From left: Hazel (Catherine Walker) with Annie (Bláithín Mac Gabhann) in Nancy Harris’s New Girl. Photograph Ros Kavanagh

Nancy Harris’s characters, scarred by experience, are torn between taking responsibility or seeking a hero

Photograph: Ros Kavanagh

Conspiracy thriller set in counterfactual 1970s Ireland plays out as screwball comedy

Medea, neither wholly deranged or demonic, remains unknowable. Photograph: Ros Kavanagh

Theatre review: Eileen Walsh faces a challenge in this childcentric take on the tragedy

Shane Lowry celebrates with the Claret Jug trophy after winning The Open Championship at  Portrush, Northern Ireland last July. Photograph:  Jason Cairnduff/Reuters

TV review: Ross Whittaker’s documentary is really the story of Lowry vs Lowry

Sophie Cookson in The Trial of Christine Keeler. Photograph: Ecosse Films/BBC

TV Review: This telling of a very British scandal – heaving with sensuous imagery and light on intellectual demand – belongs to th(...)

I’ll Get This: Gregg Wallace, Les Dennis, Maura Higgins, Shirley Ballas and Joel Dommett

TV review: Maura Higgins joins the BBC’s cross between dinner and Russian roulette

The Decade in Culture: The most impactful books, series and performers of 2010-19

Guinness heir: Garech Browne at his Luggala estate home in 2018. Photograph: RTÉ

TV review: Mick Mahon’s jam-packed film is a portrait of an eccentric, lonely man

‘We’d be surrounded by death every week,’ says funeral director David McGowan. ‘It’s normal’

Watching this disarming documentary, you find yourself considering your own mortality

Trumpstreet art by Subset, shown in Wonder Walls

TV Review: Ireland’s street artists express their politics better in murals than in words

The Irish teams in Tripoli in 1989

TV review: Brian Kerr looks back on his match against terrorist-friendly Libya in 1989

Phoebe Waller-Bridge in Fleabag

Fleabag, Game of Thrones and Catastrophe all ended – and somehow brought us all together

 Rex Ryan in  The Ridleys, at the Peacock Theatre. Photograph:  Ste Murray

Theatre in Ireland this year was bookended by two crises, a state of play mirrored by the work

Endgame: Rosaleen Linehan and Des Keogh in Pan Pan’s production. Photograph: Ros Kavanagh

Pan Pan’s production doesn’t so much revivify Samuel Beckett’s play as submit to it

A combo of images taken from video issued by the BBC of Virginia Roberts Giuffre. Photograph: BBC Panorama via AP

Panorama review: ‘It made me sick,’ says Giuffre. ‘I just didn’t expect it from royalty’

Ryan Tubridy and participants rehearsing for  the 2019 Late Late Toy Show. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

Nothing about this show is supposed to be cool, making Ryan Tubridy the perfect host

Damien Grey and Andrew Heron of the Michelin star-winning Heron & Grey restaurant. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

TV Review: It’s a compelling story. Chef meets Michelin star, loses it, gets it back again

Drama at Inish: Marion O’Dwyer and Nick Dunning in Cal McCrystal’s production. Photograph: Ros Kavanagh

Lennox Robinson’s theatrical satire is comically enhanced in the Abbey’s slapstick-accentuated Christmas production

Liz Bonnin is ‘petrified and angry’ by our carnivorous planet

TV Review: The BBC’s Meat: A Threat to the Planet? is a science documentary with feelings

Lorcan Cranitch (right) and playwright Rory Gleeson. Gleeson’s new play ‘Blood in the Dirt’ will premiere at The New Theatre, Temple Bar, starring Lorcan Cranitch.Photograph by Crispin Rodwell for the Irish Times

Is the novelist and screenwriter turned playwright fated to follow in his family’s footsteps?

Sarah Greene and Killian Scott: ‘My head is f**ked from all the raped, dead kids’

There’s a late, exposition-heavy survey of the clues you may have missed

Surprisingly grating listen:  Lisa Dwan in Pale Sister. Photo: Bríd O’Donovan.

