Television

Television’s Most Realistic Mom-Child Relationships

There was something oddly comforting about watching Fifty Shades of Grey star Dakota Johnson having an awkward mother-daughter spat with mom Melanie Griffith on the Oscars red carpet. When asked if Griffith had seen the film, in which Johnson plays an oft-nude virginal initiate into the world of BDSM, she said no and that she didn’t need to see it to know her daughter was a good actress. Cue a familiar eye roll and a few fed-up expletives from a bratty Johnson. … Read More

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This Week’s Top 5 TV Moments: Pawnee Forever

There are scores of TV shows out there, with dozens of new episodes each week, not to mention everything you can find on Hulu Plus, Netflix streaming, and HBO Go. How’s a viewer to keep up? To help you sort through all that television has to offer, Flavorwire is compiling the five best moments on TV each week. This round, Parks and Rec brings on the tears while the Oscars bring on the facepalms. … Read More

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Jodie Foster Executive Producing Series About a Mother Reincarnated as a Dog

Jodie Foster has signed on to executive produce and potentially direct Charlie, a TV comedy about a “self-destructive,… Read More

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Leonard Nimoy Has Died, But His Beloved ‘Star Trek’ Character Will Live Forever

The first thing I said after the New York Times alert appeared on my phone this afternoon was, “Spock can’t be dead!” And in a way, that’s true. Spock isn’t dead; characters don’t die.

But I struggle, as he struggled, to separate the actor from the role. Leonard Nimoy, who died this morning at age 83, alternately embraced and shrugged off his connection to the iconic Star Fleet officer, from his 1967 record Leonard Nimoy Presents Mr. Spock’s Music From Outer Space (an album that bears no resemblance to anything the canonical Spock might have created, but which was certainly — and charmingly — from outer space) to his 1977 autobiography, I Am Not Spock, to his 1995 follow up, I Am Spock. He didn’t have the self-seriousness of his friend William Shatner, who felt Kirk hang like a millstone from his classically trained shoulders. Nimoy would never tell a Star Trek fan, even in jest, to “get a life.” I think he understood that this, the world he helped create, was a kind of life. … Read More

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‘Battle Creek’ Tries, But Fails, to Liven Up the Procedural Genre

CBS is mostly known for two things: Generic comedies that tend to last forever and predictable cop procedurals that birth multiple spin-offs. Battle Creek is of the latter variety, a slightly comedic drama about two mismatched officers created by Vince Gilligan and David Shore. It hits all of the expected beats in a procedural, but at the same time, it struggles to break free from the simplistic formula. Based on the pilot, it likely won’t succeed in doing so.  … Read More

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‘Kobe Bryant’s Muse’ Reveals the Widening Gap Between Man and Mythology

Even if you’re not a basketball fan, you know who Kobe Bryant is. He’s perhaps the most polarizing sports star of his generation, one of the last of a breed whose drive to win borders on the sociopathic. For the best part of two decades, he’s been defined by his refusal to compromise. Love him or hate him, his talent has remained undeniable… until the last couple of years, when age and injuries have finally started to overtake him. Quite how Bryant would go out of the game has long been a fascinating hypothetical — how would a man who refused to countenance any threat of mortality deal with the subtle ravages of time? The documentary film Kobe Bryant’s Muse, which airs on Showtime this Saturday at 9pm, is a document of Bryant’s last act, and it’s fascinating because, if nothing else, it illustrates the ever-widening gap between the man and his own mythology. … Read More

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Frank Underwood Finally Gets What He Wants in ‘House of Cards’ Season 3 — and That’s the Problem

House of Cards‘ Frank Underwood gets his fair share of Macbeth comparisons, but the show is something of a tragic figure in its own right. It simply doesn’t know what it wants to be: is it a slick, cynical look at Washington — The West Wing, with pessimism? Or is it a shamelessly over-the-top melodrama that just happens to be set in and around the White House — Scandal, with swearing? House of Cards’ greatest weakness has always been that it tries to be both, and even when it commits to one vision over the other, it’s bound to sacrifice some of its core appeal. In the case of Season 3, that means prioritizing the former over the… Read More

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Could Cancer Be Cured in Our Lifetime? VICE’s ‘Killing Cancer’ Offers an Optimistic Look Into the Future

For VICE‘s Shane Smith, the VICE Special Report: Killing Cancer, is personal. He’s watched his mother fight breast cancer and his stepmother die from cancer. Anyone whose life has been affected by cancer will understand where he’s coming from immediately — the way that the sword of Damocles descends at the first diagnosis, telling the patient just what will kill them in the future. … Read More

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Fox’s ‘The Last Man On Earth’ Finds Humor in a Decidedly Unfunny Situation

What would you do if you were the last person on Earth and had no rules to abide by? You’d lose your mind pretty damn quickly, if The Last Man on Earth, which premieres Sunday on Fox, is to be believed. But you’d also have a little fun while you’re at it. The latest installment in the post-apocalyptic end-of-the-world genre, the show takes place in 2022, after a disease wipes out everyone except Phil Miller (Will Forte), who has no idea how he survived or why. He is completely alone, he prays to God about how much he misses other humans, and he even, at one point, tries to commit suicide. But Last Man on Earth is a comedy — in fact, it’s one of the best new comedies of the season.  … Read More

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