ICYMI: Too-Long TV, Blaxploitation, and Covetable Cable-Knit Sweaters
It’s been quite a week here in HWD, and it can be hard to keep up. From TV shows that feel tortuously long to the Eye of Sauron, here’s what you may have missed this week on Vanity Fair HWD.
We’ve established that this meeting probably could have been an email, so why can’t entertainment do the same? Fed up with shows that should just accept that their entire season only has one movie’s worth of plot, Tara Ariano tells it like it is, but will Hollywood take these signs to heart?
Girls5eva is the latest show to receive a last-minute save with a switch, finding a new home with Netflix after two seasons on Peacock. There’s something different about these damsels in distress, though: They’re middle-aged. The show—which, it’s worth mentioning, is screamingly funny and has legitimately good, if absolutely ridiculous, pop songs performed by the titular group attempting a comeback—is allowing a rare space for Women of a Certain Age to be seen on TV, in all of their weird foot, UTI-anxiety-having, Spanx-wearing glory. 5eva, indeed. After reading Esther Zuckerman’s ode to the show, go have yourself a merry little bingemas.
A new documentary on Netflix will fuel your “well, actually” well for weeks. Is That Black Enough For You?!? explores the importance and influence of so-called Blaxploitation films, with film critic and scholar Elvis Mitchell exploring a whole category of films that have been reduced to winks and nudges. Mitchell chatted with Vanity Fair’s Yohana Desta about how Shaft strutted so Saturday Night Fever could swagger. Read the interview, check out the doc, then look at the genre through a whole new lens.
We’re endlessly fascinated with Before They Were Stars–style peeks into the lives of celebs before they hit it big, as the popularity of clips of young Justin Bieber or Jessica Simpson belting proves. But what about a little *Before They Were…Giant Flaming Evil Eyes–type action? Wonder no more! VF’s Anthony Breznican talked with Rings of Power showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay about how they hid Sauron’s pre-eyeball identity in plain sight the entire first season of the show.
The Banshees of Inisherin is gaining praise for its performances, sure, but what about that knitwear? Martin McDonagh’s latest offering features the most stunning sweaters to grace the screen since Chris Evans’s cable-knit number in Knives Out. VF’s Maggie Coughlan found out how the movie’s wardrobe was spun into a pop-culture phenomenon.
We’d like to tell you a story about Ruth and Cheryl, the most notable horses in cinema this year, made famous by Sheila McCarthy’s character in Sarah Polley’s buzzy movie Women Talking, making the festival circuit now. McCarthy stopped by VF’s Little Gold Men podcast to talk about the film’s impact, how she talked her way into the memorable role, and, yes, Ruth and Cheryl.