The Gamer in the Olympic Laurel Leaves

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VR Skiing

If you’ve been watching any of the Winter Olympics, you’ve undoubtedly noted that, in some events, the difference between a winning run or a losing one can come down to mere seconds. No, sometimes just hundredths of a second. What you may not have been aware of, though, is that some of the competitors have […]

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Finding God in a Bad Commercial

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It’s been said that God works in mysterious ways. Sometimes even through a controversial Ram Truck commercial. We’ve already mentioned that commercial Wednesday, of course. The manufacturer (or, rather, its advertising agency) put together an advertisement pairing video clips of its truck helping folks do good things with the words of a Martin Luther King […]

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R.I.P. CDs

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CDs

I bought a CD last night. (Rock guitar instrumentalist Joe Satriani’s latest release, if you must know. But I digress already.) I bought it because even though I listen to tons of music digitally (streaming, and in my 15-year-old iTunes library), I just like having a real, physical copy of my music. It’s tactile. Reliable. […]

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Culture Clips: About Those Super Bowl Ads …

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super bowl ads

A few days ago, the world was treated to one of the best Super Bowls in history. But some viewers couldn’t have  cared less about the game: They were in it for the commercials. Advertisers go all out for their Super Bowl spots, and well they should. In this age of entertainment fragmentation, the Big […]

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Culture Clips: The Holy Throwers Edition

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Case Keenum

Anyone who watched the Minnesota Vikings pull off a near-miraculous win against the New Orleans Saints last weekend probably saw Case Keenum—a one-time backup quarterback was thrust into the starting lineup due to injury and who’s having a career year—literally jump for joy. But if fans turned off the telly before the postgame interviews, they […]

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Culture Clips: A Good Year for the Bad Guys

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Frank Griffin from Godless

We’re three whole days into 2018 now, but it’s still wholly appropriate to look back at the year that was. Researchers have weighed the data to determine the year’s most popular books, movies and videos. Pundits have opined on the year’s biggest entertainment stories. But one thing’s clear, at least to the Los Angeles Times’ […]

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Pop Culture’s Top 10 Movers and Shakers (2017 Edition)

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Movers and shakers

The outgoing year is often depicted as an old, tired man with a beard down to his knees. But this year, that depiction felt all too true. With all the natural disasters and political unrest and international crises afoot, 2017 probably made us all feel older than we should. Back in the day, many folks […]

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Pop Culture’s Complicity in Sexual Harassment

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#me too

Complicity. The word sounds vaguely menacing. Even if we’re not quite sure what complicity means, it sounds … bad. To be complicit, Merriam-Webster’s dictionary says, involves “helping someone commit a crime or a wrong in some way.” We’re hearing that word used a lot lately—albeit perhaps slightly less literally—in connection with the sexual harassment and […]

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Culture Clips: The Most Hated Man in Nerd-dom?

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Luke almost didn’t come back. Mark Hamill portrayed Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars trilogy, launching him into the kind of superstardom few ever actors ever achieve. No wonder he was a bit tentative about reprising his iconic role. “I was just really scared,” he told the New York Times recently. “I thought, why […]

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Culture Clips: The ‘House of Cards Indeed’ Edition

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Kevin Spacey

For five seasons now, two-time Oscar winner Kevin Spacey has starred in Netflix’s buzzy House of Cards. He played a caddish President Francis Underwood who manipulated and murdered his way to power and—if the show’s title means anything at all—would’ve someday been laid low by his own misdeeds. We may never see Underwood’s comeuppance come […]

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Television Learns That It’s Nice to Be Nice (And It Makes Money, Too)

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the good doctor

We’re in the heart of the new television season, and I’ve noticed something a little odd about it. It’s trying to be nice. Strange, right? For the last several years, television has been besotted with undoubtedly gripping, unbearably grim prestige TV. HBO’s Game of Thrones revels in its episodic cruelties, both physical and political. Hulu’s […]

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