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
4:45 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Oh, 'Mother': An Awful End To A Long Love Story

Josh Radnor and Cristin Milioti, as Ted and the mother, deserved better on the series finale.
Ron P. Jaffe CBS

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 1:55 pm

[WARNING: If you haven't seen the series finale of How I Met Your Mother, don't watch it. Just kidding! Sort of. This piece, at any rate, contains plot details from that finale.]

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Monkey See
5:32 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

10 Absolutely True Stories About Writing For Television Without Pity

Tubey, the Television Without Pity mascot, rendered as a plush toy.
NPR

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 7:13 pm

[What follows is a personal reflection. Please indulge me.]

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Monkey See
2:43 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

Essie Davis: On Playing A Sexually Liberated 'Superhero' Without Apology

Essie Davis has read about how Phryne is a "hussy." She doesn't mind.
Ben King Acorn.TV

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 9:11 am

In the first-ever episode of the Australian series Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, the central figure, Phryne Fisher, has to explain to her young, extremely Catholic new maid Dot what exactly is in the round, plastic case that Dot is holding in her hands. "Family planning," she says casually.

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Monkey See
12:44 pm
Sat March 29, 2014

Sex And The Greater 'Good Wife': Archie Panjabi On Keeping That Big Secret

Archie Panjabi plays Kalinda Sharma on CBS's The Good Wife.
Jeffrey Neira CBS

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 3:15 pm

Archie Panjabi is part of the cast of CBS's The Good Wife, which has spent much of this week hearing an earful about a major plot development on last Sunday's episode. (They discuss her feelings about the reaction, but do not specify what the development was.)

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Monkey See
5:25 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

The Tyranny Of Release Dates, Part II: 'The Lunchbox'

Saajan Fernandes (Irrfan Khan) is a widower whose correspondence comes in an unlikely package — a lunchbox.
Ritesh Batra Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 3:16 pm

The romantic comedy-drama is not dead; it's just being platformed.

I saw The Lunchbox, the first feature from director Ritesh Batra, at the Toronto International Film Festival in September of last year. Starring Irrfan Khan and Nimrat Kaur, it takes as its jumping-off point the dabbawalas of Mumbai, guys on bikes who run a lunchbox-delivery system that brings hot, delicious lunches to people working in offices. (Spoiler alert: you will envy this system by film's end.)

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Monkey See
5:24 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Divergent,' Getting Personal, And Jesse Thorn

NPR

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 3:16 pm

  • Listen to Pop Culture Happy Hour

There's no one better to — as Stephen terms it — put the Y in YA than our youngest regular contributor, Code Switch's Kat Chow. So Kat sits in for our discussion this week of Divergent, which is not at all The Hunger Games, but ... sort of is. We spend a little time on the world of Tris Prior and her family, chat about the things that we didn't understand about this particular divided dystopia, and hear from Kat about how it changes your perspective if you (gasp!) read the book on which the film is based.

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Monkey See
11:18 am
Mon March 24, 2014

Not So 'Divergent': The Cookie-Cutter Nonconformist

Shailene Woodley and Theo James in Divergent. Can you see the rebellion?
Jaap Buitendijk Summit Entertainment

Originally published on Mon March 24, 2014 8:58 am

Divergent, the new film starring Shailene Woodley based on the popular YA novels by Veronica Roth, describes a dystopian future in which everyone belongs to one of five "factions": Erudite (cold-blooded intellectuals), Amity (hippie farmers), Abnegation (plain-dress public servants), Candor (people who tell the truth all the time) (?), and Dauntless (bad-ass fighters).

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Monkey See
11:17 am
Mon March 24, 2014

Ugh: 'Good Wife,' Bad Idea

Josh Charles as Will Gardner and Archie Panjabi as Kalinda Sherma on The Good Wife. In a word, "Ugh."
CBS

Originally published on Mon March 24, 2014 4:13 pm

[CAUTION: Do not, under any circumstances, read any farther unless you want to know what happened on Sunday night's The Good Wife. Do not say you were not warned.]

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Monkey See
3:23 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: The Authenticity Business And A Colorful Quiz

NPR

Originally published on Mon March 24, 2014 10:40 am

  • Listen to Pop Culture Happy Hour

On this week's episode, our pal Gene Demby is with us for a discussion of the recent Between Two Ferns episode in which the President of the United States chatted about the Hangover movies. What does this kind of appearance accomplish? What is the meaning of "keeping it real" in current popular culture? And what does this all have to do with mayonnaise? Oh, you'll find out.

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Monkey See
3:43 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Would You Order The Grande Soy Oprah?

Howard Schultz, left, chairman and CEO of Starbucks Coffee Company, clinks tea cups with Oprah Winfrey, right, to announce their partnership to offer Teavana Oprah Chai tea.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 8:12 am

Say this to yourself: "I'd like a grande skim Oprah."

Let it roll off your tongue. Let it echo in your head. Let it burn itself into your brain. Really feel it.

On Wednesday, Starbucks announced that, in partnership with Oprah Winfrey, it had developed Oprah Chai Tea, which will be available either as regular tea or as a chai latte. When will it be here? "In time for Mother's Day."

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