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Tag: Entertainment Geekly (11-20 of 76)

Entertainment Geekly: Does modern TV fandom actually make it harder to understand TV shows?

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Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses! This week there are two columns inspired by True Detective, partially because True Detective was a thought-provoking TV show which deserves a significant amount of thoughtful analysis, but mainly because I missed a column last week. Yesterday: A consideration of where the show’s ending fits into the pantheon. Today: A meditation on the show’s meaning, or lack thereof. Spoilers follow.

At the end of True Detective‘s second episode, philosophizing detective and anti-human crusader Rust Cohle has one of his occasional acid-flashback visions. Maybe it’s a hallucination; maybe it’s a misfiring brain neuron; maybe we all create the world for ourselves every time we open our eyes. He sees a flock of birds ascend into the sky. They form a spiral — an echo of the spiral tattoo on the back of murder victim Dora Lange, a symbol of the downward spiral of the accident that is human consciousness, evidence that the wind was blowing kinda weird just then. Maybe the spiral means something. Maybe it just looks cool.

True Detective was a show that looked cool. It was also a show about the battle between good and evil. Spoiler alert: Good won. On one hand, reducing True Detective to this binary equation is unfair. On the other hand, the show reduced itself, concluding its season finale with a long conversation between the two leads about the oldest story in the world, light triumphing over the darkness, stars twinkling in the darkness, good night stars, good night air, good night noises everywhere. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: The least disappointing endings

Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses! This week there are two columns inspired by True Detective, partially because True Detective was a thought-provoking TV show which deserves a significant amount of thoughtful analysis, but mainly because I missed a column last week. Today: A consideration of where the show’s ending fits into the pantheon. Tomorrow: A meditation on the show’s meaning, or lack thereof. Spoilers follow.

True Detective only ran for eight episodes, but the final episode carried series-finale weight and expectation. Maybe it’s because the show dominated the Sunday-drama chatter during a cold hibernating winter. History will record that True Detective filled the dead air between Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones. (History will also record that House of Cards filled the dead air between True Detective episode 4 and True Detective episode 5.) Maybe it’s because the show always carried itself like an eight-season serial crammed into a miniseries: The characters aged across the decades, and they had the kind of deep-dive psychological conversations that give so many foreign action movies a bigger-on-the-inside body mass.

I’m not sure there’s really a consensus on the True Detective finale. Our TV critic Jeff Jensen liked it; I was underwhelmed; your opinions may vary. Although it only ran for a couple of months, the final hour of the show was a prime example of a very specific kind of ending: The closing act of a massive years-long epic-sized symbol-laden that had to answer a whole host of lingering questions, some of which were left unanswered, possibly because the creators didn’t have an answer or didn’t even know there was a question. (Martin’s daughter was such a Cindy.) READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: 'True Detective' and 'Heroes: Reborn'

We’re just a few days away from the finale of True Detective, and this week on the Entertainment Geekly podcast we’re obsessing over the possibilities. Topics discussed: Jeff Jensen’s Lawnmower Man Theorem, our dream casting for season 2, and a serious debate over just who exactly is the hero of True Detective. But first, we discuss the impending return of Heroes, the once-great and ultimately not-so-great superhero soap opera. Can Heroes: Reborn actually be good? We hope so! Hope is a wonderful thing! READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: How to Fix 'Girls'

Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses!

On one hand, I’m not sure Girls needs fixing — which seems like an appropriately ambivalent way to start an essay about fixing Girls, since Girls is a thing about which few opinions are uncomplicated. When it debuted in 2012, the HBO twentysomething drama was variously hailed as “revolutionary” and “not as good as you think,” the standard point-counterpoint reaction to Important TV Shows.

The best things you could say about it were very good indeed — it was a new kind of television, produced with a new kind of voice, telling stories rarely told in the dude-heavy Golden Age of Television. (The worst thing you could say about it was that it was a much better version of How To Make It In America.) And everyone agreed that it was Saying Something Important — about women, about twentysomethings, about how the internet has ruined us all, about New York, or at least our cultural-consensus understanding about what New York means. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: The New Rules of Spoilers

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Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses!

The great thing about the internet is that everything can talk about everything, and the worst thing about the internet is that everything has become a spoiler. Or maybe it’s more accurate to say that the internet turns everything into a spoiler. Maybe it’s because we all watch television and movies in our own special way now — OnDemand, at the theater, on our iPad, in season-long binges — but you get the weird sense that even things that aren’t twists can now be considered “spoilers.”

