Episode 36: Vaya Con Dios, Brah

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Captain Marvel #8, Sex Criminals #8, Ms. Marvel #9, Rocket Raccoon #4, Hawkeye vs. Deadpool #1, Lumberjanes #7 and Batgirl #35 | I hope you'll listen to our commentary, but for the very best insight to "Sex Criminals" #8, you really must get the scoop straight from the horse's mouth (wherein Matt Fraction is the horse). Overall, this week's comics were pretty good, with one notable exception. We might give it a few more issues, but it seems like "Batgirl," with its horribly overwrought "kids these days" gimmickry, is not for us. We're pretty confident, though, that the gimmickry of the Ryan North-penned "Unbeatable Squirrel Girl" is going to be right up our alley. Stay tuned!
  • This Week in the Book Report: Judging a Book By Its Cover
    Perhaps unsurprisingly, we have a lot to say about book covers. In short: it's not only what's on the inside that counts. We talk about the headless white woman phenomenon, which is included on this list of book cover trends that should die, along with other trends we're ready to see go (and one we're OK with). We conclude that you actually can tell a lot about a book from its cover, but neither of us is quite ready to make the commitment one brave Book Riot blogger did when she spent several months reading books based solely on their covers. For more on book covers, check out these blog posts that pull back the curtain on the book design business from romance author Courtney Milan and Anna from Door Sixteen. You can find our favorite book covers at our LibraryThing page!
  • This Week in "You Haven't Seen What?"
    Allison watches Point Break. Here's what Chris from A House of Lies has to say about it in his "Quest for the Most 90s Movie of All Time." Read Film School Rejects' "6 Scenes We Love From Point Break" to find out which scene was deemed impossible by the Mythbusters (wait, there's just one?). And finally, the late, lamented Fame Tracker Fame Audit of Keanu Reeves is a must-read.

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 36

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week:

  • On Twitter, Mallory Ortberg invited her followers to share their dads' most Dad Moments. The results are truly a gift unto us.
  • Speaking of gifts...Do you like books? Did you go to high school in the Nineties? Then the A.V. Club has a gift for you: a list of all 57 books mentioned on Daria.
  • Speaking of links for people who like books and went to high school in the Nineties...There's a lot of interesting stuff in this interview with Ann M. Martin, but the teaser about Martin revealing her favorite Babysitter's Club member was all I needed to click and it's all I'm giving you. You know you want to.
  • Speaking of babysitters...No, just kidding. That gag is over now.
  • Pour one out for that late great American institution: Saturday morning cartoons.
  • Vox looks at Playboy's online rebranding attempts in light of falling sales, and the way they're turning to feminism as a possible business savior.
  • We've discussed before on the show how it's great that Marvel is adding more and more female characters to their roster, but it'd be even better if they'd add more real women to their payroll. NPR's Mallory Yu reports that they know and they're working on it, but "the change is going to take some time." *sigh*
  • There was never any chance I was going to watch the new sitcom Manhattan Love Story, but that did not stop me from enjoying the hell out of Vulture's very critical review of it: And then she gets the hiccups, a personal quirk so oppressively cutesy, even Taylor Swift's cat is looking at it and thinking easy does it.
  • There's a lot of concern and confusion over California's new "yes means yes" law. Over at GQ, Lindy West has a handy guide to signs your partner still wants to bang you (1. Your partner just said, "I want to bang you!"), and at Vox, Amanda Taub looks at the ways the default assumption of consent takes its toll on women: That status quo puts women in the position of having to constantly police their own behavior to make sure that they are not giving the appearance of passive consent. That's not only exhausting; it's limiting.
  • The folks over at Forever Young Adult have started a new series called "Superhero Sundays!" Not only do they offer up analysis of the week's superhero television and comic book highlights, they also name the hero, villain, and abs of the week. Yes, you read that correctly. These ladies are providing an important service and I, for one, am thankful.
  • Aretha Franklin covers "Rolling in the Deep," and all is right with the world.

