On Comedy: A Netflix Experiment Gives Deserving Comics Their 15 Minutes

So many stand-up specials are released these days that it’s easy to miss how radically the art form has evolved. Part of the reason Ali Wong’s “Hard Knock Wife” and Hannah Gadsby’s “Nanette” have made such an impact is that they were thematically and structurally coherent, their jokes integrated into the special the way scenes fit into the plot of a play. The status and ambition of the specials’ directors have also grown, shifting from craftsmen for hire to stylists to the auteur Bo Burnham, whose distinctive work with Jerrod…

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Critic’s Notebook: ‘GLOW’ Brings #MeToo to the 1980s

The scene between Ruth and Debbie is remarkable in part because of how well Ms. Gilpin simultaneously conveys Debbie’s anger with her co-star and her exhaustion with her own situation. No, Ruth shouldn’t have to pretend to enjoy Tom’s lechery, she says. But, she adds, “Feminism has principles. Life has compromises.” “GLOW” is, at its core, about how women make art in an imperfect industry. In the wrestling ring, that means literally embodying the stereotypes they’ve had imposed on them — pinups, bitches, vixens, hags. It can be empowering, and…

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What’s on TV Monday: ‘The Rape of Recy Taylor’ and ‘Strangers’

Nancy Buirski’s documentary on Recy Taylor airs on Starz. And on Facebook Watch, “Strangers” is back for a second season. What’s on TV THE RAPE OF RECY TAYLOR (2017) 9 p.m. on Starz. “Planting a flag firmly at the intersection of patriarchy, sexism and white supremacy, ‘The Rape of Recy Taylor’ is a documentary of multiple layers and marvelous gumption,” Jeannette Catsoulis wrote in her review of this documentary for The New York Times. On a September night in 1944, Mrs. Taylor, then a 24-year-old sharecropper, was raped by six…

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The Affair: ‘The Affair’ Season 4, Episode 3: Playing the Savior

There are shades of McNulty, the rebel-with-a-cause cop played by Dominic West on “The Wire,” in the smile Noah cracks when he sees his students making this kind of “good trouble.” But this dissolves quickly into panic when the police show up, and he witnesses firsthand just how quickly the thin blue line can wrap itself around the throats of not just the students, but also the school’s strict principal, Janelle Wilson (Sanaa Lathan), who gets manhandled by a hulking white cop until Noah, himself a large white guy, intervenes.…

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Critic’s Notebook: The Fashion Closet, Seen From Inside and Out

The first thing we watch Plum Kettle (Joy Nash) do in “Dietland” is look in a mirror. She is blunt about how she sees herself: “Fat. It’s O.K. I’m allowed to say it.” “Dietland,” a volatile feminist satire on AMC on Mondays, is about a lot of things: sexism, media, body shaming, terrorism, self-hatred, self-discovery, revenge. But it is also, throughout, about perception — about the various ways Plum sees herself and is seen by the outside world. Sometimes she’s invisible. Other times, she’s visible in a bad way, taunted,…

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What’s on TV Sunday: A Baseball Rivalry and ‘Recovery Boys’

The Yankees-Red Sox rivalry is back. And stream a documentary series about opioid addiction recovery on Netflix. What’s on TV MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL 8 p.m. on ESPN. The latest generation of the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry is upon us. These A.L. East teams enter this midseason series in the Bronx possessing two of the best records in baseball. The matchup, already chock-full of superstars like Aaron Judge and Mookie Betts, will be intensified by bad blood lingering from a confrontation at Fenway Park in April. On Sunday, the series rubber match…

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What’s on TV Saturday: ‘It’ and ‘Liquid Science’

Stephen King’s killer clown stalks on HBO. And the rapper GZA’s science show streams on Netflix. What’s on TV IT (2017) 8 p.m. on HBO. “It” opens with a boy in a yellow raincoat floating a paper boat down a flooded suburban street as it rains and ends with an epic battle. Andy Muschietti’s adaptation of Stephen King’s 1986 novel about a group of kids fending off a killer clown layers generous scoops of action atop a base of jump scares — with a sprinkling of late-’80s nostalgia. That mixture…

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A Look Back at Evel Knievel: A Daredevil Unafraid to Fail

It might seem hard to believe now, but there was a time when a cape-wearing man best known for crashing his motorcycle was one of the biggest names in American pop culture. That name: Evel Knievel. With his signature patriotic jumpsuit and increasingly ambitious motorcycle jumps over buses, cars and sharks, the stuntman became one of the defining figures of the 1970s, simultaneously thrilling and putting the fear of death into sold-out audiences — in this case, the death they were afraid of was his. To be fair, he didn’t…

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RuPaul’s Drag Race: ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ Season 10 Finale: Everybody Say Love

Asia attempted a trick that sounds fascinating on paper, and probably looked great in a small rehearsal room — she released monarch butterflies, many of which appeared to be dead, from cameo bracelets and colossal chesticle cones — but the butterflies simply didn’t read from the enormous stage, and the bit flopped. (The shot of Monique and Vanjie’s reactions will unquestionably be made into a GIF that will survive the nukes.) Unimaginably, Kameron, stunting with the same stripper moves we’ve seen four times now, beat Asia O’Hara, and Asia, a…

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The Amy Adams Method

LOS ANGELES — Amy Adams reached into her fanny pack and fished out a stick of sunscreen. “I’m such a mom-nerd,” she apologized, as if sensing the pretense of Hollywood Glamour melt with each dab to her flush, freckled cheeks. It was a late morning in June and the sun was high; there was nothing to apologize for. But she is congenitally polite and, as she stared up at the storied Art Deco observatory in Griffith Park here, on an 1,100-foot summit of Mount Hollywood, maybe a tiny bit self-conscious.…

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