A timey-wimey guide to the modern era of Doctor Who

For a while, getting into modern Doctor Who was easy. The long-running BBC show is broken up into two distinct eras: The “Classic Era,” which ran from 1963 to 1989 (followed by a mid-’90s TV movie) and the “Modern Era” (or “NuWho” as it’s sometimes called), which kicked off in 2005 with a soft reboot and is still…

Where to start with the primal howl of Iggy Pop

In February—one month after the death of his close friend and collaborator David Bowie—Iggy Pop covered Bowie’s “The Jean Genie” at Carnegie Hall. Two weeks earlier, he said in an interview that he’s probably “closing up” and retiring from the recording business after the release of his new album Post Pop Depression.…

A beginner’s guide to the twisty melodrama of Pedro Almodóvar

The films of Pedro Almodóvar are twisty, lurid, and lustful, melodramatic but deeply empathetic, taboo-breaking but moral. There’s no such thing as a “typical” one, given the range of genres and tones he covers (often in the same title), but there are some typical ingredients that together make him one of the best and…

A beginner’s guide to Steve Martin’s eclectic, groundbreaking career

Steve Martin has been a part of pop culture for so long, and a force in so many mediums, that the best way into his career is to start small. Consider the absolute minimum for entertainment: a performer onstage. Here, the performer speaks calmly— even dully—about an art exhibition touring the country. While his…