Episode 35: Wonder & Mystery Hunter

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Saga #23, Lumberjanes #6, Rat Queens #8, Hawkeye #20, Sheltered #11, and Thor #1 | Saga keeps on keepin' on with the "oh shit!" moments, Kate Bishop leaves LA in her dust, and Thor is totally lady, but just which lady remains a mystery.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Magazines | We love magazines, particularly in physical form, particularly when on a plane. We talk about the ones we read for the articles and the ones where we're just here for the porn.
  • Real Ladies: Math
    Every fifth episode, we talk real ladies. Today, we're joined by special guest Dr. Eileen McGinnis to talk about Countess Ada Lovelace, mathematician and "poetical scientist." Find Ada Lovelace Day events near you! (Austin's event is hosted by Art.Science.Gallery, a seriously cool place.) Check out the webcomic 2D Goggles, about the crime-fighting adventures of Ada Lovelace and Charles Babbage (plus her forthcoming book!). Eileen also recommends this collection of Lovelace's letters ("Enchantress of Numbers" is a pretty sweet title.) And as a sidenote, there was recently a dustup over an underwear company using female tech CEOs as models for their Ada collection.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Mesmerism" by Emily Howard

This Week in Links 35

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • In our last link roundup, we expressed our indignation at experiencing a significantly less interesting library school curriculum than Buffy the Vampire Slayer watcher and school librarian Giles. Now we've set our green-eyed gazes on the real-life students of the University of Baltimore, who can now enroll in "Media Genres: Media Marvels," a class in which they'll be studying...you guessed it: the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
  • Duck Tales: great theme song or greatest theme song?
  • You've probably heard by now that Charles Blow came out as bisexual in his new memoir Fire Shut Up in My Bones and in an adapted essay posted on the NYT website, but the essay is so much more than that. It's powerful and it's moving and, at times, it's heartbreaking. Trigger warning for a description of childhood sexual assault.
  • The New Yorker has a fascinating piece on the histories of Wonder Woman and feminism, which are more intertwined than you knew.
  • What If You Just Don't Know If You Want Kids? Separating your baseline personal desires from other factors, like the relationship you’re in at the moment or where your career stands, is a phenomenally difficult task. Not to mention the societal pressure. Despite the ever-increasing feminist influence on the mainstream, conventional wisdom still says that motherhood is womanity’s highest calling...At the same time, young women get a loud and clear message that parenthood is tough. Really tough.
  • Despite our shared name, I've never finished Rebecca. Carrie Frye at Gawker has shown me the error of my ways with this mic-drop worthy literary criticism.
  • Laura Miller of Salon says "[it's] OK to admit that H.P. Lovecraft was racist." We live in a culture increasingly dominated by fandoms, and while the enthusiasm of fans can be invigorating it’s not always conducive to critical thought. When we love a writer’s work...we often have an attendant and childish desire to idolize its maker.
  • On the subject of reactionary fandom: Have geeks become their own worst enemies? The essence of confidence is the ability to handle critiques and the existence of challengers with grace and security in your own position.
  • This piece on "fingerprint words" may make you self-conscious. Or, if you're like me, delighted. Of course, if you're like me, you may overuse the word delightful.
  • Photographer Sandro Miller has recreated iconic portraits using John Malkovich as his subject. Target audience: Becca.
  • The Toast's Mallory Ortberg takes us inside the Oval Office. Teddy Roosevelt's Oval Office.

sadface

Due to a collision of illness and scheduling problems, no new episode this week. We'll see you here next week for This Week in Links, and we'll be back in two weeks with a new episode. It'll be a great one, we totally swear.

This Week in Links 34

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 34: Postmodern Bro

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    She-Hulk #8, Saga #22, Lumberjanes #5, Rocket Raccoon #3, Hawkeye vs. Deadpool #0, Sex Criminals #7, The Wicked + Divine #2, Cloaks #1, Hexed #1 and Trees | She-Hulk gets naked, Hawkeye and Deadpool team up, Sex Criminals gets better, and The Wicked + Divine gets worse. All that and more!
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Great Animals of Literature | We talk about our favorite dogs, cats and giant cockroaches from books. You can find the complete list of books we discuss at our LibraryThing page!
  • Bromance is in the Air
    We're joined by special guest and actual male human Eddie S. to talk bromance: What constitutes a bromance? How much do we hate that portmanteau? What are our favorite bromances in popular culture? Listen to find out!
  • This Week in "You Haven't Seen What?"
    Becca reports on Bridget Jones's Diary.

