Summary of “How ‘BoJack Horseman’ Got Made: An Oral History”

The email from Raphael Bob-Waksberg to Lisa Hanawalt on March 22, 2010, was to the point: “Hey, do you have a picture of one of your horse guys, by himself? I came up with this idea for a show I’d like to pitch. Tell me what you think: BoJack the Depressed Talking Horse.”
Raphael Bob-Waksberg: The question was: “Could it be sports? Instead of a former sitcom actor, could he be a former racehorse? And what would that look like?” I had some pitches for that, and how the story would change, but I said, “I really like the show-business angle and here’s why “.
Steven A. Cohen: I think one of the great things about Michael is that he’ll come in and try to push something to a certain place – or maybe try just to push Raphael for the first time, to see how much he really believes in this idea.
Raphael Bob-Waksberg: The whole tagline for Secretariat – “He’s tired of running in circles” – came out of that meeting with Michael about BoJack, where we talked about how BoJack is tired of running in circles and he wants to do something else.
The script process, once we hired Raphael to write the script, was also the beginning of knowing how it would be to work with him.
Noel Bright: I love how Raphael tells the story about how the casting went: “Can we get this person?” “Sure!” “Wait – we really can get that person?” And then, all of a sudden, “Yeah, that person just said yes.
The culmination of more than three years of talking, writing, drawing, and animating saw Raphael’s “Depressed Talking Horse” become BoJack Horseman at the stroke of midnight on August 22, 2014, when the series went live.
Raphael could have made that show just a funny cartoon for grown-ups, and it probably would have been fine.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Shaming of Geoffrey Owens and the Inability to See Actors as Laborers, Too”

I remembered Geoffrey Owens not from “The Cosby Show,” on which he played Elvin Tibideaux for five seasons, but from my sophomore year at Yale, where he was teaching undergraduate acting.
In other words, Owens is what we think of as a successful working actor: known but not a “Celebrity,” with an IMDb page that rarely skips a year.
Apparently, that’s why a woman shopping at Trader Joe’s last week, in Clifton, New Jersey, was so jarred to see Owens bagging groceries that she snapped his photo and sent it to the Daily Mail, which ran the headline, “From learning lines to serving the long line!” Fox News picked up the story, and on Saturday a Twitter storm erupted-most of it shaming Fox News for shaming Owens for working for a living.
The editor Max Weiss wrote, “RT if you think Geoffrey Owens took a much more honorable path in his life than Bill Cosby.” Even Dana Loesch, the N.R.A. spokeswoman, weighed in: “I hate stories like this. He’s a man working hard, there’s shame in publishing this story but not in this man’s job.”
We don’t tend to think of actors as laborers, despite the robust unions that represent them-Actors’ Equity and SAG-AFTRA. The most visible actors serve as aspirational figures, celebrated for their glamour and luxury.
As plenty of people pointed out on social media, conservative outlets like Fox paint Hollywood actors as coastal élites, out of touch with working Americans, only to turn around and “Expose” one of them for earning a paycheck.
There was, of course, a racial element as well, which the writer Mark Harris described as a subtext that begins “See? Even when you give them every opportunity, they still end up….” One wonders if Owens would have drawn any attention if he’d been spotted working as a coal miner or some other “Salt of the earth” job thought of as honorable and manly, rather than in a “Softer” form of labor that is itself suffering from what The Atlantic called “The Silent Crisis of Retail Employment.”
Geoffrey Owens and Cynthia Nixon both became famous after starring on beloved sitcoms, which means that their work had value for millions of people.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why I can’t stop posting my kid’s photos and sharing him with the world”

