Summary of “Wipe Out: When the BBC Kept Erasing Its Own History”

Out of 253 produced episodes of Doctor Who, the BBC had not a single original copy left.
“Television meant being live, over, and done with,” says Richard Molesworth, a BBC historian and author of Wiped!, a detailed chronicle of how the channel discarded a large chunk of Doctor Who history.
Around 1975, control of managing tapes went from the Engineering Department to the BBC Film Library, which was soon renamed the BBC Film and Television Library.
At the same time, newspaper articles began to point out that the BBC had been rather mercenary in their approach to archival material.
Malden found just 57 episodes out of the 253 produced through that time scattered throughout the BBC’s various departments.
At the same time, a Who fan named Ian Levine had approached the BBC looking to buy original copies of episodes for his own private collection.
In 1983, a Mormon Church in London was cleaning out its basement when several BBC film cans, including two episodes of Doctor Who, were discovered among the clutter.
On a few occasions, Malden was able to retrieve episodes that had been seized by BBC employees simply because they were fans of the show.

The orginal article.

Summary of “50 Years Ago, Scooby Doo Was the Perfect, Weird, Hopeful Mystery Series 1969 Needed”

Fifty years after his creation, Scooby Doo needs no introduction.
The countless spin-offs and sequels within the Scooby Doo franchise have attempted to offer context and origin stories but ultimately, when viewers first encountered Scooby Doo and his friends, they were asked to take all these elements at face value-including that, if the lyrics to the title song were to be believed, there was some important work to do that required Scooby Doo’s assistance, and in fact could not be done without him.
The protagonists of Scooby Doo being so young and cool as well as classically cartoonish allows Scooby Doo to speak on multiple levels to its young audiences.
It’s the lack of realism in Scooby Doo that makes its general insistence on being realistic all the more inviting.
Reading Scooby Doo as being thoroughly invested in rationality and realism alongside its anti-capitalist sentiments offers a perspective on what work the show was doing in 1969, at the end of an increasingly turbulent decade, one month after Woodstock.
The lessons of Scooby Doo do not contradict that real capitalistic problems are harder to solve than its own cut-and-dry mysteries, so much as recommend a mindset to deal with impossible problems of any kind.
Scooby Doo suggests to the youth of America an alternative path for resistance against a greedy grown-up world, one achieved by outsmarting the enemy, rather than either fighting it or protesting it.
Towards the end of a decade marked by chaotic cultural shifts, mounting tensions, and mass violence, Scooby Doo insists that there is always an underlying solution that may be achieved through calm investigation.

The orginal article.

Summary of “8 TV Shows That Were Creatively Altered by a Writers Strike”

Thirty years ago, the longest strike in the history of the Writers Guild of America began, and lasted a full 155 days, affecting everything from MacGyver to Tim Burton’s Batman.
Writers strikes have a major impact on TV and film production.
Depending on the strike’s length, dozens of film and TV projects can be suspended, delayed, or even canceled, and rebounding when a strike is over isn’t exactly easy, either.
Numerous TV series have had to return from strike to a kind of creative reboot, from rewriting single episodes to devising entirely new finales.
BREAKING BAD An enduring legend about Breaking Bad sprung up around the 2007-08 Writers Guild of America strike.
STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION The 1988 Writers Guild of America strike was the longest in the organization’s history, and its long run cut into the production of a number of series, among them the second season of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
The writers strike offered Kring and company a chance to rethink and restructure.
Initial enthusiasm for the series led to a full season order in October 2007, just weeks before a writers strike was declared.

The orginal article.

