Black Buck is a how-to manual for succeeding in sales, wrapped up in a brutal satire of start up tech culture, with a heavy dose of racial commentary disguised as satire. I say disguised because a lot of what our young sales star Darren experiences in the book seems completely absurd to me. But I’m a white dude. I expect most black people would just be nodding their heads thinking, yep, been there done that. I can't imagine this not being in my top 5 book list at the end of the year.
"Fforde (Early Riser) invokes John le Carré, George Orwell, and Beatrix Potter in this tongue-in-cheek political satire of systemic injustice, bureaucratic corruption, and human foibles. Peter Knox, one of the rare humans who can differentiate between individual humanoid rabbits created in the Spontaneous Anthropomorphising Event of 1965, works as a spotter in the English village of Much Hemlock. In this role, Peter secretly identifies rabbits for the United Kingdom Anti-Rabbit Party’s Rabbit Compliance Taskforce. But when Peter’s university crush, Connie, a rabbit herself, moves in next door right when the Taskforce is cooking up a plan to rehome the rabbits in a work camp, Peter falls into a tangled web of seduction, espionage, and betrayal as he’s torn between his career and a chance to do the right thing. Amid a rapid-fire barrage of literary allusions, Fforde displays his signature quick wit on a furious tour through modern British right-wing politics. Playful, biting, and timely, this is a must-read."--Publishers Weekly
14 years after making a film about his journey across the USA, Borat risks life and limb when he returns to America with his young daughter, and reveals more about the American culture, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the political elections. [more inside]
A pharmaceutical company's illegal experiments inadvertently create a zombie. It becomes adopted by the Park family who attempt to profit off of it. [more inside]
Brockmire: Season 4 (Full Season) Season 4, Ep 0
Fourth and final season, largely set from 2030 to 2033. Earth has been ravaged by the climate crisis; Brockmire is tasked with saving baseball.
Teenage Bounty Hunters: Season 1 Season 1, Ep 0
After joining forces with a veteran bounty hunter, sixteen-year-old fraternal twin sisters Sterling and Blair dive into the world of bail skipping baddies while still navigating the high stakes of teenage life. (Netflix) [more inside]
But I'm a Cheerleader is a 1999 American satirical romantic comedy film directed by Jamie Babbit and written by Brian Wayne Peterson. Natasha Lyonne stars as Megan Bloomfield, a high school cheerleader whose parents send her to a residential inpatient conversion therapy camp to cure her lesbianism. There Megan soon comes to embrace her sexual orientation, despite the therapy, and falls in love. The supporting cast includes Melanie Lynskey, Dante Basco, Eddie Cibrian, Clea DuVall, Cathy Moriarty, Katrina Phillips, RuPaul, Richard Moll, Mink Stole, Kip Pardue, Michelle Williams, and Bud Cort.
Five workers in an IKEA knockoff are about to discover what happens when you put a big-box store on the former site of a 19th Century torture-prison. Spoiler: Bad things.
Medical Police: Medical Police - Full Season 1 Season 1, Ep 1
Two American physicians in São Paulo, Brazil, discover a civilization-threatening virus and are recruited as government agents in a race against time and around the world to find a cure and uncover a dark conspiracy. [more inside]
When the puppet cast of a '90s children's TV show begin to get murdered one by one, a disgraced LAPD detective-turned-private eye puppet takes on the case. [more inside]
How do you use ‘taraddidle’ in a sentence? Is it possible to make a Gin Ricky that’s also a metaphor for the American Dream? How can you tell your Faulkner from your Franzen if you haven’t actually read either? Allow me, the @GuyInYourMFA, to expound on the most important (aka white male) writers of western literature. You’ve probably seen me around, observing the masses, or defying the wind by hand-rolling a cigarette outside a local, fair-trade coffeeshop. I’ve actually read Infinite Jest 9 1/2 times. Care to discuss?
