I've enjoyed all of ESPN's "30 For 30" series, with a few exceptions (the Len Bias doc was surprisingly weak), but Steve James of Hoop Dreams' piece, "No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson" was exceptional. It's about a race-driven brawl that Iverson was in at a bowling alley during high school, and how the following trial divided the town in two. James doesn't necessarily come out and say "these people are racist," but just hearing all of the figures being interviewed, they all sound like people trying not to sound racist. They're speaking in those couched terms people use in these situations, talking about the "bad crowd" he was "running with," or how if he wasn't a famous athlete, no one would be making these accusations. But underlying their tone, there's a clear dislike for Iverson, a refusal to believe that he could be innocent because of the kind of person that he is. They're far more transparent than they think, and ultimately, they're damned by their dishonesty. Here's a link to the show's site, so you can see the trailer and check viewing times, and I'd recommend watching it next time it pops up on ESPN or ESPN2.
Rebecca Traister has an excellent piece on Slate about the possibility that Tina Fey has failed feminists (spoiler alert: she hasn't). It mentions, but does not delve into one of my constant frustrations when discussing actors and culture: the inability to separate character from actor, and character's viewpoint from actor's viewpoint. Because Fey's created an upper-middle-class sitcom character who can't maintain her stated values when push comes to shove, she herself must be gulty of the same failings. It sounds stupid when you say it, but for some reason this is human nature. I feel bad for Kelsey Grammer, who must be constantly chided for intellectual snobbery.
I also enjoyed this Wired article on Bill Amend about the geek aspects of Fox Trot. Which reminds me, I have a large magazine rack in my office installed into the wall by the previous occupant - it's too much trouble to take down and have our facilities team patch up and repaint the area, so I've just jammed it with some old back copies of DV magazine, but since it's the thing that everyone comes into the office and flips through (and the mocks), I feel that I should have some more interesting reading material there. So, if anyone knows of any good cheap/free magazines that a video producer could have in his office, let me know.