Journal of Writing & Environment

Web Rove: Summer Pop Culture Bonanza

by Adam Blake Wright

With last weekend’s release of The Amazing Spider-Man 2, the summer entertainment season is officially upon us. If you’re anything like me, you’ll soon be spending the next few months reading, binging on Netflix, grilling on the back porch, and wasting too much money on crappy blockbuster movies. Consequently, here are several pieces that celebrate the best of TV, films, food, and more:

Seitz on the Rise of the Bespoke TV Series” by Matt Zoller Seitz (from Vulture)

With this rise of DVRs and Internet streaming, the landscape of television is rapidly changing for the better. This essay argues that we are currently in a “golden age” of the TV mini-series, as exemplified by such genre-defying works as True Detective and American Horror Story. Perhaps what is most striking about this essay is the suggestion that by borrowing heavily from film and literature, “television” has morphed into a new category of entertainment all together that has yet to be defined.

10 Years Later, the Clique Still Reigns” by Megan Angelo (from The New York Times):

In the decade since its release, the 2004 comedy film Mean Girls remains as relevant as ever in our era of Tweeting, texting, and cyber-bullying. In an oral history essay, the cast and crew recount this now-classic movie’s impact on society and pop culture. To absolutely no one’s surprise, Lindsay Lohan fails to participate, probably because she’s too busy crying on Oprah’s shoulder. And no, Gretchen, fetch is never going to happen, so just stop trying.

Fictitious Dishes by Dinah Fried

In her amazing new book and website, photographer Dinah Fried recreates some of literature’s most famous meals. “Menu items” include the tea party from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, an unappealing bowl of slop from Oliver Twist, and a Southern fried feast from To Kill a Mockingbird. Ultimately Fried’s work captures a whimsical yet elegant spirit that delights the palate as well as the mind.