DEAR TV 2013

Bobs-Burgers-Season-3-Episode-21-Boyz-4-Now-1Dear Television ended a fun year by recapping all of our favorite things for the LARB blog. From favorite performances to favorite and least favorite episodes to our year-end GIFstravaganza, it’s all here. I wrote about Kristen Schaal’s performance as Louise on Bob’s Burgers, my favorite episode of Game of Thrones, and why Mad Men was such a compulsively GIFfable series this year. See you in 2014!





e9c386f9039c20870dfeaf0639f8430b_6d581bab2a70df741d942a9a635d63b4In what will hopefully become a holiday tradition, the wonderful Jane Hu and I wrote about NBC’s The Sing-Off and our shared love of a cappella music for The Hairpin:

Phil: Yes, Jane! “Keep A Cappella Weird.” Speaking of the future, though, if you and I were looking to put together an a cappella group for next year’s Sing-Off, what would we be called?

Jane: Oh, we couldn’t quite well use Cruel Poptimism, could we?

Phil: Aural Exams, BeatBakhtin, Three Part Harmony in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction, Vocal Historicism…

“No Future: The Sing-Off and the Art of A Cappella”



arcade-fire-afterlife-videoThis week, Dear Television wrote about music videos, and I turned in a #longread post on all three of Arcade Fire’s music videos for their single, “Afterlife.”

“This video is good because Gerwig is dancing to the song. Part of what makes the [Black Orpheus] lyric video so uncanny and ultimately uncomfortable is that the dancers in the video cannot possibly be dancing to Arcade Fire. On a visceral level, the appropriation of their spontaneous, impassioned movements feels almost more invasive than the appropriation of their skin color or ‘exoticism.’ The lyric video commits a low-grade historical fraud by forcing its subjects to dance to ‘Afterlife,’ a song that is really only modestly, theoretically even, danceable.”

“Three Ways of Looking at Arcade Fire”