In our afternoon reading: reviews of books by Jade Chang and Meredith Alling, an interview with Kelly Sue DeConnick, and more.
Afternoon Bites: Eno and Television, Keith Gessen on Russia, Judge John Darnielle, Gothenberg Pop, and More
This afternoon: a deeper look at Television’s Brian Eno-recorded demos, new writing from Sasha Fletcher, John Darnielle makes with the book-judging, Keith Gessen on Russia’s recent history, Casey N. Cep on unplugging, and much more.
Morning Bites: “Marquee Moon” Revisited, Omar Souleyman, Thoughts on Nico Muhly’s “Two Boys,” A.S. King Interviewed, and More
Listening to Television; when novelists write video games; the best music heard at CMJ; Nico Muhly’s new opera reviewed; and more.
IFC’s Comedy Bang! Bang! is, on some level, a talk show hosted by comedy veterans Scott Aukerman and Reggie Watts and loosely tied to Aukerman’s hit podcast of the same name. But it seems to occupy a terrifying reality that only bears a loose resemblance to our own: on any given episode, a lovable talking bird might get eviscerated, Scott might accidentally send himself to hell, or an attempt to show a movie clip might devolve into a disorienting feedback […]
There’s something profoundly dystopian about Bunk, the not-exactly-game-show that’s finishing up its first season on IFC. On it, stand-up comics and sketch performers are forced into improv-based challenges that include insulting puppies or drawing new appendages to the crotch of Michelangelo’s David. And all the while, the barefoot host — played with terrifying confidence by New York-based comic Kurt Braunohler — will do things like force his intern to sift through glass shards or threaten to murder his viewers. […]
While my colleagues here at Vol.1 Brooklyn have been keeping a close eye on Girls, I’ve been following a different set of New Yorkers. The latest season of Mad Men wraps up this Sunday, so here are my guesses for what’s gonna go down:
Afternoon Bites: Contrarian Takes On “The Hunger Games,” Television Rarities, “The Secret of Evil,” And More
Would you like a contrarian take on an acclaimed dystopian novel, and the cinematic adaptation of the same? Well, with respect to The Hunger Games, Ned Vizzini has you covered. Warren Ellis on Mark Dery’s essay collection I Must Not Think Bad Thoughts, which sounds fantastic. Bill Morris on one-word book titles, at The Millions. Bryan Waterman links to some unreleased Television songs. Alison Bechdel is interviewed by June Thomas at Slate. J.P. Smith on Roberto Bolano’s The Secret of Evil. […]
For the no longer nascent group of people who take sitcoms very seriously, declaring the moment’s best is an incessant burden. This is partly what makes Happy Endings so frustrating – it’s super hilarious but doesn’t feel like the best. As a wildly funny show without perspective, it doesn’t feel like anything. It’s the proprietor of television’s most enjoyable thirty minutes but is that enough? Can a show be television’s best sitcom without having a point-of-view?