While there is a subtlety in Tóbín’s text of this reimagined Antigone, Lisa Dwan’s stentorian performance conveys more thunder tha(...)

Peter Watterson, Philip Rafferty and Siobhan McCabe, from the book Children of the Troubles, by Joe Duffy and Freya McClements

TV review: Hoping to honour all of the dead, the programme becomes overwhelmed by the sheer number of fatalities

Dafne Keen as the headstrong, rebellious, adored Lyra Belacqua

It’s a lavish adaptation from BBC/HBO, but – happily – Philip Pullman’s darkness is here too

Harry Enfield and Kieran Hodgson in How Europe Stole My Mum. Photograph: Channel 4

Review: Inside the divided livingrooms of Britain, the stark choice to Leave or Remain seems to extend to family members

Guilt: Jamie Sives and Mark Bonnar strike a perfect balance as contrasting siblings. Photograph: Mark Mainz/Happy Tramp North/Expectation/BBC

Review: In this moral satire, two Scottish brothers discover the perfect victim. Can they get away scot-free?

Who Are You Calling Fat? – The participants  are a broad survey of attitudes towards weight and its consequences. Photograph: Sara Ramsden/Love Productions

Review: The participants in this ‘Bigger Brother’ format debate if obesity is a slur or a serious condition

Joanne Ryan’s Eggsistentialism is going on a national tour

Theatre highlight: Joanne Ryan’s comic solo show looks at a universal dilemma

Watchmen: “Something much more than an effort to keep fans ticking over.”  Photograph: HBO/Sky Atlantic

TV review: Once the cultishly-revered comic bible for misfit adolescents is transformed in new TV show

Francis Brennan seems uncharacteristically unsure of himself

In Francis Brennan – All Hands on Deck, the ebullient hotelier has finally gone overboard

Pulling with My Parents: Sophie and Jason with Sophie’s grandmother and mother, and Jason’s mum and dad

Review: RTÉ’s new Pulling with my Parents show recognises just how weird and warped modern dating can be

Sarah Greene and Killian Scott: ‘My head is f**ked from all the raped, dead kids’

Review: A 13-year-old girl is found dead in a suburban wood, in this absorbing new drama

Sopro: Tiago Rodrigues has created a gentle portrait of one theatre, built in nostalgic moments

Dublin Theatre Festival: The backstage view becomes a way of seeing the world in Tiago Rodrigues’ elegant piece of metatheatre

Collection of Lovers: Raquel André gives not so much a performance of love as a parody of it

Dublin Theatre Festival: Raquel André has, to date, gathered together 245 strangers to manufacture and document the illusion of in(...)

Richard Wakely, artistic director and chief executive of the Belfast International Arts Festival

If Brexit deadline holds, Belfast International Arts Festival will begin in the EU and end beyond it

Burgerz: Travis Alabanza lifts the lid on our potential for empathy, alliance and complicity. Photograph: Dorothea Tuch

Dublin Theatre Festival: A wry, wounded Travis Alabanza confronts transphobia

Dr Paul D’Alton with Rachael Keogh on Survivors, Tuesday on RTE One

Review: On RTÉ, Keogh’s compelling story of recovery becomes a moralistic secular sermon

Myles Bonnar uses hidden cameras to expose men who use hidden cameras

Panorama investigates men who seduce women and secretly film their conquests

The  unapologetically violent Darklands is filmed with cinematic flourish and queasy realism

TV review: MMA fighting and gang crime intersect in Virgin Media’s exciting new show

Travis Alabanza in Burgerz

Us/Them and Burgerz take very different approaches to transforming trauma, the first through matter-of-fact playfulness, and the s(...)

