An intensely busy week, as a confluence of celebratory, curious and urgent topics pushed typical residents like Facebook and Deaths in 2014 out of the top ten entirely. The Academy Awards didn't quite have the presence they did last year, with only six topics in the top ten (rather than seven) and failing to claim the top spot. Unsurprisingly, that dubious honor was taken by the increasingly frantic region of Crimea, with it and the wider Ukraine bringing back uncomfortable memories of the darker days of the Cold War, and even managing to colour the Oscars thanks to Jared Leto. On a more positive note, the start of Lent and its associated feasts were again popular this year, with Ash Wednesday rounding out the top ten.
To the surprise of absolutely no one, this handsome onetime My So-Called Life actor won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in Dallas Buyers Club. To quite a few people's surprise, however, he then used his acceptance speech to show solidarity with the people of Ukraine and the LGBT community, which of course had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with Russia's sudden decision not to broadcast the Oscars. No siree.
Things are moving fast in the country, from protest to revolution to armed hostility. It has now reached the point where anything I say will probably be obsolete by the time this is published. But it's fair to say things are getting pretty hairy; the last time Vladimir Putin asserted his manhood to his near neighbours, the conflict lasted a week. Here's hoping a similar outcome prevails now.
Although it only won 3 Oscars on the night, one of them was Best Picture, ensuring that Solomon Northup's account of his captivity in the antebellum American South would generate massive interest from the public.
Many of the wins may have seemed predestined, but the down-to-the-wire marathon for Best Picture between box office hits Gravity and 12 Years A Slave generated the show's highest ratings since The Return of the King walked away with the shop, proving once again that audiences want to see the films they watched win.
This film drew attention to a much-neglected part of history (the botched response of the American authorities to the early spread of the AIDS epidemic) but was noted in the end mainly for the committed performances it inspired.
There was a time, not so long ago really, when this moveable feast marking the first day of Lent would have been the main topic of discussion among the public. Times have changed. Most people don't even fast for Lent any more, let alone show their devotion by marking their foreheads with ash. That said, people are still curious about what it all means.