10 Sitcoms That Actually Moved Women Forward

‘Tis the season to be a woman on TV comedies. If you’ve spent the last few months living in a television-less cave, you might be surprised to discover that we’ve reached a bit of a renaissance of female-driven network sitcoms. (Also, you might be surprised to be back in society! In that case, hello! Hope your time in the cave was okay!) The latest primetime trend is usually a pretty boring and inconsequential thing to discuss, but we’re now at a moment in which a significant portion of the surviving and debatably thriving fall sitcoms have women as their comedic leads (See: New Girl, 2 Broke Girls, Whitney, etc.). If you ask us, that’s a pretty neat thing!

Still, while we love that these funny ladies are dismantling the boys club of primetime TV while simultaneously getting a shot to spice up the comedy scene, we can’t help but wonder if these shows themselves are doing all that we proclaim they are. If you ask us, it’s not even about feminism, per se; it’s more about pushing the envelope by including female-specific perspectives in humor. (A little less banal period jokes, a little more Bridesmaids, you know?) After the jump, we’re taking a look at some of the great females of sitcom history. Consider it our attempt to remind Zooey that fabulous bangs does not an instant comedic legend make. … Read More

  • 8

The Best (Or Is It Worst?) of Post-Scandal Famewhoring

It’s a big week for the literary world: Traci Nobles, the recipient of the infamous Anthony Weiner wiener messages, announced that she will, in fact, publish her adult memoir, I Freinded  You  (the misspelling is intentional), about her relationship with the congressman. Thank goodness! Here we were thinking she was walking away from it all with only a handful of steamy Facebook messages. But, no — Nobles instead is acting in what has become a grand American tradition of cashing in on her 15 minutes of peripheral scandal fame in the most obnoxious fashion imaginable. After the jump, join us in reminiscing in some of the most outrageous media circus famewhoring. Maybe you can help us decide if we should be disgusted or impressed with these slippery folks’ refusal to leave the spotlight. … Read More

  • 1

An Anthropological Analysis of Unrealistic Pop Culture Geeks

Back in the day, Hollywood was all about pretty girls, pretty boys, and their pretty problems. To an extent, it still is — after all, what are we on, Season 7,500 of Gossip Girl?  — but our entertainment has discovered the tremendous value in appealing to audiences’ inner dweebs. Instead of showering misfits in pig’s blood on prom night, we’re celebrating geeks. And that’s great! Really! Who doesn’t love big brains, niche interests, and the blessing that is social awkwardness? (Don’t answer that.)

The thing is, as noble as this cause is, Hollywood isn’t always particularly adept at pulling off these social Cinderella plots, to the point where we’re starting to wish they’d just leave the dweebs alone. So frequently are today’s geeks or their metaphorical rags-to-riches plotlines manufactured in completely unbelievable ways that we’ve charted some of film and TV’s biggest offenders and made a field guide to the worst tropes. Arm yourself with knowledge after the jump. … Read More

  • 6

The Most Consistently Inconsistent Musicians of Our Time

Consistency is the watchword in the world of music criticism. We as listeners love it when a band is at its best, but we aren’t truly happy until the musicians prove their worth again and again and again. And then maybe just once more still, after the lead singer emerges from a nasty coke habit and the band hasn’t been in the same room for three years. Of course, we forgive our favorite bands for the blemishes in their legacies every single day, because the statistics majors inside all of us understand that consistency is no small feat. But what of the bands whose discographies are marked by the exact opposite — those alternating, dramatic peaks and valleys in album and even song quality? Why, we’re glad you asked! We’ve compiled eight musical wildcards that have kept us on our toes with each note they’ve produced they put out after the jump. Be sure to join us in some collective head-scratching by giving us your own suggested additions to the list in the comments. … Read More

