Devin and I are back with our best guesses for this year’s Oscar winners. Here are our respective ballots, compiled separately.
Mark and Devin look ahead to a busy movie season and preview their most anticipated releases: Widows (2:30-6:00), If Beale Street Could Talk (6:00-9:55), Backseat (9:55-18:05), Roma (18:05-23:15), Mary Queen of Scots (23:15-25:15), First Man (25:15-31:55) and The Land of Steady Habits (31:55).
Nicole Holofcener profile in the New Yorker.
Diversity of many varieties was on the brain for many spheres of television this year. Network executives, showrunners, critics and audiences alike engaged in thoughtful discourse about what it means to make diverse television in 2015. There are more places than ever to watch TV, and more places than ever to distribute it. It makes logical sense that TV offerings this year would touch on a wider range of issues, feature a wider range of character types and demographics and explore a wider range of stories and universes than ever before.
But with great power comes great responsibility. My favorite shows in 2015 were the ones that used the expanding boundaries of what’s possible on television to their fullest advantage, crafting rich and surprising worlds, telling stories that dovetail with the themes, ideas and controversies guiding our daily lives. In relatively arbitrary order of preference (who’s to say whether a dark comedy about an animated horse is superior to one of the most beloved drama series of all time?), here are my ten favorite shows of 2015.
Some of 2015’s buzziest dramas stumbled when they were expected to soar. True Detective followed up a thrilling first season with a turgid retread. Game of Thrones tested viewers’ patience with an uncomfortable rape scene. The Walking Dead “killed” a fan favorite character just long enough to convince people he had actually died before bringing him back to life.
Defying the trend is HBO’s The Leftovers, whose second season has delivered one extraordinary episode after another. Read the rest of my essay at The Week.