This Week in Links 33

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • When Kelly Sue DeConnick does events, if you want a picture with her, you have to make duckface with her. This reached peak amazing at Dragon*Con this past weekend, when she met Rep. John Lewis.
  • Look, what have you done for feminism lately? Not as much as Beyoncé, I'll tell you that.
  • Over at Slate, there's a fascinating article about the rules governing the order of adjectives in English language sentences: [T]hinking about how adjectives work may bounce you to an epistemological Zen state, wherein you can contemplate amid flutes what it means to partake of Redness and whether former child actress means something different from child former actress. Adjectives are where the elves of language both cheat and illumine reality.
  • Your guide to the literary Muppets. (Becca, however, wants her outrage documented: they left off the Muppet Frog Prince, the entirety of which you can watch right here.)
  • Comics Alliance looks at the competition between Marvel and DC for female fans: Young women are easily the single biggest growth market for comics publishers.
  • Playboy has a flowchart about whether you should catcall a woman, and we can find no disagreement. What is this world.
  • As you probably already know, someone leaked a number of famous women's private photographs, and our response has been super fucked up. Scott Mendelson at Forbes has it right: these photos aren't a "scandal," they're a sex crime. And at Vox, Kelsey McKinney has a great piece about being a woman with nude photos of herself on her phone: The response to these pictures is terrifying. It is a perfect, encapsulated reminder that your body can be used as a weapon against you. That slut-shaming is so prevalent and accepted in this culture that you could lose your job, or your boyfriend, or your credibility if a photo you once took was stolen from you — and then you will be the one blamed for it.
  • Look at this fucking amazing embroidery by Chloe Giordano.
  • This girl's stacking a mad bread motif all up in this text. Thug Notes takes on The Hunger Games.

Episode 33: I Would Never (Have Sex With You)

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Original Sins #5, Ms. Marvel #7 and Captain Marvel #6 | "Original Sins" opens the door for a new Young Avengers series (yes, please!), "Ms. Marvel" brings back a TWiL favorite trope with Wolverine reluctantly mentoring a teenage lady hero, and "Captain Marvel" "turn[s] the white savior complex on its ear." We also discuss the upcoming Spider-Woman solo title, which we want to be excited about, but... (See what I did there? Butt/but pun. Classy.)
  • This Week in the Book Report
    In keeping with the adaptation theme of our last couple of episodes, Becca reviews the new adaptation of If I Stay by Gayle Forman, which she had the opportunity to see early, courtesy of Penguin Teen and Forever Young Adult. Have tissues handy.
  • I Would Never (Have Sex With You): Mixed Gender Friendships
    In our main segment this week, we talk about mixed gender friendships in popular culture. We air some of our grievances about the portrayal of the male-female friend dynamic and cite some of our favorite examples of this relationship. Tell us: who do you think is a better opposite sex friend for Harry: Hermione or Luna?
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    Last night, we had the pleasure of seeing comedy duo Garfunkel & Oates live at the House of Blues in Houston, TX. (Check out the video evidence.) We recommend their entire discography, but in particular "Pregnant Women are Smug" (Becca's pick) and "Go Kart Racing" (Allison's pick).

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 32

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

This was a rough news week.