The instinct has long been there; it’s just that it used to require a lot more overhead. In the 1970s, for example, there was the post-vacation slide show, in which relatives and friends of the lucky travelers had the bad luck to be buttonholed into two hours of photos with lengthy you-had-to-be-there anecdotes.
Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are also a way of flipping open your wallet to the world and saying, “Here’s my son Thomas, the person who brings me more happiness than I could ever have imagined.”
At work, I created a channel on the messaging application Slack where all I do is share photos and videos of Thomas, splashing my love for him onto everyone around me.
No picture of Thomas with a goofy expression in the bath.
Pictures of Thomas are taken indoors or in places either so abstract as to be unidentifiable or so popular that it doesn’t matter.
Where things are tricky isn’t in how I approach sharing images of Thomas but in how others do.
We ask people not to tag a location when they are taking pictures of Thomas, but it’s harder to ask them not to post images where he looks goofy.
Thomas was born into a world where his image was already mostly out of his control.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Big Bang Theory is better at portraying geekdom than haters admit”

The Big Bang Theory is still filled with punchlines about Leonard’s lactose intolerance and Sheldon’s germophobia, such that anyone dropping in on the show for the first time, or only encountering it through short clips in anti-BBT YouTube rants, might come away thinking it’s just stale, lazy digs at nerds.
From roughly its third season onward, The Big Bang Theory has been one of the premiere “Hangout” sitcoms of its era, like Friends in its heyday.
There’s a reason I’ve tagged season 3 as the point where The Big Bang Theory becomes something special.
The Big Bang Theory became a consistently enjoyable show about halfway through season 1, as Parsons, Galecki, Helberg, Nayyar, and Cuoco started bringing more nuance and individual personalities to their characters.
The Big Bang Theory subtly suggests that maybe these gentlemen should lighten up, treat women as equals and as people, and start looking for friends and partners, not just hookups.
Enjoying The Big Bang Theory requires a higher tolerance for the classic sitcom form than many younger viewers have had the chance to develop.
It’d be nice if everyone who slams The Big Bang Theory for what they insist is a sneering attitude toward geekdom would recognize how knowledgeable Lorre, Prady, and their writers actually are about all the things their haters love.
At a time when superhero movies top the box office and technology wonks like Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are household names, The Big Bang Theory has helped promote the idea that nerds are the new normal.

The orginal article.

Summary of “and How They’re Fixing It – Rolling Stone”

You’ll often hear streaming drama creators claim that they’re making “a 10-hour movie,” which is a self-defeating concept that ignores the value of crafting individual episodes, even if those episodes are part of a big serialized arc.
So you’ll hear people talking about the underwater BoJack episode or the Thanksgiving Master of None episode in a way they don’t tend to about your dramas.
Not just with number of episodes but episode length and varying episode length.
Do you have particular favorite episodes you would cite of some of your original dramas?I actually am one of the people who liked the episode seven of Season Two of Stranger Things.
Some of those are probably for budget reasons though and they’re like, OK, how do you get the bottle episode in here? So, I’m not casting aspersion, I just, knowing production as I do, that’s often what happens.
The Good Wife did 22 episodes a year on CBS, and maybe half of them were serialized in some way and half were just to fill the episode order.
The great thing about that show is, if I’m in the mood, I can go back and revisit one episode, where with a lot of intensely serialized shows, I know that if I try to rewatch one, I’m going to want to rewatch five, and I don’t have the time.
What were some of your favorite episodes of TV ever?Favorite episodes of TV ever, oh my gosh.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Penn Jillette, In Conversation”

