What we’ll be listening to, watching, and reading to sate our pop culture needs.
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The zombie apocalypse is back, so is the Gold Dust woman Stevie Nicks, Obvious Child is available on DVD, and that’s just the tip of this weekend’s fun iceberg.
Just in time for October’s season of spooks, our favorite TV zombies return with the Sunday premiere of The Walking Dead’s fifth season. We’ve been waiting six-long apocalypse-free months to find out what’s going to happen to the walker-fighters. Is there really a cure? What the heck is Terminus? And who will escape the creepy train car? Blood, guts, disintegrating flesh, and nail-biting suspense await.
As if it weren’t enough for Fleetwood Mac to be touring with a lineup close to its original roster (welcome back Christine McVie!), our favorite Gypsy has bestowed us with a new album. Stevie Nicks recorded 24 Karat Gold: Songs From the Vault last year in Nashville, but the collection of tracks—which range from piano ballads to gypsy-esque rockers—were mostly written between 1969 and 1987. Nicks’s voice, however, which shines here in all its grit and glory, is utterly timeless.
Continuing the storyline she laid out in her last two books, Gilead and Home, Marilynne Robinson picks back up with the residents of the fictional town of Gilead, Iowa, in Lila, which follows Reverend John Ames who is married to the uneducated, formerly vagabond titular character. Together the odd couple seeks to understand life, love, faith, and family, and Robinson’s prose, with its understated humor and ability to touch deeply, is an engaging exploration, her best yet.
Two years ago Laura Jane Grace, the singer of punk band Against Me! came out as transgender and began transitioning to life as a woman. In her new AOL show, True Trans, which premieres tonight, she shares her experience and those of others by sitting down to chat with a whole host of trans men and women while on tour with her group throughout the U.S. It’s an eye-opening portrayal of the trans experience, providing a real-life counterpart to the fictional stories of trans characters (e.g., Laverne Cox’s Sophia on OITNB and Jeffrey Tambor’s Maura Pfefferman on Transparent) on scripted TV series that we’re finally seeing in pop culture.
The most—okay, only!—romantic abortion comedy ever made which flipped the script on the usual rom-com disingenuousness is now out on DVD and Blu-ray. Obvious Child, a Sundance hit and well-deserving of its critical acclaim during a limited release in June, stars comedian Jenny Slate as comedian Donna Stern—a role she was made for, or, more accurately, a role that was made for her—whose one-night stand is the basis for the film’s taboo-breaking storytelling. At a time when our reproductive rights hang by a thread, normalizing the issue in a pop culture context is so much more crucial than the fact that this is, at its core, simply a hilarious and heartwarming movie.
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