Linda Holmes

Linda Holmes writes and edits NPR's entertainment and pop-culture blog, Monkey See. She has several elaborate theories involving pop culture and monkeys, all of which are available on request.

Holmes began her professional life as an attorney. In time, however, her affection for writing, popular culture and the online universe eclipsed her legal ambitions. She shoved her law degree in the back of the closet, gave its living-room space to DVD sets of The Wire and never looked back.

Holmes was a writer and editor at Television Without Pity, where she recapped several hundred hours of programming — including both High School Musical movies, for which she did not receive hazard pay. Since 2003, she has been a contributor to MSNBC.com, where she has written about books, movies, television and pop-culture miscellany.

Holmes' work has also appeared on Vulture (New York magazine's entertainment blog), in TV Guide and in many, many legal documents.

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Monkey See
7:36 pm
Sat August 17, 2013

Why I Resist Web Redesigns (And Maybe You Do, Too)

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 11:07 am

Words many of us never want to hear: "It's the transmission." "We can't get a technician out there until next Tuesday." "Your ex will be there."

And, of course: "Welcome to our redesigned site!"

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Monkey See
7:28 pm
Sat August 17, 2013

On 'Doomsday Castle,' If Armageddon Doesn't Get You, Your Tractor Might

Brent, Jr. in his battering ram, on National Geographic Channel's Doomsday Castle.
National Geographic Channel

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 7:55 am

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Monkey See
3:17 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Can You Really Dissolve A Guy In A Bathtub? 'Mythbusters' Tackles 'Breaking Bad'

Adam Savage and Aaron Paul trade some information on Monday night's Mythbusters.
Don Feria Discovery

Originally published on Mon August 12, 2013 7:31 am

Perhaps you heard that last night, a plucky little drug dealer named Walter White returned to television for his last eight episodes of the award-hoarding Breaking Bad.

But before he began his life of crime, Walter White was a chemistry teacher, and chemistry is what originally made him such a great meth cook. Breaking Bad has always included a lot of science talk, especially in the early days, and the time has come for someone to see whether it holds up.

And by "someone," I mean "Mythbusters."

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Monkey See
3:16 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

'Elysium': To Build A World Is Not To Tell A Story

Wagner Maura, as someone named Spider, handles Max (Matt Damon) in Elysium.
Kimberley French Sony Pictures

Originally published on Sun August 11, 2013 6:46 pm

[General plot/premise discussion within; no major spoilers regarding big developments.]

One of the great threats to any film is that the people who are making it live too much inside it. Just as you learn to navigate a city without looking at signs, they learn to navigate the world they've built so well that they forget to make it comprehensible and important for people who have just arrived.

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Monkey See
3:14 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

The Real Foodwives: Bravo Found Some More Rich Ladies Who Gossip!

Screenshot

Originally published on Sun August 11, 2013 9:12 am

The first person we meet in Bravo's new rich-white-ladies-fighting show Eat Drink Love is Waylynn. Waylynn is a pastry chef who has a store where she sells what she calls "fonuts."

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Monkey See
3:11 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

Grief And Community In 'Broadchurch'

Olivia Colman and David Tennant in Broadchurch.
Colin Hutton BBC America

Originally published on Wed August 7, 2013 9:14 am

It's hard to import a European murder mystery without importing baggage along with it — expectations of a gray chill, of relentless and austere severity.

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Monkey See
9:10 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Death And Walter White

Bryan Cranston as Walter White on Breaking Bad.
Ursula Coyote AMC

Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 10:57 am

This piece discusses plot points in detail from the first four and a half seasons of Breaking Bad, but nothing from the Aug. 11 season premiere.

If television's golden age has taught viewers anything, it is to expect that explosive, violent death is an integral part of serious storytelling. The history of literature and the history of film teach that there are other ways to achieve high stakes. But if you go looking for premium, celebrated television dramas that don't involve a lot of bloody kills, you will narrow your options considerably.

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Monkey See
8:50 am
Thu August 8, 2013

Rushing The Revolution: Television Is Disrupted! (Sort Of)

Vasca iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri August 2, 2013 9:58 am

Television is in the middle of a cataclysmic upheaval, in which there's no more season or midseason, no more requirement that a series run for 22 episodes at a time, no more stigma surrounding film actors going to television, no more assumption that television is watched on a television, no more assumption that people watch things when they're on, an explosive presence for social media that unites fans, and a growing sense on the part of a lot of people that television is pulling just as much of the cultural storytelling weight as film.

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Monkey See
10:58 am
Tue July 30, 2013

Mike Tyson And The Questions Not Asked

Director Spike Lee and Mike Tyson speak onstage at a panel in Beverly Hills on Thursday.
Frederick M. Brown Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 10:53 am

HBO's press tour presentations this year were quieter than they've sometimes been. They don't have a big, splashy new drama series to talk about — in part because they still make a limited amount of original programming and don't have a lot of room when they're happy with how things are going. They have a comedy series with Stephen Merchant, but since we haven't seen it, most of the questions touched in one way or another on how tall he is.

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Monkey See
8:44 pm
Sat July 27, 2013

Keith Olbermann Talks Sports, ESPN, And The Secret Identity Anthony Weiner Stole

Keith Olbermann speaks onstage during the Olbermann panel at the ESPN portion of the 2013 Summer Television Critics Association press tour.
Frederick M. Brown Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 8:07 am

"Carlos ... Danger," says Keith Olbermann with utter awe, and arcs his hand across his field of vision.

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