Making a Murderer and the Manosphere: The Week in Pop-Culture Writing

The highlights from seven days of reading about entertainment


Dead Certainty: How Making a Murderer Goes Wrong
Kathryn Schulz | The New Yorker
“Ultimately, Making a Murderer shares that flaw; it does not challenge our yearning for certainty or do the difficult work of helping to foster humility. Instead, it swaps one absolute for another—and, in doing so, comes to resemble the system it seeks to correct. It is easy to express outrage, comforting to have closure, and satisfying to know all the answers. But, as defense lawyers remind people every day, it is reasonable to doubt.”

From Pickup Artist to Pariah
Rachel Monroe | New York
“You can either unquestioningly accept society’s fictions—blue-pill thinking—or grasp the true power that comes from taking the red pill and facing the painful truths that most people deny. In the manosphere, the red-pill truth is that men are victimized by a contemporary culture that is biased toward the female perspective.”

How Racially Skewed Are the Oscars?
The Economist
“Throughout the 20th century, 95 percent of Oscar nominations went to white film stars. It is an embarrassing anachronism that the prevalence of white Academy electors has been allowed to continue into the 21st century, a trend that the Academy’s (black) president, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, has vowed to end.”

Rachel Bloom’s Twisted Comedy
Susan Dominus | The New York Times Magazine
“In person, Bloom comes across as someone who takes honesty to its natural conclusion. ‘I like deconstructing things,’ she told me when we met in December … There’s something almost earnest about Bloom’s desire to discuss the realities of biology—sexual, anatomical, or otherwise—that the rest of humanity tries so hard to gloss over.”

An Oral History of A Special Thing, the World’s Most Important Comedy Message Board
Rick Paulas | The Kernel
“For an art scene to exist, for artists within it to make the leap into greatness, hubs need to exist. Like-minded people need a space where their ideas can commingle and become better, where they can borrow, hook up, network, steal, and stab each other in the back. In the past, this meant a physical locale … With the Internet, people no longer needed to share the same physical space within the same hours of the day. If their computer was plugged in, they were there.”

A Story of a Fuck Off Fund
Paulette Perhach | The Billfold
“You graduated college and you’re a grown-ass woman now. Tina Fey is your hero. Beyoncé, your preacher. If any man ever hit you, if anyone ever sexually harassed you, you’d tell him to fuck right off. You want to be, no, you will be the kind of woman who can tell anyone to fuck off if a fuck off is deserved, so naturally you start a Fuck Off Fund.”

Our Band Should Not Be Your Life
Amos Barshad | The Fader
“These days, signing with a major [label] feels less and less important, or desired. The middle class of bands lives with a certain understanding of their limitations: A vibrant artist’s life can be accomplished, but gilded dreams of fame are left back with a previous generation.”