  • A lot -- a lot -- of good stuff has been written about the situation in Ferguson, Missouri this past week. There's too much to share here, so I'll just include Rembert Browne's piece for Grantland, which is raw and brave and heartbreaking.
  • The most recent episode of Last Week Tonight With John Oliver also had an excellent piece on the militarization of the American police in general.
  • Also, the Ferguson Public Library is doing an amazing job right now for their community -- among other things, the first day of school has been delayed, so they're hosting teachers at the library, all day, for kids who want to come in. They're also acting as an oasis for their community. The teachers and librarians of that community are heroes.
  • Amanda Hess over at Slate has a good description of ironic misandry, and why so many feminists are cheerfully using it: So young feminists have taken to deploying the claim of “misandry” like a parlor game, competing to push the idea of a vast, anti-man conspiracy to its most gleefully absurd limits.
  • The New York Times had a really lovely reminiscence of what it means to commit years of your life to taking care of a pet (in this case, a cat).
  • NYT also has a great look at millennials that is actually refreshingly free from the sort of handwringing you usually see accompanying pieces about us, and our general narcissism and need for praise.
  • Lev Grossman has written a pretty great piece at the Wall Street Journal about the way that Modernist complex writing and barnburning storytelling are coming together right now, and it made me excited about reading (even though I was, you know, already pretty jazzed about that, in general).
  • Over at TIME, James Poniewozik talks about what "hashtag activism" does well, using #IfTheyGunnedMeDown: But #IfTheyGunnedMeDown was a simple, ingenious DIY form of media criticism: direct, powerful, and meaningful on many levels. 
  • The #sharkweekreads hashtag is full of some great stuff. A Farewell to Arms, y'all. A FAREWELL TO ARMS.
  • Andrew W.K. has an advice column (?!) and he wrote an actually pretty great answer to a kid fighting with his right-wing dad.
  • Hey NBA: we're coming for you. The Spurs hired a female coach, and the players union hired a BAMF"My past," she told the room, "is littered with the bones of men who were foolish enough to think I was someone they could sleep on."
  • I don't think I've seen even half of the Step Up franchise, but even I know Vulture nailed it with #1 on this list of its dance numbers, ranked. (Becca, who has seen them all, agrees.)
  • The U.S. Department of the Interior has a really quite stunning Instagram account.
  • The Academy's initial tribute to Robin Williams was beautiful and perfect.

Episode 32: This Is Why You Don't Have Any Friends

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    She-Hulk #7, Rocket Raccoon #2 and Hawkeye #19 | A famous friend of Jennifer Walters' stops by to help She-Hulk and Hellcat out of a jam, Rocket Raccoon escapes from prison (it's kind of a thing), and Hawkeye reads lips. In his last outing, Clint Barton lost his hearing in an encounter with The Clown, and in an issue that will surely win an Eisner in San Diego next year, Matt Fraction and David Aja depict his experience as a deaf person in a world by and for people who can hear. We talk about it, but for some really eloquent analysis, check out "A Deaf Comic Geek's Grateful Review of 'Hawkeye #19'" and the A.V. Club's "Big Issues." David Aja sums it up pretty well, too.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Successful Adaptations | After last week's discussion of the books we'd like to see adapted for film and television, we thought we'd share some of the more successful examples of book adaptations in our viewing histories. There are too many to list here, but tune in to hear how we feel about the various incarnations of Alice in Wonderland, the adapted works of Jane Austen, and the one movie that is perhaps too successful an adaptation as it far outshines its lackluster source material.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
    Chris Pratt and Vin Diesel are hitting it out of the park on their GotG press tour. Watch them braid hair, rap, speak foreign languages, take selfies and walk around on giant stilts. Spoiler alert for our GotG discussion: one of these guys is infinitely more charismatic than his onscreen alter ego. You won't be surprised to learn that we go on at length about the latest entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but in summary: We liked it, but it was no Avengers. Among its flaws is its "miasma of douchiness." Though, it is the first MCU movie written by a woman (and the last for a long while, given what's already been announced) and the story of how that happened is pretty interesting: Marvel's doing it up old-school with a writing program that resembles the old studio system of the Golden Age of Hollywood. And somehow, it's working for them, so okay.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Girl in a Country Song" by Maddie & Tae, a sharp satire of, well, this.

