Sex & the Spotlight: Harvey Weinstein Is Nothing New in Hollywood

Harvey Weinstein

Hollywood has always been built on power and vulnerability, and abusers like Harvey Weinstein have been a mainstay since the days of Rita Hayworth and Marilyn Monroe. At the time of this writing, Harvey Weinstein has been accused by 40 women of sexual misconduct over the course of his career as a producer and distributor of films. While applauded by the industry for his “cultural impact,” few saw it fit to speak up about the decades of abuse, assault and rape that had been going on in their ranks. Yet when news broke of Harvey Weinstein forcefully performing oral sex on one actress and masturbating into a plant while cornering an unsuspecting news anchor, no one seemed the least bit surprised — apart from Harvey’s closest friends. And why is that? Why didn’t anyone speak up sooner? Because this is who Hollywood is, and has been, since the very beginning. Think:        …read more

Remembering a Legend on Tom Petty’s Birthday

Tom Petty’s birthday

On Tom Petty’s birthday, October 20, we remember 6 reasons why we loved the man and his music. I’ve been listening to Tom Petty since the womb. My mom is undoubtedly his biggest fan. She calls him, simply, “Thomas” and always has. My first concert? Tom Petty. The first time music brought me to tears? Tom Petty. My first crush? The girl from Tom Petty’s “Free Fallin’” video. That “good girl” who loves her mama, Jesus, America, Elvis, horses and her boyfriend too. I’ve been obsessed with Tom Petty my whole life. I’ve learned most of his songs on guitar. I’ve seen Runnin’ Down a Dream, Peter Bogdanovich’s excellent documentary on Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and savored every word of Paul Zollo’s Conversations With Tom Petty and Petty: The Biography by Warren Zanes — all of which I highly recommend. So when news hit on October 2, 2017, that        …read more

The Walking Dead Comic vs. the Show: Similarities & Differences

the Walking Dead comic

AMC uses the framework of The Walking Dead comic but creates their own zombie world. The toe-curling tension of the postapocalyptic zombie world in AMC’s The Walking Dead has locked in fans and casual viewers ever since the show aired its first episode in 2010. The gory show is based on The Walking Dead comic books created by Robert Kirkman with illustrations from Charlie Adlard. The ongoing comic book series is now in its 14th year and has 170 issues, while the show has seven seasons and a moderately successful spinoff show. Both mediums enjoyed unprecedented commercial success and are now firmly established in pop culture. In light of the season eight premiere, let’s analyze the show and look at some noticeable differences from the comic books. SPOILERS AHEAD! As with all book-to-TV adaptations, the story lines of the comic books and the show overlap. However, there are both minor        …read more

Stephen King Adaptations: The Best and the Worst

Stephen King movies

This year brings more Stephen King movies and shows than ever before. Which adaptations have been the all-time best and worst? Would you believe me if I told you there have been more adaptations of Stephen King’s stories and novels than King books themselves? It’s true. By the end of 2017, King’s book count — novels, short story collections and nonfiction — will stand at 71. The number of King adaptations — feature films, TV series, miniseries, made-for-TV movies — will reach 93, and two more are currently scheduled to add to that total next year. Adaptations of the iconic novelist’s work have been a part of our culture for almost as long as his books. Carrie, King’s debut novel, was made into a film just two years after its 1974 release. Ever since, Stephen King movies and shows have rolled out almost every year, and quite often more than        …read more

What ‘Mr. Robot’ Gets Right about Cybersecurity and Hacking Attacks

With Rami Malek, Christian Slater and the cast back for season three of ‘Mr. Robot,’ we spoke to cybersecurity specialists about what makes this show so impressively realistic in its portrayal of hacking culture. It’s sadly too easy to rattle off the many ways Hollywood has watered down cybersecurity and hacking scenes in films and shows over the past two decades: Swordfish, Live Free and Die Hard, CSI: Cyber, The Net… I could go on and on. But it’s been difficult to name films or shows that accurately depicted cybersecurity threats, the defense against those attacks and the programming languages used by the pros…until Mr. Robot came along in 2015. The series follows Elliot (Rami Malek), a hacker and programmer whose gang of fellow counterculture misfits aim to attack the online defenses of E Corp, a massive conglomerate resembling Google or Microsoft. Rami and his hacking crew, fsociety, aim to        …read more

Deckard Is Back...And Other Reasons We’re Stoked for 'Blade Runner 2049'

Blade Runner 2

'Blade Runner 2049,' starring Harrison Ford and Ryan Gosling, hits theaters 35 years after the original. Fall 2017 will go down in history as the season that brought us Blade Runner 2049. Thirty-five years since its release, the original movie has finally been granted a sequel. The first Blade Runner is hailed by sci-fi buffs and movie critics alike as undoubtedly one of the most seminal science fiction films produced in the 20th century. “Look at Dark City, Total Recall, Brazil, 12 Monkeys or Gattaca and you will see its progeny,” the late Roger Ebert noted in his review of the director’s cut. Written, directed and edited by British action-epic virtuoso Ridley Scott, the 1982 cult classic is famous for its immersive and detailed environments. Though Scott took on the role of producer for Blade Runner 2, allowing Denis Villeneuve to take over as director, the trailers suggest his signature        …read more

Are ‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘Black Mirror’ Really So Similar?

Twilight Zone, Black Mirror

‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘Black Mirror’ are frequently compared, but here are three fundamental differences. If you’re just catching on to the series Black Mirror, you’re not alone. Though it first aired on British television at the end of 2011, its acquisition by Netflix in 2016 brought it to a whole new audience. The original press release for the series called it “a hybrid of The Twilight Zone and Tales of the Unexpected which taps into our contemporary unease about our modern world.” This particular bit of marketing of the techno-drama series, which mainly plays on insecurities about the digital world, seems to have been particularly effective. A whole lot of articles have declared Black Mirror the heir to The Twilight Zone. That’s a difficult standard for any show to live up to, but Black Mirror does admirably well. Both shows are quite largely concerned with future worlds and the morality        …read more