35 posts tagged with season8 by JHarris.
Displaying 1 through 35 of 35.

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Union Busting  Season 8, Ep 30

This week.... Continuing investigations into the perpetrators of the January 6 insurrection. And Now: The Many Questions of Fox & Friends' Brian Kilmeade. Main story: Union busting (24 minutes), how companies are served by an entire industry of people who provide them scripts and videos on how to do it, and how easily they can get away with it. And, at the end, this is the final episode of Season 8 of Last Week Tonight, so we check in with some friends: George Clooney, an assortment of other celebrities, and The Void from earlier in the season, who has a new talk show! So long John, see you next time. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Nov 16, 2021 - 2 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: The Power Grid  Season 8, Ep 29

This week... electorial problems for Democrats in last Tuesday's election, and, at the COP26 climate summit nations promised to limit emissions to stall global warming but are unlikely to actually do it. And Now: People On TV Saying Things Wrong. Main story (22 minutes): the power grid, a little-regarded engineering marvel, yet one beset by many threats, from squirrels to balloons to age to climate change, but its biggest problem is the push to renewable sources, and transporting that power from the places where it is generated over long distances to where it is needed. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Nov 8, 2021 - 3 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Homelessness  Season 8, Ep 28

This week.... Facebook announces their company is now called "Meta." (MeFi). Congress is hammering out Biden's final spending plan. And Now: Once Again, Our Annual Look At What Happens When Local News And Halloween Collide. Main story: Homelessness (25 minutes), and how our institutions make a bad situation for a lot of people worse.
posted by JHarris on Nov 2, 2021 - 6 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Taiwan  Season 8, Ep 27

This week: police officers around the US threaten to quit rather than get vaccinated. And Now: The Weather Channel's Graphics Department Is Still Not Fucking Around. Main story: Taiwan, its history as an anti-communist tool by the West, its current-day democratic miracle, and its fraught relationship with Communist China. And Now: James Corden Loves Cinema. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Oct 25, 2021 - 6 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Misinformation Among Immigrant Communities  Season 8, Ep 26

This week.... Idaho's Lieutenant Governor issued an executive order forbidding vaccine mandates, even though the Governor is opposed it. It turns out OAN, which has been covered by the show before, owes a lot of its existence to AT&T, the same AT&T that's Last Week's Tonight's abdicating business-daddy, which John Oliver cuts them no slack over. And Now: "Fox & Friends'" Brian Kilmeade Likes Christopher Columbus Way, Way Too Much. Main story (YouTube, 20 minutes) : Misinformation as it spreads through immigrant diaspora communities, for although more than 90% of Facebook monthly users are outside the U.S. and Canada, only 13% of hours the company has spent on monitoring information is focused outside the U.S. LWT made some memeable pass-around videos to try to spread the word about not spreading misinformation on the internet, available at bettermorningmessages.com. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Oct 11, 2021 - 3 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: PFAs  Season 8, Ep 25

This week... Covid + Brexit causes widespread gas shortages in the UK. Congress holds a hearing on the impact of social media on teenagers' mental health, causing confusion for Senator Richard Blumenthal on what a "finsta" is. Democrats try to pass the ambitious Build Back Better Act, and predictably Republicans are using every means to block it, aided by the villains of the hour, Senators Manchin and Sinema. And Now: Newscasters Take Issue With The Term "Leaf Peeping." Main story (YouTube, 20 minutes): PFAs, a class of chemicals that cause a variety of health issues and take thousands of years to break down, and has now bioaccumulated in nearly every human being on Earth, including 99.7% of US citizens. At the end, Danny DeVito appears in a bit "promoting" PFAs. Check the level of PFA contamination in the water in your area at ewg.org/pfasmap. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Oct 4, 2021 - 6 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Voting Rights  Season 8, Ep 24

This week.... Two hosts of The View test positive for COVID mid-show moments before Kamala Harris was due to appear. In Del Rio, Texas, Haitians attempting to cross the border were met with border patrol agents on horseback wielding makeshift whips. And Now: Local News Anchors Announce The Changing Of The Seasons The Only Way They Know How. ("It's Fall, y'all!") Main story (YouTube, 20 minutes): Voting rights, why they're under attack, and what should be done to protect them. And Now: The Utterly Spectacular Dramatic Pauses Of ESPN's Stephen A. Smith. Finally: duck stamps. They're not postage stamps, but kind of a hunting permit. But they're also collectable, and effective at raising money towards wetland preservation. There is much more to this than you'd expect there to be (see inside for more info). [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Sep 27, 2021 - 4 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Lukashenko, Dictator of Belarus  Season 8, Ep 23

