Hello and welcome to a rundown of popular culture detritus. I actually wrote this a month ago and forgot to post it. Better late than never?
Last month, I caught my first cold since February of 2020, and was it ever a doozy. In my old age, I am quicker to take time off work (bless substitute teachers, for real). Since I was unable to work or focus on the written word, I watched a lot of TV. So.
Here’s what got me through my illness:
Television: Season 5 of The Crown dropped the first day I was home in bed, so it served as a perfect backdrop to floating in and out of consciousness. I don’t know why, as an American, I am fascinated with palace intrigue, but here we are. Was not a fan of the casting of Dominic West as Prince Charles, though. Season 4’s Charles was perfectly awkward and petty, and Dominic West is just too manly a man to be believable as the wannabe king.
Podcasts: Rachel Maddow shares an untold (under-told? I’m not sure) American story in her podcast Ultra. It’s the story of how several U.S. senators and congressmen were sympathetic to the Nazi government, distributed Nazi propaganda to constituents, and how the Department of Justice tried to hold them accountable. I knew there were Nazi sympathizers in the U.S.—Charles Lindbergh, most notably—but I did not realize the scale of Americans who were openly pro-Axis powers.
Film: I finally got to watch See How They Run, as it came to HBO Max. If you like clever edits, flashbacks, and self-referential dialogue in your films, this one fits the bill. It’s also relatively short—1 hour 38 minutes—and it’s been so long since I’ve watched a film so tightly packaged, that it really was a nice surprise.
Books: I counted up all the books in my possession between hard copies, Apple Books, Kindle, and Audible. Friends, it is…significant. Yet I don’t know how to stop falling for recommendations I see on Instagram which just add to the pile (even though I tend to read those quickly anyway). So. Plan for 2023 is to try and get to as many of those as I can.
Want to guess how many unread books I currently have?