Like Aaron Sorkin, the veteran rock band U2 has been making ambitious, iconic art for decades—art that can be soaring but occasionally self-important. Sorkin and U2's work draws parallels in comfort and struggle.
Hollywood is increasing Black representation but Damon Lindelof and Jordan Peele challenge audiences to question the authenticity of this system.
When I first came out as trans, I desperately wanted acceptance and validation into the "male gender", and espoused negative beliefs toward my femininity. Avatar: The Last Airbender helped me transcend that.
MTV's central role in delivering grunge to a national audience in the early 1990s demonstrated the network's power as a creator and definer of culture.
Not many knew what to make of HBO Max's initial reality competition Legendary when it first premiered, but the high tensions that ended Season 1, Episode 5 escalated the vogue-tastic and defiantly queer celebration of ballroom culture into the must-watch event of the year.
Television min-series Mrs. America and Taylor Swift documentary Miss Americana make vivid how beauty pageants are more multi-dimensional than many assume, offering a platform to some (attractive) women to pursue higher education, politics, and more.
Dyson's seminal Writing Superheroes, and how children process violence and power, is considered in a new light as children consume media in this time of social isolation.
While RuPaul's Drag Race remains a celebration of campy queer culture, Season 12 premiered as serious allegations against a contestant were quickly confirmed, forcing the producers to recut the episodes to diminish the influence of a now-known predator. Did the gambit work?
Contrary to the intention of Ken Liu's short story, "Good Hunting", Netflix presents a superficial arc of female empowerment, then allows animation and the role of male characters to undercut that message.
Tim Brooks' detailed research tells us how blackface didn't die, but found ways to multiply as the entertainment industry grew.
David Lynch and Mark Frost's seminal Twin Peaks is rich with insight as to how both people and works of fiction can age gracefully.
Author Caleb Carr's The Alienist explores the 19th century psychiatric debate between free will and determinism. TNT's nearly identical adaptation of the novel, however, comes up with a completely different conclusion.
From the Enterprise to the Discovery: The Decline and Fall of Utopian Technology and the Liberal Dream
The technology and liberalism of recent series such as Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Picard, and the latest Doctor Who series have more in common with Harry Potter's childish wand-waving than Gene Roddenberry's original techno-utopian dream.
Many fantasy writers have incorporated the visual footprint of the Third Reich into their fictional worlds. Few, however, have done so as extensively as the creator of Attack on Titan, who revisited this terrible chapter of history not to find inspiration for a fearsome antagonist, but to excavate the divisive ideas that lay buried there.
The organic growth of everyday American fascism and the understanding that pogroms are not a uniquely European phenomenon is rendered in stark and terrifying detail in David Simon's adaptation of Philip Roth's alternate historical novel, The Plot Against America.