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Jeffrey Malone Jeffrey Malone
Starpulse Contributing Writer
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My name is Jeffrey Malone, and I like liking things. I view reality through the lens of pop culture. I can also be found at,, Twitter, and YouTube.

'Saturday Night Live' Season 41, Episode 6 Recap: Matthew McConaughey & Adele

11/22/2015 3:30pm EST
SNL Matthew McConaughey Adele
Matthew McConaughey has two different, but ultimately complementary reputations.

The first is of the ultimate chill dude. Up until about four years ago, that translated into meaning he would rather play the bongos naked than get down to work.

But now, in a post-McConaissance world, he is known more for his commitment to challenging and unusual roles.

That mix of mellow and focused is perfect for an “SNL” host, and it may very well be enough to overcome any bad memories from his unforgettable first stint in 2003.

Musical guest Adele, meanwhile, had an excellent “SNL” debut, and the only ...

'The Middle' Recap: The Hecks Postpone Thanksgiving

11/19/2015 10:39am EST
The Middle
Most sitcoms aim their highest at the holiday; few are as consistently successful at it as “The Middle.” While every day for the Hecks is usually pretty much like the day before (i.e., not the most domestically harmonious), something unusually heartwarming tends to happen on their holidays out of sheer force of will. But this year, work and other engagements get in the way of family time, and little effort is made to counteract that. So they float Thanksgiving off to June 12. They disperse, each spending the day mostly on their own, and they are perfectly okay with that … or are they?


'The Muppets': Chelsea Handler Is 'Too Hot' For Scooter 'To Handler'

11/18/2015 9:09am EST
The Muppets
“The Muppets” has settled into a pleasant groove, in which the nastier tendencies that typified the new “adult” branding of this show have been toned down. Scooter, Kermit, and Fozzie take center stage in stories with familiar plot beats that are not particularly revelatory, but they could have been a lot worse. Misunderstandings – either contrived or perfectly understandable – could have been compounded the conflicts, but instead the resolutions are pleasant and Muppet-style heartwarming. It is a form of television that will not win praises for its ambition but can be treasured for the com...

Elizabeth Banks Makes Her Well Deserved Debut On 'SNL'

11/15/2015 8:24am EST
'Saturday Night Live' Recap: Elizabeth Banks, Disclosure, Lorde,
“SNL” often responds to its most controversial outings in subsequent episodes, but the Donald Trump spectacle is nary mentioned at all a week later, save for a quick hit on Weekend Update. And this is for the best, because Elizabeth Banks shall not be overshadowed. She has been a deserving host for at least a decade, and in her debut, she puts on a showcase monologue, and then she fades into the ensemble for an episode that is all over the place. Meanwhile, musical guest Disclosure makes it a party by inviting their friends Lorde and Sam Smith.

In lieu of an opening sketch, “SNL” acknowl...

'The Middle' Recap: The Hecks Explore Their Identities In 'Homecoming II: The Tailgate'

11/12/2015 8:58am EST
The Middle
The way people believe they are supposed to be is often based more in perception than in hard evidence. Frankie Heck is compelled to hold on to her perceptions. This holds true when it feels right but also even when she wants to let go. The entire Heck family is beholden to perception. This is not necessarily a problem. The primary perspective they all rely on is their own, so their independence keeps them stable, but they could benefit from being rocked by an alternate point of view.

Frankie’s frustration with her mother’s constant presence, while subjective, is not an example of this typ...

Explosions And Jason Bateman Make For One Of The Best 'Muppets' Episodes

11/11/2015 9:38am EST
The Muppets
With an Animal drumbeat providing the foundation, “The Muppets” leans into its most natural mode in the kinetic “Pig’s in a Blackout.” Animal does not just provide the instrumental support, but also the thesis statement, when he exclaims, “Explosions! Yum!” The Muppets have a grand tradition of a perennial threat of everything gloriously blowing apart. Usually Kermit, at the center of it all, manages to keep a stopgap on the most combustible situations, but that is a formula for a lot of stress. With the frog opting for a period of relaxation, the floodgates come bursting open. Taking that ...

'Saturday Night Live' Season 41, Episode 4 Recap: Donald Trump & Sia

11/8/2015 2:01pm EST
Donald Trump on SNL
Donald Trump might be a bigot, or he might just be shamelessly aping the rhetoric of bigots to win over their support. Which is worse? Either way, one would assume he is a terrible fit to host a comedy show that many believe has the responsibility of holding the powerful accountable.

Thus, the petitions to reverse the Trump booking or calls to disrupt the episode had made for one of the most controversial shows in decades before it even aired.

In a way, Trump’s appearance actually turning out to be a funny episode would be troublesome, because of the fear that it could legitimize a rather...

The Muppets Learn That Ignorance May Or May Not Be Bliss

11/4/2015 9:30am EST
The Muppets
As the saying goes, “What you don’t know can’t kill you.” Of course, this maxim has its limits. If you don’t know that you have a chronic heart condition, there is still a decent chance that it could kill you. In a more metaphorical sense of death, ignorance can be blissful, but the potential for danger is still present. “The Ex-Factor” presents several Muppets experiencing various stages of being left in the dark. And indeed, this episode seems to confirm the value of maintaining obfuscation – so long as the obfuscation itself is also obfuscated. However, such solution is likely only tempo...

What's New And Expiring On Netflix In November

10/30/2015 10:31am EDT
Masters of None
Comedy-loving Netflix users have plenty to be thankful for this November, as a few titans of modern humor debut their latest projects. First up, on the 6th, is “Master of None,” featuring Aziz Ansari as New York actor Dev, and Ansari’s real-life parents as Dev’s mother and father. Dropping on the 13th is the sketch series “With Bob and David,” featuring the two stars (Bob Odenkirk and David Cross) and much the same writing staff as the seminal 90’s HBO series “Mr. Show.” Also on the 13th is John Mulaney’s latest stand-up special titled (perhaps in reference to the demise of his sitcom) “The...

'The Middle' Recap: 'The Middle's' Latest Halloween Episode Is Legitimately Scary

10/29/2015 9:32am EDT
The Middle
“The Middle” was in an unusually ambiguous mood a few episodes ago, and now the Hecks return to that vein of uncertainty with scary intensity for Halloween. Lack of answers is the order of the day for a lot of great horror, and “The Middle” boldly commits to this approach in a way that transcends typical sitcom constraints. When scares are promised on family half hours, tricks are usually delivered instead. Usually, to produce genuine thrills, shows step outside the bounds of continuity. Doing so within the normal confines requires tricky construction, and “The Middle” pulls it off in surpr...