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STAYING IN; The best ways to enjoy yourself this week.

GAME

CAPTAIN TOAD: TREASURE TRACKER

Nintendo Wii. Out Now

It's impossible not to treasure this glistening jewel of a game. There is a level of brilliance which is hard to comprehend in the design of each level of this enchanting puzzle platformer.

It's an expansion of Super Mario 3D World which sees you navigating Toad through a series of tricky levels. You have to explore each maze, study enemy routes and time runs to perfection.

You feel rewarded for each goal and the characters are beautiful. It doesn't take long to become hooked on defeating the variety of enemy, littered throughout a number of crafty mazes.

A brilliant cacophony of colour and excellent entertainment.

*****

OWEN ANSLOW

DVD

GIRLS: SEASON 3

15, 326mins, PS17, amazon.co.uk

All 12 episodes of the cult HBO comedy-drama (created and starring Lena Dunham) about friends living in New York. Often cringeworthy, but always funny.

GADGET

BRAUN MULTIQUICK J700 JUICER

PS149.99, amazon.co.uk

It's January. Everyone wants to get healthy and juicing is one way to beat the bulge.

This 1000W juicer is a beast and makes short work of even the largest fruit and vegetables.

The spout, drip stopper and pulp container all work together. Most of its parts are dishwasher safe, making cleaning easy.

Yes, it is quite pricey, but if you're dedicated to the cause it'll be worth the investment.

APP

SLEEP TIME +

Free. Google Play, iOS

Never wake up groggy again with this app, which accurately analyses your sleeping pattern and wakes you up gently from a deep slumber.

SINGLE

MCBUSTED

Get Over It, 99p, itunes.com

If you hadn't guessed, the supergroup's catchy second single is about picking yourself up and dusting yourself off after break-up. Predictable, but it has all the ingredients for a pop chart smash.

ALBUM

MARK RONSON

Uptown Special, PS7.99, itunes.com

The talented DJ and producer has teamed up with a host of stellar names, including the likes of Tame Impala's Kevin Parker, Hudson Mohawke and Stevie Wonder.

GAME

SUNSET OVERDRIVE AND THE MYSTERY OF MOOIL RIG

Xbox One. Out Now

Another colourful treat, this is one of two story expansion packs for the brilliant Sunset Overdrive. The plot - which sees you take on six story missions - involves a new strain of Overcharge zombies spawning from an oil rig. There is a variation of the ugly bad guys including napalm-bursting poppers. The mechanics feel familiar and there is no great change to boss fights - which is no bad thing, seeing as the original was so much fun to play. There are some side quests, new challenges, amps and guns to keep you entertained. Well worth the PS8 download.

****

OWEN ANSLOW

THEATRE

CIRQUE DU SOLEIL: KOOZA

Royal Albert Hall, cirquedusoleil.com

World-class action as the big top meets feats of human greatness.

The bendiest trio I've ever seen contorted their lithe bodies into unimaginable shapes and a spectacular unicyclist made the tiny woman wrapped around his neck look like a scarf. Four tightrope walkers leaped across what looked like a tiny piece of string miles above the audience. By far the highlight was the "wheel of death" which saw two muscly daredevils come as close to flying without wings I've ever seen. Add the stunning trapeze artist, a magical hula hooper and a team of old school clowns - and you've got the best circus you'll ever see.

CLAIRE O'BOYLE

PLAY

MERCHANT OF VENICE

Almeida Theatre London

This version is set in Las Vegas with gamblers, chorus girls and an Elvis lookalike. Portia's test for her suitors is turned, brilliantly and hilariously, into a Blind Date show.

But this makes the darker theme, of Shylock (Ian McDiarmid) demanding his pound of flesh from decent Antonio, seem a bit incongruous when the powerful trial scene replaces the glitzy showbiz theme. It's ambiguous and not wholly successful, but brave and enthralling.

MIKE MARTIN

BALLET

SWAN LAKE

London Coliseum, www.eno.org

The vision of two dozen white swans shimmering in the mist to Tchaikovsky's famous score will send shivers down your spine in this classic English National Ballet production.

But the main draw is the iconic dual role of the white and black swan, performed with featherlike fragility and breathtaking strength by company legend Tamara Rojo.

Her pirouetting pas de deux with guest star Alban Lendorf brought dance pyrotechnics and tenderness to the doomed love affair. Until January 18.

VICKI GRIMSHAW

FESTIVAL

SLASH @DOWNLOAD

June 12-14, Donington Park

Fresh from promoting his cracking new album World On Fire, Slash continues his brilliant collaboration with Alter Bridge frontman Myles Kennedy (and backing band The Conspirators) at this year's Download Festival, where he'll be joined by headliners Slipknot, Muse and Kiss as well as a host of other headbanging favourites.

At his Wembley gig last month, the guitar legend cherry-picked from his impressive back catalogue, with seven Guns 'N Roses favourites - including Sweet Child O' Mine, Nightrain, Rocket Queen and Paradise City - as well as a Slither of Velvet Revolver and a whole lot of classic Slash. Just awesome.

Catch him at Donington Park in Derbyshire this summer.

KARIN WRIGHT

PREVIEW

THE SCRIPT UK tour, February 19 - March 14

The Dublin boys kick off their 16-date tour in Glasgow, before heading to arenas all over the UK. Lead singer Danny O'Donoghue, guitarist Mark Sheehan and drummer Glen Power will rattle through tracks from their fourth album, the No1 hit No Sound Without Silence. While they might be known for their soppy pop/rock, there's no denying the feverish screams for the charming frontman.

Book it now

Alexander McQueen, Savage Beauty Victoria and Albert Museum, London March 14 - July 19

His early death was a tragic loss to the world of fashion. Now the iconic designer's unique talent is to be celebrated in this lavish retrospective that spans works from his 1992 graduate show to his unfinished 2010 collection. vam.ac.uk

Dylan Moran, Off the Hook, Various March 4 - May 30

The star of Black Books and Shaun of the Dead is a superb stand-up. After a break from live comedy, he is returning with his own brand of sardonic wit, going on a national tour. dylanmoran.com

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Aldwych Theatre London

February 10 - June 13 She shot to fame at just 17, and went on to become one of the most influential singer/song-writers of her age. Beautiful, newly transferred from Broadway, tells the story of her amazing life and features her incredible songbook. Starring Katie Brayben and Alan Morrissey.

beautifulinlondon.co.uk
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jan 11, 2015
Words:1090
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