealed.
Dec 26, 2014

Londoners miss out as homes built as ‘safe deposit boxes’ for foreign buyers bit.ly/1zEsVNO pic.twitter.com/a6HD6feEQj

Emergency airlift puts large fries back on the menu at McDonald’s in Japan

theguardian.com — McDonald's has said an emergency airlift of French fries to Japan has eased the nationwide shortage that forced the chain to ration them at more than 3,000 restaurants across the country. From 5 January, medium and large-sized fries will be back on the menu, almost three weeks after the fast-food giant restricted customers to small portions due to import delays.
Dec 26, 2014

Emergency airlift puts large fries back on the menu at McDonald’s in Japan bit.ly/1zm5ZO4

Dec 26, 2014

Some folks' emergencies are different from others: Emergency airlift returms large fries to McDonald’s in Japan gu.com/p/44et5/tw

Animals photographs of the year 2014

theguardian.com — From beavers to birds and a baby rhino, the Guardian picture desk has selected its pick of the year's animals photographs

Guardian music critics: the songs that kept us sane in 2014

theguardian.com — At the start of this year, I interviewed Adam Granduciel of the War on Drugs. We talked about his album Lost in the Dream, and the depression he had faced making it. He didn't seem like a bundle of laughs that day, but not many people do when they've flown across the Atlantic to do several days of promotion.
Dec 26, 2014

RT @janinegibson: This is wonderful. MT @missbarton: A little joy and sadness from us Guardian writers on our musical moments of 2014: theguardian.com/music/2014/dec…

Dec 26, 2014

RT @missbarton: A little joy and sadness from us Guardian writers on our musical moments of 2014: theguardian.com/music/2014/dec… (special props to @MichaelAHann)

Dec 26, 2014

This is wonderful. MT @missbarton: A little joy and sadness from us Guardian writers on our musical moments of 2014: theguardian.com/music/2014/dec…

Dec 26, 2014

RT @missbarton: A little joy and sadness from us Guardian writers on our musical moments of 2014: theguardian.com/music/2014/dec… (special props to @MichaelAHann)

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Heroes of 2014: Pope Francis

theguardian.com — You don't have to be a believer to recognise that the leader of a billion Catholics has emerged as a global champion of social justice. That's something of a turnaround both for the Vatican hierarchy - and an Argentinian pope whose record under his country's dictatorship was less than heroic.
Dec 26, 2014

Heroes of 2014: Pope Francis | Seumas Milne | Comment is free | The Guardian theguardian.com/commentisfree/…

Snow globe causes charity shop fire

theguardian.com — A fire in the window of a charity shop on Christmas Day morning was caused by sunlight refracting through a snow globe. The sun's rays ignited fake reindeer food and snow on display in the window of the shop in Bournemouth, Dorset. Dorset fire service attended the incident at the shop in Wimborne Road, Winton, at about 11.30am.
Dec 25, 2014

RT @jana_pruden: Snow globe causes store fire by refracting sun, igniting display of fake snow and reindeer food. theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/d…

Dec 25, 2014

RT @jana_pruden: Snow globe causes store fire by refracting sun, igniting display of fake snow and reindeer food. theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/d…

Dec 25, 2014

Snow globe causes store fire by refracting sun, igniting display of fake snow and reindeer food. theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/d…

Best theatre performances of 2014: was Sofie Gråbøl your drama queen?

theguardian.com — So the best of the year lists are in, reflecting what critics - myself included - haven't seen as well as what we have. Nobody can see everything. Within those lists plenty of actors have had nods for brilliant performances, in particular Tim Pigott-Smith in King Charles III, Imelda Staunton in Gypsy, Kenneth Cranham as the old man in The Father, and Sofie Gråbøl in The James Plays.
Dec 26, 2014

RT @lyngardner: Best theatre performances of 2014: was Sofie Gråbøl your drama queen? gu.com/p/448m2/stw

Dec 26, 2014

Best theatre performances of 2014: was Sofie Gråbøl your drama queen? gu.com/p/448m2/stw

The Making of the Middle Sea review - fascinating, intelligent and provocative

theguardian.com — When Cyprian Broodbank promises in the subtitle to this award-winning book that he will start "from the Beginning", he should be taken at his word.
Dec 26, 2014

RT @paullaity: "50 tortoises consumed in a funerary meal" The always wonderful James Davidson on Cyprian Broodbank's award-winner gu.com/p/44ang/stw

Dec 26, 2014

"50 tortoises consumed in a funerary meal" The always wonderful James Davidson on Cyprian Broodbank's award-winner gu.com/p/44ang/stw

