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.

Pages

Monkey See
6:21 am
Wed October 22, 2014

On Vacation, See You Soon

Everyone needs a break now and then, and the time has come for a vacation. I'll be away from the blog until November 3, though you may see some posts here and there from other folks, as well as new PCHH episodes (which will be here both this Friday and next).

Thanks for reading and thanks for chatting, and wish me luck not getting rained on too hard.

Monkey See
8:39 am
Fri October 17, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Transparent' And Pop Culture Debuts

NPR

For a couple of lovely weeks in October, our dear pal Ari Shapiro — who has long since forgiven us for making him watch the VMAs and Olympus Has Fallen for a prior episode — was back at NPR HQ to host Weekend Edition. While we had him here, we grabbed him up for a conversation about Transparent and pop culture debuts.

Read more
Monkey See
8:58 am
Thu October 16, 2014

With Few Stages Left To Conquer, Neil Patrick Harris Goes To The Oscars

Neil Patrick Harris, seen here hosting the 2013 Emmys, is getting the Oscars job many have long wanted for him.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

It was an announcement of an old-school job that played out in a new media landscape: Yesterday, Variety reported that Neil Patrick Harris would host the Oscars, which they tweeted at 4:49 P.M. Harris himself tweeted a little video of himself crossing "Host the Oscars" off his bucket list — also at 4:49 P.M. Then finally, an interminable 26 minutes later, we got the press release from the Academy that announced with excitement that Neil Patrick Harris would host the Oscars in 2015.

Read more
Monkey See
1:55 pm
Wed October 15, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour, Small Batch: A Report From New York Comic-Con

Costumes were plentiful at the New York Comic-Con at Jacob Javitz Center.
Daniel Zuchnik Getty Images

Friend Of PCHH and NPR Books editor Petra Mayer recently returned from New York Comic-Con, so we asked her to talk a little about what she did while she was up there. As it happens, she kept herself very busy, moderating a panel full of authors she admires and chatting up one of the biggest nerd icons of her (and my) pop-culture coming-of-age.

Read more
Monkey See
11:45 am
Wed October 15, 2014

HBO Without Cable, Coming In 2015

Lena Dunham and Allison Williams star in Girls, one of several popular HBO shows that stand-alone streaming could include.
Mark Schafer HBO

Originally published on Wed October 15, 2014 12:28 pm

HBO has built a robust and popular online presence over the past couple of years with its app, HBO GO. But to get it — as is the case with many streaming services that offer television over the Internet — you've needed a cable subscription. In other words, HBO GO was an add-on for people who already had HBO, not an alternative way of getting shows for people who didn't.

Read more
Monkey See
10:28 am
Tue October 14, 2014

'Marry Me' Throws Plenty Of Jokes (And Its Lead Actress) At The Wall

Ken Marino and Casey Wilson star in NBC's Marry Me.
Greg Gaynes NBC

I'm not sure I've ever seen a comedy use an opening scene to put a main character in a hole as deep as the one Marry Me digs for Annie, played by Casey Wilson. We meet her as she and her longtime boyfriend Jake (Ken Marino) return from a vacation during which she believed he would propose and he didn't.

Read more
Monkey See
9:34 am
Fri October 10, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Gone Girl' And What Pop Culture Can Teach

NPR

You've had a week now since the release of David Fincher's Gone Girl, the adaptation of Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl, so we hope that the most fervently excited of you have already seen it.

Read more
Monkey See
11:41 am
Wed October 8, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour, Small Batch: 'Twin Peaks' Returns

Sherilyn Fenn and Kyle MacLachlan starred in the original run of Twin Peaks. MacLachlan is rumored to be reprising the role of FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper in the new episodes.
ABC Photo Archives Getty Images

Regular PCHH listeners know that our own Glen Weldon is a big fan of Twin Peaks, so we knew that he would be excited to sit down and talk about the big news that it's returning to Showtime for nine new episodes, picking up the story 25 years later.

He and Stephen Thompson therefore sat down for a chat about where the show might be going from here, why Glen believes having both original creators on board is so important, and which two favorites from public television he imagines when he thinks about their collaborative process.

Read more
Monkey See
10:58 am
Wed October 8, 2014

Cameron Esposito And The Comedy Of Confidence

The opening track on Cameron Esposito's new album, Same Sex Symbol, is an accelerating and elegant display of something often in short supply in great comedy: confidence.

Read more
Monkey See
12:05 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

'The Flash' Winks At History And Keeps Its Superhero Tone Light

After being struck by lightning, Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) realizes he's gained super speed and takes on the persona of the Flash.
The CW

Originally published on Tue October 7, 2014 12:16 pm

The most telling feature of the CW's new superhero drama The Flash is the casting of John Wesley Shipp as the tragically and wrongfully imprisoned father of Barry Allen (Grant Gustin), who in the opening hour becomes The Flash.

Read more
Monkey See
11:02 am
Tue October 7, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour, Small Batch: 'House Hunters International'

NPR

Do you fantasize about living in Hong Kong or Paris or on an Australian beach? And do you wonder whether you could fit it into your budget? And do you wonder how you would resolve petty little conflicts with your spouse or partner or roommate about being near work versus having a pool?

Read more
Monkey See
11:28 am
Fri October 3, 2014

Please Don't Judge John Mulaney By 'Mulaney'

Martin Short and John Mulaney in FOX's Mulaney.
Ray Mickshaw FOX

Originally published on Fri October 3, 2014 3:22 pm

Read more
Monkey See
9:23 am
Fri October 3, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Denzel Washington And 'Gilligan's Island'

NPR

Originally published on Fri October 3, 2014 11:20 am

The Equalizer, starring Denzel Washington in the kind of role (the "Sad Jedi," as our own Chris Klimek put it in his terrific review) that Liam Neeson has been specializing in for several years, hit theaters last weekend. It made a lot of money, and that got us thinking: How does this fit into the larger arc of Denzel Washington?

Read more
Monkey See
4:22 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

The Overworked 'Bad Judge' Still Doesn't Work

Kate Walsh as Rebecca in NBC's Bad Judge.
John Fleenor NBC

Originally published on Thu October 2, 2014 4:38 pm

The bummer about Bad Judge, a comedy premiering Thursday night on NBC, is that Kate Walsh is funny. There's a particular moment when she decides to sing something she's just said, and just in that brief moment, she's legitimately funny.

But boy, she is stuck in a stinker here, a show that they've substantially revamped from the weak original pilot until it still isn't very good, but now it doesn't even make any sense.

Read more
Monkey See
2:13 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

'A To Z': Not A Great Romantic Comedy Yet, But Give It A Letter Or Two

Cristin Milioti as Zelda, Ben Feldman as Andrew in NBC's A to Z.
Jessica Brooks NBC

We've been over this point before: particularly with comedy, it can be hard to tell from a pilot what the show is going to be like. But when you've seen a few, you can sometimes tell the difference between fundamentally misbegotten projects, like the ABC romantic comedy Manhattan Love Story, and fundamentally functional shows that have kinks to work out, like the NBC romantic comedy A To Z.

Read more

Pages