Runaways and Creeps: The Week in Pop-Culture Writing

Highlights from seven days of reading about entertainment

JoJo Whilden / Netflix

The Lost Girls
Jason Cherkis | The Huffington Post
“Jackie showed up at the next band practice some days later, not ready to stop being a Runaway. Although she was nervous about how her bandmates would treat her, she at least expected them to acknowledge that something bad had happened. But the girls hardly registered her presence. They just plugged in and started running through their songs. That was the day, Jackie says, ‘the elephant joined the band.’”

The Age of Creepiness
Nathan Heller | The New Yorker
“Are creeps, and their defining quality—creepiness—to our age what anxiety was to postwar life? The proposition is embarrassing, but, then, so is everything the pruney fingers of creepiness touch.”

Orange is the New Black Is the Only TV Show That Understands Rape
Jada Yuna | Vulture
“The best of television ought to reflect some version of our world back to us, and in real life, we can’t pan away from rape. Rape is not sexy, or a plot point, or a shocking secret to be set up for a dramatic reveal. The reason—the only reason—to film a rape scene is to make the audience dig into that feeling of discomfort, to force us to be witnesses to the torture we are capable of inflicting on one another and come away with a deeper understanding of who we hurt and the depth of their pain.”

Hollywood Game Night and the Problem With the Celebrity Fun Bus
Hank Stuever | The Washington Post
“Large swaths of network TV—from morning shows to late-night, from midday to afternoon to prime time—have been given over to constant, publicist-pleasing opportunities for stars to advance their own brands, unchallenged, and pass off their self-promotion as the very definition of fun.”

Can We Just, Like, Get Over the Way Women Talk?
Ann Friedman | The Cut
“Men also use the word just. Men engage in upspeak. Men have vocal fry. Men pepper their sentences with unnecessary “likes” and “sorrys.” I haven’t read any articles encouraging them to change this behavior. ”

Website, Profiled: Why Are the Most Important People in Media reading The Awl
Josh Dzieza | The Verge
“As more content is published directly onto Facebook, users will gradually lose a sense of who’s producing what. The most consequential journalism becomes just another unit of content in a single stream of music videos, movie trailers, updates from friends and relatives, advertisements, and viral tidbits from sites adept at gaming fast-changing algorithms and behaviors.”

Bill Cosby’s Famous “Pound Cake” Speech, Annotated
Adam Serwer | Buzzfeed
“But the Pound Cake Speech itself was never the grand manifesto it was made out to be. Taking a look back at the speech 11 years later in light of what we now know about Cosby, the Pound Cake Speech is rife not only with inaccuracies and flawed premises, but immeasurable hypocrisy.”

What Does Harper Lee Want?
Claire Suddath | Bloomberg
“‘This Watchman publication is what physicists call a singularity. There has been nothing like it before now, and there never will be again,’ says Daniel Menaker, a former editor at Random House and, before that, the fiction editor at The New Yorker. ‘You couldn’t plan for this if you tried.’”