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.

Episode 27: Off With Their Heads

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 #19, Ms. Marvel #4, Trees #1, Captain Marvel #3 and C.O.W.L. #1 | Saga is back! And Brian K. Vaughan's not interested in easing us back in gently. Ms. Marvel finally dons her own costume and claims her own superhero identity, while Captain Marvel teaches us about the folly of hubris. We also discuss Trees, the newest book from Warren Ellis (Iron Man, Wolverine, Transmetropolitan, everything else), which we agree would make a pretty great TV show, but was maybe not enough to convince us to commit to yet another comic.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Series vs. Standalone | We fly by the seat of our pants on this segment to talk about the comparative merits and weaknesses of series fiction. Mostly weaknesses. Think we're fooling you about the wide variety of cozy mysteries? Think again. Feel free to defend your favorite series in the comments below; we'd love to hear from you!
  • Maleficent & Female Villains
    We saw Maleficent this weekend (along with millions of other Americans) and it was...okay? Still, we declare it a win for movies headlined by women. Money speaks, after all. From there, we discuss some of our favorite female baddies, from Dolores Umbridge to Chelsea Cain, the characteristics that make a villain truly terrifying, and what traits female villains in particular tend to have in common. We also talk about this disturbing scene from The Rescuers.

 Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 26

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.

And in observance of American Memorial Day, a thank you to those who serve, and who gave their lives in service to this country.

Episode 26: You Know You're a Feminist When...

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 #4, Black Widow #6, Loki: Agent of Asgard #4, Lumberjanes #2 and Rat Queens #1 | An embarrassment of riches this week! We talk about the apparently universal appeal of Chuck Taylors among superheroes, the joy of team assembly montages, and what happens when Lumberjanes grow up to become mushroom-eating marauders.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Graphic Novels | We talk about what distinguishes graphic novels from comics (your mileage may vary) and recommend a few of our favorites, including a Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic memoir, an American sitcom-Chinese folktale fusion and a kid-friendly book about a poodle-eating alligator. As always, you can find a list of the books we talk about on our LibraryThing page.
  • The Media That Shaped Our Feminism
    Happy anniversary to us! In celebration of a year of talking about feminism and popular culture, we share some of the popular culture that aided us in becoming the feminists we are today. Our fictional female roles models run the gamut from plucky heroines like Anne of Green Gables to a certain unlikable Southern belle. We spend a little time on the ways popular culture taught us why we need feminism, from mandated pseudonyms to derisive, dismissive terminology, but mostly we accentuate the positive. Unsurprisingly, books play a starring role in our feminist development. Here are 15 Teen Feminist Books Everyone Should Read, according to Flavorwire, who also inspired this topic with their Ultimate Pop-Culture Feminist Syllabus.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Teen for God" by Dar Williams

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 25

 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.

