It’s March, which is when a pop-culture website’s mind turns to thoughts of brackets. Over the past two years, Vulture has held 2012’s Drama Derby, a brutal dogfight to determine the best TV drama of the past 25 years (winner: The Wire), and last year’s Sitcom Smackdown for comedies (The Simpsons rules all!). In 2014, we turn to what is arguably the most dominant and proliferative genre of TV of the current millennium: Welcome to the Reality Rumble, a battle that will reveal the greatest season of the greatest reality shows! … [Read more...] about The Reality Rumble: What’s the Greatest Reality-TV Season Ever?
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Ink Master ticks each box for the reality-contest checklist: It’s based on an unusual skill in a largely insular industry; the contestants are all passably decent (at least to a layman’s eye); and the judging — by tattoo legend Oliver Peck, Miami Ink alum Chris Nuñez, and, uh, Dave Navarro — is expert, harsh, and hugely informative. It’s the kind of show that at once demystifies a process (oh, that’s how you make a color tattoo really seem three-dimensional!) and deifies its practitioners (oh, and she is really good at it!). Each episode tests the artists on a different facet of tattooing: dimension, shading, old school, new school, cover-ups — even prison tattoos got an episode. When done well, shows like Ink Master (which airs tonight) create an instant hobby. Passion is inherently interesting, even when it’s not a passion you necessarily share. I didn’t mean to care this much about who can do the best photo-realistic … [Read more...] about Skill-Based Contests Are the Best Kind of Reality TV
Following on from hits such as Isn't It Romantic? and Love Wedding Repeat, Netflix now feels like the natural home for romantic comedy and its latest, Love Guaranteed, doesn't disappoint. Why? Because it knows all the clichés we love and celebrates them. Rachael Leigh Cook and Damon Wayans Jr star as a chalk-and-cheese lawyer and client, heading to court to sue a dating website for false promises. And though they struggle with each other at first, you know just where this is heading. … [Read more...] about Netflix: best movies to watch this week – September 2020
New York was still the down-at-the-heels city of bankruptcy, blight, and seediness that ranged from the amiable to the menacing, so there were also, ambling up and down Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue, a fair number of heroin addicts, prostitutes, and pimps who actually dressed like they did on TV shows and movies set at that time, in fake furs, neon hot pants, and spectacular platform shoes. As a small boy, I took in stride much of what I saw and heard. On the sidewalk, my mother would briskly move me and my brother past the junkies and sex workers and tell us not to stare. In the afternoons and early evenings, they would congregate on or around the small pedestrian islands just north and south of the 72nd Street subway station, officially called Sherman Square and Verdi Square but known to all residents (and immortalized in a 1971 Al Pacino movie) as “Needle Park.” At night, the addicts and streetwalkers would hang out at the large diner across the avenue, guzzling endless … [Read more...] about Real-Life Cops, and Me
I don’t know if its affectation or a certain amount of craziness that is starting to seep out of her pores and into the outside world, but Sonja is becoming more and more eccentric, like an old English lady who lives in a church or, I don’t know, that crazy broad that likes to “make flowers” in the True Detective finale. She has a ratty old carpet with holes in it, her old stuffed dog is sitting on the buffet covered by an old scarf, a fleet of midwestern teenagers are doting on her every command while she shouts at them about not letting the air conditioning out. But the weirdest thing of all was her giant plate of breads and jams and jellies that she expected these women to sit down to. Do you think this is on any of their diets of green juice and flavored steam? Hell no! … [Read more...] about Season-Six Premiere Recap: New Girl, Same As the Old