From Paradise Lost to Harry Potter, Fanfiction Writers Reimagine the Classics

Though Derided by Critics as Copycat Art, It's a Democratic Form of Crowdsourced Creativity

As Game of Thrones looks to its eighth season, the show—strictly speaking—is no longer filming the books of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. Of course, it is still using the characters, world, and settings that Martin established (though its sometimes-drastic departures from the source material have been the cause of controversy before). But as the show has passed the timeline covered in the published novels, it is writing its own narrative without the need to reference a pre-existing canon. The biggest franchise on television has become, …

Art Can Help Us Understand Reality, Even While Transforming It

It Crafts Beauty and Truth from Mundane—Sometimes Ugly—Daily Existence

In their different ways, David Simon and Jamel Shabazz both have transformed gritty reality into art, drawing inspiration from the complex, often troubled urban-scapes of places like New York, …

If TV Wants to Bring America Together, It Needs to Show Bipartisan Empathy

Understand Every Character You Write and Avoid “Preachiness and Condescension”

“Can television bring America together?” asked writer John Bowman, the moderator of a panel posing that question. He immediately answered his own query with, “God knows I’ve tried.” And …

Television and Film Have a Role to Play in Repairing a Fractured America

Despite the Bitterness Splintering the Nation, History Shows We’re “All in the Family"

In American memory, if not always in reality, television and film once played a unifying role. During the Great Depression, decadent Hollywood productions delivered welcome diversion. At the dawn …

NASA’s Other Moonshot Helped Revolutionize Marketing

The Apollo Moon Landing Wasn't Supposed to Be Broadcast, Until a Team of Ex-Reporters Pushed for Live TV

On July 20, 1969, an estimated 600 million people watched and listened in real time as astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin touched down on the surface of the moon. …