The slow TV of ‘Twin Peaks’: This year’s Showtime resurrection of David Lynch and Mark Frost’s ultimate left-field mystery was one of the most anticipated shows of 2017. Then, well, the first 15 of a planned 18 episodes aired and still no one entirely knows what’s going on amid a brain-addled Agent Cooper and his tan double, the atomic bomb test and at least one charcoal-colored Abe Lincoln impersonator (seriously). That said, there’s no show this fearless, uncompromisingly odd and wholly immune to easy, binge-watch consumption. How does a series this strange exist in 2017? Enjoy the mystery while it lasts.
Portugal. The Man’s ‘Feel It Still’: An Alaskan-born band most known for inventive punctuation and a skewed vision of psychedelia that after seven albums had carved out a tidy space for itself on the indie-leaning festival circuit, this group stumbled over an actual pop hit with this track, which comes from its latest album, “Woodstock.” Gliding on a breezy falsetto from singer John Gourley and aided by a spare funk drive, “Feel It Still” is one of the most insistently catchy, irresistible songs of the summer. It doesn’t sound much like what was once called indie rock, but that’s what makes it such a pleasant surprise.
The Tina Fey backlash: The Internet is always looking for a new target to feed into its ravenous outrage churn, and last week its latest came in the form of a Twitter backlash directed toward Tina Fey after her appearance on “SNL’s” “Weekend Update.” Mocking her own impotent rage (and that of many others) at current events by describing a feelings-feeding movement she called “sheetcaking,” Fey was later criticized for embodying privilege — which was basically the point of her whole bit. There’s a lot to be angry about in 2017, but is it so all-consuming that we can’t even joke about that anger?
The zombification of ‘Game of Thrones’: For all its success, this series built on palace intrigue and patiently unfurled storytelling has been showing some alarming tendencies as it races toward the finish. Once-rich character development and time itself is being stretched thin to speed story lines along, and effects-laden battles too often rely on cheap close calls for main characters, echoing predictable action tropes that at one time seemed beneath the show’s ambitions. Before the Night King takes over next season, could someone remind “Game of Thrones” that we already have “The Walking Dead”?
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