The long and successful career of Penn Jillette, the bigger half of the magic duo Penn & Teller, itself constitutes a kind of trick.
“I don’t know if magic has changed much since I’ve been doing this,” says Jillette, 63, sitting in his dressing room before a show at the Rio Hotel’s Penn & Teller theater in Vegas.
Has the popular image of magic changed in any profound way since you started?It’s hard to say because, look, you can name about 10,000 musicians off the top of your head. And you, a guy who has been researching magic and wasting your fucking time preparing for this interview, can probably only name about 15 magicians.
From a 1987 piece in the Times: “Some of the most celebrated young magicians – exemplars of ‘the new magic” or ‘avant-magic,” as it is being billed – have rejected significant elements of the magical tradition. Some are even saying they feel uncomfortable about being associated with the word magic. ‘We think of it as the M word,’ said Mr. Jillette.'” Illusionist and multiple-island-owner David Copperfield is the world’s most well-paid magician.
The Magic Castle is a Los Angeles venue, restaurant, and private club for magic where visitors must say a password to a sculpture of an owl to get in.
“When we went to commercial,” Penn has recalled, “Dave swore at us and pushed us away from him. He wouldn’t even look at us. He didn’t say goodnight to us.” Raymond Joseph Teller met Jillette in 1974, and they began their trademark show in 1981.
Teller normally does not speak in shows or in public, citing early magic shows at frat parties where bros paid closer attention when he was silent.
Penn & Teller: Fool Us presents young magicians performing in front of the pair – if Penn and Teller cannot determine the trick’s mechanics, the magician wins a trip to Vegas to open for the duo.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Jay Leno Doesn’t Need Your Forgiveness”

Maron groans softly as Leno acts out the muffled gunshots: “Like, ‘Shhhhhhh,’ puh. ‘Shhhhhhh,’ puh puh puh. ‘Shhhhhhh,’ puh.” Leno says he’s told this joke onstage a few times already.
Did something so silly and distasteful actually get a laugh? And it will not surprise your average performative Jay Leno hater to learn that according to the man himself, it totally did.
Second, NBC horrifically botched Leno’s own 2009 Tonight Show handoff to Conan O’Brien, hedging by giving Leno his own hour-long 10 p.m. show to keep him from jumping to another network.
When both The Jay Leno Show and Conan’s Tonight Show struggled initially, a harebrained plot was hatched to give Jay a half-hour at 11:35 p.m. and push Conan to 12:05 a.m., a humiliating demotion.
Conan quit in a huff and eventually took his talents to TBS. But not before several weeks of awkward and fully televised fury, which spread to Conan’s many defenders, including Jimmy Kimmel, the fresher-faced ABC star who lambasted Leno right there on The Jay Leno Show.
As for Jay Leno superfans-are there Jay Leno superfans? Is it such a terrible thing if there aren’t?-Maron’s goal is to get his guest to express regret, to apologize, to grovel at the feet of his many haters, from Howard Stern to Conan himself.
Talking to Maron, Leno describes his style of humor like this: “It’s what you call evergreen topical. ‘Cause most people don’t know anything. I learned on The Tonight Show, once you get past secretary of state, nobody has any idea who you’re talking about. They just don’t know anything. So you have to talk about, How ’bout the ECONOMY? And CONGRESS?”.
Leno is, technically, still a part of the modern landscape, but Jay Leno’s Garage is defiantly dry and gearhead-centric, with nothing whatsoever to offer those with no emotional investment in the 1992 Mazda Autozam AZ-1.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Futures of the Major TV Networks Are Coming Into Focus”

The Television Critics Association’s summer press tour, currently underway in Los Angeles, often serves as a helpful litmus test for the networks and the streamers that produce the medium’s best programming.
The TCA tours-which happen twice a year-congregate the biggest networks and the critics and reporters that cover them into one place.
It’s mutually beneficial: the press get access to the minds behind the programming they cover, and the networks in turn can use any press to churn the hype machine for the programs that merit it.
Below is a handy guide for assessing how the biggest networks and streamers are positioning themselves for 2018 and beyond.
While AMC isn’t operating as it was during its Prestige TV heyday, back when Breaking Bad and Mad Men were at the height of their powers, the network is rapidly on the rise again, becoming more than a Walking Dead content mill.
Netflix supplanted HBO’s stranglehold on the Emmys, up to a point-for the first time in nearly 20 years, HBO didn’t garner the most Emmy nominations from a single network.
It’s not a lot, but what the network does have coming is undeniably exciting.
Facebook Watch is even newer-still attempting to conceptualize its role in an ever-growing pile of networks and programming.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Virgil Abloh Conquered Streetwear and Took Men’s High Fashion By Storm”

