Linda Holmes

Linda Holmes writes and edits NPR's entertainment and pop-culture blog, Monkey See. She has several elaborate theories involving pop culture and monkeys, all of which are available on request.

Holmes began her professional life as an attorney. In time, however, her affection for writing, popular culture and the online universe eclipsed her legal ambitions. She shoved her law degree in the back of the closet, gave its living-room space to DVD sets of The Wire and never looked back.

Holmes was a writer and editor at Television Without Pity, where she recapped several hundred hours of programming — including both High School Musical movies, for which she did not receive hazard pay. Since 2003, she has been a contributor to MSNBC.com, where she has written about books, movies, television and pop-culture miscellany.

Holmes' work has also appeared on Vulture (New York magazine's entertainment blog), in TV Guide and in many, many legal documents.

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Monkey See
4:03 am
Sun May 20, 2012

TV Networks Hope Familiar Faces Bring Viewers To New Fall Shows

Matthew Perry stars on NBC's fall comedy Go On.
Jordin Althaus NBC

Originally published on Sun May 20, 2012 9:31 am

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Monkey See
10:58 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: TV Season Postmortem, Old People, Young People

NPR

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 1:35 pm

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On this week's Pop Culture Happy Hour, I am back from vacation and back at the table, and boy, was I glad to be there.

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Monkey See
6:43 am
Fri May 18, 2012

What To Expect When You're Expecting In A Movie

Lionsgate

Originally published on Sat May 19, 2012 6:44 am

Babies! Babies babies! Pregnancy and babies! Babies and pregnancy! Strollers full of babies!

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Monkey See
1:15 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

'Kickstart Shakespeare': Of Sonnets, Beer, And Online Fundraising

Recitations of Shakespearean love poems may come straight to you via mobile app in celebration of his 450th birthday.
iStockphoto.com

The New York Shakespeare Exchange says its goal is "to encourage an enthusiastic appreciation of classical theater and to expand the reach of the art form within new and existing audiences." More specifically, it's interested in the question of "what happens when contemporary culture is infused with Shakespearean poetry and themes in unexpected ways."

What, exactly, does that mean?

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Monkey See
10:00 am
Wed May 16, 2012

ABC's Fall Schedule: Reba McEntire, Country Music, And Satan The Landlord

666 Park Avenue stars Terry O'Quinn as the devil, kind of. Only a landlord.
Andrew Eccles ABC

ABC unveiled its new fall shows yesterday as part of the ongoing circus/party/ad campaign that is the 2012 network upfronts.

It's rolling out three new dramas with completely different tones. Nashville, starring the enchanting Connie Britton as country singer Rayna James, whose long career is a little tricky in the age of crossover superstars like bitchy young thing Juliette Barnes (Hayden Pannettiere).

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Monkey See
8:54 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Fox Rolls Out Its New Fall Shows, Including One From Mindy Kaling

Mindy Kaling stars in the new Fox comedy The Mindy Project.
Beth Dubber Fox

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Monkey See
8:10 am
Mon May 14, 2012

NBC Upfronts: Six New Shows, And 'Community' On Fridays

Crystal as Dr. Zaius and Justin Kirk as Dr. George Coleman on NBC's new fall comedy, Animal Practice.
Chris Haston NBC

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 8:34 am

"What are the upfronts, exactly?"

People who write about television get this question a lot. And we're getting it a lot right now, because this is upfronts week for the major networks.

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Monkey See
9:48 am
Fri May 4, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: It's Our Summer Movie Preview! Bring On The Sunscreen!

Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins in the upcoming film Dark Shadows.
Peter Mountain Warner Brothers Pictures
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With The Avengers just opening in your local jillionplex, it seems like the right time to look ahead to summer movies and see what's on our radar, both good and bad. Dark Shadows, Safety Not Guaranteed, Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World ... well, you'll hear them all.

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Movie Reviews
3:38 pm
Thu May 3, 2012

Seven Dancers, Chasing Big Dreams At The Barre

First Position profiles dancers at the Youth America Grand Prix, a prestigious ballet contest. Rebecca Houseknecht, 17, is a dancer with a lot of talent — and a painful awareness that her chances of signing with a top company are growing slim.
Bess Kargman IFC Films

Originally published on Thu May 3, 2012 3:54 pm

One of the most striking moments early in the documentary First Position comes when a talented ballet student, an 11-year-old boy named Aran, inserts his foot into a sort of clamp that holds it in a mercilessly pointed position.

"This is a foot stretcher," he says. "Hurts a lot."