  • Autostraddle was recently accused of being "Cosmo for queers," and their defense of their site -- and their right to make money from their writing -- is fierce and perfect: Why is it okay to make straight feminism “friendlier” but not queer issues or queer feminism? Why does Clarke think xoJane’s vacillation between frivolous prose and “serious issues” is strategic and smart, but ours is simply a reflection of our misguided immature desire to conform profitably?
  • This chart comparing the number of unique words used by rappers versus Shakespeare and Melville is super interesting. Words + charts + culture! That is the TWiL trifecta, right there.
  • Vulture has a great interview with Brian Michael Bendis about Spider-Man, working at Marvel, and race in comics, among other things.
  • An actual NHL referee reviews the plays in The Mighty Ducks: Prior to the opening puck drop I would have firmly addressed the highly inappropriate, racially charged "Oreo Cookie line" comment by assuming the role of a "Political Correctness Police Officer." I would have immediately insisted upon a sincere apology be delivered by the Hawks player with the threat of ejection from the game under rule 23.7 (ii) racial taunts and slurs. If I was satisfied with a sincerity of the apology I would have escorted the Hawks player to his bench and placed the Coach on notice that any further such episodes from any of his players would result in a game misconduct. 
  • Here's a roundup of cool photos of the world's remaining "chained libraries," where books are literally chained to stacks/desks (most of these books and libraries are very, very old).
  • A librarian in New York City wrote a piece for School Library Journal about the discussions she had with her students over the course of the school year about the whitewashing of children's book covers (a huge problem). These kids are amazing, and I for one welcome our new socially conscious overlords: “Now I kind of want to be a publisher so that I can break some of these stereotypes,” wrote one student.
  • TIME has a great look at the art and science of NOW That's What I Call Music!
  • At the Ms. Foundation awards last week, both Amy Schumer and Gabourey Sidibe gave outstanding speeches about personal confidence, and specifically finding it in a world where you are not valued for your looks: It's my good time, and my good life, despite what you think of me. I live my life, because I dare. I dare to show up when everyone else might hide their faces and hide their bodies in shame. I show up because I'm an asshole, and I want to have a good time. 
  • Ann Friedman has a great piece about Shailene Woodley saying she's not a feminist, and, more broadly, the problem with a world where young women who absolutely believe in feminist things don't want to bear the burden and misconceptions that go with the label.
  • For TIME, James Poniewozik wrote about the power of Friends, the season finale of which was ten years ago (!). The article is behind a paywall, unfortunately, but his blog post about it is still worth it: For 10 years, through all the musical-chairs dating and goofy college-flashback episodes, the characters have dealt with one problem: how to replace the kind of family in which they grew up with the one they believed they were supposed to have. 
  • A New Zealand-based artist is creating a series of 100 works illustrating words for which English has no direct translation. They are amazing. Becca and I both have problems with tsundoku. See the whole series (so far) here.

Episode 25: She Said, She Said

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

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

  • This Week in Comics
    Free Comic Book Day, Sheltered #9, Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #4 and Loki: Ragnarok and Roll #3 | Becca breaks down her Free Comic Book Day haul. We're sorry we didn't talk this event up before the fact this year, but for 2015, we're giving you 363 days notice: it's the first Saturday in May. Keep an eye on the Free Comic Book Day Web site to find participating stores and see the free comics. We also talk adolescent doomsday preppers, slowly wrought rebellions and violent gods for modern times.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Unexpected hits! This week, we talk about the books and genres we were sure we'd hate, but then that took us by surprise. Find out how we came around to romance novels, self-help guides, and a little series you may have heard of called The Lord of the Rings. As always, you can find the books discussed in this segment on our LibraryThing page.
  • This Week on the Soapbox
    Allison breaks it down for the many, many people confused by what the First Amendment is and does. (We're looking at you, Donald Sterling defenders.) Here's the xkcd comic sums this up really well, once again.
  • Real Ladies: Rivalries
    Every fifth episode, we talk real ladies. This time: real lady rivals of the Golden Age of Hollywood. We talk about the antagonistic chemistry Joan Crawford and Bette Davis brought from their real lives to the screen for What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? and the near-lifelong sibling rivalry between Joan Fontaine and Olivia de Havilland. Bonus: modern day starlets Jennifer Lawrence and Kristen Stewart refuse to play that game.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Julia" by SZA, other auteur R&B artists as recommended by Friend of the Show, Ramón Ramirez

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 24

 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.

