August 27, 2014

Lightning Round: Tony Soprano Is Not Dead

Do you like mystery and ambiguity? Have you achieved some level of acceptance and moved on with your life since the famously open-ended 2007 finale of ‘The Sopranos,’ arguably our greatest modern television show? Well, TOO BAD!

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Freak Show and Tell: A Classic Retroactive Premarital Pregnancy Condemnation

All the best parts from ‘Preachers of LA,’ ‘Married at First Sight,’ and ‘The Extreme Guide to Parenting.’

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‘The Brown Bunny’ 10 Years Later: Reevaluating the Target of Roger Ebert’s Ire

This week marks the 10th anniversary of The Brown Bunny’s theatrical release, which occurred 15 months after Roger Ebert called it the worst film to ever play the Cannes Film Festival, more or less sealing the film’s commercial and critical fate.

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Hype Going Up (on a Tuesday): ILoveMakonnen and the Power of the Drake Career Boost

Just how valuable is a guest appearance from Drake? Is it worth a hit single? A tour? A career? For ILoveMakonnen, a rapturously crooning L.A. transplant making desperate, dazed R&B-rap in Atlanta, the surprise addition of a Drake verse to his ‘Club Going Up on a Tuesday’ two weeks ago sped up what had been a slow but promising rise.

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‘Saturday Night Live’ vs. the World: A Statisticalish Study

Cocaine? The GDP? Sex? A very scientific examination of the ratings decline of ‘Saturday Night Live.’

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Jessie J, Ariana Grande, and Nicki Minaj’s ‘Bang Bang’ Is a Pop Song From Another Era

The “Bang Bang” video is verrrrrrry early 2000s, aside from the Beats Pill product placement and that fact that Ariana Grande would have been a zygote during the Carson Daly era.

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August 26, 2014

The Mystery of ‘Gone Girl’ May Drive Us Mad Before the Movie’s Even Out

Also in the Afternoon Links: ‘Bang Bang’ gets a video, #Donald4Spiderman finally works, and Bieber is at it again.

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Hollywood Prospectus Podcast: Emmys, ‘The Honorable Woman,’ and ‘The Leftovers’

Chris Ryan and Andy Greenwald talk about the Emmys, ‘The Honorable Woman,’ and ‘The Leftovers.’

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Is This Thing On? The Eight Most Essential Inessential ‘SNL’ Musical Guests

To understand the significance of the musical legacy of ‘SNL’ — both to the show and the overall arc of pop-music history — we must set aside the outliers and look at the middle.

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Q&A: Ben Mendelsohn on ‘Starred Up’ and the Art of the ‘Good’ Bad Guy

‘Animal Kingdom’ — in which Mendelsohn plays the unhinged, progressively-more-murderous Uncle Pope — set the template for his latter-day resurgence. Taken along with ‘Killing Them Softly’ and ‘The Place Beyond The Pines,’ in which he played a far more kindhearted, still criminally inclined type of fellow, it’s a powerful little string of men living on the edges.

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The Moment Podcast: Brian Koppelman and Jon Lovett

Jon Lovett was a White House speechwriter while in his mid-twenties. Now 30, he creates TV shows. He talks about that ride, proximity to power, and why he does what he does.

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The Problem of the Black Cast Member on ‘SNL’

I’ve been watching Saturday Night Live since before I had a proper Saturday night. I also watched Saturday Night Live before I had a proper grasp of race. It was just the show with the guy (Garrett Morris) who looked like one of my father’s brothers, and the one (Eddie Murphy) who looked like my […]

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The Emmys As Flat Circle: Why Last Night’s Show Felt Familiar

It’s OK that the Emmys continue to go to the same handful of people. Really, it is. I just wish the ceremony around those lucky few could be filled with the energy of the ones who still have empty space on their mantels.

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The Moment Podcast: Brian Koppelman and Taran Killam, Revisited

‘Saturday Night Live’ star Taran Killam and Brian Koppelman talk about life on the show, how to get a sketch on the air, and how to stay sane in showbiz.

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Everything We Learned from Fox’s 22-Minute ‘Gotham’ Preview

They’re definitely playing hide-the-Joker, they’re gunning for realism, and Jim Gordon’s going to fill the Bat-Signal-shaped hole in the premise.

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The Battle for the Best ‘SNL’ Cast Member, Day 3 Results: A Bracket Living in a Van Down by the River

OK, let’s get the obvious out of the way first. The upsets keep on not coming! 1. Eddie Murphy (20,806 votes) 4. Dan Aykroyd (10,195 votes) 3. Bill Murray (16,052 votes) 2. John Belushi (14,638 votes) 3. Mike Myers (12,013 votes) 2. Phil Hartman (18,146 votes) 1. Will Ferrell (28,960 votes) 4. Jimmy Fallon (1,995 […]

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