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Category Archives: Culture

Game of Thrones

In looking through the blog logs yesterday, I noticed that someone searched for “Game of Thrones.” It seems odd in retrospect that I haven’t really blogged about the greatest achievement in fantasy since Tolkien, both in literature and in television. (I’m open to the argument that George R.R. Martin’s achievement has surpassed Tolkien’s.) The reason, […]

How to win: Torture the language and muddle the story

I pay very little attention to the science fiction and fantasy publishing industry anymore. Almost every book I try to read, I end up flinging away in frustration after the first few pages. Almost no one knows how to write, and almost no one knows how to tell a story. Instead, what passes for “good […]

Not quite canary

For the past few months, I’ve been rereading Winston Graham’s Poldark novels. I’m now on book 8. I would rate Winston Graham as one of the best novelists of the 20th Century, but that’s a post for another day. This post is about wine — dessert wine in particular. In the Poldark novels, the poor […]

The Brontës: To Walk Invisible

For literature lovers, “To Walk Invisible” is a must-see. It’s a two-hour, two-part British production about the Brontë sisters, shown this spring in the U.S. on PBS and now available on DVD. It is an extremely strange production, and it will give Brontë fans hours of arguing and brooding material. As far as I know, […]

Coming Dec. 15: The Last Jedi

Today Disney released a teaser for the next Star Wars Film, “The Last Jedi.” The film will be released Dec. 15. It is thrilling to see Gwendolyn Christie cast in the new film. She is the 6’3″ British actress who plays Brienne in HBO’s “Game of Thrones.” It’s heartwarming to see new scenes with Carrie […]

Rich young creeps and their creepy visions

What is it about young tech billionaires that makes them so creepy? Partly, I’m sure, it’s the character flaws that they seem to have in common — hubris, arrogance, the assurance of superiority that goes along with their being very smart and having made themselves very rich. They also see themselves as visionaries who have […]

Increasingly violent and authoritarian propaganda

⬆︎ National Rifle Association ad ⬆︎ Trump assault ad: Ladies and gentlemen, the president of the United States, talking directly to the American people If I were a right-wing propagandist, my big concern right now would be heading off catastrophic damage to the Republican Party if (though I would say when) Trump voters see their […]

A Tales of the City revival

It had to happen, now that I think about it. Armistead Maupin let his Facebook friends know today that Variety has reported that Netflix is planning a remake of Maupin’s Tales of the City. The books, which have sold more than 6 million copies, were first serialized in the San Francisco Chronicle and the San […]

Summer movies

Dunkirk It’s a good summer if there is at least one summer movie that’s worth going to the theater for. There is one for sure this summer. That’s “Dunkirk,” to be released July 21. We all know this history, but we never get tired of hearing the story retold. At the time, an alliance of […]

Anne of Green Gables

For the past five days, after the chickens have gone to bed, and after being whipsawed during the day by the news out of Washington, I have retreated to the television to watch an episode of “Anne With an E,” a new production of Anne of Green Gables produced by Canada’s CBC and available for […]