Culture Clips: Fascism … on the Hallmark Channel?

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shocked watching tv

It’s officially 2020, folks, and we all have our own hopes and dreams for what the new year might hold. But some of us have radically different hopes and dreams. For instance, I know that some folks may dream of watching Hallmark Christmas movies all year long. But Salon political writer Amanda Marcotte hopes that […]

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Pop Culture’s Top 10 Movers and Shakers (2019 Edition)

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Movers and shakers 2019

The year 2019 was a year of goodbyes. We said farewell to sitcoms (The Big Bang Theory) and television serials (Orange is the New Black); rappers (Juice WRLD) and Disney stars (Cameron Boyce); writers (Toni Morrison) and superheroes (no spoilers here) and even a Grouch (as in Oscar and the voice that brought him to […]

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Introducing The Plugged In Show

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plugged In show

If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “I wonder if Plugged In is ever going to do a podcast, because it seems like they should,” well, the wait is over. I’m thrilled to announce that we have recently launched The Plugged In Show! Each week, members of the Plugged In team will be joined by author, […]

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What Is a Dopamine Fast, Anyway?

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dopamine

One of the most interesting concepts in economics is the law of diminishing marginal returns. It says, basically, the more we consume of something, the less we enjoy it. Put simply, the second cup of coffee we have in the morning has less “marginal utility” than the first cup. The taste may be exactly the […]

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Fifty Years of Sesame Street and the Internet: Which Hurt My Kids More?

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OK, so this blog’s title is a little click-baity, but it’s still worth thinking about for a bit. The Internet and Sesame Street are both celebrating their golden 50th. They popped into being back in the fall of 1969 (on Oct. 29 and Nov. 10 respectively). Each required years of planning and hard work. Their […]

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Culture Clips: Alone … With Our Screens

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culture clips alone with screens

Plugged In reviewed a strange little video game last week called Death Stranding. Our own Bob Hoose calls it part shooter, part adventure game, part building game and all weird. While dark and bloody, the game has also earned the most nominations this year from the Game Awards (an awards “show” that was watched by […]

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Why Has Supernatural Lasted So Long? One Word: Fans.

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supernatural

With Supernatural now into its 15th (and final) season, I find my social media timeline swarmed with memes, GIFs, and posts reflecting on the series, speculating on how the Winchester brothers will save the world from the apocalypse (again), and bidding farewell to the show’s most beloved characters. But seeing all this internet chatter doesn’t […]

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Culture Clips: The Black Hole

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black hole

Last week, Culture Clips noted that Epic Games was being sued because its wildly popular online game, Fortnite, was allegedly as addictive as cocaine. You’d think that Epic might have a vested interest in saying, “Nah, you’re overreacting.” Instead, the game maker seemed to set out to prove just how right that little ol’ lawsuit […]

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Culture Clips: Joker Edition

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joker culture clips

The fictional Arthur Fleck, better known as the Joker in his titular movie, would be pleased that his story has already stirred up so much controversy. And that before it has even hit theaters. Director and screenwriter Todd Phillips unleashes his vision of DC Comics signature super-villain in theaters this weekend. But Phillips’ Joker bears […]

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There For Us? Why Friends Is Still Culturally Relevant

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Friends

The widely beloved 1990’s sitcom Friends will officially celebrate its 25th year anniversary on Sept. 22. That’s right, people. Twenty-five years. That’s a long time. And somehow, more than two decades later, people around the world are still down to chill with the Central Perk gang. In fact, viewers are so adamant about their Friends […]

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“You Have to Be Proactive.” An Interview With VeggieTales Creator Phil Vischer

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Phil Vischer

Thanks to Phil Vischer, kids love their veggies. Not necessarily the vegetables that land on the dinner plate (because, let’s face it, beets are disgusting). But in 1993, he and Mike Nawrocki introduced them to Bob the Tomato, Larry the Cucumber and a bunch of other characters typically found in the produce aisle. Their direct-to-video […]

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Culture Clips: Are Video Games Linked to Mass Shootings?

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video games

Tragedy struck the communities of El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio, this weekend. A total of 31 lives were lost in separate mass shootings, with more injured. As the friends and families of these victims mourn the loss of their loved ones, it can be difficult to know how to best show our support. Jim […]

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With MAD Magazine Gone, is the Future of Satire … Christian?

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Mad Mag

MAD Magazine, after 67 years of serving as America’s gap-toothed jester-king of satire, is no more. Oh, it’s not completely gone. Its creators say a year-end issue will come out (presumably at year’s end), along with the occasional special collection. But its days as an entertainment/cultural bellweather and influencer is done. Make no mistake, MAD […]

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