The Atlantic's Week in Culture

A roundup of our recent writing on arts and entertainment

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Hollywood Has Ruined Method ActingAngelica Jade Bastién traces the history and identity politics of a technique that has become so popular among (primarily) the industry’s leading men.

David Gray / Reuters


The Glorious Drama of the U.S. Swim TeamSophie Gilbert relishes the poolside antics that put Hollywood scriptwriters to shame.

The Singular Joys of Watching IchiroRobert O’Connell pinpoints the simple elegance of watching the newest member of baseball’s 3,000 hit club.

Their Bodies, OurselvesMegan Garber identifies the fine balance between femininity and athleticism in women’s gymnastics.

Women’s Softball Needs the OlympicsChelsea Leigh Horne explains how the sport’s reinstatement for Tokyo 2020 is a significant victory for gender equality in athletics.

The Real Olympic Challenge for American BasketballRobert O’Connell declares that the perpetual gold-medal favorites are determined to prove they can’t lose.

The Emotional Range of Olympic HugsMegan Garber breaks down the various kinds of embraces viewers are bound to see at the Olympics.

The Olympic Quote (That Should Be) Heard ‘Round The WorldMegan Garber exposes the gendered double-standards that lurk behind the media’s coverage of female athletes in Rio.



Hitchcock/Truffaut Is a Master Class in CinemaDavid Sims reviews a new HBO documentary based on the now-historic conversation between two of film’s greatest minds.

Hell or High Water Offers and Iconic Vision of the Modern WestChristopher Orr reviews the stunning new neo-Western that will make viewers love West Texas.

The Reason Suicide Squad is Crushing? Fans Love ItAndrew McGill dives into the data behind superhero movies to figure out why DC’s newest “flop” is actually doing so well at the box office.



Why Saturday Night Live Shook Things UpDavid Sims makes sense of what’s going on behind the scenes of the show’s revamping efforts.

Next Season, Let Unreal’s Master Manipulators FreeSpencer Kornhaber unpacks the finale of the show’s second season, and speculates on what season three might have to offer.

Martha Stewart, Queen of All InternetMegan Garber analyzes the brand transformation of the “domestic diva” in the wake of her upcoming cooking show with Snoop Dogg.

What’s Wrong With Mr. RobotLenika Cruz answers some of the questions hanging over the hit USA show’s shaky second season.

The Get Down and the Sanctuary of Hip-HopSpencer Kornhaber details how Netflix’s newest show handles the music and dangers of real life in the Bronx of the ’70s.

Norsk Telegrambyra AS / Reuters


Frank Ocean, Harper Lee, and the Reclusive ArtistEve L. Ewing explores the links between the two brilliant, quiet artists and the masterpieces they’re known for.

Frank Ocean Is Working on His Own TermsSpencer Kornhaber argues that the singer continues to stand for the ideal of the artist fully in charge of his art.

And the Gold Medal in Olympic Music Marketing Goes To …Spencer Kornhaber looks at some of the stars who’ve taken on the inspirational-song format during this year’s games.

Parsing Obama’s Sexy, Sometimes Woke Summer PlaylistDavid Graham combs through the president’s rather sensual, seasonal jams.

Hello Games

Video Games

The Infinite Possibility of No Man’s SkyDavid Sims explores the colossal universe of the highly anticipated new game.

Brian Snyder / Reuters


Slightly More Than 100 Exceptional Works of JournalismConor Friedersdorf returns with his annual list of the best nonfiction writing from 2015.