("Spoiler Alert" sketch from tomorrow's Portlandia)
- As I wrote in my 2012 in Film coverage, it's a damn shame that Zero Dark Thirty is becoming swallowed in controversy (undeserved in this writer's opinion) before anyone who doesn't write for a publication has been able to see the movie. Now, adding to the fire, the Senate will probe relations between the CIA and ZDT filmmakers. The thing I don't get: either, like the Senate says, events within the film are far from the truth or the CIA gave the filmmakers classified information. I cannot comprehend how both of these could be true. Either way, see the movie, realize it is a masterpiece that in no way endorses torture, and hope that it can take its rightful place in the annals of film history, rather than being forgotten due to a cooked-up controversy. (via Deadline)
- After that little rant, I'm far too exhausted to deal with people's incorrect reactions to Current TV becoming Al Jazeera America, so you should read the A.V. Club's excellent summary on the matter.
- In lighter news, Adam Levine will be hosting Saturday Night Live on January 26nd. Well, lighter news for some. (via TV Line)
- The musical guest for that episode will be Kendrick Lamar. His good kid, m.A.A.d. city may not have placed as highly on my albums of the year list as it did with most others, but it still has a number of tremendous moments. My personal favorite (besides the epic "Sing About Me, I'm Dying of Thirst") is "Backstreet Freestyle" which now has a video. The black-and-white home video aesthetic works well with the song's (and album's) memoir-tone, even if this video style is nothing new. A spoken-word interlude and extended twerking shot does provide a unique personality. (via Pitchfork)
- Local Natives are a perfectly fine band, but their new record was produced by The National's Aaron Dessner, so it'll be worth at least checking out once or twice. Their new song "Heavy Feet" clearly feels the influence of The National, obvious as soon as those drums start things off. (via Pitchfork)
- Ryan Hemsworth has had a fairly productive 2013 so far, with a new, dreamy track ("BasedWorld") and a fairly incredible video for an old, dreamy track (2012's "Colour & Movement"). If the trend continues, he'll be discussed a lot more on this site in the coming year. (via Stereogum)
- Last night on the first Late Night With Jimmy Fallon of the year, Fred Armisen killed it, which shows that while the year may have changed, certain things can still be relied on. At the end of the show, after a great bit with fake album covers, Armisen and Questlove had a drumoff. You don't need me to tell you that it was incredible.
Today On Wine & Pop:
- Paul Krueger wrote about four on-going non-superhero comic books you should be reading: Chew, The Massive, Saga and Adventure Time. Of the four, I've only read a couple issues of Saga, but I add my hearty endorsement of that.