Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog

July 21 2016 12:51 AM

Veep’s Peter MacNicol Has His Emmy Nomination Revoked Over Eligibility Issue

Six days after being nominated for an Emmy for outstanding guest actor in a comedy series for his role as Jeff Kane on HBO’s Veep, Peter MacNicol has been ruled ineligible for the award and had his nomination rescinded, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The Academy of Televison Arts and Sciences will announce the actor who received the next highest number of votes in the category as the replacement nominee soon.

MacNicol was disqualified for appearing in too many of the show’s episodes; the rules require that a guest actor nominee be in less than half of a season. At the time his name was submitted for the Emmy, Veep was still in production, and HBO anticipated that he’d appear in four of the season’s 10 episodes. Subsequently, however, he was included in 10 seconds of footage in the show’s ninth episode, a documentary supposedly assembled by the daughter of series lead Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ President Selina Meyer. Those 10 seconds meant he was in 50 percent of season’s episodes and disqualified him. The academy released a statement explaining the situation and added, “This decision is in no way a diminishment of Mr. MacNicol’s stellar performance on this season of Veep.” MacNicol joins Dennis Miller and Henry Winkler as actors who were found ineligible for Emmies after they had been nominated.

MacNicol played the uncle of Jonah Ryan (Timothy Simons), the universally loathed aide who ran for Congress this season; MacNicol’s character was a New Hampshire kingmaker who pulled the strings behind his nephew’s campaign. Despite being family, he enthusiastically participated in the series’ long tradition of insulting Jonah, calling him everything from a “walking trisomy” to a “sentient enema.” MacNicol won an Emmy in 2001 for his role in Ally McBeal.*

*Correction, July 21, 2016: This post originally misspelled Ally McBeal.

July 20 2016 11:42 PM

These Surprise Speakers Could Still Salvage the Republican National Convention

The speakers at the Republican National Convention started weird and are getting weirder. Professional golfers, multi-level marketing executives, a casino owner wearing sunglasses indoors, and a defeated rival who didn’t even endorse him: It’s such a dog’s breakfast that Slate has had to explain who these people are on a daily basis. Have some sympathy for Donald Trump, though: He tried his best to put together a more coherent lineup. Republicans turned him down, Tim Tebow backed out, and Father Coughlin is dead.

But it’s not too late for Trump to turn this around—all he needs is a last-night surprise. We’ve picked six speakers whose eloquence and competence would raise the bar and convince the nation that Trump is, if not exactly serious, at least not as flamboyantly incompetent as the convention so far has made him seem. Any one of these would improve the convention; all six would make history.

July 20 2016 4:46 PM

The Whimsical Japanese Trailer for Moana Offers a Completely Different Take From the American Teaser

The first international trailer for Moana features the titular heroine as a (very adorable) toddler collecting shells in a crystal-clear, and somewhat mischievous, ocean. Contained in a single scene and almost completely without dialogue, the Japanese preview of the film is much more serene than the livelier American teaser trailer that came out in June, which instead emphasized the antics of Maui, the film’s comic relief supporting character, voiced by Dwayne Johnson.

July 20 2016 4:04 PM

Garry Marshall Was the Rare Hollywood Filmmaker Who Valued Women’s Stories

If you had a soft spot for Garry Marshall, you’re probably not alone: The director and producer, who died Tuesday at 81, was the force behind iconic TV favorites likeHappy Days and The Odd Couple. But when you look more closely at his (staggeringly huge) body of work, a theme emerges: From Laverne & Shirley to Pretty Woman to his final feature from earlier this year, Mother's Day, Marshall had a soft spot for women-led stories.

Marshall may be best known to viewers of a certain generation for directing 1990’sPretty Woman, the movie that put Julia Roberts on the map. It would be a “big mistake ... huge(to paraphrase Vivan Ward) to overstate just how major this movie was at the time, and as a result of it, how much Roberts became the star of the ’90s, America’s sweetheart to end all sweethearts. It's a legacy that continues through to today—aren’t we still looking for the one who will finally dethrone her? And all because Garry Marshall decided to put her in a little romantic comedy.