Last Week Tonight is back, in a studio, and with a live audience and a new set! This week... Texas's awful new abortion law that lets private citizens sue people who got or in any way abetted an abortion, including the people who drove the patient to the hospital. And Now: Yet Again, It's That Time Of Year (Starbucks is bringing back their Pumpkin Spice Latte). Main Story (YouTube, 19 minutes): Belarus, specifically its leader Alexander Lukashenko, the self-proclaimed "last dictator of Europe," who has clung to power for three decades. He's the most popular president Belarus has ever had, but only because he's the only president Belarus has ever had, and is in fact deeply unpopular and controls that nation's media with an iron fist. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Sep 13, 2021 - 10 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Afghanistan  Season 8, Ep 22

Farewell to the white void! It's the last episode from the blank existential nothingness voiced by H. Jon Benjamin. This week... we begin going right into the main story (24 minutes), about the withdrawal, after twenty years, from Afghanistan, a process that began under Trump, continued under Biden, and arguably had to happen someday, but we had hoped would be done in a more orderly and less violent and chaotic way than it has. And Now: Tamron Hall Will Have You Know She Is Fifty. Then, a word about the legal battle between our old friend, Jim "Texas Hammer" Adler, and newcomer to the tool-wielding, television-advertised personal injury law scene, Mike "Alabama Hammer" Slocumb, who looks like he may have stolen some of Jim's shtick. John suggests a new nickname for Slocumb: "The Alabama Banana Slicer," complete with prop that he will happily send on request. And, at last, another, final, moment with the void.... Last Week Tonight is off for the next two weeks. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Aug 25, 2021 - 5 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Ransomware  Season 8, Ep 21

Two weeks left in the white void! The spread of the Delta variant of the Coronavirus continues to grow, helped by hordes of ideologically-driven parents threatening school boards over mask mandates. And Now: Pete Nelson From Treehouse Masters Really, Really Likes Trees. Main story: Ransomware (YouTube, 22 minutes), which is an epidemic of its own right now. How it started, what's happening now, and a couple of ways you can help protect yourself. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Aug 17, 2021 - 7 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: The Sackler Family  Season 8, Ep 20

This week, from the white void (for three more weeks).... Andrew Cuomo tries to ride out the numerous sexual harassment allegations against him. Russia competes under another name in the Olympics, as the Russian Olympic Committee. And Now: The Electrifying Small Talk Of San Antonio's 'Daytime With Kimberly & Esteban.' Main story (Youtube, 24 minutes): While on the surface it appears that Purdue Pharmaceuticals is finally being duly punished for their role in the opioid epidemic, the plan under consideration lets the Sackler family that currently owns it off in many ways. The Sacklers have created a website. judgeforyourselves.info, to give their side of the story, but Last Week Tonight got the dot-com version, judgeforyourselves.com, to give a broader picture, featuring video of "Richard Sackler" (played by Richard Kind). [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Aug 9, 2021 - 4 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Emergency Medical Services  Season 8, Ep 19

This week: still in the void, for (perhaps) four more weeks. A crisis is developing over the fate of translators in Afghanistan, who are experiencing difficulties in obtaining visas to enter the US as troops withdraw, a life-or-death situation for them. And Now: Jim Cramer Loves Chipotle. Main story (22 minutes): about ambulence service in the US, often staffed by the underpaid, and yet are still frequently extremely expensive. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Aug 2, 2021 - 8 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Housing Discrimination  Season 8, Ep 18

This week: another show from the void, but maybe not for much longer! The Tokyo Olympics proceed despite a spike in COVID cases, and the UK prepares to lift nearly all restrictions despite an uptick in cases over there. And Now: People On TV Mean "Fucking" (Olympics Edition). Main story (32 minutes): Housing Discrimination, its legacy in the US, how its effects are felt today, and what can be done to rectify it. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jul 26, 2021 - 6 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Health Care Sharing Ministries  Season 8, Ep 17