Summary of “TV’s Reckoning with #MeToo”

The heroines of the show, a sweet, loopy friendship sitcom, are a raunchy toucan named Tuca and her best friend, an anxious parakeet named Bertie.
These stories, which were packaged as “Very special episodes,” were regularly treated as big cultural events-maybe because they stood in striking contrast to the way sexual violence was portrayed on crime shows and soaps, which tended to be hardboiled or lurid.
As with Bertie, on “Tuca and Bertie,” women on these shows are enablers as well as victims, and sometimes both.
On the second season of “GLOW,” the Netflix series about female wrestlers in the nineteen-eighties, Ruth Wilder is hit on by the head of her show’s network-and, when she refuses to sleep with him, he pulls the show from prime time and her best friend berates her for her naïveté, arguing that it was her job to string him along.
“Younger,” a sweet, smart show on TV Land, which premièred in 2015, faced a tougher set of circumstances.
“The Good Fight” is a broadly satirical show, as surreal in its way as “Tuca and Bertie,” and not a gentle romance like “Younger” or “Jane the Virgin.” But, even in a darker series, one obsessed with corruption, the choice to show its central characters as near-villains feels significant.
Even Diane Lockhart, the show’s feminist heroine, who has spent the show’s run obsessed with Donald Trump’s sexism, is key to the coverup.
TV shows, unlike novels, are never truly unaware of their audience: if they are, they don’t get renewed.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The magical earnestness of the new adult cartoon”

In this way, Tuca & Bertie joins the plethora of 21st century adult cartoons that insist there is tremendous power in re-imagining our everyday lives as something magical.
From shows like Rick and Morty to BoJack Horseman to Big Mouth to online web-comics like Lunar Baboon and Strange Planet, today’s adult cartoon is not only positioned as a silly place, but a tender and honest one too.
Unlike the live action sitcom, which often follows a template for sentimentality, the earnest adult cartoon is provocative precisely because it insists on allowing viewers a range of emotions, from utter delight to absurd fascination to outright sorrow.
In contrast, the 21st century cartoon is clearly indicated for grown-ups, insisting that animation for adults doesn’t have to just be about snark, but also about substance.
From the range of absurd delights found on Adult Swim, to the continued influence of beloved animated sitcoms like The Simpsons, Futurama, South Park, and Family Guy, no one today could possibly argue that animation is just for kids.
At a time when one’s appetite for sarcasm and just general meanness can be whetted by simply going on Twitter for a few minutes, adult cartoons are increasingly positioning themselves as a respite from the cruelties of the world, rather than a place to indulge in bad behavior.
Instead, today’s new wave of smart, nuanced adult animation is earning viewers precisely because of its daring and the way it trusts audiences to tackle complexity.
The absurd scene brings levity to a serious episode and also illustrates one of the core truths of the modern adult animated series: that things that are broken may not be able to be fully repaired, but they can be a site of beauty and wonder too.

The orginal article.

Summary of “‘Jennifer Aniston cried in my lap’: the inside story of Friends”

Twenty-five years on, Friends is still one of the most successful television shows of all time.
Before Friends became a cultural phenomenon, before the “Which friend are you?” quizzes, the layered haircuts and the cries of: “We were on a break!” – and before the show became a trusted companion on hungover days spent in bed – Friends was just another television pilot being tested for NBC executives in the hope of being picked up.
By the end of the 1994-1995 season, Friends is the eighth most-watched show on air.
In the two and a half decades since Friends first aired, the show has been continually rerun.
In recent years, critics have re-evaluated the show’s legacy, identifying problematic storylines and criticising Friends for its lack of diversity.
Now, 25 years since the show first aired, Friends is the most-streamed show in the UK, and perhaps even the most beloved TV show of all time.
Paget Brewster: A show like Friends was one in a million.
Aisha Tyler: There have been other shows that have advanced that concept of friends as chosen family, but Friends was just a perfect encapsulation of that idea.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The inside story of Bandersnatch, the weirdest Black Mirror episode yet”

