David Simon's The Wire, which is set to soon be re-broadcast in high definition, continues to be hailed, in some corners, as the greatest television show of all time. In an effort to elevate it to the level of high art, many critics (including Simon himself) have reached for comparisons with other, less lumpen forms, from Greek tragedy to Dickens—anything, in short, that isn't a television show. But Linda Williams, a professor of film studies and rhetoric at Berkeley, in her new book, On The Wire, thinks that the show's greatest accomplishment is its use of melodrama. I talked to Williams last month about melodrama and [...]
In which we discover things in our work chatroom.
A Man: My roomgirl works at [REDACTED] so just killing time before I go to an all-you-can-eat sushi place.
Choire: …so that's what they're calling it now.
Another Man: Wait. What's a roomgirl, is that like a wife… or a Roomba.
A Man: Roommate-girlfriend, which is different than girlfriend you live with.
Choire: It's all about Which Came First.
Another Man: Still confusedddd.
A Man: Right. So if you room with someone and make the mistake of marrying them they are forever a RoomPerson.
Another Man: Oh! I'm doing a similar thing: my now-girlfriend was a roommate first but [...]
Tonight, at PowerHouse Arena, it is the Brooklyn Launch Party for Tom Scocca's Beijing Welcomes You, a nonfiction chronicle of what Beijing has so recently become. As China is now (well, as usual) so much in the news, we asked him some questions!
Choire Sicha: Tom Scocca, as you have written a book called Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future, which is brand new and good and also a book I have read, you are the only expert on China.* (*That I personally know.) Is this a great week for China or what?
Tom Scocca: If you set aside the fact that all [...]