Another episode from the white void, will it be with us much longer? Senate Republicans rejecting a voting rights act, because awful. Republicans continue to push wildly incorrect voter fraud claims, including something stupidly called ItalyGate. And Now: On The Occasion Of His Departure From C-SPAN, One Last Salute To The Most Patient Man On Television. Main story (23 minutes): Health Care Sharing Ministries are a way that some use to get out of the penalties for not having health insurance in the US. But they are not insurance, are much less regulated, and in some places like Florida are crazy easy to set up. So easy that LWT did just that, in Florida, spinning off their old church Our Lady Of Perpetual Exemption, called Our Lady Of Perpetual Health, and their new "plan," JohnnyCare, to demonstrate how little health care an HCSM can get away with. Features the return of "Wanda Jo Oliver," John's "Mega Wife," (aka Rachel Dranch). [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jun 29, 2021 - 5 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: PACE Loans  Season 8, Ep 16

Another entry from the void. Biden holds a summit with that notorious jokester, Vladimir Putin. Japan is set to host the Olympics in 2021, making up for their not being held in 2020, but still against the advice of many considering their vaccination rate is just 6%. Shown is a Japanese condom commercial with an anime styling. And Now: Please Enjoy Some Better Names For The Dogs From This Year's Westminster Dog Show. Main Story (22m): PACE loans, intended as a way for people to cheaply renovate houses for energy savings, are sometimes handed out by predatory contractors to people unaware of their costs and consequences, resulting in them losing their homes. And Now: The Winner Of Best In Show At The Westminster Dog Show Breaks Newscasters' Brains. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jun 21, 2021 - 4 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Prison Heat  Season 8, Ep 15

From the white void once more. Ohio State House hosts a distraught lady worried that the vaccine turned her magnetic. The NYC Mayoral primary season is underway, using ranked choice voting for the first time. Interviews have revealed that the candidates are, for the most part, grossly out-of-touch concerning housing costs in Brooklyn. And Now: Someone Please Stop Stuart Varnet From Saying This ("Flattery is the mother's milk of television.") Main story (13m): As temperatures rise around the world, prisoners have to suffer extremely high temperatures, often in facilities that do not offer air conditioning, resulting in heat stroke and sometimes death, most frequently in Texas, but across the US as well. And Now: Ernie Anastos Left Fox 5 One Year Ago This Week, And We Miss His Man On The Street Segments More Than Ever. Finally, LWT offers a free commercial concept to any used car place that asks, under the condition that: they produce and air the piece, and that they must agree to use it sight-unseen. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jun 21, 2021 - 3 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Sponsored Content  Season 8, Ep 13

This week once again comes to us from the White Void of Sad Facts. The Supreme Court is on track to review Roe vs. Wade, to the chagrin of practically every non-conservative. In Philadelphia, Larry Krasner, running in favor of police reform, won a primary for D.A. and is set to go against Republican Charles Peruto. Along those lines there is a brief recap of cartoon character candidates in the news, such as Andrew Giuliani. And Now: San Francisco City Council Meetings' Public Comments Are A Joy To Behold. The main story: sponsored content (21 minutes), specifically in local news programs, revenue source for local stations that, due to vague FCC rules that suffer from lax enforcement, often is insufficiently identified as paid programming. Many examples are given, including three that Last Week Tonight produced themselves and got placed for a mere few thousand dollars, for the "Venus Veil," a fake product that is the "world's first sexual wellness blanket." [more inside]
posted by JHarris on May 24, 2021 - 10 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Stand Your Ground Laws  Season 8, Ep 12

This week, once again from the void... . Local governments try different ways to incentivize getting vaccinated against COVID, from lottery money to free fast food. And Now: Ari Melber, Rap Genius, Will Just Not Fucking Stop. The conflict between Israel and Hamas terrorists escalates, a conflict that, despite the both-sides, tit-for-tat framing the news media uses for it, greatly harms innocent Palestinians more than Israelis. The main story concerns Stand Your Ground laws (19m), an unnecessary set of laws passed in 22 states that removes the "duty to retreat" from armed confrontations, sometimes with disastrous consequences. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on May 17, 2021 - 6 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Personal Bankruptcy  Season 8, Ep 9

This week, again from the White Void of Sad Facts: the killings by police of Daunte Wright and Adam Toledo, kicking off yet another cycle of media condemnation, right-wing defense of police, and criticism of righteous anger from protestors. To attempt to change their part in this terrible cycle, LWT did short pieces on blissfully stupid topics (see inside). And Now: The Commercials On FOX News In The Middle Of The Night Know Exactly Who They're Talking To. Main story (21m): Personal bankruptcy, a resource employed by millions of people, and has been often unduly stigmatized. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Apr 19, 2021 - 2 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Long-Term Care  Season 8, Ep 8

