Jen Chaney

  1. intelligencer chats
    The Tokyo Olympics Haven’t Felt Like Must-See TVBlame it on the time difference, the pandemic, the lack of a unifying star, or all of the above.
  2. tv review
    Mr. Corman May Test Your Patience, But It’s Worth ItJoseph Gordon-Levitt’s Apple TV+ series about a bummed-out white dude is more than initially meets the eye.
  3. best of 2021
    The Best TV of 2021 (So Far)We survey the high points of a sprawling television landscape, from lush cinematic dramas to fleet streaming comedies and all points in between.
  4. filmmaking
    Naomi Osaka’s Cinematic Perspective Is Also a Human OneDirector Garrett Bradley breaks down the intuitive, intimate approach she took to capturing one of most scrutinized athletes in the world.
  5. ip freely
    The Future of Entertainment Is Just More and More and More of ThisTwo critics wonder if Space Jam 2–style IP mining is a brief trend or something that could alter the entertainment timeline for good.
  6. olympics 2021
    Welcome to the ‘What Are We Doing Here?’ OlympicsThe opening ceremony’s determined efforts to project normalcy amid the abnormal were occasionally lovely and frequently surreal.
  7. tv review
    Ted Lasso Has Done It AgainThe breakout hit of 2020 returns with a second season that is just as good, and maybe better, than the first.
  8. jerk-o-meter
    Who Is Never Have I Ever Season Two’s Biggest Jerk?A ranking of bad behavior, from semi-redeemable to totally toxic.
  9. tv review
    Naomi Osaka Is the Story of a Work in ProgressThe Netflix docuseries about the tennis phenom crafts an intimate study of a player for whom winning matches is only half the battle.
  10. awards season
    It’s Time for Emmys to Expand Limited SeriesGiving comedy and drama such a wide berth without extending the same flexibility to limited series is extremely, well, limiting.
  11. tv review
    The White Lotus Is No VacationMike White’s new HBO series set at an upscale Hawaiian resort is an arresting satire of entitlement that cuts like a knife.
  12. 😺💖🐶
    Netflix Makes Space for the Truth About Cats and DogsA new season of Dogs and the series Cat People arrive on Netflix on the same day, proving that dogs, cats, and the humans who love them can coexist.
  13. so angry it’s insane
    Welcome to Mad Girl SummerHeroines both onscreen and in real life are meeting the back-to-normal-ish moment by airing grievances like it’s Festivus in July.
  14. finales
    Conan Gives a Qualified FarewellThe finale of his TBS show was low-key evidence that O’Brien has always stayed true to himself — and will continue to do so with whatever’s next.
  15. a long talk
    Elisabeth Moss on Tackling The Handmaid’s Tale From Both Sides of the Camera“I’ve always thought, in a way, that is actually the way a director thinks. I just never realized it.”
  16. bird watching
    Tuca & Bertie Are Just As Anxious As You AreThe best bird buds are back on Adult Swim and perfectly suited to our new neurotic normal.
  17. unhappy wife unhappy life
    How the Creators of Kevin Can F**k Himself Made Two Shows at the Same TimeThe secret to telling the story of one terrible marriage—through a half-sitcom, half-dark comedy lens.
  18. tv review
    Kevin Can F**k Himself Effectively F**ks With TV ConventionThe Annie Murphy–starring AMC series flips the bird at the trope of the beleaguered sitcom wife and everything she represents.
  19. tv review
    Betty Rolls Through a Vibrant, Visceral Pandemic-Era New YorkIn its second season, the dynamic skateboarding series maintains a singular style as it navigates myriad mid-2020 obstacles.
  20. tv review
    We Are Lady Parts Rocks Outside the BoxThis absolutely delightful new musical-comedy series about an all-female Muslim punk band is a stereotype-shattering blast.
  21. pets with issues
    Talking Anxious Pets and Horny Tortoises With the Creators of HousebrokenVeep veterans Clea DuVall, Jennifer Crittenden, and Gabrielle Allan’s approach to a sitcom about animals in therapy? “The more issues, the better.”
  22. spoilers
    Let’s Talk About Mare’s Decision in the Mare of Easttown FinaleHer choice speaks to the theme of the entire HBO series.
  23. acting
    Master of None’s IVF Episode Understands the Value of a Great NurseHow the wonderful Nurse Cordelia, played by Cordelia Blair, went from a single-scene role to episode four’s most consistent, calming presence.
  24. tv review
    Friends: The Reunion Is an Extreme Friends ZoneThe much-hyped HBO Max special is somehow both nostalgic and unsentimental. It may also make you ponder the very nature of time.
