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comedy

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Solo is the tenth feature-length, live-action Star Wars film. It is the fifth Star Wars prequel. It is the second Star Wars anthology film (following 2016's Rogue One), and it's the second Star Wars movie to come out in just the last six months (along with The Last Jedi).

It is, though, a number of Star Wars firsts too: It's the first Star Wars picture to have its director(s) fired midway through production. It's the first to star Woody Harrelson. It's the first Star Wars movie that may well lose money.

Carlos Mejia / Connecticut Public Radio

Donald Glover can do anything. He's an actor and a comedian, he's a singer and a songwriter, he's a rapper and a DJ. Mainstream audiences know him from Community and maybe the FX series he created, Atlanta. Nerdy audiences know him as the voice of Spider-Man, and they're about to know him as a young Lando Calrissian.

But Glover's music -- he sings and raps as Childish Gambino and DJs as mcDJ -- has never quite punched through into the wider popular consciousness, despite some chart success. Until this week, maybe. The new Childish Gambino video, "This Is America," which dropped last Saturday in concert with Glover's hosting Saturday Night Live, has just about 75 million views on YouTube. It is "a milestone" and "a media phenomenon," and it has finally made Glover "a superstar."

Tripp / Creative Commons

 

Comedy forces us to confront uncomfortable realities that we prefer to ignore. It also makes us laugh. Laughter is a powerful force. It can release chemicals in our body that make us feel good and help us better cope with the daily stress of living in a world that can lately seem to be spiraling out of control. 

Bill Morrow / Creative Commons

A man kills women because he can't have them. An elected politician reacts harshly to speech he doesn't like. Supporters and critics of Wolf's monologue rip each other apart over whether Wolf went too far or got it just right. 

This is our second Monday in a row where we book no guests and take your calls. What does this mean to you? It's your calls and Colin.

Jamle / flickr

They smell better, they're better at sensing temperature changes and they can handle more pain. These are just a few of the actual differences between redheads and the rest of us. But while having red hair does come with certain advantages, there are more than a few disadvantages as well.

IFC Films

Armando Iannucci is the creator of Veep and The Thick of It and the writer and director of In the Loop. Those, you'll note, are all contemporary political satires. Iannucci's new movie, The Death of Stalin, is set in 1953 Moscow and tells a true-to-some-degree version of the story of, logically, Joseph Stalin's death. Historical period piece or no, The Death of Stalin is still utterly recognizable Iannucci: it's funny, it's filthy -- it's mostly about the incompetence of the powerful. And, at the same time, stories about Russian authoritarianism have a certain contemporary vibe too, ya know?

MilkADeal / Flickr

The Thighmaster, the Chop-O-Matic, the George Foreman Grill and the Clapper: Products which are all part of American consumer culture and which were all introduced through infomercials. But as online shopping increases and traditional television watching decreases, are we beginning to see the end of these high-energy, late-night shows?

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Ryan Coogler's Black Panther is the eighteenth feature film entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It is the sixth movie in Phase Three, and it's most directly a sequel to Captain America: Civil War, the first film of the phase.

Christel Øverland Preteni / flickr creative commons

humor = tragedy + time

Okay, but then the logical next question is: How much time?

If it's okay, at this point, to joke about, say, The Spanish Inquisition... what about, for instance, the Holocaust? Or AIDS? September 11th? The #MeToo movement?

...Parkland?

Yujin =) / flickr

From ancient mixtures of boiled goat fats and ashes to modern artisanal soaps with calendula and coffee grinds, humans have been inventing clever ways of cleaning themselves since the very beginning.

Sony Pictures Classics

There are nine movies nominated for Best Picture at this year's Academy Awards. And, as of this week, The Nose has seen eight of them. We saw Get Out way back in last March. We saw Dunkirk over the summer. We went to Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at night. And this awards season, we've gone to Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird and Steven Spielberg's The Post and Paul Thomas Anderson's Phantom Thread.

Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

The Post is Steven Spielberg's first movie since he turned 70 (and it's actually his first movie since he turned 71 too). It's just a little newspaper picture with a cast of newcomers like Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks and Bob Odenkirk and Matthew Rhys that Spielberg tossed off while he was simultaneously making Ready Player One (which comes out in a couple months). Oh, and it was nominated for six Golden Globes including Best Picture -- Drama and Best Director, and it's probably about to be nominated for a bunch of Oscars too. The Nose has seen it.

Jamle / flickr

They smell better, they're better at sensing temperature changes and they can handle more pain. These are just a few of the actual differences between redheads and the rest of us. But while having red hair does come with certain advantages, there are more than a few disadvantages as well.

Netflix

Dave Chappelle somewhat famously walked away from his Comedy Central series and went twelve years without releasing a comedy special. He broke that streak by putting out no less than four specials in 2017, and now he's maybe threatening to go back on another hiatus? Netflix released two new Chappelle specials -- "Equanimity" and "The Bird Revelations" -- on December 31, and The Nose has watched both.

Amazon Studios

Amy Sherman-Palladino created "Gilmore Girls." Her new Amazon Prime show, "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," is nominated for Golden Globes for Best Television Musical or Comedy and Best Actress in a Television Musical or Comedy for Rachel Brosnahan in the title role. "Mrs. Maisel" sounds a lot like "Gilmore Girls" with the stylized, rapid-fire, overlapping dialogue. The biggest difference between the two shows is probably that this one is set mostly in 1960s New York City. Oh, and that Lenny Bruce is a recurring character. The Nose has thoughts.

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