Television

Lessons from The Leftovers: finding meaning in an ISIS-filled world

January 1, 2016

Two weeks ago, the HBO TV series The Leftovers completed its stunning second season. With its incessantly bleak tone, and ratings that were not much better, critics and fans called it “the best show on television you’re probably not watching.” But you ought to. Go out and binge watch all 20 episodes right now. Because […]

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Israeli Spotting at the Super Bowl

February 4, 2013

Yesterday was Super Bowl Sunday and, as always, the commercials were often as unforgettable as some of the bolder plays on the field. For Israelis, the spot to watch was GoDaddy’s promotion of its web hosting service featuring Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli. The video is all over the Internet and has racked up a stunning […]

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Shmulik and Mushkie go to Kathmandu

June 8, 2012

Shmulik and Mushkie are not the kind of protagonists you usually see on Israeli television. The newly married Chabad couple are all set to begin their shlichut (emissary period) in Brussels when a last minute change of plans lands them in Kathmandu, just days before Passover, with the seemingly impossible task of organizing a mass Seder for […]

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Srugim Co-Creator Tells All in Jerusalem Lecture

May 3, 2012

For its three season run, I was hooked on the Israeli TV drama Srugim. The program told the tale of four religious (and one formerly religious) young Israelis living in Jerusalem’s singles-centric Old Katamon neighborhood, affectionately known as the “swamp.” The show won praise from both religious and secular society – the latter were captivated […]

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Tu B’av Fashion Show Faux Pas?

July 27, 2010

Tu B’av – the 15th day of the Jewish month of Av – is the closest Israelis have to a Valentine’s Day: just substitute a bit of ribald wisdom from the rabbis of the Talmud for a martyred Roman saint and a lot of cuddly Cupids. Tu B’av is the number one day for weddings […]

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Did Lost “Lose” the Jews?

June 2, 2010

SPOILER ALERT: if you have not seen the last episode of Lost, do not read further. It’s been just over a week since the two and a half hour series finale of Lost aired, but the blogosphere continues to dissect every nuance of the show’s final big reveal. I’ll readily admit I’ve been a Lost […]

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What Irked Me About the Simpsons in Israel

April 13, 2010

The Simpsons came to Israel last week. Not the actors themselves or large foam rubber versions of the popular yellow characters dancing on ice; rather the show itself, which after over 20 years as the longest running sitcom on television, finally had an Israel-themed episode. I enjoyed most of it but there was an ongoing […]

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Israeli Sci Fi and Fantasy Fans Get Beamed Up

January 18, 2007

Whether their taste was Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, or just good old aliens, there was something for every Sci Fi fan at the tenth annual ICON Festival held recently in Israel. Bringing together more than 5,000 young enthusiasts to the Tel Aviv Cinemateque, the festival was a four-day celebration for fans of science fiction, fantasy […]

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Watching Battlestar Galactica from the Middle East – Part II

November 2, 2006

New Season Evokes Holocaust, Iraq as Allegory Shifts to Occupation Theme A few weeks ago I published an article reviewing the hit Sci Fi Channel series Battlestar Galactica. In it, I compared the theme of nuclear jihad in the fictional program with the realpolitick of contemporary fundamentalism vs. the West. My review covered the series […]

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