July 20 2016 1:15 PM

Jimmy Fallon Busts Out His Donald Trump Impression to Defend Melania, Mock RNC Speakers

Jimmy Fallon once again trotted out his Donald Trump impression (and his best Michael Jackson dance moves) to skewer the events of Tuesday night’s RNC convention. He began with the biggest news story to come out of the night: Melania Trump’s instantly infamous plagiarized speech, which lifted entire lines from an address given by Michelle Obama in 2008 (not to mention the other sources she borrowed from). “Did you see Melania? She stole the show—literally,” quipped Fallon as Trump.

He went on to praise the city of Cleveland while taking a shot at Paul Ryan’s unfortunately homogenous intern selfie: “It’s fantastic to be here, home of Cleveland’s great football team, the Cleveland Browns, and home of Paul Ryan’s great intern team, the Cleveland whites.” And he mocked the RNC’s somewhat lame lineup of speakers—which included some weird ones—with an appearance by Q*bert. Apparently, the real superstar, Pikachu, wasn’t available.

July 20 2016 12:54 PM

The Full Trailer for Ava DuVernay’s New Series Queen Sugar Is Absolutely Gorgeous

While the upcoming television season’s slate includes many of the usual subjects—legal procedurals, political thrillers, and broad multicamera sitcoms chief among them—one cable show in particular is worth keeping an eye on as we head into the fall. That’d be Queen Sugar, the new OWN series created by Ava DuVernay and executive-produced by Oprah Winfrey. After a glimpse of the upcoming drama dropped a few weeks ago, OWN has now unveiled an extended full-length trailer—and goodness is it gorgeous.

July 20 2016 11:54 AM

The Honest Trailer for Batman v Superman Will Bring Divided Fans and Critics Together to Laugh About It All

To call Batman v Superman divisive would be an understatement. Despite a robust box office performance and positive audience response, Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel follow-up was widely panned in reviews, leading to a hostile back and forth between fans and critics. But fortunately for those who love the Honest Trailers series, it’s a tension that Screen Junkies cunningly plays with for their hilarious take on the film.

July 20 2016 11:31 AM

This Two-Minute-Long Beyoncé GIF Is Peak Beyhive

I have a lot of questions about this. Who made it? (The furthest I could trace it back was this user.) How long did it take? Is there a significant overlap between fans of Beyoncé and fans of Avatar: The Last Airbender?

But mostly I wonder this: Did the Beyhive figure out some sort of advanced compression algorithm, Pied Piper–style, just so they could tweet Beyoncé GIFs of longer than two minutes? As my colleague Will Oremus, Slate’s senior technology writer, pointed out to me, Twitter quietly tripled its GIF size limit to 15MB earlier this month, but it took the Beyhive to show that new size limit at its maximum potential.

July 20 2016 10:45 AM

Stephen Colbert Interviews the RNC’s Token Black Delegate, Who Looks a Lot Like Keegan-Michael Key

Donald Trump, now the official Republican presidential nominee, commands a whopping 0 percent of the black vote in Ohio. But that doesn’t mean that black Ohioans are wholly unrepresented at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland—in fact, Frank Walters is there, and he’s having a great time. And why not? As he tells The Late Show’s Stephen Colbert, people keep giving him free merchandise, saying “thank God you’re here,” and putting him in front of a camera.

July 20 2016 8:32 AM

How Keeping Up With the Kardashians Helps Kim Tell a Better Story Than Taylor

This article originally appeared in Vulture.

Maybe you, like me, woke up this morning and thought, “Wait, how am I supposed to feel about Taylor Swift now?” and then carefully sat and scrolled through several different pieces about Kim Kardashian’s Snapchat of reconstructed Twitter timelines and Instagram responses and what, exactly, it means when the Notes app says “search” at the top. All of that is pretty entertaining, of course, but if you’re a casual consumer of either of these celebrities and not fully embedded in everyone’s multiplatform presence, it’s hard to feel like you actually grasp the complete story.

Thank goodness for reality TV.

I woke up wondering what the heck was happening, watched last night’s episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, and then looked upon the internet with new, crystal-clear vision. The scales had fallen from my eyes. Before, I was mixed about who was in the wrong, what anyone’s motivations might be, and why this feud was being revived at all. After, I came away with a refreshed and pleasantly tingly sense that Kimye was almost entirely in the right, that Taylor’s motives were indeed inscrutable (but in a bad way), and also that Kim has, indeed, been working very hard to get her body back in shape after the birth of her son.