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Thursday, October 27


I Want My MTV

An excerpt from a new oral history of MTV.

Friday, October 21


Group Portrait With Television

The story of the Delmar family, told through what they watch on TV.

Monday, October 17


Peyton's Place

When your house is the set of One Tree Hill:

On one shoot, I remember, I'd been confused about where they needed to set up (confession: hungover), and as a result neglected to clean the bedroom. Later, a crew guy—the same one who'd told me about Blue Velvet—said, "I'm not used to picking up other people's underwear." I felt like saying, Then don't go into their bedrooms at nine o'clock in the morning! Except… he was paying to be in my bedroom.

Friday, October 14


The Eternal Adolescence of Beavis and Butt-Head

A profile of Mike Judge, creator of the now-resuscitated Beavis and Butthead.

Monday, September 26


And… Scene.

An oral history of the Upright Citizens Brigade.

Thursday, September 15


Jon Stewart and the Burden of History

A profile of the comedian who’s “not so funny anymore”:

Jon Stewart has made a career of avoiding "Whooo" humor. He has flattered the prejudices of his audience, but he has always been funny, and he has always made them laugh. At the Juan Williams taping, however, at least half of Stewart's jokes elicited the sound of Whooo! instead of the sound of laughter. He's been able to concentrate his comedy into a kind of shorthand — a pause, or a raised eyebrow, is often all that is necessary now — but a stranger not cued to laugh could be forgiven for not laughing, indeed for thinking that what was going on in front of him was not comedy at all but rather high-toned journalism with a sense of humor. Which might be how Jon Stewart wants it by now.

Monday, September 12


The Writearound: Vanessa Grigoriadis

An interview with Vanity Fair and Rolling Stone writer Vanessa Grigoriadis on the finer points of celebrity profiling.


The Pinup of Williamsburg

A profile of Zooey Deschanel.

Thursday, September 1


Zombies Are So Hot Right Now

On the fascination, from Hollywood to Atlanta, with zombies.

Wednesday, August 31


Sex & Death in the Afternoon

An oral history of the soap opera.

Wednesday, August 24


A Fearless Media Critic

"Here is what Jack Shafer is," says Erik Wemple, who blogs about the media for "Obviously, very talented, tremendously original and highly informed. But more important, he is utterly uncorrupted by friendship, money, power, anything. He is ruthless with people he doesn't know, but what is impressive is how ruthless he can be with the people he knows. He's impervious to outside influence, and it's a glorious thing to watch."

Tuesday, August 23