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 31

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • BuzzFeed has a longread about Drop Dead Gorgeous, a movie that, in 1999, was both a critical and commercial flop, but has become a cult classic, and found a home in the hearts of those at TWiL HQ. There is a LOT of great insider baseball about the making of this movie (producers wanted Goldie Hawn to play Amber's mom?!). This could not be more crucial to your well-being: Success is always conditional. It’s not necessarily that good things happen to good people. This is a complete fucking accident.
  • In case you hadn't met your daily quota of "I'm not crying, it's just dusty in here," have some window washers dressing like superheroes at a children's hospital.
  • If your general health and well-being depend on not knowing what any American president has ever nicknamed his penis, well, the newly unsealed personal correspondence of Warren G. Harding is not for you.
  • The Bloggess has the best response to the whole Women Against Feminism thing, and frankly, a damn good definition of feminism in general: The point is that sharks, much like feminists, are awesome, and beneficial, and the world would be a worse place without them. 
  • Dear BookRiot, why couldn't you have published this literary tour of Maine when we did a piece on it for our Book Report segment?
  • The new University of Texas football coach, Charlie Strong, has released a number of players from the team as part of his cultural makeover. Every Day Should Be Saturday's Spencer Hall has some ideas on how he can take it even furtherRick Perry, those glasses look stupid. Get out of this state and come back when you've shot more than one dog and called it a coyote. Willie Nelson, walk it like you talk it and make another record with Julio Iglesias. It's been thirty years. You're off the team until I get my tender ballads.
  • Vulture takes us through all 38 #1 soundtracks of the last 30 years, and what they tell us about who we are as a people.
  • Stephen A. Smith has had a banner couple weeks with his comments about how women "provoke" domestic violence and Michael Sam. Deadspin has a great piece on how debating a topic legitimizes both sides of an argument even if they're inherently unequal, inspired by a "debate" on the ESPN show First Take.
  • Esquire has a dynamite profile of Dr. Willie Parker, the doctor performing abortions at Mississippi's last clinic (which conservatives in that state are desperate to close). This man is an American hero: "The protesters say they're opposed to abortion because they're Christian," Parker says. "It's hard for them to accept that I do abortions because I'm a Christian." 

Episode 31: Seeking a Friend for the End of the World

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 30

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • A filmmaker here in Austin (who, full disclosure, we tangentially know) is doing a Kickstarter for a fan film about X-Men's Storm. You should back this, it looks awesome.
  • NPR tells us how to win Monopoly in 21 seconds, which is the only way I will agree to play that game. (And having said that, Becca and I are now in a fight.)
  • Nathan Rabin is sorry he ever coined the phrase "Manic Pixie Dream Girl." This is an interesting piece, but I think it's conflating, a bit, the popularity of that phrase with the popularity of that archetype.
  • Batgirl's getting a new costume for her reboot, and it's awesome: fun, practical (within the bounds of assuming any superhero costume is practical), feels like something that character would actually choose for herself, and I need to cosplay it, stat.
  • The New Republic has a great, if depressing, piece about women's value, framed around that awful Esquire piece announcing it was OK to find 42-year-old women attractive: How, in this country, every barometer by which female worth is measuredfrom the superficial to the life-altering, the appreciative to the punitivehas long been calibrated to “dude,” whether or not those measurements are actually being taken by dudes. 
  • The coolest mom ever hand embroidered a Calvin and Hobbes panel for her son and it's so good I can't even.
  • TIME has a great look at the television series through history that changed the rules on how women's sexuality is portrayed, with really thoughtful examples.
  • So unlike Mallory Ortberg, I think you should watch Jenny Lewis' new music video because the song is great. And also unlike Mallory Ortberg, I have no strong feelings about Kristen Stewart as she normally appears. But like Mallory Ortberg, I have strong feels about KStew in drag: Something you might not have come to understand, if you are not a student of La Stewart as I am, is that she is one of the most misunderstood people in the world. Everything you found objectionable about her in the Twilight films — and you found her objectionable; I have read the internet — was the result of a lion being forced to wear housecat drag.
  • Before last week, I had watched exactly none American Ninja Warrior, and now I have watched Kacy Catanzaro conquer it like a beast, and now I don't think I need to watch any more American Ninja Warrior because I cannot imagine it gets any better than tiny gymnasts dominating a show that appears to be like if Wipeout was organized by sadists.
  • The most iconic soft drinks from each state. Texas' is right on, but I am ENRAGED that we get regular Dr Pepper and Oklahoma gets cane sugar Dr Pepper. I will flip this table.
  • In more state news, Jeff Friesen created a diorama in Legos that perfectly captures the essence of each of these fifty united states.
  • The New York Times has a lovely ode to Dungeons & Dragons, and the generation of writers it inspired: Playing D&D and spinning tales of heroic quests, "we welfare kids could travel," Mr. Díaz, 45, said in an email interview, "have adventures, succeed, be powerful, triumph, fail and be in ways that would have been impossible in the larger real world."
  • Dolly Parton played "Yakety Sax" at the Glastonbury Music Festival, which is obviously the greatest thing that has ever happened to anyone. (Vulture's video isn't working for me, so here's another clip.)
  • 25 Literary Pun Names for Your Cat. Becca and I agree that #12 is best.