Dublin Murders: Killian Scott and Sarah Greene as detectives Rob Riley and Cassie Maddox

Sarah Phelps’s brooding adaptation is politically charged and narratively uncanny

Helen Mirren as Catherine: ‘There are unscrupulous people in Russia. Fortunately I’m one of them’

The ruler of Russia faces her steepest challenge yet: filling the void left by Game of Thrones

Total Immediate Collective Imminent Terrestrial Salvation: that Tim Crouch compares his fictive strategies to the darkest manipulations of politics seems bleakly grandiose. Photograph: Mihaela Bodlovic

Dublin Theatre Festival: Tim Crouch’s new play compares playwrights to cult leaders and dictators. Are we all on the same page?

Your Words in My Mouth: the show makes us not just consider but also represent a distant stranger’s perspectives

Dublin Theatre Festival: Turning watchers into performers, this unusual show finds a subtle route into theatre’s fundamental aims

Lord Sugar: ‘15 years ago, Brexit sounded like a Kelloggs cereal’

The US show made a hero of Donald Trump. The UK one gave us Katie Hopkins and Alan Sugar

A Love Like That: the play is filled with allusions to myth and legend. Photograph: Brendan Foreman

Dublin Theatre Festival: Billy Roche’s new play turns modest characters into legends in their own lifetimes

Brendan Grace: The documentary he set out to make, before discovering his cancer, is dedicated to people with dementia

Review: Poignant moments act as reminders to appreciate what you have when you can. Grace, ever the professional rascal, seems awa(...)

Piece for Person and Ghetto Blaster: Nicola Gunn’s performance evokes a fractured society. Photograph: Maria Baranova

Dublin Theatre Festival: Nicola Gunn brings ceaseless motion to a restless meditation

Faultline: this immersive performance is thrillingly immediate. Photograph: Pat Redmond

Dublin Theatre Festival: This absorbing new work remembers a faultline in the early days of Irish gay rights

Hecuba: a compelling staging of the Greek myth. Photograph: Ste Murray

Dublin Theatre Festival: In Marina Carr’s version of Hecuba, the scale of tragedy is made rivetingly intimate

 Jonathan Swift: “He has all these fictive enterprises that sort of masked his own identity.” Painting: Charles Jervas

Conall Morrison’s new play blends 18th-century wit’s biography with his bibliography

The Alternative:  who will save Ireland, on the eve of an in or out referendum? Photograph: Publicis Dublin

Dublin Theatre Festival: In Fishamble’s new production, all of Ireland remains in the UK and now faces a referendum on whether to (...)

Eloïse Stevenson as Pegeen Mike and Michael Shea as Christy Mahon in The Playboy of the Western World. Photograph: Mark Stedman

Dublin Theatre Festival: It seems like a game that has spun out of control, where murder can be applauded if it is told well enoug(...)

A garda at the former Regency Hotel, Dublin following the fatal shooting of David Byrne in February 2016. Photograph: Gareth Chaney, Collins

‘Now we have all these young people fighting over turf,’ a Virgin Media documentary hears

The Beacon: Jane Brennan plays a fascinatingly severe visual artist, Beiv. Photograph: Robbie Jack

Fascinated with ideas of art and ambiguity, Nancy Harris’s play sees long hidden secrets dredged up

Helena McCartan, Margaret Tierney Smith, Anne Lynch and Breege O’Connell on the first episode of Goodbye House

Review: Anne Lynch’s downsizing project was stalled by the realities of the property market

Michel Cohen: A mathematical memory for auction valuations

Review: A fascinating documentary about art dealer Michel Cohen gets its sums wrong

Beckett’s Room:  no performers in this Dead Centre and Gate Theatre co-production. Photograph: Kyle Tunney

Dublin Theatre Festival: Dead Centre’s ambitious new work depicts Beckett’s formative years in Nazi-occupied Paris

Dublin Theatre Festival: How to Win Against History

Whether it’s looking back or casting forward, this year’s event is rooted firmly in the now

Playwright Nancy Harris: Her new play The Beacon opens at the Gate Theatre as part of the Dublin Theatre Festival. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

With two new plays opening simultaneously in Dublin and London, the playwright lays bare both a family and a political drama, full(...)

