The secret of the Western—as Jane Campion’s “Power of the Dog” shows—is that its mythology nurtures a queer fantasy, hiding in plain sight.
“Lupin” and the Limits of “Haute Culture”
Does Netflix’s “Lupin” resist the notoriously white milieu of European high culture, or, instead, endorse it?
Trapped Inside with Bo Burnham
Autofiction like Burnham’s—or Wallace’s, or Lerner’s—show white men using irony, self-deprecation, and vulnerability. Should we listen?
At its core, noir is a feeling: realizing one’s own helplessness, when faced with the vast networks of power that control everyday life.
Twelve Moral Axioms on Ryan Murphy’s Oeuvre
“I don’t quite know what Murphy means by baroque or what he means by camp, but Murphy has never been able to discern tone.”
The Broken Promises of “Bridgerton”
The show portrays a racially diverse society, but papers over white-supremacist interracial sexual assault and violence. Was there another way?
Meritocracy Is a Dystopia
Netflix Brazil’s 3% presents a desperate future city that nevertheless proclaims its citizens all have an equal shot at success. Sound familiar?
What if comfort TV brought no comfort? Even the most innocuous shows can transform into horror, when the monster of racism bursts onto the scene.
What Is the Genre of Rape?
While some progress has been made, TV is still trying to figure out how to tell the stories of male-identified rape survivors.
TV’s Golden Age of Female Serial Killers
Female killers are all the rage in literature and television. My Sister, the Serial Killer, for example, has caused a stir in the literary world. Killing Eve boasts a large ...
Marriage and Other Shams
In the early 1980s, an Indian guru homesteaded a tract of ranchland in rural Oregon, building a utopia equipped to withstand both HIV and American hypocrisy. Armed with free love and even freer ...