Musical Musings 2019: Adam Holz and Kristin Smith’s Year-End Pics

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best of music 2019

“Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togedder today.” Yes, yes, I know, I know. Those famous lines hail from the classic comedy Princess Bride. Nevertheless, they are what brings us “togedder” today, in a roundabout way, as we talk about the best music (both tracks and albums) of 2019. Why, you ask? Well, it turns […]

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We’re Always Connected, Thanks to Social Media. Why Do We Feel So Alone?

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facebook and loneliness

Netflix’s The Politician isn’t a show I’d recommend. But it does offer some interesting thoughts on what it means to grow up in the social media age. At one point, main character Payton frets that he doesn’t have the ability to feel, in the same way that everyone else does. His mother says it’s only […]

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The Spiritual Lessons in Felicity Huffman’s Confession

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felicity huffman

Public figures—be they actors, musicians, politicians or athletes—sometimes make poor choices. And sometimes they have to face the consequences. Over the last seven months, we’ve watched one such moral scandal play out in the media. Actresses Felicity Huffman (Desperate Housewives, Get Shorty) and Lori Laughlin (Fuller House, When Calls the Heart) were among a group […]

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Skillet Frontman Asks, ‘What in God’s Name Is Happening to Christianity?’

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skillet John Cooper

Sometimes the truth hurts. It hurts because we’re forced to confront something about life or about ourselves that’s uncomfortable, maybe even painful. That doesn’t feel good. Increasingly, though, mainstream culture is veering away from telling hard truths. Especially those that make anyone feel uncomfortable. And for many, emotions have become the path to their subjective, […]

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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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Entertainment, Media and Mental Health: Psychoanalysis on the Screen

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beautiful mind

This is the second part of a three-part series examining the connection between our entertainment/media culture and mental health, the latter of which is a growing problem for America’s youth. Last week, Kristin Smith discussed how celebrities are increasingly open about their own struggles with anxiety and depression, giving their fans permission to do the […]

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Game of … Critics?

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Game of Critics

To paraphrase something Bruce Banner once said, “Don’t make the fans angry. You wouldn’t like them when they’re angry.” Since the advent of social media, fans have increasingly had an online outlet to express their euphoria in glorious, crowd-pleasing moments—and to vent their white-hot, dragon-fire rage when their beloved franchises veer in directions they deem […]

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Forget About Saving the World. The MCU is All About Family

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Avengers family

We could unpack a lot of stuff with Avengers: Endgame, Marvel’s three-hour finale to its 11-year, 22-movie odyssey (so far). And hopefully we’ll have opportunity to do just that sometime soon—when most of you have seen it and spoilers aren’t quite as big of an issue. But one thing that I can say about Endgame […]

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‘What Is Real?’ Reflections on The Matrix 20 Years Later

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The Matrix

Hundreds of new movies come and go each year. Some have theatrical debuts. Some stream online or are released direct to video. All feature stories that someone, somewhere, thought were interesting enough to warrant the trouble of making them. Most of these movies vanish, metaphorically speaking, into our cultural memory. Functionally forgotten, as if they’d […]

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Unplanned Sparks Controversy and Conversation

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It’s often said that all publicity is good publicity. Unplanned seems to be proving that axiom this week. Controversy began to swirl before the film was even released. This dramatization of former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson’s decision to leave her clinic received an R rating, prompting many to wonder if the film had been […]

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