2013 was the year of Unnecessary Secrecy. Star Trek Into Darkness pretended Khan wasn’t Khan. Anyone who said anything on social media about Breaking Bad would inevitably suffer some kind of “spoiler” accusation. Complicating matters, Game of Thrones became ever more popular — making it more difficult than ever for those of us who read the George R. R. Martin books to carry on any kind of meaningful conversation about the series. (Whenever I talked to people about Game of Thrones during season 3, I invariably found myself doing the same thing: Half-smirking, shrugging my shoulders, saying something like “Yeah, Robb sure does seem like an important character!”) READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: Let's Cast Everyone In Everything

Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses!

The vast majority of human beings will never cast anyone in anything, but that doesn’t mean we can’t hold opinions about who should (and shouldn’t) play some beloved character in the next blockbuster iteration of that character’s franchise. Recently, I’ve engaged in a bit of fantasy casting for the Justice League movie, the next Fantastic Four movie, and the next next Amazing Spider-Man movie. In an effort to get ahead of my editors on any future fantasy-casting assignments — and a simultaneous effort to recreate the Great We-Totally-Said-Elizabeth-Banks-as-Effie-Trinket Casting Call of 2010 — I’ve taken it upon myself to very carefully consider name everyone who should be cast in everything. The list begins now. No repeats.

Dr. Strange: Benedict Cumberbatch. I know, I know: Cumberbatch should play every role in everything. But he should specifically play the role of the egotistical surgeon who falls from grace and turns into the earth’s Sorcerer Supreme. This casting would have the side bonus of moving us one step closer to a Cumberstrange vs. Hiddloki movie. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly Podcast: 'Sherlock' and the 2014 Geek preview

This week on the Entertainment Geekly podcast, Jeff Jensen and I talk about the somewhat-controversial-or-maybe-not decision that Benedict Cumberbatch’s super-sleuth made at the climax of the latest season of Sherlock. The result is a minor reprise of last summer’s epic Man of Steel debate — albeit calmer and less intense, since we’re older and wiser now. Suggestion for further reading: Jeff’s essay about the Sherlock finale. (Spoilers, natch.)

Then it’s time to look at the year ahead at the things that excite us. Some of them are totally original (Interstellar!) and some of them are somewhat less original (the eighth Planet of the Apes movie) — not that there’s anything wrong with that. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: The meaning of Super Bowl commercials, and how to fix them

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Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses!

Do Super Bowl commercials really matter? Yes. Shut up. Sure, it seems strange that we should think about, care about, or devote any deeper-than-shallow national attention to advertisements representing millions of dollars invested by companies worth billions of dollars in the hopes that you, me, and everyone we know will give them at least hundreds of dollars. Did the great philosophers ever grapple with the subtext of a billboard? Did John Keats ever write a poem about a newspaper advertisement for a popular brand of absinthe? No. But Keats also didn’t live long enough to see a puppy fall in love with a horse. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly Essentials: Does 'Calvin and Hobbes' deserve more respect?

Entertainment Geekly is a weekly column that examines pop culture through a geek lens and simultaneously examines contemporary geek culture through a pop lens. So many lenses! Sometimes we’ll look back at an essential part of the last twenty-five years of geek history. Today: A comic strip about a boy and his tiger.

I don’t think we love Calvin and Hobbes enough, and I’m trying to figure out whether I’m crazy for thinking that or if everyone else is crazy for not realizing that. I do know that saying “Calvin and Hobbes is underrated” is the equivalent of arguing that Meryl Streep deserves more Oscars, or that Breaking Bad didn’t get enough respect. Bill Watterson published the comic strip from 1985 through 1995, and during that time it became so popular that he was allowed to colonize half a page of every Sunday newspaper in the nation — a move that initially smacked of hubris but produced some of the greatest artwork in the history of the newspaper comic strip. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly Podcast: 'Rick and Morty' and 'Adventure Time'

Entertainment Geekly gets animated this week! While my usual co-host Jeff Jensen is away on a secret mission, I’m joined by Keith Staskiewicz for a chat about the new Adult Swim series Rick and Morty, the Back to the Future riff that has already established itself as one of the weirdest new shows of the season. We also talk about Adventure Time, which shares a network, a night, and a general sense of go-for-broke madcap geekery (albeit in a way that’s much safer for children.) Oh, and we talk about Moral Orel. Because everyone should be talking about Moral Orel all the time. READ FULL STORY

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