Posts Tagged: television

The Weekly Scandal-Homeland Showdown: Who Would Vote for Fitz?

Last week on Scandal vs. Homeland: You should watch Weeds.

This week on Scandal (“More Cattle, Less Bull”) vs. Homeland (“The Yoga Play”): You should watch Chinatown.

As always, beware: spoilers. 


Two Klassic Unions

Good morning! Two questions from when you were sleeping:

1. If a quarter of the cast of Friday Night Lights gets together and poses in a backyard somewhere, but Riggins is not in attendance, did it really even happen? [Instagram]

2. If Kanye West proposes to Kim Kardashian in an empty ballpark with a 50-piece orchestra scoring the event, but there is no planned TV special to record it, did it really even happen? (Actually, wait: "after Kardashian said yes, her family rushed out of the dugout to celebrate." This is totally going to be on the show.) [Time]


Survival Prognoses for Characters on Orange is the New Black If They Were Instead Characters on Game of Thrones

Piper Chapman: Attempts to endear herself to the Queen of Thorns by providing her with artisanal soaps—rose-scented, of course. Cersei observes this gesture and, believing Piper to be allied with the Tyrells and disloyal to the crown, has her accused of treason and executed. Total survival time: 8 days (3 spent in prison awaiting trial).

Alex Vause: Builds an underground organization distributing milk of the poppy to Westeros's wealthy and indolent upper classes, recruiting minor bannermen and bored youngest children of lords to help her. Selling to all sides, she's able to make a comfortable if rootless living—and kiss a few rich men's wives along the way—until she's poisoned by [...]


Why I'll Miss Bunheads: Because I'm a Mess, Too

After a day during which one mini crisis inspired a second, which invited crises numbers three and four, who brought along their friends, until my mood turned into an impromptu house party filled with unwelcomed guests who drank all my booze and left regret, despair, and used Kleenex as their parting gifts—after that kind of day—this was the news I came home to: “Bunheads has been cancelled.”

I couldn’t be too surprised at the announcement. Despite the cultish passion it inspired in a handful of critics, Bunheads was a weird show with a clunky name and a premise (former showgirl turns small-town dance teacher) that didn’t exactly grab potential viewers by [...]


The Weekly Scandal-Homeland Showdown: How Do You Save a Heroine's Reputation?

Checking in on the third seasons of our favorite prestige TV dramas set in DC whose main characters are both high-powered, well-dressed, hyper-competent professional women who make questionable relationship choices while simultaneously saving the world. This week: “Game On” vs. “Say Hello to My Little Friend.” Caution: spoilers.

Episode Titles

Both shows reverted to cliché this week with their episode titles. Homeland chose “Game On,” which is either stolen from or an homage to the original—and, for its first four seasons, best—prestige drama set in DC, The West Wing. Let us be charitable and say “homage.”

Scandal went with an obvious dick joke. But, as we know, [...]


A Girl and a Good Wife

I'm leaving Pete's Candy Store in Williamsburg when I spot Girls actor Alex Karpovsky at the bar. I'd been feeling old at a 30 year-old's birthday party, so I knew I hadn't time-traveled into a scene with Lena Dunham: Girls is bereft of fortysomething women. If you want to watch a television show about a grown-ass woman, you need to tune in to The Good Wife.

I watch both. I watch The Good Wife, now in its stellar fifth season, because Julianna Margulies's Alicia Florrick is a model of intelligence at any age. I watch Girls because I am curious about how a young woman is interpreting her early twenties as she lives [...]


Anna Gunn's Defense of Skyler White

Anna Gunn, the actress who plays Skyler White on Breaking Bad, wrote a New York Times op-ed piece Friday about the hate her character has inspired (see: "Skyler White meme") among the show's very passionate viewers:

Because Walter is the show’s protagonist, there is a natural tendency to empathize with and root for him, despite his moral failings. (That viewers can identify with this antihero is also a testament to how deftly his character is written and acted.) As the one character who consistently opposes Walter and calls him on his lies, Skyler is, in a sense, his antagonist. So from the beginning, I was aware [...]


Scandal vs. Homeland: The Weekly Showdown

Checking in on the third seasons of our favorite prestige TV dramas set in DC whose main characters are both high-powered, well-dressed, hyper-competent professional women who make questionable relationship choices while simultaneously saving the world. This week: “Tower of David” vs. “Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington.” Caution: Spoilers.


Mental Health

Liv: Not great. David Rosen astutely diagnoses her as an adrenaline junkie after she once again inserts herself into a high profile, life-threatening situation. Does she not remember that the only thing Shonda Rhimes likes more than a bomb is a bomb that goes off? Later, she doesn’t take up Jake on his offer to get them burgers [...]


There Is No Good Reason for SNL Not to Cast a Black Female Comedian

Saturday Night Live needs a black female cast member. There are exactly zero non-racist excuses for the lack of diversity on network TV in general, but SNL's diversity mandate is uniquely pressing because of the show's explicit goal: to spoof, at large, a pop culture whose mainstream is driven, in part and undeniably, by the work of black women (Oprah, Rihanna, Beyonce, Shonda Rhimes, Kerry Washington, more).

But SNL has only ever had four black female cast members in its almost 40 years on the air (in comparison, they added five white male cast members this year alone); as a result, black women in pop culture are avoided whenever possible, and [...]


What Do Formerly Incarcerated Women Think About Orange Is the New Black?

The Cut's Kat Stoeffel thought to ask a few of them:

Orange Is the New Black walks the tightrope of making incarcerated life accessible to outsiders — through the touristic, writerly lens of Piper — without condescending to demographically representative insiders. When a fictional prison guard loses track during daily “count time” and must begin his prisoner head count anew, the women from Fortune Society groaned in unison. Another correctional officer’s salty “Good luck with that” — that being Piper’s non-incarcerated fiancé, Larry — was met with head shakes and one loud “too true.”  The scene that got the loudest laughs was one that revealed the versatility of maxi pads, which the [...]