Only two people really understand how “Bandersnatch” – the latest episode of Black Mirror – actually works.
It is utterly unlike any episode that has gone before it and yet is unmistakably part of the Black Mirror universe.
Although most of the people behind the episode refer to it as a film, Weeks, who programmed computer games earlier in his career, likens it to a video game.
For Todd Yellin – the Netflix VP who first floated the idea of an interactive Black Mirror episode – getting the terminology around the episode right is of critical importance.
At the opposite end, Yellin says, indicating his right hand, you have a normal Black Mirror episode.
An episode that lets viewers pick their own route through an episode naturally subverts the idea that film-makers have the final say over how a film will be viewed or understood.
The huge file sizes involved in streaming multiple versions of the same scene, by the way, are why the film isn’t available for download.Brooker says the first time he watched the completed episode of “Bandersnatch” was as close to profundity as he ever gets.
If Netflix’s bet is right, and it also works for viewers, then this episode of Black Mirror might open the floodgates to a whole new era of film-making.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Reddit detectives are hard at work decoding Black Mirror: Bandersnatch”

Early in the morning on Friday, December 28th, Netflix slipped its viewers a late Christmas present: a new episode of Charlie Brooker’s technological-dystopia anthology series Black Mirror, in the form of an interactive movie called Bandersnatch.
Bandersnatch may not have been designed specifically for decoding in the same way as those puzzles, but it’s still exactly the kind of complicated project the Reddit secret-miners thrive on dissecting.
Just like a game with save points, or one of those CYOA books, Bandersnatch lets the audience jump back to those branch points and choose a different option than they chose the first time.
Reddit users are busy at work hunting down the answers.
Another thread is digging into the subtle Black Mirror episode crossovers, references, and Easter eggs hidden in Bandersnatch.
Like so many previous attempts at interactive movies, Bandersnatch borrows heavily from games’ story-tree methodologies, where many choices are meaningless, others lead back to the main path for the sake of story economy, and still others lead to abrupt endings.
The Reddit users’ maps are effectively just a collaborative game walkthrough, and “Let’s play Bandersnatch” videos on YouTube and Bandersnatch-watch videos on Twitch may be the logical next step.
Reddit has yet to turn up any cheat codes for the movie, but given the episode’s video game theme, its openly meta storyline, and the self-referential ouroboros of an interactive story about a man trying to design an interactive story, who knows? They may actually be in there.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Emily Nussbaum: The Best TV Shows of 2018”

I really love shows from this year that are the right length, unlike, say, Netflix’s horribly paced “Maniac.”
Grant gives such a remarkable performance that I went and re-watched the delightful romantic comedy “Music and Lyrics” just to see more of him; at three episodes, the show’s exactly the right length, too.
Truly, I’ve thought about this show more than almost any show this year: it taught me a lot about a time that I lived through and thought I understood.
Nathan Fielder is a strange and clever man, and his sadistic, empathetic quasi-prank show messes with your head. A dangerous binge if you have a fever.
Consistent shows aren’t necessarily the most interesting ones; I hope that I’m not implying that.
Why would you watch a boring show like “The Romanoffs” when you could watch this?
This is the show that I watch for fun when I’m trying to kill time between the shows that I’m watching for work.
A soothing show that gives me some nice, basic ideas to improve my life, like Real Simple.

The orginal article.

Summary of “An anonymous 4chan post could help solve a 25-year-old math mystery”

A 4chan poster may have solved part of a very tricky math problem that mathematicians have been working on for at least 25 years.
The user was just trying to figure out the most efficient way to watch episodes of a nonlinear anime series, but the result has generated considerable interest from mathematicians around the world who have no way to identify the anonymous user.
Yesterday, Robin Houston, a computer scientist and mathematician tweeted about the bizarre intersection of 4chan and mathematics, inadvertently setting off a wave of public interest in the story.
The 4chan part of this saga began on September 17th, 2011, when a poster posed a question: if you wanted to watch 14 episodes of the anime The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya in every possible order, what’s the shortest string of episodes you’d need to watch?
An anonymous poster figured out one possible way to solve to the 4chan problem, satisfying the more mathematically inclined Haruhi fans.
The 4chan proof outlines how to find the smallest possible number of episodes for the solution.
Now, mathematicians have a way to figure out the range of answers, and a group of them – including Houston and Pantone – are actively working to figure out a formula that combines Egan’s work and the anonymous proof into a cohesive formula.
The 4chan episode does show that math can be accessible to anyone.

The orginal article.