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
6:37 am
Fri November 23, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Out Of Season Entertainment And A TV Quiz

NPR
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We know you're traveling; we're traveling, too! But we thought we'd send the show out early, just in case you have time to throw it on your iPod before you go over the river and through the woods.

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Monkey See
3:01 pm
Wed November 21, 2012

Rob Delaney Talks About Gratitude, Perspective, Spaceships And A Career With Teeth

A screenshot from Rob Delaney's standup special, "Live At The Bowery Ballroom."

Originally published on Wed November 21, 2012 3:57 pm

Full disclosure: The first thing I said when I saw that Rob Delaney would be talking to NPR's Audie Cornish on today's All Things Considered was that I was curious to see whether he had ever said anything on Twitter — where he has almost 670,000 followers (including me) as of this writing — that they thought they could read on the radio. It's an exaggeration. But not by that much.

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Monkey See
2:53 pm
Tue November 20, 2012

Making The Comedy Podcast: Julie Klausner's Life Of Conversation

Julie Klausner has written for television, traditional media, new media, and Joan Rivers. But she's also a very popular comedy podcaster — a job that, only a few years ago, barely existed.
Ari Scott Julie Klausner

Originally published on Tue November 20, 2012 4:14 pm

Julie Klausner's podcast, How Was Your Week?, has been featured on all manner of lists of the best shows of its kind — in Rolling Stone, in GQ, and in The New York Times. Comedy podcasting is a field growing so fast that, as NPR's Audie Cornish mentions in talking to Klausner on today's All Things Considered, comedian Colin Quinn recently commented that the only thing comedians talk about anymore is doing each other's podcasts.

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Monkey See
7:02 am
Mon November 19, 2012

Entirely Real Photos: Kristen Stewart Is So Totally Thrilled To Be Here

Kristen Stewart poses during a photo call at the Spanish premiere of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2.
Gabriel Pecot AP

Given my constitutional opposition to women being told to smile and look happy, it takes a lot for me to pick on scowling.

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Monkey See
8:35 am
Fri November 16, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Let's Talk Turkey

NPR

Originally published on Fri November 16, 2012 1:13 pm

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It's Thanksgiving time again, and while we're very sad to be without our pal Glen Weldon this week, we're happy to be joined by the lovely Barrie Hardymon.

We start with a discussion of Thanksgiving and pop culture — and, more specifically, why there's not as much Thanksgiving-themed pop culture as you might think, particularly compared to Christmas. We explore the turkey episodes of Friends and other comedies, but talk a little about the surprising dearth of Thanksgiving movies.

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Monkey See
9:29 am
Wed November 14, 2012

The Fundamentals Of Battle: 'Star Wars' Versus 'Star Trek'

An original Darth Vader costume from the Star Wars films on display in Christie's auction house in 2010.
Matthew Lloyd Getty Images

When you set out to take on the great battles, it's only a matter of time before you get to this one. The battles. The spaceships. The creatures. The Shatner and Vader of it all.

Yesterday, cats emerged victorious over dogs in our opening round in what was a very hard-fought and close contest. But here, we ought to be able to come to a simple agreement, right?

Monkey See
11:03 am
Tue November 13, 2012

The Fundamentals Of Battle: Cats Versus Dogs

iStockphoto.com

As I'm currently separated from most of my earthly possessions for the rest of this week, some of my cultural intake has been interrupted. (There's this great Hitchcock Blu-ray set I wanted to tell you about, and I will, but it has to come out of storage first.) Also, I don't know if you've noticed, but the news is really weird, and we're coming off a time where it's contentious over very serious things.

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Monkey See
8:52 am
Mon November 12, 2012

Let's Rush To Judgment: 'World War Z'

Brad Pitt in World War Z.
Jaap Buitendijk Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 6:17 am

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Monkey See
9:23 am
Fri November 9, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Arcades, Nose Putty, And Lisbeth Salander's Parents

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As you may recall, last week's storm (big hugs to those of you still dealing with that mess) left us without a show, but we have returned this week with a fully stuffed episode in which we spend a little time on what we meant talk about last week: Cloud Atlas, which Stephen and I in particular did not want to have seen at almost 10:00 at night for nothing.