We Are Lightning: the harmony of community spirit feels invincible. Photograph: Pia Johnson

Dublin Fringe Festival: The merged talents of community bands make a defiant and galvanising last stand

‘Well, that didn’t work out, did it?’ Cameron said to colleagues the morning after the Brexit vote. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid,  WPA Pool /Getty Images

‘I thought we had a winning hand,’ the former British prime minister tells the BBC

Kingley’s presence alone tells you most of what you need to know about the plot

Perpetual Grace Ltd belongs to an era of black and white film, voice-overs and artificial dialogue

Collapsible: Essie is the precarious subject in Margaret Perry’s  play. Photograph: Bronwen Sharp/Martha Hegarty

Dublin Fringe Festival: A young woman pursues some sense of self in a troublingly unstable world. Can she hold it together?

It’s Not About Love: the show is most effective when spilling raw and affecting truths. Photograph: Adam Matthews

Dublin Fringe Festival: Inspired by the greatest tragic love story, Megan Riordan creates a considered cabaret show

Nate: a roadie-hirsute man who pulls miniature motorcycle stunts. Photograph: Nick Rasmussen

Dublin Fringe Festival: This roaring figure of bruised machismo isn’t the obvious choice to lead a workshop on sexual consent

Minefield: a dark satire on politics, performance and bad influencers. Photograph: Kyle Cheldon Barnett

Dublin Fringe Festival: Clare Monnelly’s stealthy new play is a story of online shaming and incel revenge attacks

Crime and Punishment: Aaron, one of two prisoners the cameras follow at the dismal HM Prison Winchester

Crime and Punishment looked unflinchingly at prisoners incarcerated with no end date

Irish Food: a palatable piece of dinner theatre. Photograph: Anita Murphy

Dublin Fringe Festival: A palatable tasting menu but the scattered folk memories of Irish cuisine leave you hungry for substance

Looking for Paradise: a metaphysical treasure hunt. Photograph: Clément Martin

Dublin Fringe Festival: This treasure hunt through the heart of the city dares to alter your perception of reality

The Justice Syndicate: human psychology is the only thing beyond reasonable doubt. Photograph: Guy Sanders

Dublin Fringe Festival: Fanshen’s absorbing piece of interactive theatre takes the shape of an emotive court case

Nine Weeks: Kennedy’s performance is composed with love and freighted with grief. Photograph: Seán Kennedy

Dublin Fringe Festival: If human limitations are painfully real in Seán Kennedy’s moving performance, human expression can still b(...)

Sink: dense with detail, the audience is asked to find what’s buried underneath. Photograph: Dean Brannagan

Dublin Fringe Festival: Inspecting an uncannily familiar site, an archeologist finds herself assailed by uncertain memories and in(...)

Powerpoint: Colfer makes breezy gags while sleuthing through evidence. Photograph: Ross Castigan

Dublin Fringe Festival: Comedian, gamer and podcast fan Stephen Colfer tries to solve a modest mystery

Beyond the Menu: Veg king Mark Jennings, of Pilgrim’s, and Mark Moriarty, who was crowned young chef of the year

Review: RTÉ’s new show sends a young chef around the island. Is he eyeing a few crowns?

State of the Union: Rosamund Pike and Chris O’Dowd meet before marriage-counselling sessions to lob sotto-voce criticisms and recriminations over a pint of bitter and a glass of white wine. Photograph: Confession/BBC

Review: O’Dowd and Pike are entertaining despite some stagy material from writer Nick Hornby

Bodies of Water: the life of artist Ira Dean is explored through the flotsam and jetsam of a career. Photograph: Alex Gill

Dublin Fringe Festival: The former assistant and lover of a video artist tries to make sense of a life and career

A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings: a model of ingenuity through humble means. Photograph: Patricio Cassinoni

Dublin Fringe Festival: The charmingly offbeat adaptation of Gabriel García Márquez brings magic realism to all ages

Admin: Oisín McKenna’s cripplingly self-aware spoken word performance

Dublin Fringe Festival: Adrift in a lonely London, Oisín McKenna tells a story of love and money with irony and insight

David and Nessa fended off the pergola dreams of  Dermot Bannon. Photograph: RTÉ

Review: Even special guest gardener Diarmuid Gavin teased Bannon over his lack of imagination

Sinéad O’Connor performing Nothing Compares 2 U on The Late Late Show on Friday. Photograph: RTÉ

Review: The show doesn’t segue but jackknifes from one thing to another

Anna Shiels-McNamee takes an unusually wry view of the process of going blind.