  25. summer 2021
    29 TV Shows We Can’t Wait to Watch This SummerPlus 127 more debuts worth keeping an eye on.
  26. underrated
    A Shout-Out to Coach Beard and Brendan Hunt, the Quiet Hero of Ted LassoAshley Nicole Black of A Black Lady Sketch Show breaks down his greatness.
  27. tv review
    Master of None’s Third Season Is Slowly But Surely GratifyingThe new Lena Waithe–focused iteration of Aziz Ansari’s Netflix series is resoundingly low-key, but it packs a subtle punch thanks to Naomi Ackie.
  28. tv review
    Give Jean Smart All the Awards for HacksShe’s terrific in the new HBO Max comedy about the contentious art of making comedy.
  29. tv review
    Shrill Doesn’t Need ClosureThe low-key yet insightful closing episodes of the Hulu comedy eschew resolution in favor of continued evolution.
  30. tv review
    Girls5Eva Is 2 Funny 2 IgnoreThe Peacock series about a girl group reuniting in middle age cranks out joke after joke about the ridiculous exercise that is show business.
  31. tv review
    The Handmaid’s Tale Gets Its Mojo BackAfter two seasons stuck in a hamster wheel of ugly conflict, the series finally delivers some much-needed forward movement and emotional payoff.
  32. oscars 2021
    Oscars 2021 Was Not a Movie. It Was Prestige TV.And like most celebrated prestige dramas, it was pretty good until the ending.
  33. the office
    How Hollywood Depicted the New York OfficeIt was where our dreams and anxieties unfolded.
  34. a long talk
    The Co-Creators of Rutherford Falls On Sitting in the Mess of American History“We’re piss-poor, frankly, at trying to live in nuance.”
  35. tv review
    Rutherford Falls Reckons Optimistically With America’s Flawed Past and PresentThe Peacock comedy tackles heavy topics like Indigenous erasure and revisionist history with the light touch expected of a Mike Schur co-production.
  36. tv review
    Mare of Easttown Is More Than It Appears to BeThe HBO limited series starring Kate Winslet is not not a familiar-looking crime drama, but its appeal goes much deeper than that.
  37. tv review
    Big Shot Shoots and Mostly ScoresJohn Stamos plays basically the anti–Ted Lasso in Disney+’s new family drama centered on a girls’ basketball team.
  38. tv review
    Younger Goes Full Rom-Com in Its Farewell SeasonWith its central narrative tension resolved, the series shifts all the way into fun and frothy mode.
  39. in memoriam
    Allow Anne Beatts to Set the Record Straight About Square PegsThe late, great comedy writer wanted to correct the narrative surrounding the demise of her influential teen sitcom.
  40. the lost canon
    Anne Beatts Was Always More Interesting Than John HughesEvery teen series and movie that followed Beatts’s Square Pegs owes it, and her, a debt of total gratitude.
  41. tv review
    Made for Love’s Tech Looks FamiliarCristin Milioti leads a great cast that brings some necessary distinction to a series full of recognizable future-paranoia components.
  42. tributes
    Lucille Bluth Was Jessica Walter’s Comedic Pièce de RésistanceWalter had an amazing, varied acting career, but making us love such an entitled, acerbic character may have been her greatest feat.
  43. role call
    Judy Reyes Answers Every Question We Have About Jane the VirginOn passing up “sassy” roles for powerful ones, not being the only Latinx person on set, and the sexed-up Netflix period piece she wants to join next.
  44. movie review
    Even If You Know Tina Turner’s Story, You Should Watch TinaThe HBO documentary is a comprehensive and moving look at the wild, inspiring life of a rock icon.
  45. ooh it’s them!
    The 32 Greatest Character Actors Working TodayWe asked critics and Hollywood creators: Which supporting players make everything better?
  46. close reads
    This Week’s The Real World Homecoming Gets Real About RaceIt’s practically a checklist of exactly what not to do when confronted about racism.
  47. tv review
    The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Is More Sturdy Product From the Marvel MachineThe latest Disney+ foray into the MCU should keep fans engaged for exactly the amount of time it takes for the next tentpole to arrive.
  48. tv review
    Waffles + Mochi Is Educational, Trippy, and a Bit OverstuffedThe first TV series from the Obamas’ production company feels like a kid-friendly version of shows like Ugly Delicious and Salt Fat Acid Heat.
  49. showrunners
    How Jac Schaeffer Made WandaVision Inside the Marvel MachineLike the sitcom-superhero show itself, Schaeffer’s work on WandaVision involved a hybrid approach.
  50. tv review
    Last Chance U: Basketball Is a Riveting, Heartbreaking Sports DocThe end of the eight-episode season, now on Netflix, has a twist you’ve probably never seen in a sports documentary.
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