Linda Holmes

Linda Holmes writes and edits NPR's entertainment and pop-culture blog, Monkey See. She has several elaborate theories involving pop culture and monkeys, all of which are available on request.

Holmes began her professional life as an attorney. In time, however, her affection for writing, popular culture and the online universe eclipsed her legal ambitions. She shoved her law degree in the back of the closet, gave its living-room space to DVD sets of The Wire and never looked back.

Holmes was a writer and editor at Television Without Pity, where she recapped several hundred hours of programming — including both High School Musical movies, for which she did not receive hazard pay. Since 2003, she has been a contributor to MSNBC.com, where she has written about books, movies, television and pop-culture miscellany.

Holmes' work has also appeared on Vulture (New York magazine's entertainment blog), in TV Guide and in many, many legal documents.

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Monkey See
9:53 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Shut The Door, Have A Suite: 'Mad Men' Steps It Up

Jon Hamm as Don Draper in Mad Men.
Michael Yarish AMC

[CAUTION: This is all about Sunday night's Mad Men. Obviously, if you haven't seen Sunday night's Mad Men and you still intend to, you might hold off.]

It's reductive to conclude that on far too many episodes of Mad Men, nothing happens. Of course something always happens: someone feels something, or learns something, or is locked in a continuous internal struggle with something. A dynamic continues to simmer, a memory comes to the surface, angels and demons battle for somebody's soul.

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Monkey See
8:10 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Armor And Anxiety: Tony Stark Is The New Captain America

Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark in Iron Man 3.
Marvel/Walt Disney Pictures

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 10:37 am

Meet Tony Stark at the opening of Iron Man 3: insanely wealthy, possessed of every toy, and traumatized by an attack on New York that has left him restless, anxious, belligerent, and given to both hunker-down security measures and fate-tempting swagger. He declares his total lack of fear, then builds the fortress walls higher.

Let's step back.

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Monkey See
1:45 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

Discovery's 'Big Brain Theory': Not That Kind Of Nerd TV

Alison Wong, a contestant on Discovery's new The Big Brain Theory, does the math.
Jason Elias Discovery

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Monkey See
10:19 am
Wed May 1, 2013

How 'New Girl' Got Smarter, Sexier, And A Lot Less Annoying

Jess (Zooey Deschanel) and Nick (Jake Johnson) have one of their many chats on Fox's New Girl.
Adam Taylor Fox

In the early days of New Girl, Jess Day (Zooey Deschanel) was a toddler-sized tutu made flesh: cute, affected, hard to actually dislike, but earning grins largely by doggedly evoking childhood's clumsy and doomed attempts at grace.

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Monkey See
1:01 pm
Mon April 29, 2013

Can Online Shows Be Habit-Forming? Soaps May Provide Some Clues

Debbi Morgan and Darnell Williams in a scene from the online-only premiere of All My Children.
Screenshot

Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 10:23 am

In the world of television, there's nothing quite like a soap habit. People watch characters evolve not over the 10 or 15 seasons that might mark a long run in prime time, but over 30 or 40 years, until they have kids and grandkids — sometimes played by the same actors the entire time.

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Monkey See
8:31 am
Mon April 29, 2013

Everywhere But Here, 'Iron Man 3' Is Already Huge

Iron Man 3 doesn't open in North America until this Friday (May 3), but this weekend, it's already up and whomping The Avengers at the international box office. The new adventures of Tony Stark, directed and co-written by Lethal Weapon screenwriter Shane Black, brought in $195.3 million. That beat a mere $185.1 million when The Avengers opened internationally to make it the biggest opening weekend ever in a bunch of countries, including Argentina and Indonesia.

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Monkey See
10:41 am
Fri April 26, 2013

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Our Great Big Summer Movies Show

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This is the time of year when we take a deep breath and a look ahead to the long summer movie season. And this year, as Stephen is quick to point out, things look pretty dire. There's a lot of apocalyptic stuff going on, and zombies, and vampires, and even the Iron Man movie looks dark. (Don't even get us started on the fact that the Star Trek movie is actually subtitled "Into Darkness.")

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Monkey See
8:27 am
Fri April 26, 2013

How 'The Office' Took A Scene From The Heart And Shot It In The Foot

John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer as Jim and Pam Halpert.
Chris Haston NBC

This has been a difficult year for The Office. There are only three episodes left after "Paper Airplanes," which aired Thursday night, and where 30 Rock rallied as it headed to the finish, The Office has seemed lost, particularly by devoting substantial time to world-building Dwight's beet farm, a remnant of a failed spin-off effort.

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Monkey See
9:56 am
Wed April 24, 2013

Ryan Lochte And The Easy Life Of The Professional Public Dummy

Ryan Lochte, seen here during the London Olympics in 2012, has a new reality show on E!.
Ng Han Guan Getty Images

Is there any reason to be a professional public hero anymore when you can be a professional public dummy?

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Monkey See
9:40 am
Tue April 23, 2013

Watch These Coachella Attendees Enthuse Over Made-Up Bands

A woman attending Coachella is asked about bands that don't exist on Monday night's Jimmy Kimmel Live.
Screenshot

Originally published on Tue April 23, 2013 3:09 pm

Jimmy Kimmel Live ran this rather remarkable segment in which, as the show explained it, people walking into Coachella were asked about bands that do not, in fact, exist. Nevertheless, these particular folks had strong opinions about the great "energy" of The Chelsea Clintons, and the album DJ Cornmeal, which one guy claims he used to play all the time at his community radio show.

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