ET Obsessions: ‘Dear White People,’ the Notorious Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a Liz Phair Reissue and More!
By Stacy Lambe
Netflix / Elizabeth Weinberg / Matador Records / Audible / Bradshaw Boys
Here at ET, we’re obsessed with all things pop culture -- and here’s what we’re most excited about this week:
Why We’re Obsessed With Dear White People Volume 2
Adapted from the hit independent film of the same name, creator Justin Simien’s exploration of racial relations in America is back for a second season on Netflix. The show, which tells the overlapping stories of black students at a predominantly white Ivy League institution, continues to mix humor with poignant commentary that only feels more accurate and timely as ever. Season two takes on Alt-Right trolls, while also exploring issues around sexuality, mid-adult crises and privilege, allowing the ensemble cast led by Logan Browning (Samantha White) to dig deeper into the humor and psyche of their characters. Like season one, there are unexpected reveals when all the interlocking stories come together by the end, with season two forcing Sam to look into the mirror.
At 85 years old, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has become a pop culture icon, dubbed the “Notorious R.B.G.” by the internet and earning a recurring impersonation by Kate McKinnon on Saturday Night Live. The riveting, new documentary directed by Betsy West and Julie Cohen looks at how Ginsburg’s legacy came to be, a largely unknown journey -- even to her biggest fans -- from her days in college to her time on the bench, all the while advocating for women’s rights. The film offers a peek inside her personal life as a wife and mother, but keeps the focus largely on her work breaking the glass ceiling, which feels just as important and vital as ever as rights around the world come under attack.
Why We’re Obsessed With Liz Phair’s Exile in Guyville Reissue
Liz Phair’s groundbreaking debut album, Exile in Guyville, gets the box-set treatment ahead of its 25-year anniversary on June 22, 1993. Met with critical acclaim upon its initial release, the album’s mix of lo-fi sound and emotional honesty would go on to define early-’90s alt rock as well as Phair’s recording career, while eventually landing on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. In addition to a remastered reissue of the original album, the box set indulges fans with seven LPs including three never-before-commercially released copies of the Girly-Sound cassettes as well as an accompanying book that features an extensive oral history of the album by Jason Cohen. The May release of the box set will be supported by an eight-city June tour during which Phair will only perform songs from the Girly-Sound tapes.
The Alien film series made its debut in 1979, and ever since, the nightmarish creature designed by H.R. Giger has haunted audiences in everything from novels to comic books and video games to multicast audio dramas. Alien: Sea of Sorrows is the third in the Audible series of Alien dramas, taking the original novel of the same name by James A. Moore and adding a cast of actors which includes Stockard Channing. Everything that we love about Alien is here: a reluctant hero, space marines, and the Weyland-Yutani Corporation attempting to capture Xenomorphs. Also something new, finally we get to delve into the titular creature’s point of view. With the rich audio production and talented voice actors, it was very easy to get lost in the five-hour audio performance.
The Bradshaw Boys -- Cory Cavin, Kevin Doyle and Jon Sieber -- have committed to watching the entire Sex and the City series straight through, for the first time, and they’ve already decided that they’re total Mirandas! The men behind the popular Bradshaw Boys podcast are asking fans of the beloved HBO show to take this journey with them as they review one SATC episode a week, with the help of some pretty spectacular guests -- including Carrie Dragshaw herself. The podcast, which has just finished reviewing season one, has already taken off thanks to the guys' astute and hilarious commentary on the episodes, and is a fun way to revisit the series, which turns 20 this year. While listening to The Bradshaw Boys’ discussion of the episodes, listeners will inevitably find themselves wanting to chime in on the conversation -- which is always a true sign of a great podcast.