Four college girls hold up a restaurant in order to fund their spring break vacation. While partying, drinking, and taking drugs, they are arrested, only to be bailed out by a drug and arms dealer. [more inside]
A girl group find themselves in the middle of a conspiracy to deliver subliminal messages through popular music. Starring Rachel Leigh Cook, Rosario Dawson, Tara Reid and Kay Hanley's (of Letters to Cleo) voice. Featuring Allan Cumming and Parker Posey. [more inside]
Jealous, harried air traffic controller Max Fielder, recently dumped by his girlfriend, comes into contact with nuclear waste and acquires telekinetic abilities. He uses his new powers not only win her back, but to get a little revenge. [more inside]
A compulsively readable, deeply human novel that examines our most basic and unquenchable emotion: want. With his critically acclaimed first novel, Jonathan Miles was widely praised as a comic genius “after something bigger” (David Ulin, Los Angeles Times) whose fiction was “not just philosophically but emotionally rewarding” (Richard Russo, New York Times Book Review, front cover). [more inside]
Based on the initially anonymous blockbuster 1996 account of Bill Clinton's first presidential campaign in 1992, the film version continues the novel's weak à clef distance, casting a thinly disguised John Travolta as Bill and Emma Thompson as Hillary as they navigate the ethically trying road to the White House. [more inside]
In a suburban community, moms and dads, one after the other, mysteriously feel the irresistible impulse to attack and kill their own offspring. Stars Nicholas Cage and Selma Blair. From writer/director Brian Taylor (Crank).
As the only relative to take over the Royal throne, a down on his luck American slob must learn the ways of the English. [more inside]
Dark satire in which the token black man on the executive board of an advertising firm is accidentally put in charge. Renaming the business "Truth and Soul, Inc.", he replaces the tight regime of monied white ad men with his militant brothers. Soon afterwards, however, the power that comes with its position takes its toll on Putney... [more inside]
In an alternate present-day version of Oakland, telemarketer Cassius Green discovers a magical key to professional success, propelling him into a macabre universe. [more inside]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Stupid Watergate II: Fox News' Cries Of "Witch Hunt" Season 5, Ep 14
- Trump prepares for the (then) upcoming North Korea summit, of course, by not preparing.
- Philippine President and strongman Rodrigo Duterte very uncomfortably kisses a young woman before a crowd.
- And Now: Julie Chen Has A Few Questions For The Audience of "The Talk."
- Main Story: More on Stupid Watergate, this time about Fox News' efforts to normalize the idea that the Mueller investigation is a "witch hunt" by calling that through every channel available to them, in an desperate (yet somewhat effective) effort to get ordinary Americans thinking it must be one, despite the fact that they've already charged 20 people and three companies, and gotten five guilty pleas. Watch it on YouTube (18m).
- And Now: The Entire Seventeen-Minute Piece You Just Saw, Boiled Down To Eight Seconds.
- Finally, a bit about the UK. Last week's episode had a segment about the putdowns of House of Commons speaker John Bercow that could not air in the UK, because of a stupid law saying footage of the chamber could not be used in "light entertainment" or "political satire." Because they used such footage this week and thus UK viewers again cannot be shown the whole program, LWT offers five minutes of replacement content: Gilbert Gottfried reading Yelp reviews.