  • 16

Sink or Swim: A Look Back at TV Shows That Lost Their Lead

Steve Carell is officially gone from The Office and, between that and this whole royal wedding thing, it feels like the world has sobbed itself dry. In fact, we just tried to cry as an experiment and couldn’t because there are no tears left. None at all. But do we blame the people? No, not really. Michael Scott’s goodbye on The Office was heart-wrenching, and it was hard to see our beloved Dunder Mifflinites go through that painful farewell, especially since every moment was underscored with the uncertainty of how the show itself will cope in future seasons. Will it sink or swim? It’s hard to say, but The Office is hardly the first show to part with a leading man or lady. After the jump, we calculate the odds with a look back at how some of the biggest shows fared after cutting main characters loose. … Read More

  • 7

From The Gates to ‘Dueling Tampons:’ The Most Ridiculed Works of Public Art

We know that “everyone’s a critic” is just a saying, but, when it comes to public art, seriously, everyone is a critic. We can’t blame bored teenagers, confused moms, and everyone in-between for poking fun at the usually-gigantic installations imposed on cities who want to convert their everyday spaces into an open-air museum. As much as we love some good highbrow criticism of these sorts of pieces, we’re just as interested in the controversies these works create on the street. After the jump, check out nine hyped works of public art and the dirty nicknames, biting jokes, and larger scandals forever swirling around their legacies. … Read More

  • 10

Muammar Qaddafi: An Irreverent Sartorial Analysis

Here at Flavorpill, we don’t really consider Libyan dictators to be our go-to folks or fashion inspiration or, well, anything, for that matter. But, today, UnBeige reports that one of Qaddafi’s advisers invited The New York Times’ director of T Magazine Horacio Silva to visit Tripoli and feature the leader’s closet. The idea? Such a profile would help get a retrospective on Qaddafi’s style green-lit by the Met, so the clothes can be properly revered and protected in case the country’s turmoil threatens the garments. The adviser writes, “Our President is one of the very best dressed men of the last half century.” If you ask us, that’s a pretty big claim, and probably one to be judged by someone not under Qaddafi’s thumb. Instead, we’re going to answer the world’s burning question ourselves: just how does Qaddafi’s style rank in to the political sartorial world? Does he deserve more or less closet envy than the average dictator? Check out our roundup after the jump. … Read More

  • 0

A Recent History of Morbid Celebrity Photographs

Celebrities must get tired of photo shoots really fast. They’ve always got to sit on some swing and pretend to laugh, scowl while an industrial fan blows in their face, or lounge on a fancy Victorian sofa and feign disinterest. And it’s not just the furniture and facial expressions that are boring; eventually, these photos also aid in making their public image go stale. It’s no surprise, then, that so many of them have produced some darker images in collaboration with edgier photographers. Despite how inevitable they may be, the content of many of these violent, twisted, and morbid images have us squirming in our seats a little — should we feel fascinated, repulsed, or offended? After the jump, help us decide with some recent and notorious photos that we can’t get out of our brains. … Read More

  • 1

The Best Besties in Sitcom History

Sitcoms aren’t shy about their underlying formula: take a protagonist who’s thoroughly average in every way, give her a colorful best friend, and set their pun-laden exchanges to a laugh track. Not all shows sink to those depths of formulaic cheesiness, but even the greatest ones know it’s hard to misstep with the one-two punch of a pair of strong characters made even better by the depth of their friendship. After the jump, check out our favorite sitcom besties and be sure to chime in with the the ones we missed in the comments. … Read More

  • 9

Rejected: Great Album Covers That Didn’t Make the Cut

The story behind an album cover is almost as good as the story on the cover itself. Here at Flavorpill, we’ve got a mild fascination with the album art that didn’t make the cut, whether it was rejected by the record label, by the artists themselves, or a fluke released by the band to make us laugh. If you ask us, sometimes the one that wasn’t chosen is even better than the official version, and that only adds to the mysterious allure of the covers that could have been. After the jump, check out seven of our favorite vulgar, funny, and creative rejects, and be sure to throw your contributions of lovable losers in the comments. … Read More

  • 2