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HBO's Veep needs more mean

Soft serve
Reality, right now, is so absurd that almost everyone has already adopted a "laugh-to-keep-from-crying" approach to the news. We don't need someone to tell us how truly horrifying our political landscape is. So what's a satirist to do?
By: RYAN STEWART  |  April 19, 2012

MagicCity TV

Not much 'magic' on Starz's new drama

City of blahs
Premium networks play by different rules from the rest of television, but Starz has taken things to a new extreme: they've twice renewed shows before episode one even aired.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  April 05, 2012

House of Lies - Don Cheadle 2

Review: House of Lies

House of Lies and Shameless's heroes could be less anti-
In a television landscape dominated by protagonists who are murderers, drug kingpins, serial philanderers, and other assorted life-ruiners, Showtime may have finally gone too far.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  January 05, 2012


Interview: Talking The Wire with Robert F. Chew

A bold Proposition
Like many cast members on HBO's The Wire, Robert F. Chew is originally from Baltimore and therefore has firsthand experience with much of the urban decay the show depicts.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  October 12, 2011


Breaking Bad keeps topping itself

This meth we're in
In this age of Hollywood business dealings breathlessly tweeted within minutes of their consummation, passersby cell phone set photos that reveal major plot points, leaked scripts and leaked episodes, Vince Gilligan has accomplished something rare indeed.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  October 05, 2011


The 10 TV premieres that’ll have you glued to the tube this fall

From “American Horror Story” to “X-Factor,” a TV tip sheet
Here are the highlights of this year's autumn TV contenders.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  September 14, 2011

Wilfred good weird dog

Review: Wilfred

Good dog
It's hard to say what's more surprising about Wilfred , FX's new comedy — adapted from an Australian series — about a depressed ex-lawyer (Elijah Wood) and his friend Wilfred, who he thinks is a man in a dog suit but who is, in actuality, a dog. Is it that the show exists at all, or that it's actually pretty good?
By: RYAN STEWART  |  June 28, 2011

'Past Life Martyred Saints' album from EMA

EMA | Past Life Martyred Saints

Souterrain Transmissions (2011)
This hasn't been a bad year for music, but there haven't been a lot of songs that hit in such a way that there's a physical need to hear them again — immediately. But Past Life Martyred Saints, the solo debut from former Gowns frontlady Erika M. Andersen, conveniently shortened to EMA and pronounced in acronym-form, does have such a song.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  June 09, 2011

the minuteman bike trail in cambridge, arlington and lexington

A trek through the Minuteman Trail

The Road More Travelled
Years ago, when I was a completely out-of-shape cycling novice, I had a vague dream of someday riding my bike the entire length of the Minuteman Bike Path — a 10-mile trail that starts in Cambridge, winds through Arlington and Lexington, and ends in Bedford.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  May 09, 2011

Wye Oak list

Wye Oak | Civilian

Merge (2011)
Very quietly, Wye Oak have put together an impressive run. Not musically quiet, of course — their specialty is massive guitarscapes that seem an impossibility from just a duo.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  March 31, 2011


The Rural Alberta Advantage | Departing

Saddle Creek (2011)
On their debut, Hometowns, Toronto's Rural Alberta Advantage sounded like a band in search of an identity. It was a bit of a mess, but there were moments when they seemed to be onto something. So surely the improved focus on Departing must be to their benefit, no?
By: RYAN STEWART  |  March 23, 2011

Chicago Code tv show

The Shield's Shawn Ryan looks at more cops in The Chicago Code

Oh, the darkness!
The Shield's Shawn Ryan looks at more cops in The Chicago Code
By: RYAN STEWART  |  February 18, 2011


Rich harvest: Parks and Rec reaps a bounty

Rich harvest
On the third season of Parks and Recreation , NBC's hilarious yet ratings-starved ode to small-town civil service, Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) and the rest of the gang at the title department decide to revive the Harvest Festival, a town fair that could attract a lot of attention — and revenue.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  January 11, 2011


Review: Bob's Burgers

Medium rare: Can Bob's Burgers make the cut?
Maybe it's too soon to worry about the fate of Bob's Burgers — Fox's new animated comedy series doesn't even premiere till this Sunday (January 9) at 8:30 pm. But consider Lone Star .
By: RYAN STEWART  |  January 04, 2011


Braids | Native Speaker

Kanine Records (2011)
Kanine Records (2011)
By: RYAN STEWART  |  January 04, 2011


Review: AMC's The Walking Dead

No guts, no glory
There's quite a lot to like about The Walking Dead . That is, if you can make it past the opening sequence.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  October 28, 2010


Laser Orgy 500 Battle of the Week: Day of the Tentacle vs. Chrono Trigger

 Which one is the best? You decide.
For me, this may be one of our most difficult calls yet ...
By: RYAN STEWART  |  October 20, 2010


Review: The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret

Would watching be a good decision?
Say this for The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret (Fridays at 10 pm on IFC), David Cross's new show for Channel 4 in England and IFC here: the title is apt.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  October 12, 2010


Twin Shadow | Forget

Terrible Records (2010)
Those who were hanging around the music scene in Allston around 2004 may be surprised to discover that the George Lewis Jr. behind Twin Shadow is indeed the same George Lewis Jr. who fronted Mad Man Films back in an earlier life.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  September 22, 2010


Interview: Michael K. Williams

On trading Baltimore for Atlantic City in Boardwalk Empire
This Sunday will mark the premiere of Boardwalk Empire , HBO’s newest epic drama series.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  September 14, 2010
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