PlayStation and Xbox sites go offline in apparent cyber-attack

theguardian.com — Sony's online PlayStation store and Microsoft's Xbox site have been disrupted over Christmas in what is thought to have been a cyber-attack on the companies. Sony said on Friday that some users were having trouble logging into its network and engineers were investigating. Microsoft said it knew some users were having trouble signing in.
Dec 26, 2014

PlayStation and Xbox Live networks go offline in apparent cyber-attack bit.ly/1zXwhcp

How movies embraced Hinduism (without you even noticing)

theguardian.com — Interstellar's box office total is $622,932,412 and counting. It is the eighth-highest-grossing film of the year and spawned an endless raft of think pieces testing the validity of its science and applauding the innovation of its philosophy. But it is not so new.
Dec 26, 2014

How movies like Intestellar, Star Wars and Matrix embraced Hinduism without you even noticing | theguardian.com/film/2014/dec/…

Dec 26, 2014

How movies embrace Hinduism without anyone even realizing it. Hollywood's gharwapsi. Hah. theguardian.com/film/2014/dec/…

Dec 25, 2014

How movies embraced Hinduism (without you even noticing) gu.com/p/44ak3/stw

Dec 25, 2014

How movies embraced Hinduism (without you even noticing) gu.com/p/44ak3

Show 1 more tweet from Ram Ramgopal

Share your drawings and photos of Christmas scenes

theguardian.com — On 1 November 1929, the Manchester Guardian launched three Christmas competitions, one of which was a drawing contest where 'grown-ups' were invited to draw 'a domestic scene', 'a street scene' or a Christmas scene. The competition ran for a month with the paper publishing the best entries each day.

Robert Macfarlane on The Snow Geese by William Fiennes

theguardian.com — My favourite pages of William Fiennes's The Snow Geese have nothing to do with geese. They describe a diner in South Dakota called Dally's, which serves its coffee from a "stainless steel Bunn-O-Matic urn", and houses its cinnamon rolls under "scuffed Perspex domes". Stuck in Dakota for a week, the narrator becomes a regular at Dally's.
Dec 26, 2014

Treat yourself to reading this - Robert Macfarlane on The Snow Geese by William Fiennes. From the Guardian Review gu.com/p/44bkv/stw

Boxing Day tsunami: 10 years on, the scars are not hard to find in Aceh

theguardian.com — In the afternoons, after days of heavy rain, the boys in the village clamber up the wall of the shed, letting out screams of elation as they jump into the swollen river in their underwear. Clamber, jump, swim - repeat.
Dec 26, 2014

10 years on, Aceh rebuilt but can never forget. 286,000 killed by 2004 Christmas #Tsunami. >200,000 in Aceh alone. gu.com/p/44d6p

Dec 26, 2014

"A wall of water was tossing up the bodies," - 10yrs on from Boxing Day tsunami that killed a quarter of a million. theguardian.com/world/2014/dec…

Dec 25, 2014

10 years on from tragic Boxing Day tsunami which killed - extraordinary figure - 286,000 people, across 14 countries. gu.com/p/44d6p

Ohio haunted house manager ordered to take down zombie nativity scene

theguardian.com — You've not seen a baby Jesus in the manger quite like it. His eyes are bruised and glaring, his face slashed with scars and his teeth protrude from his mouth like rotting vampires' fangs. The three kings who have come bearing gifts are pretty unusual too.
Dec 25, 2014

RT @BalkansBohemia: Trying to shut down Zombie Nativity w/ local zoning oppression seems like a battle for @nickgillespie & @reason http://…

Dec 25, 2014

Twas the night before Christmas when Jason Dixon was ordered to take down the zombie nativity scene theguardian.com/us-news/2014/d…

Dec 25, 2014

RT @AlexKoppelman: As promised: @Edpilkington saves Christmas, with this short but great piece on a zombie nativity scene theguardian.com/us-news/2014/d…

Dec 25, 2014

RT @AlexKoppelman: As promised: @Edpilkington saves Christmas, with this short but great piece on a zombie nativity scene theguardian.com/us-news/2014/d…

Show 1 more tweet from Alex Koppelman

NHS to target obesity in new nationwide programme

theguardian.com — A new programme aimed at getting the nation back in shape through a better diet and more exercise is to be rolled out across the country. The latest figures, in a report from the European commission, show that the obesity rate in the UK has increased over the past decade, making it the second highest in the EU.

Glasgow bin lorry crash: Church leader tries to comfort grieving families

theguardian.com — The moderator of the Church of Scotland has urged the people of Glasgow to "travel with the grieving", as relatives of those who died in Monday's devastating crash visited the still-growing bank of floral tributes left for victims by members of the public.
Dec 26, 2014

George Square crash: Church of Scotland moderator urges people of Glasgow to "travel with the grieving" gu.com/p/44etc/stw