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Monkey See
10:40 am
Thu November 8, 2012

The Love You Save: Lessons On Water And Stuff

This is the poster from my mom. As you can see, I was very into writing about reality shows.
Linda Holmes

On Monday morning at about 5:30 (I'm an early riser), I woke up, swung my legs out of bed, and stepped into water.

I live in a basement apartment where I've been for four years, and almost exactly a week after I was blessedly lucky to avoid the superstorm — and at a time when some of my New York and New Jersey friends were still in the dark — a freaky plumbing/heating mishap wound up filling my entire apartment with about an inch of water.

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Monkey See
7:21 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Twenty Stories That Will Absolutely Run The Week 'Star Wars: Episode VII' Is Released

Star Wars creator George Lucas during the 2011 Scream Awards." href="/post/twenty-stories-will-absolutely-run-week-star-wars-episode-vii-released" class="noexit lightbox">
In this Oct. 15, 2011 file photo, "Darth Vader" accepts the Ultimate Villain award from Star Wars creator George Lucas during the 2011 Scream Awards.
Chris Pizzello AP

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 7:59 am

Well, now that Lucasfilm is being bought by Disney and a new set of Star Wars films is allegedly on the way, there's only one thing to do: look into the future and realize that we already know what a lot of the coverage will look like when the next film comes out in 2015.

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Monkey See
8:59 am
Fri October 26, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Halloween Stories And Very Good Taste

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It's Halloween — or it will be soon — and that means BOO! We talk about the scariest of holidays (if you don't count Valentine's Day). Not scary at all: with Trey on vacation, we're joined by the charming Tanya Ballard Brown, who kicks off with a delightful tale of a clothes-wearing friend of hers. We get the update on what Stephen's kids are doing this year (the World's Saddest Banana is retiring!) and I once again make the case for my favorite dog photograph of all time.

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Monkey See
6:54 am
Thu October 25, 2012

Morning Shots: The Books You Like Are Probably Bad, And World Series News

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu October 25, 2012 10:13 am

I feel very much like the radio lady at the beginning of Singin' In The Rain when I say "rumor has it," but rumor has it that Bradley Cooper and Emma Stone might be starring in something written and directed by Cameron Crowe, and that's actually good enough news if true to make me want to put aside those worries. (Dignity, always dignity.) [Deadline]

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Monkey See
6:40 am
Wed October 24, 2012

Morning Shots: Are You Planning On Dressing Up Like Thor? You're Not Alone

iStockphoto.com

A Fandango poll says that The Avengers is leading the pack for Halloween costume choice, and then goes on to explain that most of the top picks across the board are action heroes. Which does make some sense, as dressing up like a rom-com heroine would make it hard for people to tell who you are. [The Hollywood Reporter]

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Monkey See
7:01 am
Mon October 22, 2012

Morning Shots: NBC's Surprising Success And Louis C.K.'s Next Gig

iStockphoto.com

From my beloved ex-hometown: The Minnesota Orchestra put on a show Thursday night, in spite of the fact that they're currently locked out in a contract dispute. [The Star Tribune]

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Monkey See
1:45 pm
Fri October 19, 2012

'Friendkeeping': The Close Relationships We Could, But Can't Easily, Let Go

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 2:46 pm

At Monkey See this week, we've been talking about friendship and pop culture. We close with this discussion with Julie Klam, whose new book, Friendkeeping, goes on sale next week.

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Monkey See
9:55 am
Fri October 19, 2012

Does The Hallmark Channel Have Basic Cable's Most Efficiently Defined Brand?

Kellie Martin and Ethan Erickson in I Married Who?
Alexx Henry Hallmark Channel

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 2:50 pm

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Monkey See
8:58 am
Fri October 19, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: The Nature Of Suspense And Our Love Of Cover Songs

NPR

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 2:53 pm

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This week, we're visited by the marvelous Barrie Hardymon for a show about the nature of suspense — brought on by Stephen's and my enthusiasm for the new Ben Affleck film Argo -- and about cover songs. We play a lot of music, including covers we love and the raw materials to put together covers that don't exist except in our dreams.

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Monkey See
7:48 am
Fri October 19, 2012

Entirely Real Photos: What's It Like At A Rockettes Rehearsal?

