television Archive

Firefly and Beowulf’s “Reavers from Hell” as the Dark Side of Human Nature

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In Seamus Heaney’s acclaimed translation of Beowulf, the narrator describes Grendel and his mother’s fearsome raids, declaring that no one is safe “where these Reavers from Hell roam on their errands.” This was by far the most high-profile usage of the word “reaver,” an otherwise obscure and obsolete term

A Writer Writer: The Writing That Counts

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In an episode of HBO’s Girls titled “Free Snacks,” aspiring writer Hannah Horvath lands a job producing “advertorial” content at GQ. Characteristically sharp and observant, she immediately brainstorms circles around her coworkers; at this rate, they suggest, she could really make a name for herself. But Hannah isn’t interested.

Holiday Book Shopping List: The TV-Lovers Edition

‘Tis the season for gift giving, and what makes a better gift than an unforgettable book? 2014 has been a great year for books and television both, so here are some pairings to help you shop for the TV enthusiast in your life.

Episodia 2.10: Writing About Other People

Author: | Categories: Writing, Writing Advice 2 Comments
I spent the past few years writing a memoir about a secret I kept throughout my adolescence, and the book is set to debut next Tuesday. When I was ten years old, a beloved piano teacher in my small hometown was accused of sexually assaulting his young female students.

Episodia 2.8: Scott Cheshire & True Detective

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In his remarkable debut novel High as the Horses’ Bridles, Scott Cheshire tackles the loaded subject of faith and religious fanaticism in America with the same élan, sophistication, and depth found in HBO’s neo-noir series True Detective. I had the pleasure of asking Cheshire about the parallels between his

Episodia 2.7: Gilmore Girls & The From-Aways

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CJ Hauser’s evocative debut novel The From-Aways will take you deep inside small-town New England, a budding friendship, and troubled family ties. It’s a whip-smart and heartfelt book. It also shares some common ground with the fan-favorite television series Gilmore Girls, and below CJ and I discuss the show,

Episodia 2.6: TV-Based Beach Reads

Author: | Categories: Reading 1 Comment
Ah, summer. That sweltry time of year when some of our favorite television shows go on hiatus and we head outdoors for lots of sun, swimming, and—if you’re like me—lots of literature. I love the feeling of reading poolside on a sunny afternoon, and the right book can transform

Episodia 2.5: The Third Heat

Author: | Categories: Writing Advice 1 Comment
Last week I received an email from a dear student with a serious case of writer’s block. She’s been writing a screenplay for the last four years, and her work is almost finished. To her despair, however, she recently discovered that her very project (idea, locale, plot, and timeframe,

Episodia 2.4: Lessons in Creativity from “Mad Men”

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Tonight the seventh and final season of “Mad Men” premieres on AMC. I’ve loved this show and the slow, magnetic swirl of 1960s Manhattan ever since the episode “Babylon” aired in 2007. The entire series might be considered in terms of the opening credits we’ve all grown familiar with:

Episodia 2.3: Why Writers Need Jury Duty

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A while back, when I was living near Newark, I got a summons for jury duty. As soon as I saw the thin slip of paper that labeled me as “juror x,” I started to brainstorm how I might be able to get out of it. I was more