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ENTERTAINMENT

Mary McNamara

Columnist

Mary McNamara is a television critic for the Los Angeles Times. A Pulitzer Prize winner in 2015 and finalist for criticism in 2013 and 2014, she has won various awards for criticism and feature writing. She is the author of the Hollywood mysteries “Oscar Season” and “The Starlet.” She lives in La Crescenta with her husband, three children, two dogs and a hamster.

Recent Articles

  • Characters, plus the usual sex, violence, etc., make 'Spotless' memorable TV

    Characters, plus the usual sex, violence, etc., make 'Spotless' memorable TV

    Well, clearly Esquire Network didn't get the memo about "peak TV." The NBCUniversal-owned network is launching "Spotless," its first scripted series, on Saturday and unfortunately for all our already overstocked DVRs and streaming lists, it's pretty darn good. Set in London, with French undertones,...

  • TV Picks: 'Mom,' 'Master of None,' 'Getting On'

    TV Picks: 'Mom,' 'Master of None,' 'Getting On'

    "Mom" With consistently stellar turns by stars Anna Faris, Allison Janney and Mimi Kennedy, this Chuck Lorre comedy remains one of the most touching yet tough-minded comedies on the air. Following the adventures and misadventures of Christy Plunkett (Faris), a single mother and recovering alcoholic/addict...

  • Fox Business Network made GOP debate a safe space

    Fox Business Network made GOP debate a safe space

    In the days leading up to Tuesday night’s Republican debate, moderators Neil Cavuto and Maria Bartiromo, anchors of Fox Business Network — on which it aired — and Gerard Baker, editor in chief of the Wall Street Journal, made it clear they would not just be hosting a discussion of economic policy....

  • Larry David over Donald Trump in a landslide

    Larry David over Donald Trump in a landslide

    Maybe Larry David should run for president. After all the agony and ecstasy, the promos and protests, Donald Trump may have hosted “Saturday Night Live,” but David owned it, first reprising his scary-great Bernie Sanders in the show’s opening skit and then giving voice, literally, to the hundreds...

  • Why huge 'SNL' ratings won't help Donald Trump become president

    Why huge 'SNL' ratings won't help Donald Trump become president

    Every presidential candidate is obsessed with polls, but only Donald Trump fixates on ratings. Not approval ratings, television ratings. "I get the best ratings," he said recently, appearing to channel NBC executives to explain why he had been asked to host "Saturday Night Live" this weekend. It's...

  • Far-fetched 'Flesh and Bone' on Starz aims for grit, which means lots of sex

    Far-fetched 'Flesh and Bone' on Starz aims for grit, which means lots of sex

    Dear American Television: Enough already with the stripper poles. I realize that, in some circles, the stripper pole has been reclaimed as a tool of empowerment, a symbol of unapologetic female sexuality rather than servitude. It is also, apparently, an excellent form of exercise. And there is...

  • Survive or succumb: A new death on 'The Walking Dead' forces us all to choose

    Survive or succumb: A new death on 'The Walking Dead' forces us all to choose

    Glenn is dead, he is dead, and once again viewers gasp and wonder: "How much more of this can we take? Indeed, “The Walking Dead” has become the story of two bands of post-apocalypse survivors: its fictional characters and its audience. On Sunday night, swaying on top of a dumpster surrounded by...

  • Super-charming 'Supergirl' lands in the middle of several strong women on CBS

    Super-charming 'Supergirl' lands in the middle of several strong women on CBS

    Bright, bouncy and very, very Comic-Con, "Supergirl" seems at first glance a huge departure for CBS, which generally prefers the tensely roiling tones of police and law procedural. "Hawaii Five-O" is about as bright and bouncy as a CBS drama gets. But "Supergirl," which premieres Monday, isn't...

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