Linda Haberman (L), Director and Choreographer of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular directs The Rockettes at the 2012 Radio City Christmas Spectacular Rehearsals this week in New York.
Rob Kim Getty Images

I have no particular wisdom about this photo; I just think it's interesting to see that the Rockettes are never not regimented. I thought maybe you'd be allowed to wear your own dance clothes, but it makes sense that they'd want to see the effect of everyone looking the same, even in practice. These women work hard.

Monkey See
6:44 am
Fri October 19, 2012

Morning Shots: 'Girls,' Jerks, 'Sugar Dome,' And Messing With Classics

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 2:51 pm

I continue to be utterly fascinated by Ta-Nehisi Coates and his quest to learn French. "I now understand why two-year-olds are so frustrated," and other insights. [The Atlantic]

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Monkey See
6:48 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Morning Shots: George Takei, 'Moby-Dick,' And Magical Realism In Film

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu October 18, 2012 8:49 am

I don't know when we decided to start celebrating the 161st anniversaries of things, but it's the 161st anniversary of the publication of Moby-Dick, and there's a Google Doodle to celebrate. [The Telegraph]

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Monkey See
3:03 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Culture Yourself: October 17, 2012

iStockphoto.com

Each afternoon, we encourage you to put your feet up, relax, and check out some of the cultural coverage that might have slipped by during the day.

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Monkey See
2:13 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Sometimes A Friend Is Just A Cigar: Why Not Everybody Needs To Kiss At The End

David Duchovny, left, and Gillian Anderson in the film The X-Files: I Want to Believe.
Diyah Pera AP

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 2:51 pm

This week at Monkey See, we're looking at friendship in pop culture.

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Monkey See
9:42 am
Wed October 17, 2012

See A Clip From The Outstanding 'Brooklyn Castle,' A Film About Chess And Life

The I.S. 318 chess team, featured in Brooklyn Castle.
BrooklynCastle.com

Brooklyn Castle, which I originally saw at the South By Southwest Film Festival in March, is one of my favorite movies of the year. And starting this week, it's coming to theaters in select cities. (See a list of theaters here.)

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Monkey See
7:44 am
Wed October 17, 2012

Entirely Real Photos: It Is Possible That Jennifer Lopez Needs Less Wind Machine

Jennifer Lopez performs in Paris on Tuesday night.
Kenzo Tribouillard AFP/Getty Images

I'm sure Jennifer Lopez knows exactly how much wind is flattering, far more than I do. I'm sure she has a Flattering Wind consultant, and possibly even a Flattering Wind Consultant Handler. ("Assistant To The Flattering Wind Consultant Handler: Coco Maribou. Assistant to Ms. Maribou...")

But honestly, I might have gone with 20 percent less gale force here.

Monkey See
3:41 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Culture Yourself: October 16, 2012

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 3:42 pm

It's only a minute long, but if you don't listen to the Morning Edition story about Snoop Dogg [Lion] hyping Hot Pockets, I don't know why we even bother knowing each other.

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Monkey See
2:23 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

'We Killed': Women In Comedy, From Stand-Ups To Sitcoms

Originally published on Tue October 16, 2012 3:09 pm

We Killed: The Rise Of Women In American Comedy is a sprawling oral history that grew out of a Marie Claire piece. It has the loose structure of most similar books (of which there are more and more), though the introduction unfortunately ties it to the tired "women aren't funny" assertions that apparently we're not through talking about yet.

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Monkey See
11:00 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Judd Apatow And Lena Dunham Talk About Comedy On 'Iconoclasts'

Lena Dunham and Judd Apatow appear on tonight's episode of Iconoclasts on the Sundance Channel.
Sundance Channel

Tuesday night, the Sundance Channel series Iconoclasts pairs Lena Dunham with Judd Apatow for an interesting conversation about comedy.

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Monkey See
9:44 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Best Friends And Broken Hearts

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 2:43 pm

This week at Monkey See, we're looking at friendship in pop culture.

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Monkey See
5:34 am
Tue October 16, 2012

A Judge Dismisses 'The Bachelor' Discrimination Lawsuit, But Not Its Concerns

Seen here in April 2012, Christopher Johnson and Nathaniel Claybrooks sued over the casting of The Bachelor.
Mark Humphrey AP

Yesterday, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit brought by Christopher Johnson and Nathaniel Claybrooks, two black men who had auditioned for The Bachelor, who claimed that the show discriminates against people of color both in choosing the primary bachelor/ette and in choosing the people he or she will have to choose from.

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