Pop Picks

A bit of pop culture redemption

Posted on August 27, 2010

All six seasons of Lost are now available on DVD in a new box set.  I felt like one of the few people who actually liked the finale of the series and have had to sit quietly while hearing it bashed whenever it comes up (including at our family kitchen table).

So I was pleased to see that Linda Holmes in her Monkey See pop culture blog on NPR also likes the finale.  She describes it as “imprecise but deeply felt” and says she likes it and likes it even more with the passage of time.

That’s two of us.  Maybe the only two.  You can read her complete comments by going to http://www.npr.org/blogs/monkeysee/ and scrolling down.

We always have at least one guilty pleasure television series underway and right now it is True Blood.   It’s full of campy Southern gothic violence (gore really), the supernatural, sex, and humor.  Sort of like a Gen Ed Committee meeting.  This season it feels like the writers have been doing speed as they have amped up all of those qualities just listed and left little time for catching one’s breath.  It’s a fun ride.

So you don’t think my brain has turned off this summer, I finished Empire of the Summer Moonlast week, S.C. Gwynne’s history of the Comanches and their last great leader, Quanah Parker.  It is well told, dramatic, and I learned a lot.  Yet, as with every book about American Indians, we know before we start exactly how it will end and it’s been true since I read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee  (one of the saddest reading experiences I have ever had) so many years ago.   The treatment of America’s aboriginal people remains one of the saddest and most shameful chapters in our history.

On a much happier note, I am in the middle of Sy Montgomery’s Birdology, a book that will lift your spirits and restore a sense of wonder about the natural world (and I am no real nature lover, truth be told, aside from a larger environmental sensibility).  Sy is visiting writer in our MFA program and lives in the world quite differently than you and me.  This is a lovely, lovely book.

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