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Posts tagged "TV"


The Death of Control

My wife has one unrelenting addiction: “Jeopardy!” If there is time, she will watch, and if I am there, I will sit through it. In his 35 years on the syndicated nightly show, Alex Trebek has become an icon. His hushed superiority, muffled humor, and obvious judgments of the players and the game are, now, […]

Another Week Ends: Self-Citation, GoT Fatigue, Pros and Cons of Moral Lit, Wonder in Children’s Books (and Movies), Millennial GENESI$, and Funeral Etiquette

1. In the academic world this week, a new study looks at self-citations among academics. One had 7,000 citations, which is pretty good–but more than 1400 of those came from his own (later) work. There’s some ‘bootstrapping’ for you. The study also found that men over the last couple hundred years have cited to themselves […]

“Mockingbird Turns 10” Interviews: David Zahl

This is the first installment in a series of monthly-ish interviews between myself and various Mockingbird writers and members of the Mockingbird community. These posts will explore some aspects of each individual’s personal story and some aspects of Mockingbird’s larger story and ministry as we celebrate its 10th Anniversary. Charlotte Donlon: What has surprised you most […]

Reflections on the This Is Us Premiere: Shameless Tear-Jerking and the Theme of Adoption

This post contains spoilers! If you have not yet watched the premiere of “This Is Us” head on over to NBC’s website, and come back in 45 min. Be sure to have your tissues ready. It’s been a long time since I watched, let alone looked forward to, a network-produced TV show. HBO and Netflix […]

The Messy Truth of the Axe Effect

Before the early 2000’s, the mention of the word “axe” conjured up visions of heavily bearded, weapon wielding men; men who were cloaked in bright red, pre-hipsterdom flannel, the kind of flannel that a man could wear while walking through a forest of ten foot tall thorn bushes and come out unscathed. Maybe hearing the […]

Doctor Who, Vincent van Gogh, and the Limits of Future Hope

With the recent wave of BBC programs appearing on PBS (Downton Abbey, The Hour, Mr. Bean) it’s somewhat surprising that the 49 year old mainstay Doctor Who hasn’t enjoyed the same popularity. With time travel, aliens, and revisiting historical events, what’s not to like? Either way, this is a major oversight. But I digress… a […]

The Beautiful Ugliness of HBO: A Conference Breakout

I don’t wanna just survive. It’s says in these movie writing books that every character has an arc. Understand?…Everybody starts out somewheres. And they do something, something gets done to them and it changes their life. That’s called an arc. Where’s my arc?  -Christopher Moltisanti, The Sopranos HBO’s wild success in premium television belies an […]

God Is My Co-Pilot

Give Up, Charlie Sheen!

But alas, the exhortation to “give up” does not engender the ability, nor the desire, to “give up.” We’ve posted bits and pieces on Charlie Sheen’s very public, very unfortunate meltdown before, but one might argue that Thursday the “bottoming out process” began. CBS has halted production on Sheen’s successful TV show, Two-and-a-Half-Men, in response […]

Graham Schuyler and Churches for the Sake of Others

The convergence of two of our favorite things: Friday Night Lights… and Graham Schuyler:

Sweet Emotion on American Idol?

Not being a huge American Idol person, or post-Rocks Aerosmith fan, everything in Jon Caramanica’s article in this past Sunday’s NY Times, “Steven Tyler Escapes From Idolatry,” was news to me. Those of you who’ve seen the episode in question can tell us whether it was indeed a lightning-striking instance of grace on TV or […]

Control: A Conference Primer

“Mother, I tried, please believe meI’m doing the best I can,I’m ashamed of the things I’ve been put through,I’m ashamed of the person I am.Isolation, Isolation, Isolation.” When Sam Riley, as Joy Division’s tragic lead singer Ian Curtis, drones out these lyrics in Corbijn’s 2007 film, Control, he’s sequestered to a recording room padded off […]