  • xkcd spells it out for us. Preach, Randall.
  • The Toast's piece "So You've Decided to Go to Library School" is hilarious and devastatingly on point: The absolute best thing about library school is your peers. You will all have a Leslie Knope-ian intensity about something. It may be Star Wars, hockey, astrophysics, or that damn rock wall, but everyone brings some kind of obsession to the table. There is sure to be someone who will be a little too into board games. People will regularly discuss Weasleycest and Tami Taylor’s hair at parties, because if there’s one thing librarians get, it’s an enthusiast. We are all punk-ass book jockeys, and we want you to read our favorite book.
  • Muppet Christ Superstar is everything I never knew I needed. Gonzo singing "Heaven on Their Minds." Holy shit.
  • Speaking of things that are totally my jam, the DuckTales theme song as a slow jam. Bad and good luck tales, ooh ooh.
  • Tamara Keith is NPR's new White House Correspondent (she's great, but America still loves you, Ari Shapiro!), and she got to ask her first question of Obama recently. She has a great inside baseball story on how press briefings work.
  • FastCo has a chart showing which sitcom characters could actually afford their homes. Surprise: it's not many of them.
  • Continuing with TV, a linguist at an Australian university crunched the numbers on (American) TV opening credits. I am pro weird and pronounced credit sequences, personally. 
  • As goes Waffle House, so goes a post-disaster region of the United States, according to the dude who's now the administrator of FEMA.
  • Here's a post at Bookish about learning to love romance novels.
  • The Los Angeles Book Review has a great piece on "sheikh romances," a subset of the romance genre that feature romances between Middle Eastern men and (almost exclusively) white women, that explores the ways stereotypes take hold on us: The books rely on a curious mix of cultural stereotypes and a flimsy critique of them. Nearly all that I’ve read end in a union between the sheikh and the white woman. That is, most of the books make a positive statement about cultural difference (even if some differences are misrepresented or elided). They tell us that we can love each other despite allegedly grave cultural divides. And I must confess that I want to believe in this story.
  • The LA Book Review also has a fantastic piece on the Dead Girl Show, the TV show whose primary mystery surrounds a dead (beautiful, white) teenage girl: Murder is something on the air, like a demon — and make no mistake, this is a kind of victim blaming.
  • New Jay Smooth video! First one in forever! On the Donald Sterling tapes. Jay Smooth, forever my Internet boyfriend, very much at the top of his game.
  • So it turns out the Smithsonian Natural History Museum has never actually had a real T. rex skeleton -- theirs is a replica. But they're getting one now, and NPR has a great story about the process of getting it there. (Also, Matt Carrano has the best job title in the entire world): Johnson gives the dinosaur's arm bones, which are Velcro-ed into a white plaster cradle, his measured scientific opinion: "Wow. Wow. Wow." This was the first complete T. rex arm ever found. 
  • I have never really gotten the point of Vines, but then I watched this one of a llama hopping to DMX and now I have seen the light.

Episode 24: Podcasts of Sharks & Superheroes

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

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

  • This Week in Comics
    Ms. Marvel #3, Captain Marvel #2 and the all-new Lumberjanes | Ms. Marvel hits its stride, Captain Marvel encounters the Guardians of the Galaxy, giving us hope that we'll see her on the big screen (We've got a story idea, Marvel. Call us), and the Lumberjanes kick ass, take names and drink cocoa. After striking out with X-Men and Fearless Defenders, we finally get a lady ensemble comic we think's a winner! Lumberjanes is co-written by Noelle Stevenson, who not only did the illustrations for Rainbow Rowell's Fangirl, but also brought us The Broship of the Ring. And here's the Slate article on how the Carol Corps and the Kamala Korps are changing Marvel's sense of what kinds of superheroes sell.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Non-stop non-fiction! We recommend some of our favorite nonfiction books for you (sophisticated books about religion and relationship, imperialism, and science from Allison, Tori Spelling from me). You can find all the books we discuss in the Book Report at our LibraryThing page! And the Sarah Vowell essay "You, Sir, Are No Rosa Parks" is up in its entirety over at Time (where it was originally published).
  • Dreams of Gods and Monsters
    Laini Taylor wraps up her Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy with a finale that isn't at all what we expected, but was everything we never knew we always wanted. Have you read it? Listen to our discussion, then join us in the comments to talk fantasy trilogies, petty revenge, beautiful language and Ziri forever!
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "IOU" by Metric
    from Friend of the Show Julia M.

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 23

 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 23: Up All Night to Get Bucky

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies! Thanks to Jamie McKelvie for our episode title!

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

  • This Week in Comics
    Avengers Assemble #25, Hawkeye #18, Loki: Agent of Asgard #3, She-Hulk #3, Pretty Deadly #5 | Kelly Sue DeConnick says good-bye to Avengers Assemble and damn, does she go out on a high note. This storyline with Spider-Girl/Anya Corazon has been a-mazing. Pretty Deadly also just wrapped up a story arc, so if you've been wanting to check out some of KSD's work, but prefer to trade-wait, your time is coming! Also in this segment: gritty L.A. noir, talkin' 'bout art, Journey Into Mystery callbacks and the kick-ass, all-lady cast of She-Hulk.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    Allison recommends her favorite home design books! Check them (and other books mentioned in the Book Report) out at our Library Thing page. You'll have to take my word for it, but Allison's apartment is super cute, so you're in good hands! There's also this, for those of you who are curious about how your design book/magazine sausage is made.
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier
    Captain America: The Winter Soldier is breaking box office records and getting rave reviews and, well, we're not surprised. I'm pretty sure we'll both be seeing this one on the big screen again. Our discussion is *extremely* spoilery, so if you want to skip it, here's what you need to know: Go see this movie. Run, don't walk. It's a great movie and a major game changer in the MCU.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Ooh La La" by the Ditty Bops
    from Friend of the Show Julia M.
  • Please take our survey! For science!