Prince Philip died. Matt Gaetz continues to face accusations of pedophilia and sex trafficking. President Biden promised to reverse Trump's refugee cap, but hasn't yet, and no one seems to know why. And Now: A Farewell Tribute to the Greatest Questions Ever Asked on Yahoo! Answers. Main story (23m): Nursing homes and assisted-living facilities in the US, and the serious problems that many of they have. And Now: A Few More of the Greatest Questions Ever Asked on Yahoo! Answers.
posted by JHarris on Apr 12, 2021 - 8 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: The US National Debt  Season 8, Ep 7

Another week from the White Void of Sad Facts. Right wing media loses their shit at a suggestive music video featuring Lil Nas X. Matt Gaetz is suspected of violating sex trafficing laws. A historic vote of whether to unionize has taken place among workers at an Amazon fulfillment center, which Amazon has fought in ludicrous ways, including anti-union propaganda in bathrooms. And Now: Some Very Unwelcome News Regarding Peeps. (It's the Peeps & Pepsi promotion.) Main story (22m): the US National Debt, and the massive disingenuousness with which it has been portrayed by Republicans. A lot of interesting information in this one! [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Apr 5, 2021 - 9 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Plastic  Season 8, Ep 6

This week from the White Void of Sad Facts--The shootings in Atlanta of eight people, six of them Asian women, and the terrible response from police authorities. And Now: Even During A Pandemic, Local News Cannot Be Trusted With St. Patrick's Day. Main story (22m): plastic. Think we live in a golden age of recycling plastic? Think again: less than 9% of plastic made gets recycled, and over half of all plastic ever produced was made since 2005. How did we get to this point, when plastic recycling has been promoted for decades? [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Mar 22, 2021 - 7 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Tucker Carlson  Season 8, Ep 5

The passing of the Coronavirus stimulus bill was met with a weird celebratory tweet from the DNC, but Republican responses ranging from anger and dismay to people who voted no trying to take credit for it. And Now: Local News Bothers 100-Year-Old Women On Their Birthdays. Main story (25m): Tucker Carlson, his career, and how he gives white supremacist talking points a veneer of respectability. And Now: A Look Back At One Year Of TV News With Pandemic Precautions.
posted by JHarris on Mar 18, 2021 - 5 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Unemployment  Season 8, Ep 4

This week from the white void: The Democrats pass the COVID relief bill, although a few (like Manchin and Sinema) prevented it from containing a minimum wage increase. The FBI identifies Trump-supporting white supremacist groups like the Proud Boys as the ones who stormed the Capitol building. And Now: Neil Cavuto Really Loves Adele. Main story (21m): Unemployment in the US, and how terribly it serves people in need. And Now: Rachel Ray's Complicated History With Baking. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Mar 9, 2021 - 3 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Police Raids  Season 8, Ep 3

This week: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo faces a Federal investigation for intentionally under-reportng nursing home deaths due to COVID, reportedly having threatened to end a state senator's career over it. And Now: Did Fox Business's Liz Claman Mention That She Likes Peloton? Then the main story (26m): Police raids, a tool that law enforcement arguably relies on way, way too often, and disproportionately against minorities. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Mar 1, 2021 - 0 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Working Conditions in Meat Packing Factories  Season 8, Ep 2

This week, again from the White Void of Sad Facts: Winter storms caused problems nationwide, but especially in Texas, which suffered power outages due to Texas disconnecting itself from the national power grid to avoid regulation, or, according to Tucker Carlson and the rest of Fox News, wind turbines. Fallout was so severe that Ted Cruz, a man who has given Texas dozens of reasons to dump him, may actually, finally, face political repercussions for attempting to abandon the state during its hardship and go to Cancun. And Now: People Who Went to Harvard. The main story (19m) has to do with the terrible conditions meat packing workers face on the job, including production quotas so onerous that many workers feel like they have to pee beneath the line or wear diapers on the job to keep up. And Now, finally: Working Remotely Sucks For 'The People's Court," too. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Feb 22, 2021 - 3 comments

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Future Pandemics  Season 8, Ep 1

