Pop Culture Odds and Ends – Three Day Weekend Edition


I was lucky enough to have a three day weekend last weekend and it was kind of glorious, mostly because against every instinct that I had I decided to stay in town. Normally a three day weekend is an invitation to get out of dodge – not that I need much of an excuse to travel anyway – but I opted to ignore those urges and stay closer to home. I was still pretty busy but I actually felt refreshed when it was time to go back to work yesterday, which is not always the case. And I got a lot accomplished, assuming that you use my definition of “watching 9 episodes of Luke Cage.” So I’m taking the controversial stand that I’m in favor of three day weekends , which is a good thing since the way that the holidays fall this year I have three day weekends at least once a month through February.

Also a good thing – pop culture. So get yourself caught up on what you might have missed with this week’s roundup.









  • Patriots Day:


  • The Great Wall:


  • Marvel’s Iron Fist:


  • Jackie:


  • Power Rangers:


  • Stan Against Evil:


  • The Take:


  • John Wick: Chapter 2:


  • The Man in the High Castle, season 2:


  • War for the Planet of the Apes:


  • Black Mirror:


  • Chance:


  • Midnight, Texas:


  • Salt and Fire:


  • Sweet/Vicious:


  • Trollhunters:


  • Army of One:


  • Red Oaks, season 2:


  • Sleepless:


  • Tangled: The Series:


  • Planet Earth II:







Odds and Ends


Mashups and Supercuts

  • A soul cover of “Since U Been Gone”:


  • 50 Shades of Muppets:


  • I didn’t watch the last debate, but I imagine it went something like this:


  • And finally, Luke Cage reimagined as a 90s sitcom:

TV Siblings


Yesterday was National Siblings Day, one of those made up holidays that suddenly appeared a few years ago. If you are on social media, your feed was probably filled with people sharing throwback photos of them with their siblings when they were little. I am guilty of this myself, probably to my brother’s chagrin. While it’s a silly “holiday,” it’s still nice to see so many people paying a little tribute to their brothers and sisters. My brother and I really didn’t start to get along until I went away to college, but I’m proud of the relationship that we’ve built as adults and a day like Siblings Day gives me a chance to share that. Plus there is the inherent possibility of embarrassing him, which is also a plus. We may be good now, but some of that sibling rivalry never goes away.

Because of how my brain is programmed, thinking about National Siblings Day got me thinking about my favorite television siblings. It was kind of surprising how many shows feature siblings, whether they are main characters or one of the siblings is recurring or a guest star. I guess there is a lot of material to be mined from the relationship that people have with their brothers and sisters; they are often the people that know you the best, but there is also often an undercurrent of competition or resentment as well. For siblings that are not part of the main ensemble, their appearance allows the show to explore a side of a character that they don’t normally get to showcase (and, because of the temporary nature of the guest star, that they are not obligated to commit to). I guess since the majority of the population has siblings – other than those lucky bastards that are only children – people identify on some level with these storylines. It may not reflect your sibling relationship perfectly, but just the inherent dynamics of a sibling relationship are something that many of us can easily identify with on some level.

Upon this reflection, here are some of the television siblings that I find the most enjoyable.

Dennis and Deandra Reynolds – It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia


I don’t want to spend a lot of time analyzing why these siblings were the first that popped into my head when considering this topic; I really don’t think it will speak well for how my brain works. Dennis and Dee are terrible people – Dennis is clearly a sociopath and Sweet Dee is pretty delusional – and they really don’t have that great of a relationship on the surface. Dennis often torments Dee as much or more than the rest of the gang. But because they are both so terrible – a definite side effect of being raised by Frank – when they team up together it is often something to behold. Some of my favorite episodes (Chardee MacDennis: The Game of Games or Dennis and Dee Go On Welfare) feature the Reynolds twins working together. Once in a blue moon, there is even some semblance of sibling affection between the two, though it usually doesn’t last long. This exchange from The Gang Goes to Hell (Part Two) pretty much sums it up:

Dennis: “I love you sis.”

Dee: “Whatever.”


Monica and Ross Geller – Friends


Unlike the Reynolds siblings, the Gellars actually seem to enjoy each other’s company. They even have a choreographed dance routine that they used to perform. Ross and Monica being siblings serves an important purpose on the show as it explains why they keep Ross around, since he is pretty much the worst (a fact that I didn’t pick up on when I first watched the show, but that has become abundantly clear in watching it in re-runs). There is also the funny runner of the very different relationships that they have with their parents; while Ross is the golden child that can do no wrong, pretty much everything that Monica does is subject to criticism or mocking. That dynamic resonates with a lot of siblings (I may or may not refer to my brother as “The Chosen One.”) Monica and Ross are a nice example of television siblings that are also really friends.