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 22

 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 AV Club takes a look at Brooklyn 99's main weakness, Boyle's obsession with Rosa, and why it's just not funny to have a dude refuse to hear a woman's noSitcoms pretend there are no consequences for the woman being pursued. In most sitcoms, there’s an acknowledged comfort zone that allows us to enjoy what might be uncomfortable in something more realistic: We know these heroes are essentially harmless.
  • The Toast makes an eloquent argument in favor of Veronica/Mac being the greatest romance on Veronica Mars. I subscribe wholeheartedly (I, Allison, speak only for myself here; this is most certainly not an official This Week in Ladies position, as you probably already know if you listened to our most recent episode).
  • On the subject of Veronica, here's an interview with the movie's costume designer, and here's one with the show's. Lot of interesting stuff about your television sausage gets made (a CSI:NY warehouse sale?!).
  • Josh Charles was on Keith Olbermann's show and did the sports headlines as Dan Rydell and oh, my heart.
  • Maria Popova of Brain Pickings has published an old Mark Twain book of advice for young girls, if you know a girl of frankly any age who needs a present. Becca and I already had our birthdays this year, but, you know, we can overlook lateness. It contains gems like this: If your mother tells you to do a thing, it is wrong to reply that you won’t. It is better and more becoming to intimate that you will do as she bids you, and then afterward act quietly in the matter according to the dictates of your best judgment.
  • HuffPo has a list of 14 badass female authors, including some I didn't know about. For real, how is there not a movie about Nellie Bly yet?
  • Mallory Ortberg rewrote The Velveteen Rabbit as a horror story. This is genuinely some of the most upsetting shit you'll read this week: Whose skin do you have, the Rabbit had asked him, and the Skin Horse had shivered to hear the excitement in his voice. Whose skin did you get.
  • BuzzFeed has a recording of the demo tape Michael Jackson did for "Beat It," and it's worth a listen. Goddamn, that's talent.
  • Ta-Nehisi Coates at the top of his game is a force of fucking nature: If you can not bring yourself to grapple with that which literally built your capitol, then you are not truly grappling with your country. And if you are not truly grappling with your country, then your beliefs in its role in the greater world (exporter of democracy, for instance) are built on sand.
  • This Is What Happens When You Put Dogs In A Photo Booth.

Episode 22: Most Likely To

Hello and welcome to This Week in Ladies!

Illness has struck TWiL HQ, so we're skipping The Book Report this week to bring you an abbreviated show, done in our best Phoebe Buffay sexy voices. Here's what we've got on tap for you this week:

  • This Week in Comics
    Hawkeye #17, Ms. Marvel #2, Black Widow #4, Captain Marvel #1, and Sex Criminals #5 | No home runs in comics this week, I'm sorry to say, but we do have a lively discussion about "Ms. Marvel." It's okay--we did love the exact same joke in "Hawkeye," so our house divided can still stand. "Black Widow" and "Captain Marvel" weren't really for me this week (it's not them, it's me) and I ditched "Sex Criminals" altogether, despite an earlier promise to Allison, but she has some thoughtful things to say about the portrayal of mental illness in this issue. (Disagreements about Ms. Marvel! Broken promises! Coming up next on "Behind the Podcast!") Speaking of "Sex Criminals," Chip Zdarsky tweeted pictures of his models for Suzie and Jon earlier this month and the resemblance is uncanny.
  • The Veronica Mars Movie
    Major spoilers ahead! The disagreements continue as we discuss one Mr. Logan Echolls. Not that I disagree with what Allison and NPR's Linda Holmes have to say about Logan, and if he were a real dude, I'd keep my distance and want my friends to do the same. But I don't mind the fantasy of a bad man saved by the love of a good woman. Plus he's so hot and their chemistry is like burning. Aside from that one little, tiny thing, we pretty much agreed on the strengths (witty repartee,  atmosphere, father-daughter relationships) and weaknesses (television pacing, serious Piz misuse) of the Veronica Mars movie. So, did you see it? What did you think? Write in or leave a comment below!
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    "Mother of Invention" by The Trishas

Thanks for listening!

