Yinka Shonibare is the London-based artist of Nigerian descent best known for those headless mannequins dressed in 18th and 19th century costumes made from very neo-colonial cloth. “Neo-colonial” is this instance means that what we tend to think of as “traditional” African textiles turn out to be manufactured by the Dutch, who borrowed …

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Vacation Robo-Poll: Best Game Show

I rarely write about game shows here at Tuned In, and yet it’s possible that I watched more of them in my childhood than any other kind of TV. Risk-taking, odds-taking, the frequency of consonants in English-language words, the efficacy and morality of bidding exactly one dollar over the previous bidder—I learned all of these and more …

There’s the Rub

It’s often the case that when a museum director sees a big expansion to completion he or she steps down within a year or so after the project is completed. That’s what Mimi Gates did at the Seattle Art Museum and Marc Wilson at the Nelson-Atkins in Kansas City. But things have happened a little differently at the Cleveland Museum of …

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Vacation Robo-Poll: Best Character Actor

Last time I went on vacation, I asked for your thoughts as I filled out a Variety poll on the best TV shows, actors and actresses of the last decade. That seemed to go over well, so let’s try something similar this week. This time, though, I’m going to ask your favorites in some less-traditional categories. Starting with: who’s your …

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Programming Note

I’m on vacation for the next week. Robo-James here will be taking things over while I’m gone, with some daily posts and discussion threads. I may or may not post occasionally from the road—depending how much it rains and how pathetic my life is—and if you’re truly dying for more observations from me, check my Twitter feed.

Be …

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Dead Tree Alert: Hung Review

The next print issue of TIME, not yet posted online, includes my Short List blurb-review of HBO’s Hung (about a well-endowed high-school teacher forced by debt to become a gigolo, debuting Sunday), which is by definition short and glib and—because I am not made of stone—full of cheap double-entendres. The conclusion (I’m …

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Virtuality's Bold, Lonely Mission


Fox’s two-hour space drama Virtuality, airing tonight, is a show about a seemingly doomed mission: an ambitious journey intended to last several years that is in serious danger of being cut disastrously short not long after it launched. 


It’s also a TV show about an interstellar space mission. But more about that in a minute. 

Top 10 Michael Jackson Songs

From enlisting Eddie Van Halen for a guitar solo to borrowing the refrain “Mama-se, mama-sa, mama-coo-sa” from a Cameroonian
saxophonist, Michael Jackson’s very best songs drew from influences far and wide.

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