In part one of our live show from December, you heard us talk about culture and the end of the year, as we often do. You heard us explain what's making us happy this week — it was pretty much a regular show, with the addition of our terrific live audience.
This week, in part two, you'll hear something very different.
Malcolm-Jamal Warner plays Dr. John Prentice in Arena Stage's production of <em>Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.</em>
Credit Amy Ta / NPR
Malcolm-Jamal Warner plays Dr. John Prentice and Bethany Anne Lind plays Joanna Drayton in a new production of <em>Guess Who's Coming to Dinner</em>. Warner says the 1967 film had to treat the subject matter lightly, but that this staging delves deeper into the characters' emotions.
Credit Teresa Wood / Arena Stage
<em>The Cosby Show </em>starred (clockwise from top left) Tempestt Bledsoe as Vanessa Huxtable, Malcolm-Jamal Warner as Theodore "Theo" Huxtable, Lisa Bonet as Denise Huxtable, Phylicia Rashad as Clair Huxtable, Keshia Knight Pulliam as Rudy Huxtable, and Bill Cosby as Dr. Heathcliff "Cliff" Huxtable.
Actor Malcolm-Jamal Warner is best-known for the role he played in the '80s, as Theo Huxtable on The Cosby Show. He's so well-known for that role, in fact, that even now — at age 43 — he still gets called by the wrong name.
"People kind of have a misconception, because when someone calls me Theo and I correct them, say, 'No, my name is Malcolm,' they think I have an attitude about it and I don't want to be associated with the show," Warner explains to NPR's David Green.
Reeve Carney (right) handed off the lead role in <em>Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark</em> to successor Justin Matthew Sargent in September 2013. The show closes Jan. 4, and the Smithsonian Institution announced today that it's acquiring Carney's costume.
Credit Rob Kim / Getty Images
"Dark" day: On Dec. 20, 2010, actor Christopher Tierney suffered a harrowing fall and severe injuries during a performance of <em>Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. </em>The show updated its safety protocols, and Tierney returned to his roles in April 2011.
Regardless of how critics and audiences eventually responded, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark was always going to be one of the most-discussed shows in Broadway history. It had songs by U2's Bono and the Edge; it was directed by The Lion King's Julie Taymor; it was based on a hit Marvel franchise; there were going to be flying stunts right over the audience's heads.
And then somehow it all went very wrong, from injured actors to huge cost overruns.
Other exhibits on display at the Museum include "<a href="http://mmuseumm.com/exhibitions/silicon-body-part-piercing-displays">Silicon Body Part Piercing Displays</a>," "<a href="http://mmuseumm.com/exhibitions/cambodian-menu-photo-rejects">Cambodian Menu Photo Rejects</a>" and "<a href="http://mmuseumm.com/exhibitions/new-york-city-tip-jars-2">New York City Tip Jars</a>."
Imagine a museum that's only 6 square feet. It's called, simply, Museum and it's housed in an old elevator shaft in an alley near New York City's courts. It has some odd exhibits on 18 small shelves, and only about four people can fit into the space at a time.
My favorite crime novels always combine more than one genre. Like a detective mystery that's really psychological. Or a police captain who happens to be a gourmet. Honestly, most travel books don't even get going until a body or two is discovered.
In the case of Before I Burn by Gaute Heivoll, the mashup is suspense meets memoir. It sounds a little gimmicky, but I promise it's absolutely not. Instead we have a semi-autobiographical novel that's poetic, gripping and at times even profound.
It's never a good sign when a character in a mystery has to give a speech at the end explaining exactly what's just happened. You know, just in case the story itself didn't actually manage to make it clear.
Sure, Hitchcock gets away with it at the end of Psycho, but only because the whodunit portion of that movie isn't the thing that makes it so great. Also, he's Alfred Hitchcock; the masters can get away with breaking some rules, because they can make up others that work just as well.
If you're a wine drinker, you've probably noticed that screw caps are no longer considered the closure just for cheap vino. Increasingly, bottles of very good wines are unscrewed, rather than uncorked.
In the old days, a movie genre was a simple, communal category: Action/Adventure, Comedy, Drama. One had to locate oneself in the Drama aisle at the video store and then look for just the right thing: A dark road trip movie with a strong female lead? Aha, Thelma & Louise.
Many Americans were introduced to the world of early 20th century British servants through the PBS series Downton Abbey, which premieres its fourth season Sunday. The show is set in an era when domestic service was the largest single occupation in Great Britain.
"In 1900, it was calculated to comprise a third of all women who were in the workforce," writer Lucy Lethbridge tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies.
Critics are slamming Beyonce for using an audio clip from the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster in her new song "XO." Was she being insensitive, or artistic? Host Michel Martin hears from the beauty shop ladies: journalists Bridget Johnson and Keli Goff, and Maria Teresa Kumar of Voto Latino.
Meg Wolitzer's most recent novel is The Interestings.
What's potentially more troubling than a memoirist out for revenge? One who's only out for truth. Gary Shteyngart's dazzling, highly enjoyable book is the story of his life — a story that he owns, along with all the details. Yet, as an only child who immigrated from Leningrad to Queens with his parents in 1979, with no brothers or sisters to provide narrative distraction, he not only provides an intimate look at himself, he also by necessity put his parents under a fairly strong magnifying lens.
Originally published on Thu January 2, 2014 11:59 am
Photographer John Dominis died Monday at age 92 and left behind one of those archives that are hard to comprehend. Over the course of a few decades at Life magazine, Dominis not only worked in just about every photographic genre but also seemed to have mastered them.
Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 8:10 am
When I was 7 years old, living in a flat overlooking Hamra street in Ras Beirut, I read The Hobbit. I fell in love with it. I memorized all the songs and made up tunes to them; I memorized all the riddles and asked them of whoever would listen; I made up my own adventures in Mirkwood, my own encounters with Gandalf and Beorn and the Elves. I also read everything I could about Tolkien, and went in search of anything else he'd written. I decided that I too would be a writer, and that I would start with poems and work my way into fiction the way he did.
The journalism world may be in crisis, but one magazine in France has been steadily gaining subscribers for 40 years. It's a nature journal called La Hulotte, and twice a year it focuses on an animal or plant indigenous to the French countryside. The magazine published its 100th issue in November. It has more than 150,000 subscribers in many countries and is doing terrific financially.
Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 4:32 am
In case you want to add a pinch of celebratory beverage to your first meal of the year, we invite you to look through the Kitchen Window. A spirited New Year's can come from the kitchen as well as the bar.
We've featured a number of stories using alcohol as an ingredient in cooking as well as in bartending — if it tastes good in a glass, it tastes good on a plate. It's also a great way to use up any leftover libations from your holiday celebrations.
The year passed so awfully quickly, like a twitch in a shooter game, that it kind of faked me out. A week ago, I didn't believe there were 10 stellar games to make a complete 'best of' story. But I looked at a list I'd been keeping since January. I was suddenly overwhelmed — I saw at least 30 worthy games. And from those, I plucked the very best of 2013.
Originally published on Tue December 31, 2013 9:00 am
Here's why picking a Top 10 list of best TV shows has become such treacherous work for critics this year: Quite simply, 2013 was the year quality exploded in the television industry.
Thanks to the simultaneous maturing of Netflix, AMC, FX, HBO, Showtime, Amazon, BBC America, Sundance Channel, iTunes and many more media platforms, fans of great television had more options than ever to find high-quality product whenever and wherever they liked.