Honoring a legend, a Judge wins one for reproductive health, watch a critically acclaimed new pilot, and get “Heavenfaced” by The National.
Yesterday, legendary film critic and Chicagoan Roger Ebert passed away at the age of 70. Ebert’s longtime home at the Chicago-Sun Times broke the news last afternoon, paying tribute to its movie reviewer of 45 years. “It is with a heavy heart we report that legendary film critic Roger Ebert has passed away,” the publication announced on its Twitter account. Ebert had been fighting cancer since 2002, losing his jaw and ability to speak in the process but he kept his wit and humanity in his writing. His 11-year battle ended only a day after he announced a “Leave of Presence” from his duties as film while he dealt with the resurfaced cancer. Ebert wrote prolifically, churning out reviews even a week before his death. His influence is vast, inspiring critics and movie-lovers everywhere. He wrote well, but never confused or insulted his readership’s intelligence. An inspired article from The Onion serves as a perfect tribute for the late critic.
Don’t Be A Pill
After a U.S. District Court ruling, the morning-after pill will soon be available over the counter for women of all ages. Previously, Plan B required a prescription for girls under the age of 17 but U.S. District Judge Edward Korman overturned the Obama Administration ordering that the pill be available over the counter to anyone. In 2011, Secretary of Health and Human Services Sebelius incensed women’s health advocates when she ignored the FDA recommendation that Plan B be sold without age restrictions. Even worse for supporters of women’s health, President Obama echoed her sentiment. However, this new ruling is a victory of for the FDA and progressives as the administration has 30 days to comply with the new ruling barring a federal appeal.
Watch The Stunning Hannibal Pilot
Knowing that the weekday grind (or the fact that it’s NBC) causes many to spend their Thursday nights not watching NBC, the network decided to put the full pilot of their well-received new drama online. Though it’s obvious where this story is headed, Hannibal is a prequel to Silence of The Lambs and is based off the Thomas Harris novels. Hugh Dancy stars as an FBI agent who can empathize with cold killers while Danish actor Mads Mikkelson plays the renowned psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter but nobody knows he is a killer (yet). Helmed by Bryan Fuller, the showrunner behind Pushing Daisies and Dead Like Me, Hannibal is worth a watch considering the cult success and creativity of Fuller’s previous shows.
Reception for the show has been overwhelmingly positive with The A.V. Club’s Todd VanDerWerff giving the pilot an A- while other critics, like Vulture’s Matt Zoller Seitz called the show “the most beautiful series on network TV.” Though there’s no need for another serial killer drama like Dexter, Bates Motel, or The Following (to name a few), Hannibal provides a fresh voice in this overcrowded genre. After its debut, Hannibal received a modest 1.6 rating among 18-to-49-year-olds with 4.3 million total viewers. Despite the weak rating, Hannibal outperformed the struggling Community and nearly doubled the abysmal numbers of the debut of NBC’s mediocre Do No Harm. Considering how the flailing NBC has struggled recently, fans of Hannibal have no need for concern.
The National Debut New Song
During a secret show in Berlin, the National previewed new songs from their forthcoming album, Trouble Will Find Me. Fortunately for those not living in Berlin and inclined to attend secret indie rock shows, someone with a camera phone recorded the debut of the new song, “Heavenfaced. The song showcases atmospheric guitar-work from Bryce and Aaron Dressner as well as the melancholic baritone of Matt Beringer.
Trouble Will Find Me will hit your local record store’s shelves on May 21 via 4AD. The album features guest spots and collaborations from an all-star cast of indie rock royalty including Sufjan Stevens, the Arcade Fire’s Richard Reed Parry, St. Vincent, and Sharon Van Etten, among many others.
Whatever and Ever Today was written by avid Sportsballer Josh Terry