This Week in Links 21

 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.

  • I can't believe I forgot to include this last time, but I wrote a post for brandnewkindof's The First Album I Ever Bought series! Click on through if you want to know my thoughts about 90s radio country.

  • Our friends over at Stacked have a great post on unlikeable female characters in YA novelsThe characters are unlikeable because they don’t conform to an established societal ideal of what it means to be female. Boys are allowed to be loud and disgusting and ambitious. They can disagree and forge ahead and be considered trailblazers and pioneers. They are allowed a full range of feelings and behaviors that women are not.

  • These drawings of elderly superheroes are really fun. My one criticism is that Buffy is not drawn stylishly enough -- that's a woman who won't let aging get in the way of wearing a trend.

  • College libraries and archives are starting to hire "Wikipedians in residence," a person whose job is to write and edit Wikipedia entries on topics relevant to the library's collection, and to prepare public domain media for sharing on Wikimedia. This is an awesome idea. Harvard is hiring one right now, and they should definitely be paying more than the $16 an hour for this they're offering.

  • Here's some tips on how to write a good sex scene, with #5 being the most critical. (Although I have to say, you can write a good sex scene whose point is NOT to turn the reader on.)

  • Melville House Publishing has the best writeup of the current dustup in science fiction fandom, starting with the title: The only real space books are the intolerant space books, insists intolerant publisher of space books

  • Huffington Post has a fun roundup of facts about various popular fonts (Becca is a diehard Garamond person).

  • The Oxford English Dictionary announced its quarterly update of new words, which is exciting news for word nerds. A lot of the new terms are about ladies, and a bunch are derivations of "cunt." Brb changing my last name to "Clawecuncte."

  • Walter Dean Myers wrote a lovely, thoughtful, quietly angry piece for the New York Times on the lack of racial and economic diversity in children's literatureAs I discovered who I was, a black teenager in a white-dominated world, I saw that these characters, these lives, were not mine. I didn’t want to become the “black” representative, or some shining example of diversity. What I wanted, needed really, was to become an integral and valued part of the mosaic that I saw around me.

  • Becca sent me the link for this website, and anonymous author of TheBestDinosaur.com, I love you. You are right. Never surrender.

Episode 21: Hard-Working Hummingbirds

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 #2, Hawkeye #15, Loki: Agent of Asgard #2 and Avengers Assemble #24 | "She-Hulk" and "Loki" introduce us to some new characters with a lot of promise, "Avengers Assemble" gives us the Spider-Girl/real Avenger pair-up we've all been waiting for, and "Hawkeye" revisits Clint's Council of Exes. Overall, a really strong week in comics with a lot of consistent storytelling, art and characterization.
  • This Week in the Book Report
    This week, we're talking about books that make us want to go to there: books with a great sense of place, from the general (small-town Southern America, "the big city") to the specific (Texas and New England, surprise), from the quaint (Prince Edward Island) to the exotic (Prague. Prague Prague Prague).
  • Special Guest Kelly Sue DeConnick
    Comic book writer Kelly Sue DeConnick ("Pretty Deadly," "Captain Marvel," "Avengers Assemble") joins us for a discussion of popular culture, relationships, the creative process and, of course, all the exciting projects she's working on ("Bitch Planet," we're ready. Also check out Kelly Sue's Pinterest board for the series. Hello, leather). We are so grateful to Kelly Sue for taking the time to talk with us. We really enjoyed the interview and think you will, too! Please take a minute to check out Kelly Sue's Web site. You can also find her work wherever fine comics are sold.
  • This Week in Shit You Should Be Listening To
    Courtesy of our guest, "I Eat Boys Like You for Breakfast" by Ida Maria

Thanks for listening!