Episode 30: Succès de Scandale

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Lumberjanes #4, Original Sins #3, Captain Marvel #5, Sheltered #10 and Rocket Raccoon #1 | Ryan North and Skottie Young retain their standing as TWiL favorites with North's Young Avengers mini-arc and the debut of Young's Rocket Raccoon. Both of which are loaded with great jokes and one of which has art I likened to vomit (you may be surprised to hear which one).
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Once upon a time, we discussed fairy tale adaptations and modern-day fairy tales, from poems that flip the script to lesbian leading ladies, with a fantasy-free Holocaust novel thrown in for good measure. You can find all of the books we discussed in this and other book reports at our LibraryThing page. The End.
  • Real Ladies: Scandals!
    Allison tells us all about French con artist and populist heroine Thérèse Humbert, whom she originally learned of in Scams! by Andreas Schroeder. As Humbert primarily scammed banks, not honest, hardworking individuals, she was thought of as something of a Robin (or, Robyn, as the Lumberjanes would style it) Hood. Check out these delightful New York Times headlines about Humbert and her brother. Can't get enough juicy gossip about women in history? Check out Anne Helen Petersen's Scandals of Classic Hollywood, based on a series she did at The Hairpin.

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 29

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • This summer, the National Literary Trust is putting 50 benches decorated with scenes from famous children's books around London. The Guardian has a quiz to identify some of them. I did... not as well I would have hoped.
  • Our vocabulary is way, way more gendered than we ever realized: While men indulged in souped-up military wet dreams, women apparently grew up in a Victorian beauty salon, wherein they flitted about in petticoats and worried if future husbands were taking notice of their domestic skills.
  • It turns out the world's biggest collector of Alamo artifacts is Phil Collins. Yes, that Phil Collins. And he's donating it all back to the Alamo, which is awesome. Also, it means I keep thinking of this scene from 30 Rock.
  • Get ready to lose hours of your life to the website Your Secret Slang, which documents the origins of different slang words and phrases: Interestingly enough, peeps was documented back in 1847, as in a prayer from the Michigan Legislature: ‘O Lor! Bless de peeps and their servant de representatives. May dey make laws for de peeps and not for demselves amen"
  • Here's a great infographic illustrating Ranganathan's Five Laws of Library Science, a system we here at TWiL are fans of.
  • Rolling Stone has a fascinating article on the rise of Neo-Nazi hipsters, or "nipsters," in Germany, and the ways the extreme right is co-opting youth culture to reach new audiences.
  • BookPeople, Austin's amazing independent book store, is starting an awesome new project, the Modern First Library, which is committed to supporting and promoting diversity in children's literature. I foresee a lot of baby shower and birthday gifts coming from this collection. (Grace for President and Niño Wrestles the World, both in the first collection, are TWiL forever favorites.)
  • Here's a term you'll probably find depressingly useful: "Columbusing."
  • The Hairpin takes a look at the archetype of the female trainwreck: In reality, the ideological sword of the “trainwreck” cuts two ways. It perpetuates the idea that women can’t take care of themselves. Sure, these characters are often just “figuring it out,” but there is a palpable note of infantilization inherent in this motif. 
  • The Toast has a great tribute to Jessica Fletcher, one of the finest detectives to ever grace your television.

Episode 29: Subtle Adult

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Saga #20, The Wicked and the Divine #1, Ms. Marvel #5, Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #6, Sex Criminals #6, Loki Ragnarok and Roll #4 and Original Sins #2 | That's a lot to summarize, y'all. You should probably just listen. And check out this mind-blowing Saga cosplay. You will not regret it.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Home State Authors | It's not all Stephen King and Larry McMurtry, believe it or not. We talk about biographical poetry, historical hijinks, juvenile detention centers and Pulitzer Prize winners, among other things. Who are your favorite writers from your home state?
  • Obvious Child
    You guys. Stop reading and go see Obvious Child. It's okay. We'll just wait here. You saw it? Okay, good. Now you're ready to jump in to our conversation about the greatness of this movie and its star, Marcel the Shell With Shoes On creator Jenny Slate. (Plus Gaby Hoffmann! Where's she been since the '90s? We didn't know we'd missed her until now.) We also discuss the depiction of abortion in popular culture. For additional resources on that subject, check out why Shonda Rhimes thinks this should be the year abortion is depicted on TV, "A Timeline of Abortion Stories in Popular U.S. Media," and these disheartening statistics about the relationship between abortion and death in film and television.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "The Way It Goes" by Gillian Welch

