How Stan Lee Changed the World

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Stan Lee

As you’ve probably heard by now, Stan Lee died yesterday at the age of 95. Many have eulogized Lee as a “comics legend,” and that’s wholly fair. As a writer, editor, publisher and eventually chairman of Marvel Comics, he created or co-created some of the world’s most famous superheroes and helped redefine the genre itself. […]

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Culture Clips: Why Do People Want to Be Scared for Fun?

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halloween dog

For most of us, being genuinely frightened is probably something we try to avoid in the real world. But when it comes to entertainment, the opposite is often true. Many people love being scared. Especially this time of year, the time when horror movies rule the multiplexes and haunted houses pop up in seemingly every […]

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Sometimes Free Costs Too Much

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eighth grade

I get a lot of emails that make me scratch my head. I’m guessing you can relate. For instance, I regularly get one from a female gynecologist wanting me to interview her. I also get frequent emails from some “cannabis-something-or-other” business excited about their various products infused with THC. (I’m not sure what the official […]

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Culture Clips: Heroes, Heels and Hacks

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captain america

It’s not easy to find heroes these days. So it was nice to see Drew Brees, quarterback for the New Orleans Saints and apparently all-around good guy, break the National Football League’s all-time passing mark this Monday night. Even better, though? His post-game interview. When the ESPN interviewer Lisa Salters asked Brees what he told […]

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Did ’80s Movies Reinforce Rape Culture?

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Breakfast Club

Some of us who grew up in the ’80s likely have fond memories of John Hughes’ “classic” teen movies: Sixteen Candles. Breakfast Club. Or maybe we recall how much we loved Back to the Future. Or Ghostbusters. Say Anything. Or Big. Now, all of those movies have some content issues, from a Plugged In perspective. […]

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Culture Clips: The Facebook Trauma Edition

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Culture clips facebook

Perhaps it’s not exactly news anymore when Facebook announces a data breach. The ubiquitous social network has been as leaky as a perforated garden hose lately, so what’s another 50 million users? Still, it made the virtual front pages of a lot of virtual newspapers, and what might’ve gotten lost in the week’s Facebook headlines […]

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The Power of Film (Even a Very Short One)

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making a film

Recently, I had the privilege of being invited to be one of ten judges for the “Film Your Faith” video contest, sponsored by Faith Counts. Contestants submitted a two-minute video that somehow dealt with the subject of “faith.” The winner, Kyle Churchwell, who created a film called “Faith is Knowing,” got a healthy $20,000 prize. […]

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Culture Clips: A Tragedy in Jacksonville

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jacksonville

Most of us turn to entertainment to get a little respite from the anxieties of the world outside. When we watch a movie, we’re not worrying about our kids’ grades. When we play a video game, we’re not thinking about deadlines. For many, entertainment is a cozy blanket we use to keep out—for a little […]

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Vodcast: Leveraging Childhood Stuff to Tell Adult Stories

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happytime murders

No Sesame. All Street. If you grew up watching Sesame Street, you may be a bit shocked with the new “puppetry” movie, The Happytime Murders. By taking a bunch of puppets who look a lot like those beloved childhood Sesame Street Muppets and making them very adult—this movie aims to shock. But we’ve seen this […]

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Culture Clips: “Mom, Where’s My Bulletproof Backpack?”

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backpack

It’s back-to-school time. That means school supplies. Pencils? Check. Erasers? Yup. Trapper Keepers? (Oh wait, it’s not the ’80s anymore. Oh wait again, they have new ones now? And vintage ones sell for big bucks? Who knew?) Bulletproof backpack? Check.   Now, that sounds like something your teen might find while scavenging for useful gear […]

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‘Eighth Grade,’ Like Eighth Graders, Needs Parents

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Eighth Grade

Eighth Grade, the movie, is rated R, and for some pretty obvious reasons. Our intrepid reviewer Kristin Smith noted lots of profanity (including about 10 f-words) and saw plenty of references to various types of sexual activity when she screened the film. “It left me wondering why so much of it had to be there,” […]

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Culture Clips: Demi’s Overdose

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Demi Lovato

After six years of sobriety, pop star Demi Lovato admitted on her latest single that she wasn’t “Sober” anymore. Yesterday, the world came to know the tragic depth of her relapse. Lovato was taken to a Los Angeles-area hospital after an apparent drug overdose, according to multiple media reports. (Initially, celebrity gossip site TMZ reported […]

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