Links We Loved This Week — 7/22/16

Read the heartbreaking tweets Leslie Jones posted before being chased off Twitter by racist harassment. Vox has a good write-up of the topic, too.

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Emily Nussbaum wrote a fantastic piece about Braindead and Mr. Robot. Her analysis of why Braindead succeeds despite its insane-sounding premise is spot on. (via The New Yorker)

Matt Damon did a Reddit AMA in honor of the new Bourne movie. His answers are great — or as one poster amusingly put it, “my boy’s wicked smaht.”

How well do you know Anne of Green Gables? This is a pretty basic quiz, but it should whet your appetite for the planned 2017 revival (and if you get less than 100%, you should probably just go rewatch. Actually, we probably all should).

 

Braindead 1×04: “Wake Up Grassroots: The Nine Virtues of Participatory Democracy, and How We Can Keep America Great by Encouraging an Informed Electorate”

Previously on Braindead: Spacebugs, Gareth and Laurel making out, head explosions, Abby infecting Stacie, Gustav reading a lot, Scarlett being weird, Ella getting infected, Luke versus Ella, Laurel investigating the bugs, guys sharing a candy bar, and bugs eating a cat.

Whew. It’s pretty catchy when the guy sings it though.

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Braindead 1×02: “Playing Politics: Living Life in the Shadow of the Budget Showdown – A Critique”

Recap

We have SINGING PREVIOUSLIES!!! A male voice (which I hoped was Aaron Tveit’s but, tragically, is not) narrates everything that happened last week: the mysterious meteor, the space bugs, the brains, Laurel’s sad documentary, Luke’s job, Laurel’s job, Gareth’s job, Senator Weenus’s job, the government shutdown, Luke’s affair, Scarlett’s “space bug problem,” and the good doctor’s exploding brain. It’s pretty damn catchy too.

Laurel’s listening to pundits discuss the shutdown and trying to spray the ants that are parading in a column right towards her feet. They do not give one shit about the spray, so she stomps on a couple of them with her hipster-masquerading-as-professional-lady clunky boots, and then runs out the door. The camera gets way too close to the ants, who seem to be nudging each other and possibly reanimating. Yikes. OK so it’s been like a day, and already these things are ALL OVER D.C. and in Laurel’s actual apartment. Realistically, does Laurel have a chance of surviving the season with her brain intact? Things are moving way too quickly here.

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Braindead Recap: 1×01 “The Insanity Principle : How Extremism in Politics is Threatening Democracy in the 21st Century”

We open with title cards over a set of TVs playing political rants, like we’re in the world’s most stressful Best Buy or something. “In the year 2016 there was a growing sense that people were losing their minds… and no one knew why… until now.” I’m a fan of the eighties-pulp-movie red lettering they’re using.

We see some people being overpowered by a wave right after what looks like a meteor strike.

“Meanwhile,” the title cards announce: and we cut to a young woman on the phone fretting that she can’t get some unnamed large amount of money in a week, but will try when she gets back to LA. She hangs up, swears to herself, then stares at a set of monitors playing news about a fire, Hillary Clinton, and Trump. (They really lucked out here that Trump won the nomination. I mean, not as citizens of course, but as writers peddling a show about how politicians are having their brains eaten.)

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Why You Should Watch Braindead, The Summer’s Weirdest New Show

 

I didn’t really think there was any way for a show with a premise like that of Braindead, the newest show from Good Wife creators Michelle and Robert King, to hold together. A political satire, but with zombies? It sounded like a hot mess. I wouldn’t have been surprised if Aaron Tveit (who plays Laurel’s love interest and counterpart across the aisle) had suddenly broken into song: everyone loves a Zombie Musical!

But I was wrong. I admit my massive fangirlishness for The Good Wife may be biasing me here, but I think this show, like Buffy or Community, has the potential to be one of those curios that in its refusal to fit in a genre manages to carve out a big new place for itself in the TV landscape.

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