Donald Glover is still working on a Lando-centric spin-off for Star Wars. According to his collaborator and brother, Stephen, it is now being developed as a movie, not a series. Given that the Star Wars TV shows are prone to bloat, even at just 6 episodes, this is probably smart. Just tell a tight two-hour story, that can be enough. (Popsugar)


What in the Mad Max hell are these boots with built in purses? Just give me a good tote bag, like damn. I do not have the time or patience for clothing that complicated. (Go Fug Yourself)

UK talk show host Graham Norton is promoting a book in the US and he stopped by Watch What Happens Live. He was asked about the British “feeling” toward Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan. He gave a good answer, basically that it’s a “gift” to Prince William and Princess Kate, because they are now “deified” by the British press. This is my whole problem with the current state of royal coverage. You can’t have any substantive conversations about either couple because the whole thing has been reduced to a good/evil binary. Boring! And reductive! (Celebitchy)


There is an expose on Rotten Tomatoes about how film publicists manipulate the “Tomatometer” for marketing purposes. Most critics and cinephiles prone to paying attention to online discourse probably already knew this, just based on how review rollouts for big movies works. The first screenings are usually for “friendly” press like junketeers, Youtubers, TikTokkers, and other influencers who will get a free trip to the premiere in tacit exchange for nice comments about the movie. The movie then debuts on the Tomatometer with a 100% rating, or close to it. Then actual critics see the movie, and all of a sudden that number fluctuates, going up and down, or down and down and down, as more and more critics publish their reviews.

What is depressing to me is not the gamifying of Rotten Tomatoes, it’s the specific bombshell that a PR firm was PAYING critics to either write positive reviews or flip their rating from “rotten” to “fresh”. I have said for YEARS that critics don’t get paid for good reviews but…yeah, apparently some do. And not even that much! The going rate is allegedly $50! If I’m going to sell out, you better back up that Brinks truck and at minimum help me pay off my student debt. (Vulture)


Hasan Minhaj’s stand-up comedy specials are full of anecdotes about racism, Islamophobia, xenophobia, and personal threats. But…most of the anecdotes aren’t true. Does that matter? Once upon a time, I would say comedy audiences understand a comedian is putting on a performance, but then John Mulaney got divorced and I discovered that people had been taking every word he spoke on stage as the strictest truth anyone ever told, and not like, dialogue as part of a performance put on by the character of “John Mulaney”. So now I don’t know. Maybe people actually do think everything comedians say is absolutely true.

For me, though, Hasan’s stories are so specific, and often involve other, real people, and people who exist beyond the intimate scope of his friends and family. He says he’s reaching for an “emotional truth” in his comedy, and that’s fine! But what he’s doing isn’t stand-up, it’s a one-man show. I don’t think he’d have any ethical issues at all if he was presenting his act in a manner akin to John Leguizamo, dressing up on stage and clearly adopting different characters for different stories. Or if he perhaps created a singular character, like Dame Edna, through which to perform his act. 

The issue, to me, is that Hasan IS a clout chaser, and HE wants to be famous and admired. He doesn’t want to “share” any of the spotlight with a character, he wants to be the rebel comedian challenging powerful forces…except he made so much of it up. Like, bro. You’re claiming hardships you’re not experiencing. (The New Yorker)