Two stand out productions from last year’s Dublin Fringe Festival go on tour

Writers and co-directors Bush Moukarzel and Ben Kidd

As the world that made Samuel Beckett who he was becomes magically apparent, the point of Dead Centre’s unusual approach begins to(...)

This Beautiful Village: Lisa Tierney-Keogh’s comedy recapitulates the salient political talking points of our time within a nostalgic form. Photograph: Pat Redmond

Theatre review: Lisa Tierney-Keogh’s middle-class satire is somewhere between Yasmina Reza and Bernard Farrell

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TV review: There’s one magic trick the Keith Barry Experience finds a challenge

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Review: The Capture presents a troubling take on anxiety, distrust and ‘deep fake’ videos

Paul Howard and his creation, Ross O’Carroll-Kelly. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

In RTÉ’s We Need to Talk about Ross, writer Paul Howard tells how he almost killed RO’CK in 2007

The Examination: at the Project Arts Centre in Dublin as part of the Dublin Fringe Festival

Brokentalkers’ sharp and stealthy new production asks us to examine our prejudices about the roots of crime, and the inhumanities (...)

District 8 nightclub at the Tivoli theatre in Dublin. The theatre has closed after 85 years and is being redeveloped as an aparthotel

Developers are demolishing venues to build hotels, apartments and temples of finance

The contestants in this year’s Great British Bake Off.

Review: Self-referencing contestants add charming colour to show’s reliable format

Daithí Ó Sé dons the kinky boots – all in the name of charity. Photograph: Domnick Walsh

TV review: On day two of the festival the host seemed to be closest to wilting. That was before he got his kinky boots on

Washington DC Rose Molly Eastman  onstage at the Festival Dome with Daithí Ó Sé during  on Monday night. Photograph:   Domnick Walsh

TV review: It’s the 60th anniversary of the pageant, but it seems older, eternal even. At least watching the first show felt that (...)

Cillian Murphy in Peaky Blinders: a Mack the Knife given subtler edge, beautiful on the outside, hollowed out within

Review: The Irish actor is both compelling and unsettling as the fifth season begins

Locked and loaded: The Roaring Banshees

The Roaring Banshees is a counter-factual history of feminist discontents with the Free State

Helen Norton and Jonathan White in To Hell in a Handbag. Photograph: Ste Murray

Like the Oscar Wilde play that inspired it, To Hell in a Handbag imagines characters spinning complicated, comic fictions that ben(...)

David and Heidi: Octopuses can use tools, recognise faces, hold grudges, and use an iPhone

Review: Divorcee and scientist David Scheel has formed a unique bond with his pet octopus

Ask Too Much of Me: as one housemate explains, with only mild exaggeration, ‘everyone here is gay and vaguely communist’.  Photograph: Ros Kavanagh

Veronica Coburn directs the National Youth Theatre in Dylan Coburn Gray’s compelling portrayal of the Repeal generation

Jo-Rosie Haffenden, dog trainer and mind reader

Review: As one of the ‘desperate parents’ to whom this show is pitched, I’ll try anything

Lord Mountbatten’s body is brought ashore at Mullaghmore in August 1979. Photograph: Pacemaker, Belfast

Review: Relatives, friends and others recall the day in 1979 when the IRA killed 22 people

Everybody thinks they know how rugby began. But do they?

Review: RTÉ’s history of the game pulls no punches, tackling colonialism, class war and sexism

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