Where Do TV Shows Get Their (Often Mediocre) Art?

TV Art

“TV art is headed in the right direction, but it’s been flattened. The failure of these fabricated art objects to be neither valid nor completely ridiculous means that most of the comedy comes from outside the art.”

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Letting Loose the Clogs of War

clog dancing alfred hickling northern broadsides

A theatre company in northern England works clogging and Morris dancing into most of its productions – from Shakespeare’s history plays (the houses of York and Lancaster did battle with their wooden shoes) to a new script about the First World War.

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Behind The TV Dance Shows

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“In the last decade, dance on TV has become popular, sometimes wildly so. Dancing With the Stars launched in 2004 and is one of Nielsen’s highest-rated primetime programs. So You Think You Can Dance (2005) has had rating ups and downs but its contestants are generally exceptional and it has a strong fan base.”

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Hollywood Should Probably Die (But It Won’t, And Here’s Why)

Netflix's House of Cards, season 2.

“Hollywood is the closest thing the business world has to a Roman Empire: a largely self-sustaining, self-contained industry, reigning supreme over most premium content in most media channels. And like Rome, the entertainment business has plenty of enemies who’d love to watch it burn. They probably won’t get their wish.”

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Shirley Temple Black, the Child Star Who Wasn’t a Cautionary Tale

Shirley Temple

Surely the anti-Lindsay Lohan, STB, who has died at age 85, was a creature of Hollywood who survived being the most famous preschooler on the planet to become a well-adjusted, successful, meltdown-free adult. “If she emerged unscarred, it’s not for the film industry’s lack of trying.” How did she do it?

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When Academics Study Comedy

Jo Brand says it's great to see academics taking an interest.

Our correspondent visits the Playing for Laughs symposium at De Montfort University in Leicester (with reference to “the Chuckle Brothers of philosophy, Plato and Hobbes”).

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Kiev Biennale Postponed Because Of Political Unrest

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“Ukraine is experiencing an unprecedentedly difficult time, when the question of the state’s future is being decided. Taking this into account, it is impossible to carry out responsibly the preparation needed for a large-scale artistic project of international significance like the biennial.”

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Remix: Actors Act Out Internet Comment Strings

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“The reconstructions are just that — re-creations of particularly inflamed and idiotic YouTube comment exchanges — except they’re acted out by two well-dressed, middle-aged British men (or men with stellar British accents) who sit in shadowy domestic interiors populated with high-backed armchairs and baroque chandeliers.”

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