The Voice

Neil Patrick Harris’ Painful ‘Best Time Ever’ Hammers a Final Nail Into the Variety TV Coffin

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Isn’t a variety show supposed to be fun? The heyday of variety programs ended long ago (despite NBC’s attempts to usher us back into that era), so the format is prone to feeling outdated and out of place in the current television landscape no matter what, but the basic aim of a show like this isn’t complicated: a variety show is supposed to be fun, to entertain, to make audiences laugh and enjoy life for an hour. So why is Best Time Ever With Neil Patrick Harris uncomfortable, embarrassing, and hard to watch?
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‘HITNRUN Phase One’: Prince Finds a 25-Year-Old Collaborator, Shreds, But Mostly Falls Flat

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When a legendary artist releases new art, the burden of their past successes looms large — sometimes, for the artist, but more often for the audience: will the Stones ever top Let it Bleed? Will Springsteen make a record that won’t draw comparisons to Born to Run? Do we want more of the same? Or do we want to be blown away with something we didn’t even know we wanted to hear?

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Why Do We Care More About CeeLo Green’s Rape Tweets Than the Real Accusations Against Him?

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In the ongoing saga of famous men trying to redefine what constitutes rape, CeeLo Green recently detached his jawbone in order to get his foot farther down his own throat. His most salacious tweet was one that reportedly read: “Women who have really been raped REMEMBER!!!” Outlets ranging from the Los Angeles Times to Billboard to The Guardian to BuzzFeed have reported this quote as fact, all pointing to each other and/or this manual MT (modified retweet) from a user instead of a direct screenshot of CeeLo’s deleted tweet (something I haven’t seen turn up yet). Legitimacy of this specific tweet aside, Green undoubtedly offered up a handful of offensive tweets about date rape loosely veiled as dialogue with his fans, apologized for them, deleted them, and went back to mercilessly promoting his new music video all in the last few days. It’s an uncomfortable reality of our digital age, the way off-the-cuff tweets can hurt a celebrity’s reputation even more than a criminal paper trail — one that had been following Green for a little over two years by the time he took to Twitter.
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In Praise of the TV Talent Show Weirdo

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Kate Bush took to her blog this week to write a letter in support of one Liam Tamne, a contestant on the UK version of The Voice. Tamne was voted off the show by resident musical antichrist will.i.am, despite a performance that seemed objectively better than that of his competition, to much voluble protest from his fans. Frankly, if will.i.am doesn’t like you and Kate Bush does, you’re probably doing something right, and Tamne will hopefully go on to have a successful and productive career. What it all boils down to is more proof that the most interesting thing about shows like American IdolThe X Factor, and The Voice is rarely the winners.
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