Jamie York is a producer for On the Media.
OTM Staff Picks: July 18, 2011
Monday, July 18, 2011 - 03:28 PM
Every Monday, the staff of On the Media is going to pick a few things to share with our listeners. They may be new, they may be old, in fact they may or may not be media related in any way. We're all very excited to share our staff picks with you. Feel free to offer us feedback in the comments section, and enjoy!
You asked for it...a whole video devoted to the rainbow sponge!
This weekend I watched some of the BBC (now Masterpiece Mystery!) series called “Sherlock” about Holmes and Watson in contemporary London. It is great, gripping TV!
This Ricky Gervais post in the Huffington Post is about, among other things, why no one has a right never to be offended and why he’s not into consensus when he’s making television and movies.
Gervais: This is not a democracy. No art form is. I love the creative process and I love being a complete dictator when it comes to my work. It's my way or no way at all.
Warning: This post includes satisfying use of profanities.
I’m going with an Irish Traveler-themed pick this week (think Brad Pitt’s unintelligible character in the movieSnatch). They have been in the news lately because of a large scale eviction of a Traveler campsite in the UK. I was recently introduced to the British import My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding on TLC, which offers a fascinating—though undoubtedly exaggerated—look into the world of Irish Travelers in the UK. It is a total guilty pleasure show. Separately, I also started watching the now-cancelled FX series The Riches, which it turns out, is about Irish Travelers living in the US. I didn’t even know there were Irish Travelers living in the US until seeing the show. It’s worth checking out, at a minimum because it stars one of my favorite comedians, Eddie Izzard.
Speaking of Eddie Izzard, I also pick his 1999 stand up Dressed to Kill. Really funny take on history and religion told by Eddie Izzard as an “executive transvestite.”
Royksopp's "Happy up Here" video - Last week, I read that there was a big-screen adaptation of the plot heavy late 70's video game Space Invaders in the offing. I mean, I'll probably go see it, but I have a hard time imagining that it could be better than Reuben Sutherland's Space Invaders homage in this Royksopp video.
Cheers on Netflix - Look. Sometimes, I wanna go where everybody knows my name.
I’m reading “Scoop” by Evelyn Waugh. I’d always wanted to read it and then Nick Kristof reminded me to pick it up when he listed it in his summer recommendations:
Here’s what he said about it: “Scoop,” is a hilarious dissection of the tabloid news business, centered on a nature writer who is mistakenly dispatched to cover a war in Africa. I wish I could say that “Scoop” is simply an absurd comic satire. But anyone who has covered Iraq or Afghanistan knows that it is still resonant — and relevant. And if you read it, you’ll get a sense of the uncertain and often unreliable path by which news coverage reaches you.
One extra note: the racism is intense - I guess its historically accurate, but its pretty hard to stomach.
Charlie Brooker. I want to marry him (sorry real-life husband). He’s so funny; he wrote a column this weekend about Murdoch, comparing politicians’ worship of Murdoch to medieval villagers’ worship of God. My favorite line:
You must never anger God. God wields immense power. God can hear everything you say. You must worship God, and please Him, or He will destroy you. For God controls the sun, which may shine upon you, or singe you to a Kinnock. Soon he will control the entire sky.
This came up on shuffle this weekend and it’s a great pop song that I can only assume missed the charts because of the subject matter.
This came on recently on a jukebox and it's one of the great jukebox songs (accept no substitutes and go find a bar and a jukebox - YouTube clips are really for the faint of heart). The awesome power of this song isn’t something you know, it’s something you feel.
And another article about the pitfalls of portraying someone. This is a lengthy defense of John Lurie by the writer Rick Moody. Lurie was the subject of a lengthy feature in the New Yorker last August. Moody was not impressed.
Ben Goldacre’s Guardian column and his blog. He’s a doctor and a media critic and he writes so incisively about media coverage of science. He’s also just really entertaining. He was on the show a while back talking about vaccines. That’s worth a listen too.
My staff pick this week is last weekend’s Pitchfork festival. I used to think that I didn’t like concert festivals because I dislike intense heat, live music, overpriced water, and people in crowds, but it turns out that I was wrong. It was great seeing a bunch of quick sets from a Whitman’s sampler of bands. High points: TV on the Radio’s cover of Fugazi’s Waiting Room, Fleet Foxes’s playing to a setting sun on Saturday, and eating 4 or 5 pounds of free pizza in the press tent.
Anyway, I’m sorry for the inherent cheapness of recommending something that has already happened, but if you find yourself in possession of a time machine, you should check out the festival and also please find out what happened to those colonists in Roanoke.