So this episode was where we got to find out the answer to the question the Kings have perhaps unwittingly posed: Is it easier to write a great ten-episode season than a great twenty-two-episode season? Or, more specifically, would having a ten-episode season enable the Kings to write a flawlessly brilliant season, as they often implied it would? For background, the Kings, bless their hearts, sometimes responded to implied criticisms of The Good Wife‘s more uneven moments with the defense that cable television shows have it so durn easy with only ten episodes a year. So now that the first season of The Good Fight is over, we can see if their theory panned out!
Month / April 2017
Links We Loved This Week — 4/28/17
The internet is super excited about Hulu’s new adaptation of The Handmaid’s Tale (as are we, and not just because Rory is in it, we swear).
- We laughed so hard at Biblioklept’s “Selections From One Star Reviews of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale.” My favorite: “Mostly just someone running errands in an American dystopia”
- The Mary Sue posted a biting and extremely true retort to Elizabeth Moss’s disappointing equivocation on whether The Handmaid’s Tale is feminist (spoiler: it is).
We missed this when it first came out a couple weeks ago: Brian Edwards penned a nuanced exploration of Homeland‘s attempts this season to interrogate and perhaps undo the Orientalism it hath already wrought, and the “double bind” it faces by still needing to play on our suspense and anxieties. Very worth reading. (at the LA Review of Books)
The SCP Foundation just wrapped its contest for writing SCP-3000. If you haven’t come across the Foundation before in your Internet itinerations, you can think of it as a collaboratively-written X-Files—the contest is a particularly interesting way to see how something like that comes together.
Previously.tv summarizes season 1 of ER in one headline per episode. There are many gems, but my favorite is “Oh My God We Get It Jen And Mark Like To Fuck (Not That The Interminable “Ma Benton Needs To Go In A Home” Arc That Starts Here Is Much Of An Improvement).”
For Earth Day, Read This Beautiful Icelandic Book
When Bjork blurbs a book using fully 8 exclamation points (“A true pioneer!!!!!!!!”), that’s probably all the motivation you need to read it. But I’m going to add my two cents: this Earth Day, you should read Oddny Eir’s slim, inventive feminist-environmentalist hybrid novel/journal/essay collection, Land of Love and Ruins.
Links We Loved This Week — 4/21/17
“Men Recommend David Foster Wallace To Me” (its title clearly a nod to Rebecca Solnit’s seminal “Men Explain Things to Me“) speaks what is in all of our hearts. At twenty-three, I thought I was the only woman to have figured out that you NEVER go on an OKcupid date with a guy who mentions David Foster Wallace in his profile. As it turns out, every literarily-inclined woman discovers this sooner or later. Janes and I call it “Bernie syndrome”: the thing itself may be great, but its fans SUUUUCK. (via Electric Literature)
“Sylvia Plath: just because she wrote about her life doesn’t mean it’s public property.” An examination of literary scholars’ performance of ownership in the wake of those newly surfaced Plath letters. (Via The Conversation)
Who would be in YOUR Jane Jacobs biopic fantasy cast? What, never thought about it? Uh, leave our blog right now. JK. Kind of. (via Curbed)
The Atlantic enumerated the failures of the Girls finale, and we agree with 80% of it. (Review to come)
[HOMELAND SPOILERS] Rupert Friend agrees with us that Quinn’s suffering had started to feel sadistic and that this was the right time for The Thing That Happened to happen. He also essentially says the exact same thing I’ve been arguing all along about Quinn: “He takes responsibility and has a moral code. And I’m not sure that Carrie does.” (via EW — and 17 bajillion bonus points to Rupert, by the way, for graciously but firmly correcting EW when they referred to an adult sexually abusing a child as a “sexual relationship.”)
Female authors took to Twitter this week to tell us #ThingsOnlyWomenWritersHear. This one is our favorite:
Catching up on The Good Fight: Reviews of Episodes 7 – 9
1×7 “Not So Grand Jury”
In this episode, the Rindell-on-Rindell betrayals continue apace, as does the trend of new-fangled technology providing key evidence.
Homeland Recap: 6×12 “America First”
OK, I’ll just say it: I am glad this happened. Scroll to the “Conclusion” after the recap for more thoughts.
Homeland Recap: 6×11 “R is for Romeo”
With some closure for Carrie and Quinn, and the clues about what’s happening falling into place, this episode sets us up for a game-changing finale.
Personal Growth Rankings: Girls 6×05 “Gummies”
I have to say, I was definitely a naysayer about Adam and Jessa’s movie, but now I’m a believer. Not in the sense that I think the movie itself will be good; it still looks like a corny and even more twee version of 500 Days of Summer. It checks all the boxes of the worst kinds of indie movies: a manic pixie dream girl (because OF COURSE that’s how Hannah looks from Adam’s perspective), stereotypes about mental illness (“My head feels so noisy, I just want it to stop!!”), a dysfunctional relationship, and a cute yellow sundress.
But I’m on board with the movie as a plot device, if only because it gives us a hilariously meta spoof of Girls‘ early seasons. Hannah clumsily dancing half-naked to an ironically cheerful song, Hannah and Adam being ridiculously melodramatic about their relationship (“I don’t care if you ruin my life, at least you’ll have been in my life”), and Hannah wanting to be treated like shit by a guy, because that’s just so painfully edgy.
But anyway, let’s get to the personal growth rankings: Continue reading →
Homeland Recap: 6×10 “The Flag House”
The pace of human change is slow, as I remarked last week–but it can still happen. This week, we see Carrie’s priorities, however unevenly, shift towards Franny.
Links We Loved This Week — 4/7/17
Netflix has been so busy tugging at my damn heartstrings… first it resurrects Gilmore Girls and now there’s this absolutely lovely trailer for their new Anne of Green Gables adaptation!!! (Yes, the three exclamation points are absolutely deserved. If I were Emily of New Moon there would be italics, too.)
I recently read George Saunders’ Lincoln in the Bardo, and woke up the very next day to find The Millions had published an amazing parody: Trump in the Bardo. (For those not familiar with the concept, Saunders’ novel consists mostly of dialogues among the ghosts living in the graveyard where Lincoln is visiting his dead son.)
The New York Times reports that bookstores are instrumental in galvanizing people to direct political action.
At a bookshop in Massachusetts, a manager privately asked his senior staff members how the store should respond to the Trump presidency.
“Go hard,” they told him.