It's curious that an entire genre of documentary has grown up around endearing kids being pushed hard to achieve in various fields — pushed so hard that the audience is left to wonder whether the pressure might be too much for them.

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Monkey See
2:02 pm
Thu May 3, 2012

Implausibles, Assemble!: Other Hollywood Character Pile-Ups We'd Like To See

Rene Mansi iStockphoto.com

The Avengers is getting a lot of mileage out of uniting the stars of several different films for one big, knock-down-drag-out superfilm in which there are so many people floating in from hither and yon that you would be forgiven for expecting a cameo from Plastic Man. (There isn't one.)

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Monkey See
8:50 am
Thu May 3, 2012

It's Kentucky Derby Weekend: Name Your Hypothetical Horse

Horses train on the track in preparation for the 138th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs.
Rob Carr Getty Images

I am guessing that the majority of you do not own thoroughbred horses. In fact, that is the underlying assumption of this entire post, and to the degree it does not apply to you, I offer humblest apologies (your highness).

But this is the weekend of the Kentucky Derby, which I normally appreciate primarily for the way it causes everyone to momentarily forget everything they ever knew about what constitutes Too Much Hat.

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Monkey See
8:16 am
Tue May 1, 2012

Let's Rush To Judgment: 'The Dark Knight Rises'

Tom Hardy and Christian Bale in The Dark Knight Rises.
Ron Phillips Warner Brothers Pictures

The Dark Knight Rises is one of those films where so many bits and drops are constantly emerging that it's hard to find a particular moment in which rushing to judgment is any more or less appropriate than at any other time. But the appearance of a new trailer yesterday has set off another round of speculation, and who are we to decline to participate?

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Monkey See
2:54 pm
Mon April 30, 2012

Can The Networks Ever Create Another Night Of 'Must-See TV'?

Jennifer Aniston and David Schwimmer appear in the baby birth episode of NBC's Friends.
AP

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 3:34 pm

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Monkey See
11:59 pm
Fri April 27, 2012

Garry Marshall On His 'Happy Days'

Director Garry Marshall and sister, actress-director Penny Marshall, seen here in 2004 when she received her star on the Walk Of Fame.
Vince Bucci Getty Images

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 10:22 am

Director Garry Marshall has worked on so much popular comedy in his career — television like Happy Days and The Odd Couple, movies like Pretty Woman and Beaches — that something he's done has probably made you laugh. And now he's written a memoir called, fittingly, My Happy Days In Hollywood: A Memoir.

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Monkey See
9:20 am
Fri April 27, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Veep' Talk And Spoilery 'Cabin In The Woods' Chatter

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This week on Pop Culture Happy Hour, the old gang is back together to tackle a new comedy, just like the guest panel did last week: Last week, it was Girls; this week, it's the less fussed over Veep, starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus. We'll talk about how we responded to her performance, the writing (from the guys behind the great In The Loop), and the depiction of politics.

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Monkey See
8:31 am
Mon April 23, 2012

'Mad Men': Hallucinations And Love Songs Are Often Mistaken For One And The Same

Jane Sterling (Peyton List) and Roger Sterling (John Slattery) made progress, in a way, on Sunday night's Mad Men.
Jordin Althaus AMC

Sunday night's Mad Men took 20 minutes or so to reveal its structure. We watched Peggy Olson fight with her boyfriend, flame out at the Heinz presentation, take herself to the movies, smoke a joint with a stranger, hook up with him (after a fashion) in the dark, return to the office, hear the sad story of Michael Ginsburg, and then meet up with her boyfriend again. Only a mysterious, frantic phone call from Don suggested that there were pieces missing.

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Monkey See
4:31 am
Sun April 22, 2012

In 'Veep,' Julia Louis-Dreyfus Plays A 'Political Animal' With Bite

Julia Louis-Dreyfus plays the frustrated vice president in the new HBO comedy, Veep.
Bill Gray HBO

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 7:42 am

Julia Louis-Dreyfus knows it must seem like she's "arrived," as NPR's Rachel Martin says during their discussion on Sunday's Weekend Edition. She's well-known from Seinfeld, of course, but she's also been on Saturday Night Live, and for five seasons held down her own CBS sitcom, The New Adventures Of Old Christine. Her new HBO comedy, Veep, in which she plays the vice president to an unseen and unknown president, premieres Sunday night.