A wealthy New York investment banking executive, Patrick Bateman, hides his alternate psychopathic ego from his co-workers and friends as he delves deeper into his violent, hedonistic fantasies. [more inside]
When the class troublemaker is blamed for the spraypainting of dicks on every car in the faculty parking lot, two intrepid reporters from the school's morning announcement program tear apart the case against him in this eight part mockumentary. Produced for Netflix and very reminiscent of it's Making a Murderer, this spot on parody of long form investigative docmunetaries distinguishes itself by allowing its characters to grow beyond the stereotypes of nerds, jocks, and burnouts. At some point after the first few episodes you realize it stopped being just a comedy and has become as complex and asorbing a mystery as the documentaries its meant to mock. [more inside]
Comrade Detective: The Whole World Is Watching First Watch Season 1, Ep 5
Comrade Detective purports to be a rediscovered buddy cop show from mid-eighties Romania, made as Eastern Bloc propaganda/entertainment. It isn't; it was filmed in Romania in the modern day, with Romanian actors, and then dubbed into English by actors like Channing Tatum, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Nick Offerman, and occasionally guest stars like Debra Winger and Daniel Craig. In this episode: Baciu's family notices something unsettling; we hear Dragos's suspicions and learn something new about Stan; the American embassy is hospitable. [more inside]
Adolf Hitler wakes up in the 21st century. He quickly gains media attention, but while Germany finds him hilarious and charming, Hitler makes some serious observations about society. [more inside]
A simple-minded gardener named Chance (Peter Sellers) has spent all his life in the Washington D.C. house of an old man. When the man dies, Chance is put out on the street with no knowledge of the world except what he has learned from television. After a run in with a limousine, he ends up a guest of a Ben (Melvyn Douglas), an influential but sickly businessman, and his wife, Eve (Shirley MacLaine). Now called Chauncey Gardner, Chance becomes friend and confidante to Ben and an unlikely political insider.
Back to Work: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at Congress and How It Gets Things Done (and Often Doesn't) Season 1, Ep 5
When the Center for Disease Control has its funding temporarily cut, Luke attempts to reach a compromise to have the money reinstated, but Red's political machinations undermine him at every turn. [more inside]
Laurel and Rochelle try to persuade Laurel's friend Abby to get an MRI so they can uncover the real cause of the strange behavior taking over Washington, D.C. Also, Luke attempts to reopen the government through a secret deal with the Republicans.
Agent Onofrio's investigation of a deadly incident on live TV causes Laurel, Gustav and Rochelle to delve deeper into the bug mystery. Luke tries to hide his affair with Scarlett. [more inside]
The Internet Movie Database has the movie described as follows: "Story of two girls who wander away from a White House tour and meet President Nixon." Ah, but it's so much more. [more inside]
An American grandson of the infamous scientist, struggling to prove that he is not as insane as people believe, travels to his family's home country and discovers the process that reanimates a dead body. [more inside]
A lonely and disturbed cable guy raised on television just wants a new friend. His target, rejects him, with bad consequences, but not before creepy karaoke, awkward family game nights, and other hijinks ensue. Relatively early appearances of Jack Black, Owen Wilson, and Bob Odenkirk, among others. [more inside]
Samantha Bee travels to Jordan to speak to Syrian refugees and the State Department about the kind of vetting that refugees have to go through to enter the United States. [more inside]
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee: Premier Episode Season 1, Ep 1
Samantha Bee's "Full Frontal" almost late-night show (10:30pm) premiered on TBS and other Turner properties. Satiric targets included the press, the debates, “Elected Paperweight of the Month," and a filmed piece about the Jeb! campaign. [more inside]
A mobster travels to Hollywood to collect a debt and discovers that the movie business is much the same as his current job. [more inside]
A satirical review of the week's news, chaired by Miles Jupp. Jeremy Hardy, Holly Walsh, Yasmine Akram and political sketch writer Michael Deacon are Miles' guests this week. [more inside]
Is anyone interested in trying a few News Quiz posts? [more inside]
South Park: Where My Country Gone? Season 19, Ep 2
Mr. Garrison, a straight-talking American who just wants to make his country great again, wants to build a wall. But damned if the Canadians don't build one first, designed to keep us out.
When Sheldon Mopes, aka Smoochy the Rhino, is hired to replace kids show host Rainbow Randall, he doesn't realize that children's entertainment is anything but child's play. [more inside]
[From IMDB] Shortly before an election, a spin-doctor and a Hollywood producer join efforts to fabricate a war in order to cover up a presidential sex scandal. [more inside]
A monster emerges from Seoul's Han River and focuses its attention on attacking people. One victim's loving family does what it can to rescue her from its clutches. [more inside]
Five friends who reunite in an attempt to top their epic pub crawl from 20 years earlier unwittingly become humankind's only hope for survival.