Articles by Anna Malpas



In the Spotlight

Anna Malpas writes her last column for The Moscow Times after six years of watching bad television and writing about Ksenia Sobchak.

In the Spotlight

This month, NTV launched a new reality show, "The Call of Fate," where sleazy "model producer" Pyotr Listerman helps a millionaire choose from a harem of young women.

In the Spotlight

This week, long-running children's show "Spokoinoi Nochi, Malyshi," or "Good Night, Little Ones," stirred fears that a new law could lead to censorship of the cartoons Ч or the show even shifting to a louche 11 p.m. slot.

In the Spotlight

This week, tennis star Maria Sharapova brought the world something it only dimly realized it needed: "premium" fruit gums under her own brand called Sugarpova.

In the Spotlight

This week, the sultry model girlfriend of footballer Cristiano Ronaldo was hired to replace Ksenia Sobchak as the judge of "Russia's Next Top Model" after the channel got cold feet about Sobchak's political protest activities.

In the Spotlight

This week, Madonna gave her support for the members of Pussy Riot on trial by speaking at her concert, pulling on a balaclava and revealing the words Pussy Riot written on her back.

In the Spotlight

This week, everyone's attention has been on the Pussy Riot trial, whether wishing the women freedom or joyfully anticipating a long sentence, like pop singer Yelena Vayenga, who said she has already put champagne on ice.

In the Spotlight

This week, a new star rose on NTV television, spreading fear throughout the land.

In the Spotlight

This week, figure skater Yevgeny Plushenko and his wife, pop producer Yana Rudkovskaya, announced that they are expecting in Hello! magazine. This was also an opportunity for Rudkovskaya to plug a brand of moisturizer.

In the Spotlight

On Friday, television personality-turned-opposition-activist Ksenia Sobchak made her last appearance on Dom-2, the reality show she began hosting eight years ago. There were tears and white ribbons in her hair.

In the Spotlight

In December, flamboyant pop star Filipp Kirkorov announced that he had become a father, with a daughter born from a surrogate mother. This week, he said that he now has a son as well Ч from a different surrogate mother.

In the Spotlight

This week, the campaign to free the punk group Pussy Riot hit the big time with some glossy, powerful and unexpected people signing a petition saying they should either face a minor administrative punishment or be released.

In the Spotlight

This week the acclaimed actress Chulpan Khamatova and It Girl and media personality Ksenia Sobchak in a rare mood of unity both criticized the jailing for another month of the outrageous anti-Putin punks Pussy Riot.

In the Spotlight

This week, television presenter Ksenia Sobchak had both her privacy and her safe invaded, as it turned out that investigators were following her love life pretty carefully.

In the Spotlight

This week, pop star Filipp Kirkorov and Putin-loving rapper Timati had a mild disagreement on Twitter over who won gongs at an award ceremony, which swiftly deteriorated into a slanging match over who is gay and brought up bad blood over bad debts.

In the Spotlight

This week, media personality and reality-show-host-turned-opposition-activist Ksenia Sobchak very publicly lost her job hosting the MUZ-TV music awards, the competitor to MTV Russia on the local music scene. She made the announcement when the posters were all over town featuring her photo, and a television ad was already rolling.

In the Spotlight

This week, the Eurovision Song Contest is being held in Baku with all its usual deadly seriousness and an incongruous dose of Caspian glamour.

In the Spotlight

Ksenia Sobchak is continuing her role as the unofficial queen of the barricades Ч even if the more hardcore activists aren't too happy about that.

In the Spotlight

This week, Vladimir Putin invited rapper Timati and lion-taming brothers Edgard and Askold Zapashny to his big day. On the other side of the barricades, it girl and media personality Ksenia Sobchak won the activist's badge of pride by finally getting arrested.

In the Spotlight

This week, crooner Iosif Kobzon had to cancel his tour of the United States after yet another refusal of a visa, based on his alleged links to organized crime and drug trafficking. That did not stop Dmitry Medvedev and Vladimir Putin from dropping into his son's beer joint on Novy Arbat.

In the Spotlight

This week, Rossia channel came out loud and clear with its position on the Pussy Riot punk group, airing a talk show called "Provocateurs" with a weeping nun and ominous graphics of snakes slithering over the screen.

In the Spotlight

This week, Channel OneТs star presenter Ivan Urgant got his own talk show, УEvening Urgant, У which is a direct imitation of the American late-night talk show format, with its jokes about the dayТs news along with famous guests and live music.

In the Spotlight

This week, flamboyant pop singer Filipp Kirkorov christened his baby Alla-Viktoria. It was just a small event with a national television channel filming, a few pop stars and a church closed for ordinary mortals on the Palm Sunday holiday.

In the Spotlight

This week, the Federation Fund brought another batch of Hollywood stars to Moscow, film star Jim Carrey was reported to be on the point of marrying a Russian student, and Komsomolskaya Pravda revived the art of face-reading to solve the enigma that is It Girl and journalist Ksenia Sobchak.

In the Spotlight

This week, President Dmitry Medvedev attended top-level talks with Barack Obama on nuclear security, and the world sat up and took notice when his cat went missing. Or didn't.

In the Spotlight

When British boy band of the 1990s East 17, and euro pop acts Snap, La Bouche and Culture Beat walked off after a nostalgic disco night at Olimpiisky Sports Complex this month, they had a very unpleasant surprise.

In the Spotlight

This week, Channel One began showing "A Short Course in Happy Life," a much-anticipated new drama from Valeria Gai Germanika, the director of the hugely controversial and popular "School" series.

In the Spotlight

This week, Russia finally got it with Eurovision, sending the Buranovskiye Babushki, who dance in shoes made of birchbark, but to a disco beat.

In the Spotlight

This week, it girl and media personality Ksenia Sobchak reopened her talk show on politics after it was shelved by MTV Russia. The show, now called "GosDep 2," or "State Department 2," came out on the Snob.ru website, which belongs to presidential hopeful Mikhail Prokhorov.

In the Spotlight

This week, rock musician Sergei Shnurov, whose band Leningrad was once banned in Moscow for its lyrics littered with swearwords, took on a very different role Ч playing a dad in a sitcom.