For all the turkey and stuffing (or veggieducken) you were eating over the weekend, you probably weren't consuming quite as much culture news, so here are the biggest stories from while you were out.
Dallas Star Larry Hagman Is Dead
Larry Hagman, who played the villainous oil baron J.R. Ewing on Dallas, died of complications from cancer on Friday. For more, you can read the New York Times’ obit, or you can watch Slate’s film critic Dana Stevens discuss the actor’s contributions to the history of television (he also starred in I Dream of Jeannie) on CBS This Morning.
Chevy Chase Leaves Community
Chevy Chase and Community finally severed their long-troubled union on Wednesday, through what the Hollywood Reporter called a “mutual agreement.” Much of the show’s long-delayed fourth season has already been filmed, and is set to premiere in February.
Lil Wayne Ssays He Will Retire
In an interview with MTV, Lil Wayne said his upcoming Tha Carter V would be his last album. What’s next for Wayne after a life in hip-hop? “My day job will probably be sports analyst and I’ll skate all night instead of being in the studio all night,” the rapper said.
Zero Dark Thirty and Les Miserables Screen to Raves
The Oscar race got a lot more crowded over the weekend, with Kathryn Bigelow’s Osama bin Laden manhunt pic Zero Dark Thirty and Tom Hooper’s sung-through musical Les Miserables both screening to enthusiastic early reviews. Les Miserables is still under embargo, though that didn’t stop some critics from taking to Twitter to rave about the film, especially when it came to the performances of Hugh Jackman (as Jean Valjean) and Anne Hathaway (as Fantine). Zero Dark Thirty already has two glowing reviews up from Richard Corliss at TIME and Todd McCarthy at The Hollywood Reporter.
Chris Brown Launches Twitter Attack on Comedian, Has Twitter Account Deleted
After a series of vulgar tweets directed at comedy writer Jenny Johnson yesterday, Chris Brown’s Twitter account has been deleted. It’s unclear whether the R&B singer will be returning to Twitter.
Trapped in the Closet, Bad 25, and Liz & Dick Debut
In a series of special broadcasts just in time for the holidays, R. Kelly returned with the latest installments of Trapped in the Closet (which raised more questions than answers), ABC aired Spike Lee’s Michael Jackson documentary Bad 25 (though it was only half as long as the original version, according to Lee), and Lifetime aired its whacked out Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton biopic Liz and Dick, starring Lindsay Lohan (though Slate found it not nearly whacked out enough).
Lincoln Is a Hit, in a Record-Breaking Thanksgiving Weekend
If you weren’t reading any news, there’s a good chance it was because you were at the movies. Hollywood scored a record weekend at the box office, taking in an estimated $290 million between Wednesday and Sunday. While the latest Twilight movie led the way, followed by the Bond flick Skyfall, the real story was Lincoln, which expanded to take in $25 million on one of the highest per-theater averages of the weekend. The Spielberg biopic reminds us that historical dramas like Saving Private Ryan and Schindler’s List were also blockbusters that numbered among the biggest hits of their years, and the film now seems like a possible Oscar frontrunner.
TODAY IN SLATE
Smash and Grab
Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?
Stop Panicking. America Is Now in Very Good Shape to Respond to the Ebola Crisis.
The 2014 Kansas City Royals Show the Value of Building a Mediocre Baseball Team
The GOP Won’t Win Any Black Votes With Its New “Willie Horton” Ad
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
Forget Oculus Rift
This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.