Not long into his career in fashion, Abloh quickly, cannily secured real estate on the backs and bosoms of the hottest-ticket celebrities to hit our Tumblr and Instagram feeds, people whose style, in today’s pointedly brand- and image-aware economy, seemed to cut through the noise.
In interviews, West and Abloh, sincere allies, have spoken of their mutual dream to get behind the sanctified doors of the fashion industry.
“Making it,” for Abloh and West, was getting a post in a top fashion house.
That’s telling us something-you sense an unwillingness, or an inability, for Abloh to leave behind the people who helped make it happen.
Rihanna, whose ascent as a hot rod for fashion trends tracks alongside Abloh’s own rise, was also there, baking in one of the long rows of tightly seated benches with the rest of us.
Being the man of the hour, get flowers, lots of them, a sardine-can pileup of bouquets stashed under a white neon sign that reads, LOUIS VUITTON FOREVER. If, like Abloh, you were a radical choice for the job in the first place-an outsider from the ground up, who studied engineering and architecture instead of fashion and got his start selling printed T-shirt markups and working for West rather than earning his path assisting on the floor of a major house-you’re treated to a little something extra.
Abloh’s value isn’t in the ideas he has about fashion but rather in the ideas he has about its consumers.
“Organizing, art-directing the moment at which people heard the music for the first time.” Communicating the attitude and intent of the music to its first audience through design was very much an Abloh vocation.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Previously On: How Recaps Changed the Way We Watch Television”

The recap, as it’s now known, starts from a simple, user-friendly premise: What if, instead of simply telling viewers whether or not they should spend their time on a show before it even airs, a writer tracked a program’s ups and downs for the people who’d already made that commitment? It’s an intuitive idea – deceptively so, given the recap’s enormous impact on how we watch, discuss, and think about television.
A product so of its time is especially vulnerable to change, and both television and the internet have changed considerably since the recap’s heyday in the mid-aughts.
As the old saying goes, journalism is the first draft of history, recaps are the first draft of an updated understanding of TV. Part of the reason now-classic episodes like Mad Men’s “The Suitcase,” Breaking Bad’s “Ozymandias,” or The Sopranos’ finale are remembered as such is because recappers were there to register their amazement and enumerate the reasons why those hours had the power to shock and surprise.
A third epicenter of what came to be known as “Recap culture” – the diverse ecosystem of writers and commenters that flourished across a constellation of sites – arose in 2007, when Chicago-based site The A.V. Club, an offshoot of The Onion focused on arts and culture, started running its own series of recaps collectively branded TV Club.
“Which was, if I’m gonna do this, I’m gonna have to do it in a way that excites me or interests me or is just me. Engaging the text of the show with my personality and my geeky lenses was a way to do that.” It was also a way of drawing a like-minded readership, a textbook case of what became one of the fundamental laws of recapping: The voice of the recapper could be an attraction in and of itself, earning devotees that echoed the recappers’ own interest in their chosen show.
As a grassroots internet phenomenon, recaps were often an entry point for demographics who wouldn’t otherwise find their way into TV criticism, and part of what’s lost along with them is the opportunity to read about television from different perspectives than the default.
Recaps are past their peak, but they’re also far from dead. No less august an entity than The New York Times now runs recaps of a whole slate of shows, affording a legitimacy it would have been impossible to conceive of in the days of Usenet groups and Dawson’s Wrap.
At Vulture, recaps are “Still a very big part of what we do, but I also think it’s now just one part of what we do. It’s one part of a coverage plan, and that can include explainers, think pieces, what are the biggest questions asked after this episode of Westworld.” Recaps were just one expression of an idea that still holds sway over the internet, and how audiences talk about TV in general: essentially, that it’s worth talking about – publicly, rigorously, and joyfully.

The orginal article.