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Marie Kondo’s new show doesn’t have to do more than ‘spark joy’

(01/18/19 7:35am)

When I returned home for the winter holidays this past November, my parents announced on the drive back from the airport that we were moving out of the home we had lived in for the last 14 years. I reacted as anyone might after an abrupt announcement that they were losing their childhood home: nervous laughter, and then an incredulous “What?”

Review: ‘Sharp Objects’ revives the Midwestern Gothic tradition

(10/19/18 6:05am)

Airing in July this past summer, HBO’s “Sharp Objects,” an adaption of “Gone Girl” author Gillian Flynn’s book of the same name, sets out to remind its audience of what is unique to the identity of the Midwestern United States and what is possible within the supposedly limited format of the miniseries. Following the story of St. Louis Chronicle journalist Camille Preaker, played by Amy Adams, “Sharp Objects” takes its audience on the journey of an investigative reporter who must vanquish her own demons while hunting down others. Assigned to report on a murder and a series of child disappearances in rural Missouri, Camille is forced to return to the fictional town of Wind Gap, Missouri, the hometown she had long left behind.

Review: ‘American Vandal’ second season is as good as the first

(09/25/18 6:10am)

A masterful and satirical take on the crime drama complex that has swept the nation, Netflix’s “American Vandal” is mysterious, delectable and utterly ridiculous. Using a documentary format, “American Vandal” mocks the sophistication of the crime drama gaze by putting all its investigative energies toward deciphering the absurdities of high school life and the low-level offenses of the fictional Hanover High School’s student body.

TV review: ‘black-ish’ spinoff ‘grown-ish’ is fresh, fun, colorful

(01/11/18 5:00am)

On Jan. 3, Freeform debuted the first two episodes of “grown-ish,” the highly-anticipated spin-off of ABC’s “black-ish.” “grown-ish” follows Zoey (Yara Shahidi), the eldest Johnson daughter, through her freshman year of college and journey into adulthood. The show is fresh, colorful and fun, featuring a diverse cast of characters and strong writing. “grown-ish” manages to build on the success of “black-ish” while asserting itself as distinct and worthy of anticipation. The show retains many of the core elements that allowed “black-ish” to rise as a critically-acclaimed sitcom on ABC. For example, “grown-ish” also stresses audience education, offering brief insights into character background and historical context, a practice which takes on new meaning as Zoey is tasked with learning who she is, where she comes from and how she wants to exist in the world. 

Review: Brosnahan dazzles as “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”

(01/09/18 5:10am)

Watching the opening scene from the new Amazon series “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” I knew immediately that the titular character would get cheated on. A woman does not happily bounce through her daily, homemaking chores that seamlessly in the first few minutes of a feature without foreshadowing the demise of that perfect, happy routine by the end of said feature. 

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