This week, still from the void, but hopefully not for much longer.... The farce of an impeachment trial against Donald Trump, where Ted Cruz met with the defense lawyers during it and told them they'd already won because Republicans weren't going to convict regardless, and on Republican support of the Capitol riots and state Republican efforts to make voting much harder, efforts that some Democrats don't seem very excited about thwarting. And Now: Newscasters Offer Tips For How To Say "I Love You" In The Worst Imaginable Way. Main story (20m): Pandemics of the future! Not COVID, but the next ones, which believe it or not could be much worse. John discusses where they may come from, why they're on the rise, and what we can do to limit them. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Feb 18, 2021 - 4 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: SPACE MUTINY  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 20

Rewatch! Commander Santa and aerobics witches! Slab Bulkhead and Back-From-The-Dead Susie! Apple II computer effects and stolen Battlestar Galactica footage! Calgon, take them away! Widely consider one of the best episodes, this South African production is hilariously strange. Previously
posted by JHarris on Nov 21, 2019 - 6 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: TIME CHASERS  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 21

Rewatch! Nick is a high-school teacher with a secret--and no, that secret doesn't involve cooking meth. He's the inventor of a time machine! And its workings are an 8-bit microcomputer, who's have thought! It's really a shame that he turned to EvilCo for his first round of funding. I'm kind of surprised this episode placed so highly on the poll, I mean it's pretty good, but better than Manos? Soultaker? SCCTM? Hobgoblins? Time of the Apes? Master Ninja? A couple dozen other episodes? I mean, it tied with Starcrash! I guess it's one of those episodes that's grown in the years since first airing. Previously
posted by JHarris on Nov 14, 2019 - 4 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: OVERDRAWN AT THE MEMORY BANK  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 22

Rewatch! In a corporate-dominated dystopia, poor Aram Fingals gets caught "scrolling up cinemas" and so he's sent for "prophylactic rehab" to a wildlife refuge where his mind is "doppled" into a baboon (thankfully not an anteater!) because that's what is considered restorative recreation in THE FUTURE. The process is overseen by Apollonia Jones and... look, there's so much pointless jargon in this movie it's using up my supply of scare quotes so I'm going to stop the description there. Just scrounge up some creds for a bag of flavo-fibes and join us and the sadly late Raul Julia for OVERDRAWN AT THE MEMORY BANK. Previously.
posted by JHarris on Oct 17, 2019 - 5 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: PARTS: THE CLONUS HORROR  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 11

Rewatch! Considering the political reality of the USA right now, this movie's almost charming with how the villain is an evil Senator's brother, who runs a farm for stupid 70s people, clones of "important" folk, you know, like senators, to serve as living sources of spare body parts. Especially hilarious is the pseudo-Orwellian culture of the farm, which is like a sinister community college. Previously
posted by JHarris on Jul 18, 2019 - 4 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: PRINCE OF SPACE  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 16

Rewatch! We're starting to get into the weird ones. Prince of Space is a hilarious episode of our favorite cowtown puppet show, with an inexplicable hero (the invulnerable Prince of Space, who works as a Tokyo bootblack), annoying kids (PoS' child sidekicks) and easily one of the top five most ridiculous villains in MSTdom in the form of the chickenish Phantom of Krankor. HAAA... Haaa... haaa... ha. Just, for the love of decency, don't stare at the Krankorian crotches.... Previously.
posted by JHarris on Jun 13, 2019 - 9 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: RIDING WITH DEATH  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 14

Rewatch! It's another packaging of two TV show episodes (of Gemini Man) into a single "movie," such as with Master Ninja and Fugitive Alien. This one's about a Ben Murphy who can become invisible and is a spy, kind of, and a race driver. Previously.
posted by JHarris on Apr 24, 2019 - 8 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: THE HORROR OF PARTY BEACH  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 17

Shocking terror! Hideous and ridiculous monsters crawl out of the sea! "It had ping-pong balls for eyes!" shrieked one overacting eyewitness! Another moaned unconvincingly, "Oh the carnage, the bad costumes, the poor cinematography!" Will no one put a stop to the atrocities committed by this director and his crew? In subplot news, Pearl and Brain Guy are in ancient Rome. Previously.
posted by JHarris on Jan 31, 2019 - 7 comments

Mystery Science Theater 3000: THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION  Rewatch   Season 8, Ep 10

Rewatch! A small car cosplaying as a big big spider terrorizes a town as we continue through the best classic episodes as selected by poll. Previously.
posted by JHarris on Jan 24, 2019 - 9 comments

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