TV

Lena Dunham, Amy Poehler and the Modern Feminist Discourse

Melinda Parks

And so it seems appropriate that Lena Dunham and Amy Poehler, influential female actors and writers in their respected realms of comedy, would choose this year to publish memoirs detailing their experiences as women in entertainment. Dunham’s Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s Learned, released in September, and Poehler’s Yes Please, published a month later, build on the now well-established trend of intimate autobiographies penned by female entertainers. In fact, in her preface, Poehler cites the memoirs of comedians like Tina Fey, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Silverman, and Rachel Dratch as inspiration for her own writing. 

From Agnes Towler to Peggy Olson: The Working Woman on Television

Sophia Dorval

When Julia hit the airwaves in 1968, much was made of the choice for that sitcom's titular lead character, a pre-Dynasty Diannh Carroll portraying another small screen first, a Black woman in a non-servile position.   In contrast to the revolutionary tone of the raging ‘60s, Carroll's Julia was a suburban single mother, nurse and Vietnam War widow who provided lighthearted laughs for three seasons.  This precursor to The Cosby Show helped Carroll make history as the first Black actress to earn an Emmy nomination as a lead actress in a comedy series.   

The Ongoing Revolution of Television

Veronica Mendez

Media platforms like Netflix, Hulu, and even Amazon have all released successful series this past season. They have lured big-time writers and directors like Weed's Jenji Kohan and “Fight Club’s” David Fincher. TV is now drawing big-time players like Matthew McCaughey (True Detective), Martin Scorsese (Boardwalk Empire), and John Goodman (Alpha House) to the small screen,  which was unthinkable 10 years ago.Yet this “Golden Age” in TV also means fierce competition. With the rise in popularity of digital platforms like Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu, the television landscape has been severely altered. 

Louie, Breaking Bad, and the Rise of Quality Television

Andrew Cothren

It’s no secret that the summer television season isn’t exactly high quality. It’s typically a time for major networks to dump shows that were, for one reason or another, deemed  sub par for a  slot in their regular season lineup or to air reality shows and competitions that cost very little to produce-- which is why you end up with shows like Combat Hospital, an import from Canada, showing up on ABC’s primetime schedule, or competition shows like So You Think You Can Dance? airing multiple times in a given week.

        

Jesters Do Oft Prove Prophets

Daniel Sampson

The continued popularity of "fake" news.

 

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