Adam, Sarah, Crosby and Julia – Parenthood


While there are lots of sibling relationships on display in the extended family on Parenthood, the relationship between the core four Braverman siblings is the most interesting and fruitful. Like in any family, Adam, Sarah, Crosby and Julia don’t always get along and see eye to eye; these are four very different people with very different personalities. This dynamic was especially put on display when Adam and Crosby decided to go into business together at The Luncheonette. But despite their differences and the occasional conflict, these four rally around to support each other when the chips are down in a way that is admirable. Not all families are as close as the Bravermans – one could argue that they may be a little too close – but the depiction of how the four siblings interact as adults felt very real to me. And kudos to the cast, who managed to make it mostly not creepy that two of the actors playing siblings (Lauren Graham and Peter Krause) are actually a couple in real life.


Frasier and Niles Crane – Frasier


These two had to stick together because I’m pretty sure no one else wanted to be their friends. Frasier and Niles can be exhausting and pretentious, but their similarities only bring them closer together. While they enjoy each other’s company and respect each other, there is also a little sibling rivalry that is still alive and well even in adulthood; that may take a different form for them than with other people, but that desire to one up each other is still there. The world may not always understand them and their fastidious ways, but they always have an ally in each other.


Jamie, Cersei, and Tyrion Lannister – Game of Thrones


Admittedly a controversial choice, given the incest and all, but if I’m picking television siblings that are interesting to watch, you can’t ignore the Lannister siblings. One could easily argue that their familial issues are one of the driving forces of a lot of the conflict in the show. Sure their issues may be less relatable than the others on this list – I’m hoping that co-parenting your children with your sibling or blaming your brother for the death of your mother aren’t things that a lot of my readers have to worry about – but they are still fascinating to watch. While the scenes between Jamie and Cersei are obviously gross, the scenes between Jamie and Tyrion are always great as the two brothers who obviously care about each other try to find common ground after the very different cards that life has dealt them. And sometimes siblings can just never get along, as evidenced by the interactions between Cersei and Tyrion. The only reason that they haven’t killed each other yet is some vague sense of familial connection, but whenever they are forced to deal with each other, you can cut the tension with a knife. The Starks have a much more normal sibling dynamic, but the Lannisters are just way more compelling and complex.

Now it’s your turn – what television siblings are among your favorites to watch? Let us know in the comments below.

Pop Culture Odds and Ends – Spring Cleaning Edition

I found myself in an unusual position last weekend – I stayed in town and didn’t have any plans. I decided to take advantage of this unexpected free time to start spring cleaning. My apartment was in desperate need of a purge – turns out that when you are never home, things tend to pile up and your place is a mess. So I put some March Madness on the TV and went to town, throwing out a lot of stuff that I’ve accumulated and putting other things where they belong. I even donated a bunch of books and clothing, so my spring cleaning helped others. I’ve still got some work to do – I ran out of steam eventually – but I made a real dent in the mess. That’s progress.

I also cleaned out all the links that I’ve been compiling for the last week and the result is yet another pop culture roundup. So kick back, relax and see what you might have missed in the last seven days.

  • James Corden kicked off his tenure of hosting The Late Late Show by recreating Tom Hanks’ filmography:


  • Florence + the Machine debuted another new song:



  • Conan and Zachary Quinto remember the late Leonard Nimoy:


  • Cookie Monster, Life Coach:


Time for some trailers….

  • I’m a little embarrassed about how excited I am for Lip Sync Battle:


  • Mission Impossible: Rouge Nation:


  • Silicon Valley, season two:


  • Matt Dillon in the new Fox series, Wayward Pines:


  • Orphan Black, season three:


  • Ethan Hawke in Good Kill:


  • Pitch Perfect 2:


  • James Franco and Jonah Hill in True Story:


  • Paper Towns:


  • Lake Bell and Simon Pegg in Man Up:


  • The WWE keeps cranking out movies – The Marine 4: Moving Target:


  • New Entourage trailer:


Premiere Of HBO's "Big Love" Season 5 - Arrivals

As always, we end with the mashups and supercuts:

  • Kendrick Lamar and the theme from Seinfeld go together well:


  • Up as a horror movie:


  • A Harry Potter-themed parody of “Uptown Funk”:


  • A dream sequence supercut:


  • LEGO The Matrix:


  • The Peanuts perform Journey:


  • The Avengers meets Friends:


  • And finally – Saved By The Bell meets Game of Thrones: