The Playlist

Review & Recap: 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 7 'The Bear and The Maiden Fair' Brings The Action

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • May 13, 2013 10:04 AM
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  • 7 Comments
Um, WUT, this episode RULED. High fives, all around my people. It had everything: Khaleesi being awesome with dragons, lots of sweet, sweet ass, zingers galore, and a muthafuckin' BEAR FIGHT y'all. Directed by frequent "Breaking Bad" helmer Michelle McLaren, it was everything "Game of Thrones" wants to be and more -- sexy, bloody, and damn exciting. They were probably giving us all of this lovey dovey stuff to tide us over for the inevitable last-third-of-the-season-carnage we are about to experience. But for the moment, Episode 7 feels like makin' love, feels like makin' love to youuuuuu.

Recap: Christopher Guest's 'Family Tree' Gets Off To A Promising Start & Shows He Hasn't Lost His Touch

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 12, 2013 7:00 PM
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  • 0 Comments
It's been seven far-too-long years since the last feature effort from Christopher Guest, and besides a failed pilot for the U.S. adaptation of the U.K. hit "The Thick Of It" and appearing alongside his regular roster players in a sketch for the 2012 Oscars, not much as been heard from him. But the writer/director is back at HBO with "Family Tree," a new comedy series that finds him back within the faux-doc aesthetic (which seemingly every sitcom uses now) and best of all, still retaining his touch for beautifully deadpan humor, rich wordplay and characters as odd as they are lovable too. In short, Guest hasn't lost a step.

Review & Recap: The Scheming Continues In 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3, Episode 6 'The Climb'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • May 6, 2013 10:01 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Game of Thrones, Season 3, Varys, Little Finger
Welcome back Throne Gamers, whether you want to be or not! This week's episode, "The Climb," directed by Alik Sakharov, continues to dwell on the scheming and interpersonal machinations of those who happen to have a bit of power in Westeros, who are all desperately trying to pull one over on the person next to them just to save their own skin. No one seems to be in any sort of comfortable position, and all of the tricks they play on each other are borne out of sheer terror of being displaced in the power food chain. And that's the game of thrones, right? Sadly, there is little to no ass in this episode.

Recap: Memes & A Paul Simon Parody Does In The 'Veep'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 5, 2013 10:30 PM
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  • 2 Comments
The second season of "Veep" is finally on the upswing after stumbling out of the gate, with last week's episode showing what the writers can do with just a little bit of focus. And this week's "The Vic Allen Dinner" mostly takes the same tack, finding comedic potential in a simple premise and then driving to the hoop and while it might not be a slam dunk, it's a solid alley-oop.

Review: 'Manhunt' A Decent Companion To 'Zero Dark Thirty,' But Doesn't Stand On Its Own

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 1, 2013 6:03 PM
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  • 0 Comments
For a classified mission, executed in secret, and monumentally changing the face of the war of terror, there is an awful lot of public knowledge about the the hunt for and killing of Osama Bin Laden. Books, magazine articles and more have proliferated at a steady pace, and then of course there's Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty," a feature film account of the intensive search for the terrorist leader all the way up the raid on the compound in Abbottabad. That film gave a narrative to the decades long investigation, involving dozens of people, multiple branches of government, false leads and more, and turned into a compelling piece of historical cinema. As such, it takes some liberties for dramatic purposes, but the basic arc is there, however for those looking for an account from those who were actually involved, "Manhunt: The Inside Story Of The Hunt For Bin Laden" doesn't quite live up the comprehensive documentary the title suggests.

Review & Recap: Magic Returns To Westeros In 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 5 'Kissed By Fire'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • April 29, 2013 10:00 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Greetings, Gameheads. Thanks for reading my little rant last week about media images of violence. It's just important to talk about, and I think one of the things that "Game of Thrones" does really well is offer up those topics for discussion. I mean, like BODIES, right? They are so weird and gross and awesome and cool, and thank you Throne Games for letting us to reconcile a bit of that corporeal tension that is constantly surrounding us in the zeitgeist. Speaking of serving body, this episode is ass-tastic, so let's get booty rockin' everywhere in the comments (who's got the best butt? Trick question, they all have the best butt, I can't choose).

Recap: 'Veep' Delivers A "Robust" New Episode

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 28, 2013 10:30 PM
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  • 0 Comments
If the first two episodes of the second season of "Veep" left us wanting for sharper humor, richer characterization and plots tackling some higher stakes, then tonight's effort is the one we've been waiting for. While the show has a tendency to get bogged down in subplots that often feel saggy, "Hostages" is an example of lean, efficient writing that comes together in a tight knot of fast jokes, and story threads that pay off. It's certainly one of the better entries in the season so far, and it's probably the only show you'll watch this year where the word "robust" plays such a central role.

Recap: 'Veep' Again Chooses Lower Stakes Humor Over Richer Comedic Potential

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 21, 2013 10:30 PM
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  • 2 Comments
Having barely survived the midterm elections in the season opener, Vice President Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) has now finally been granted a greater say in the West Wing, starting with a chair on Foreign Policy. So, would we finally see Armando Iannucci try and tackle some bigger political themes, and perhaps grapple with potentially richer comic material? The answer is: not really. Essentially, this episode is basically A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Meeting, detailing the wide range of mishaps and crisis management Meyer and her team have to undergo on the way to getting her to an important, key strategy deliberation regarding a hostage situation overseas.

Review & Recap: Khaleesi Fires It Up in 'Game Of Thrones' Season 3 Episode 4 'And Now His Watch Is Ended'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • April 21, 2013 9:00 PM
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  • 6 Comments
Game Of Thrones - Daenerys Targaryen - Season 3
Hello again everyone. In light of this past week’s events, I have to just jump up on this soapbox for a hot minute, so please humor me. I think that it’s an unfortunate coincidence, but also a relevant one to consider, when last Sunday night we experienced the brutal amputation to close out “Game of Thrones,” and then on Monday afternoon were forced to grapple with the shocking reality of amputation in the wake of the tragic Boston Marathon bombing. The graphic images of the bombing’s aftermath shattered our screens, in Tumblr dashboards and Facebook newsfeeds, and offered a sobering reality to the images of gore we experienced the night before on HBO. I don’t condemn “Game of Thrones” for showing us violence and gore, because violence and gore confronts us on the news everyday. To relegate violence to a fantastical world of dragons and forests and 3-eyed ravens and magic can be a coping mechanism for an audience like us, who must reconcile horrific acts in our own world on a regular basis.

Review: 'Mary And Martha' Starring Hilary Swank Plays Like A Dramatized Charity Infomercial

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 20, 2013 11:56 AM
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  • 11 Comments
"Did you know, that if you take every single person killed in a terrorist act around the world in the last twenty years, and you add to that all the lives lost in the Middle East since 1967 -- the 6 Day War -- and you add to that every single American life lost in Vietnam, in Korea, and in every single American engagement since then -- Iraq, Afghanistan... If you take all those lives and you multiply by two, that's the number of children that die of malaria every single year," James Woods gravely intones in "Mary and Martha." That this audience educating factoid comes during one of the climactic moments of the movie should tell you everything you need to know about the intentions and storytelling choices in this sentimental, misjudged, one-note clunker, that's yet another wide misstep by two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank.

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