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Monkey See
12:21 pm
Sat April 21, 2012

In 'Veep,' Washington Is Viewed With A Skeptical Eye

Julia Louis-Dreyfus and her staff, including Tony Hale and Anna Chlumsky, in Veep.
Bill Gray HBO

Originally published on Fri May 11, 2012 8:16 am

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Monkey See
9:35 am
Sat April 21, 2012

What Zac Efron's Beard Means For Men And Women In Hollywood

Zac Efron plays Logan, a former Marine with all kinds of feelings, in the new film The Lucky One.
Patti Perret Warner Brothers Pictures

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 7:13 am

This is the weekend they try to make Zac Efron a grown-up movie star.

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Monkey See
9:04 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: 'Girls' Edition, Women's Edition

Originally published on Fri April 20, 2012 9:13 am

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For a few months now, we've been talking about putting together a special episode where I could sit down with Parul Sehgal, Barrie Hardymon, and Tanya Ballard Brown for what some of the men on the usual panel were referring to as "Gorgeous Ladies Of Pop Culture Happy Hour." It was, believe it or not, a complete coincidence that we finally pulled it together during the week that HBO premiered Lena Dunham

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Monkey See
1:35 pm
Thu April 19, 2012

Today's Adorable PSA: 'Book People Unite'

It's not every day that I get a pitch that basically says, "Watch our video; it's so cute!" that actually works.

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Monkey See
9:13 am
Thu April 19, 2012

Let's Rush To Judgment: 'Magic Mike'

Originally published on Thu April 19, 2012 12:41 pm

The casting of Magic Mike was attention-getting from the start.

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Monkey See
9:22 am
Wed April 18, 2012

Nostalgia Is Anywhere But Here

Baseball-booted students jitterbugging at the Carrere night club in Paris. (Photo dated 1949)
Keystone Features Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 18, 2012 2:32 pm

It feels redundant, and maybe a bit solipsistic, to study the mechanics of nostalgia too closely. It means watching ourselves watch ourselves and asking why we're doing it.

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Monkey See
10:01 pm
Fri April 13, 2012

The Fourth Stooge: Memories Of 'Uncle Shemp'

Originally published on Mon April 16, 2012 8:02 am

This weekend, the Farrelly Brothers' version of The Three Stooges arrives in theaters. You'll see plenty of Larry, Moe and Curly. But who won't you see? Shemp. Or, as NPR's Sue Goodwin calls him, "Uncle Shemp."

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Monkey See
9:59 am
Wed April 11, 2012

'America Revealed': The Ups And Downs Of The Quest For More Of Everything

Yul Kwon visits the Reno Tomatina, a giant tomato fight, in the first episode of PBS's America Revealed.
jeffross.com PBS

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Monkey See
6:57 am
Tue April 10, 2012

Ashley Judd Speaks For Herself About Faces, Bodies And Fame

Ashley Judd attends Ashley Judd in Conversation with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime at the United Nations last month in New York City.
Dario Cantatore Getty Images

I hadn't even heard the ruckus about how Ashley Judd looks that's apparently kicked up since the debut of her ABC series, Missing. But she did.

And she's written a piece for the Daily Beast about it.

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Monkey See
2:57 pm
Sun April 8, 2012

Lena Dunham's 'Girls': Still Sex, Still The City, Different Show

Lena Dunham stars in HBO's new series, Girls, premiering April 15.
Jojo Whilden HBO

Originally published on Mon April 9, 2012 6:15 am

Lena Dunham's new series Girls debuts on HBO on April 15. Dunham, who got quite a bit of attention for being the star, director and writer of the 2010 indie film Tiny Furniture, fills the same three roles in this ensemble show about four young women in New York.

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Monkey See
9:02 am
Fri April 6, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Sex Comedies And Marshmallow Peeps

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On this week's podcast, we decided to ruminate about teen sex comedies — in part because of spring break season, and perhaps in part because we're all surrounded by discussions of American Reunion. We chat about the ebb and flow of teen comedy in general, the ways in which Superbad was and was not influential, and the relationship between teen comedies, sex comedies, and teen sex comedies. This also leads us down a strange path about what kinds of vaguely dirty movies we did and did not have access to as kids.

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Monkey See
1:45 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Kerry Washington On Bringing Washington 'Scandal' To TV

Kerry Washington plays Olivia Pope on ABC's new drama, Scandal.
Danny Feld ABC

Originally published on Thu April 5, 2012 3:58 pm

Kerry Washington knows that her new drama, Scandal, will inevitably be compared to another drama about D.C.: The West Wing. Scandal tells Audie Cornish on today's All Things Considered that it even has Josh Malina, a West Wing cast member, for a little of what she calls "secret D.C. credibility."

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Monkey See
9:54 am
Thu April 5, 2012

Google's New Glasses And The War On Serendipity

A woman wears a design version of Google's intended smart glasses from its Project Glass.
Google AP

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