Monthly Archives: December 2013

Christmas-on-TV, Dear Television FamilyStone

The Christmas Movie: A Hate/Need Relationship

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Dear Television, HERE’S THE THING no one wants to admit about televised Christmas movies: they’re all horrible. Don’t get me wrong, there are beautiful moments in every Christmas movie: when Kevin rigs the entire house to look like a party dancing to “Rocking Around the Christmas Tree,” for example, in Christmas classic Home Alone, or […]


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20 Minutes into the Future SFimage12813

Back to the Present of the Future: Continuum and the War on Terror

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By Jonathan Alexander I’LL BEGIN WITH A DISCLAIMER: as much as I love SF, time-travel stories are my least favorite.  Granted, notable exceptions abound: H. G. Well’s Time Machine, which arguably launches the genre of SF as a whole, and Greg Benford’s Timescape are both brilliantly executed fables that use time travel to meditate on […]


The China Blog

Late-Breaking Iran and China News: A 1979 Flashback

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by Jeffrey Wasserstrom The weekend before Thanksgiving was a big one for international headlines. The biggest breaking story, coming out of Geneva, was of a multinational team of negotiators hammering out a nuclear-arms deal with Iran.  When John Kerry announced this agreement, American commentators reached quickly for historical analogies, focusing mostly on two years in […]


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Dear Television, The Music Video swift

I Don’t Know I’m Beautiful

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Dear Television, I FIND MUSIC VIDEOS to be a lot of work. When someone sends me a link to a new (and frequently contentious!) music video asking my “thoughts?” I hide. Close tab close tab close tab. Time-wise, they’re not actually that bad. Unlike articles, you know exactly how long it will take to finish […]


Dear Television, The Music Video Love

3 Ways of Looking at Arcade Fire

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Dear Television, EVERYBODY HATED “Bound 2.” I don’t mean the song. In fact, if you ask Yeezy purists, probably too many people liked the song (the lone example of Kanye West’s more mainstream chipmunk soul on an uncommonly aggressive album). No, everybody hated Kanye West’s video for “Bound 2.” (My favorite description of the background […]


Dear Television, The Music Video MusicVid

How to Make a Music Video About Nothing: Ke$ha, Pitbull, & “Timber”

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Dear Television, WE WATCH MUSIC VIDEOS for three overarching and often related reasons: hotness, dancing, and story. You might not like to admit to the first one, but the amount of hotness in videos can only suggest that we like it. Whether the video is for Drake or Tim McGraw, Miley Cyrus or Celine Dion, […]