‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 Episode 2: “Stormborn” Review – The Show That Was Promised

(This is written from the perspective of someone who has watched all of Game of Thrones, read the first book ten years ago, and listened to way too much of The Ringer’s wonderful podcast Binge Mode. Spoilers everywhere.) How do you finish a story another author has started? Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and … More ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 Episode 2: “Stormborn” Review – The Show That Was Promised

Revisiting Chicago Restaurant Stalwarts: Are They Still Good? – The Publican – PART ONE

How much effort should it take to get a table? I’ve always been a fighter. I clicked refresh like an over-caffeinated gamer for Next tickets. I’ve outwaited Au Cheval, even though I suspect their text notifications are designed to ping the moment you put down a new order at a nearby bar. Like the British, … More Revisiting Chicago Restaurant Stalwarts: Are They Still Good? – The Publican – PART ONE

Netflix’s GLOW Transcends Competence with a Point of View

Have people finally figured out how to make television and movies? It’s a weird, broad question. Much has been made about the Golden Age of Television, ushered in by The Sopranos, The Wire, Breaking Bad, and Mad Men. Plenty of digital ink has been spilled on the rise of streaming services and Netflix’s see-what-sticks model. … More Netflix’s GLOW Transcends Competence with a Point of View

Alinea: The Food Singularity at the Former Best Restaurant in the World

It begins with a fast. Going to Alinea is like training to be an astronaut. When you have nonrefundable tickets at massive expense for a single night, you simply. Cannot. Mess. Up. Two weeks beforehand I began my preparations. Extra sleep and constant antibacterial hand-baths to stave off disease. Three days beforehand I avoided eating … More Alinea: The Food Singularity at the Former Best Restaurant in the World

The Most Rewatchable Action Movies on Cable Tournament Bracket – PART TWO FINAL

Where we left off…  ROUND TWO 1 Bourne vs. 9 James Bond This seems like a fight between two doppelgangers.  Both are globe-trotting superheroes masquerading as ground-bound master spies. The Bourne franchise always fancied itself as the more serious IP, with its focus on privacy, leaked data, and international jurisdiction. Just remember Bourne’s scowling face … More The Most Rewatchable Action Movies on Cable Tournament Bracket – PART TWO FINAL

I Imagined I was a Hero in a YA Dystopian Franchise and I was Pretty

I read the Shannara series a million years ago when I was in middle school. It was the height of geekery, unabashed Tolkien-knockoffs that hit the bestseller lists but never quite managed to enter the mainstream pop culture consciousness the way Harry Potter and Game of Thrones did. (Hint: Game of Thrones the TV show … More I Imagined I was a Hero in a YA Dystopian Franchise and I was Pretty

The Most Rewatchable Action Movies on Cable Tournament Bracket

PART ONE  John Wick: Chapter Two made me giddy. Is there anyone it didn’t make giddy? I walked away wanting to either fight club everyone or discuss John Wick with them. Was it the best of all time? Of course, we had to hold an Enter the Dragon–Mortal Kombat style tournament of death to find … More The Most Rewatchable Action Movies on Cable Tournament Bracket

‘Arrival’ Does Nothing that SciFi Movies Do

Arrival is a small movie, a quiet movie. Except it’s raked in $115 million and counting on a $47 million budget. It has blown away expectations even though it looks nothing like the sci-fi movies that we’ve seen, and its success is really exciting. Peace over Violence The movie stresses peace and clear communication over … More ‘Arrival’ Does Nothing that SciFi Movies Do

A Guide for Non-Nerds: How the World Chess Championship Was Less Boring than It Should Have Been

Trump over Clinton. The Broncos stampeding over the Panthers. The Cavs down 1-3 to the 73-win Warriors. It’s been a year of upsets. Similar to the karmic rebound of the Cubs clawing their way back from a 1-3 deficit against the Indians, Magnus Carlsen has defeated Sergey Karjakin in tiebreaks after an ugly, sometimes boring, … More A Guide for Non-Nerds: How the World Chess Championship Was Less Boring than It Should Have Been