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Arts and Culture


Dylan Still Rolling at 71

Sep

14

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Review of Bob Dylan’s Tempest

I pretty much feel the same way about Bob Dylan that I do about Arrested Development (the TV show, not the rap group), which is to say that I enjoy both quite a bit, but I’ve never understood the insane levels of worship that either has received. This inevitably frustrates a lot of people, but while I like a lot of Bob Dylan’s work, I’ve never fully gotten what makes him the Greatest Songwriter Ever, as so many have dubbed him.

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Turn That Racket Down

Aug

17

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Am I too old for Lollapalooza?

Young festivalgoers enjoy not yet realizing that festivals are terrible

Making a mad dash for the metro on Sunday, I wiggled through the fifth or sixth American Apparel-clad clusterfuck of the evening. As I bolted past the hordes of skinny, singing 20-somethings drunk on $7 cans of Bud, and out of Chicago’s Grant Park after an agonizing weekend of Lollapalooza, it was obvious that I was the only one in sight saying sayonara to the musical festival sans sorrow. Rather than a forced au revoir, my departure through the park gates was an all-or-nothing jailbreak. The tens of thousands of others solemnly said farewell for another year. I said goodbye for good. 

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Futurama Still Doesn’t Suck

Jul

04

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Especially Zoidberg. He fucking rules.

"Hey, look! I found a copy of The Beast from 2006 in here!"

It’s been three years since “Futurama” returned to the airwaves, and I think we can safely say the show is still funny. Admittedly, there were some concerns at the beginning, like the highly dubious “Susan Boil” episode (I get shivers just thinking about that one), but for the most part, the show is producing just as much laughter as it did in its original run.

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"Community" Is Back, Except It Might Suck Now

May

21

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I spent the entire third season of “Community” wondering if there was going to be a fourth. Much like “Arrested Development” before it, “Community” has become the quintessential acclaimed show that has a very-dedicated-but-very-small fan base. Luckily, after 8 months of anxiously pacing my room waiting to learn my show’s fate, things worked out: “Community” was given a 13 episode order for a fourth season.

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Family Guy Misses Giant Target

May

19

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As much as I’ve grown weary of Family Guy’s wacky-for-the-sake-of-wacky antics, and extreme tendency towards rape jokes, I still tune in every week. Why? Partially due to an obsessive need to see every episode no matter how bad it gets, but also because once in awhile the show can still be pretty damn good. Even in this dim season, there have still been a few standouts, like the one where Brian and Stewie traveled in time to the pilot episode, or when Stewie started dating a girl who was exactly like him, but turned out to be more evil. As awful as some episodes have been, there is still some occasional wit left in this show.

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BEASTcast 30: Bob Blaskiewicz

Apr

30

by

Bob Blaskiewicz is a Marion L. Brittain Postdoctoral Fellow at Georgia Tech’s School of Literature, Communication and Culture. He also writes for the Committee For Skeptical Inquiry and blogs at Skeptical Humanities. We talk about conspiracy theories and his recent article on the Denver International Airport. Music is by Pigface and is used with permission. You can subscribe to the BEASTcast here or rate and/or leave a review in iTunes.

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Like a Boss

Mar

07

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Review of Bruce Springsteen’s Wrecking Ball

In Bruce Springsteen’s late period, there’s been one constant: the shittier America, the better his music. In 2002, when the country was still reeling from 9/11, he gave us The Rising, the one musical statement about the attacks that didn’t feel like a massive pile of jingoistic garbage. Then, in 2007, when Bush was just about done destroying the universe, he released the excellent Magic, which made the already painfully obvious point that Dubya was an awful president somehow seem interesting and relevant. By contrast, in early 2009, when America was willing to overlook its many problems because “OMG Obama! YAY!” he released the decent, but rather lightweight Working On A Dream. Quite simply, the man thrives on pointing out America’s flaws.

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