Thursday, May 23, 2013

13 Links Worth Checking Out

1. Elementary is one of the few new broadcast shows from this season worth checking out and while I like it, I'm sad to say I haven't been as enthusiastic as others in fully embracing it. But...this piece convinced me Elementary is doing more than met my eye initially which is always intriguing for me. I do love Joan and Sherlock and I really adore Jonny Lee Miller's Sherlock, but I've struggled with enjoying the cases themselves which comprise a large percentage of the actual show. (I think the writers of Elementary just aren't interested in writing mysteries which is unfortunate for a procedural) Anyway, I felt some more enthusiasm for the show after reading that i09 piece, and feel that I might have enjoyed it even more if I was more familiar with the source material. So I downloaded some stories and started reading them! Elementary's second season premiere will be in London. I wish I could encourage you to catch up on Netflix, but CBS hates us and most likely won't license the right to stream.

2. The TV Critics Choice Award Nominees were announced and I was so pleased by some of the nominations that I initially missed that Downton Abbey is still getting nominations! Then of course I got irritated by people that were like Andrew Lincoln over Jon Hamm? Really? Because let's face it...Andy Lincoln has to pretend that zombies are real and a threat every single week. He had a really tough character arc this season and while I agree that some moments might have missed the mark, mostly I was glad he was recognized because he is fantastic! Also, I was just pleased The Walking Dead was getting any kind of awards recognition since most people dismiss it despite it's rich thematic writing. But I was also thrilled that Tatiana Maslany was nominated because she's truly amazing as this tumblr user points out. She's done a really great job of creating very distinct characters on Orphan Black..I don't know, I'm just really impressed. But I'm also so happy by recognition for The Americans which was hands down my favorite new show this year. So excited for Keri Russell who is riveting as Elizabeth Jennings. And Vera Farmiga as well, as Norma Bates, has been wonderful. So the women's category really pleased me. (and while Juliana Marguiles is never the first person I think of when it comes to amazing performances, I do remember some moments from this past season I thought were particularly good, so yay for her, too)

3. FX has released the trailer for The Bridge and I'm excited. I'm so excited for this show you guys and nervous at the same time that they'll screw it up. Anyway, I want to try to recap it when it airs so I'm hoping some of you will be watching and we can discuss it and stuff! Or I can discuss it by myself, whatever works.

4. This post is about someone stepping back from covering TV as a freelancer/second job but some of the stuff he talks about really resonated with me about book blogging. I think anyone who jumps into passion blogging about something and really works to make something out of it realizes that eventually there's no place left to go. Like, I think that was my whole crisis with book blogging...I had poured hours into it and really devoted an unhealthy degree of my life to it and eventually I plateaued with my own abilities and time and what do you do after that? For me the answer has been stepping back, but I don't ever think it will be to quit entirely. I love books and I've loved some of the opportunities I've had from book blogging, but the truth is books/reading/blogging came to define me more than I really think it should have. I have other interests! I want my life to be about other things.

5. Hot galleys at BEA! Even if you aren't going to BEA (I'm not) it's always fun to look at these lists and get ready for all the amazing books coming our way.

6. Susan Hazen-Hammond's review of A Questionable Shape at The Millions thrilled me. Sometimes that can happen with the book review itself as an art form! I'm not sure this book is for me...though I'm definitely curious to check it out after her review, but her conclusion that, "A Questionable Shape is a novel for those who read in order to wake up to life, not escape it, for those who themselves like to explore the frontiers of the unsayable." was eye-opening to me. I feel like I read for both reasons and I think the very best books surprisingly offer both. I love the phrasing of reading to wake up to life, though, because so often books do exactly that.

7. Guess what? Women are still vastly underrepresented in movies. VASTLY. This depresses me. And it maybe helps explain why I feel less interest in movie watching than in the past. Though there is a huge list of movies I want to see this summer like, World War Z! Hollywood is depressing. It's depressing that things are going backwards instead of forwards!

8. Kids are reading off screens more and more. Does it make a difference? I don't know. What I do know is that I've thought a lot about how important seeing adults reading is for the development of readers. And nowadays most folks read on their tablets or phones? Does this change things? I don't know. I'm sort of a dinosaur but I miss what books used to be. On the other hand, storage issues. What is this world? How did I get so old?

9. I loved Ru Freeman's A Disobedient Girl and while I haven't read On Sal Mal Lane, I loooved this interview with The Millions. I like what she says about writing fiction and social justice activism. I love what she says about writing how world events impact fully realized characters and not educating the reader with filler in the books about those situations. Love!

10. Amazon is selling fan fiction. Or something. Making it possible for people to make money off of fan fiction. Really I see it as the original rights holders having a chance to make money off fan fiction? It's no surprise that Alloy is the first to agree to this since everything is manufactured via group there anyway. I don't have any deep thoughts or feelings on this but maybe some of you do?

11. They have made a movie about Rich Mullins. You can watch the trailer here. I have super mixed feelings about this, like on the one hand who is more compelling or interesting or was so instrumental in the Christian music scene than Rich Mullins? On the other hand, what if it's bad? I am hopeful that it will be decent, though. I remember when my youth pastor's wife tried to explain how much influence he had in her life, how she cried when she found out he'd passed away, and I thought I understood, but I didn't understand until I discovered Andrew Peterson (also very influenced by Rich Mullins!) I love many of his songs, the raw honesty in them is something I think we still crave. And also so poetic and beautiful, sigh. Anyway, super curious about the movie.

12. You can watch the final unaired episodes of Don't Trust the B-- on ABC right now. I liked this show, rare for me and comedy, and I'm sad it's over. I still need to watch these eps, though!

13. Speaking of me and comedy, once upon a time I read that Archer had a lot of literary references which made it go on the maybe list of shows to watch one day. Welllll, I just recently breezed through the first three seasons and I really liked it so much. It made me laugh a lot despite crass it is. So here have a link about the top ten literary references in the show.


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