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Mark Lashley
Mark Lashley is an Assistant Professor of Communication at La Salle University. He studies and teaches about digital media, television, and participatory culture. He watches an unhealthy amount of TV.

Entries by Mark Lashley

Jon Stewart Is Retiring, and it's Going to Be (Kind of) Okay

(16) Comments | Posted February 13, 2015 | 2:21 PM

When the news broke Tuesday night that longtime Daily Show host Jon Stewart would be leaving his post in the coming months, the level of trauma on the internet was palpable. Some expected topics arose, within hours -- minutes, even -- of the announcement trickling out. Why would Stewart leave...

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Fifth Place (Out of Four): The Decline of NBC Thursdays

(20) Comments | Posted October 25, 2012 | 3:12 PM

Television scheduling is a largely dubious, confounding and, in this day and age, increasingly irrelevant process. So what I'm about to offer isn't the first rumination on the disconnects between audiences and programmers, between mass markets and niche markets, and it definitely won't be the last. But this one is...

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Genre Riffing on Adult Swim: Childrens Hospital and NTSF:SD:SUV::

(3) Comments | Posted September 10, 2012 | 5:46 PM

I've been a fan of Adult Swim since Cartoon Network launched the platform in 2001 (believe it or not, it really is that old), and have witnessed the programming block go through lots of changes -- first adding high-profile off-network acquisitions like Futurama and Family Guy, and making a notable...

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Negotiating the Rules of a New Medium with Comedy Bang! Bang!

(11) Comments | Posted July 20, 2012 | 1:53 PM

It's taken half a season of growth, but IFC's Comedy Bang! Bang! has become essential viewing for fans of the craft of comedy. Maybe not as essential as, say, Louie, which Patton Oswalt notes is the truest representation of a working comedian's lifestyle ever caught on film. But...

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The Newsroom Is a Loaded Fantasy, But It Should Get Us Talking

(7) Comments | Posted June 28, 2012 | 11:45 AM

Quite a few critiques of The Newsroom have shown up in this space, both before and after Sunday's premiere. If one were to believe the critical establishment, Aaron Sorkin's latest is overly earnest and a bare rehash of much of his previous work, and...

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Some Great Opening Title Sequences (For Not-So-Great Shows)

(4) Comments | Posted June 8, 2012 | 5:30 PM

The title sequence for films and television series has been a hot topic of discussion of late, thanks largely to this short documentary from PBS's Off Book that explores how they're made, and websites like Art of the Title that celebrate the craft.

At least since...

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In Season Premiere, Workaholics Does What it Does Best

(4) Comments | Posted May 30, 2012 | 7:10 PM

I'm not going to give you a number, but I'm pretty sure I fall just outside the older end of Workaholics' target demographic. So I shouldn't be surprised that most recent comedy series aimed at the dorm room set -- Adult Swim's Loiter Squad and Workaholics' schedule-mate Tosh.0 (a show...

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How I Met Your Mother Wraps Another Season, Trapped in Its Own Narrative

(11) Comments | Posted May 15, 2012 | 3:51 PM

On its best days, How I Met Your Mother comments on the very idea of memory, letting its characters' distortions and misremembrances float far outside the bonds of reality. It's perhaps the series' central comedic trope (and certainly its most effective): give the audience all sides of a story in...

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Veep Doesn't Work as a Political Satire (But It's Really Funny Anyway)

(13) Comments | Posted May 7, 2012 | 6:56 PM

Hammocked between the wildly popular new season of Game of Thrones and Lena Dunham's Girls, which has inspired some interesting discussion of how television portrays the experience of young women (among other things), Veep, HBO's new comedy starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus as supremely ineffectual U.S. Vice President Selina Meyer, seems to...

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The Ricky Gervais Show and the Comedy of Self-Importance

(11) Comments | Posted April 30, 2012 | 12:19 PM

Midway through last year's Talking Funny, a round table discussion among some of the world's most famous stand-up comics, Ricky Gervais claims, "In comedy... I think, you have to be the underdog. There's no place for being above the audience." He asserts that he plays a character on stage, ironically...

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