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 28

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

Episode 28: Mo' Meta, Mo' Problems

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Lumberjanes #3, She-Hulk #5, Original Sins #1, Loki: Agent of Asgard #5 and Captain Marvel #4 | This week, we were inspired, entertained and amused by the ladies of Lumberjanes and She-Hulk. Plus, Young Avengers is back, y'all (in Original Sins)! And it's written by Ryan North of Dinosaur Comics fame, so you know it's good (let's just not talk about the art).
  • This Week in the Book Report
    This week we talk about one of Becca's favorite genres: cookbooks! If you like cooking, baking, looking at food photos, eating or onion rings, this is the segment for you! Check out our recommended cookbooks at our LibraryThing page.
  • Mo' Meta, Mo' Problems: Pop Culture about Pop Culture
    This week, we talk about movies and television that are about movies and television: how and why they're made, why we're obsessed with them, and the ways in which movies and TV influence our expectations and behaviors. TWiL favorites Anne Helen Peterson and Alyssa Rosenberg have also tackled this topic in relation to two examples we use (Don Jon and Pain and Gain, respectively) so if you're interested in reading more about meta-culture, you should check them out. Also, Flavorwire has a list of 10 Awesome Meta-Movies That Will Melt Your Mind (including some we talk about), and, of course, TV Tropes is all over this. Lastly, please enjoy this gif (hard "g," ride or die) set from Seven Psychopaths, in which Christopher Walken lays some truth on Colin Farrell.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Thank You" by Dido

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 27

Since we record a new show every two weeks, on off weeks we do a link roundup of things we've read and want to share. Here's what's on tap this week.

  • The American Nazi Party are also, um, grammar Nazis. (Though, Becca and I both try to save calling things/people "Nazis" for when they are literally Nazis.) I will quote Becca, when I sent her this link: "I wish they would separate. Or seperate. Whatever they prefer."
  • Arthur Chu wrote a fantastic piece about Elliot Rodger and nerd entitlement that is seriously worth a read: But the overall problem is one of a culture where instead of seeing women as, you know, people, protagonists of their own stories just like we are of ours, men are taught that women are things to “earn,” to “win.” That if we try hard enough and persist long enough, we’ll get the girl in the end. Like life is a video game and women, like money and status, are just part of the reward we get for doing well.
  • 21 Facts You Didn't Know About Pitch Perfect.
  • TIME has an oral history of the Mighty Ducks franchise. The dream is alive, people. Also, they have a great slideshow of behind-the-scenes photos. TIME accurately points out that "The Mighty Ducks arrived during what can only be called the Golden Era of children’s sports movies" which is true, people.
  • The Oxford comma is one of the most divisive issues here at TWiL HQ, and mental_floss has a great roundup of the best examples used to support both sides. As you can see, the people who believe in the Oxford comma are always correct.
  • Here's an interesting piece about Maya Angelou's influence on hip hop. That story about Angelou meeting Tupac is so great.
  • New Epic Rap Battle of History: Edgar Allan Poe vs. Stephen King.
  • Mallory Ortberg is a goddamn national treasure, and as if we needed more evidence of that, she wrote a piece called Stardate: Fuck This ShitFirst of all, I’m a fucking contract worker, which means that I get to work twice as hard as a full-time employee and get shit-all for health insurance and benefits. It’s ridiculous to me that there are exactly two jobs in the entire cold vastness of space — government drone or non-unionized pirate. 
  • I got 20 out of 21 on this HuffPo quiz about using common phrases correctly, and I'm mad I didn't get all 21.
  • The New Yorker has a really interesting article about the phenomenon of people adding untrue "facts" to Wikipedia, which then get cited in other places, which then confirms those untrue facts for Wikipedia users: Wikipedia’s rules value a multitude of independent sources over the word of an article’s subject. And so, the founder of Wikipedia could not get the Web site to reflect what is—according to Wales, at least—his actual birthday.
  • Sir Mix-a-Lot performed "Baby Got Back" with the Seattle Symphony. Two thoughts: a) that lady in the black dress and glasses can work it and b) ours is not the best universe, but it's a damn good one.