Another Entry in My Favorite TV Screenshot Genre: We’re All Reacting to the Same Thing Differently

America’s Got Talent on NBC at 8:00pm ET.

Pretty Little Liars on Freeform at 8:00pm ET. Two-hour series finale. Was A ever really dead? Has that already been settled? Did her friends ever actually attend enough classes to graduate high school? Will any teachers be prosecuted for flagrant sexual misconduct with students? I assume none of these questions will be answered tonight or ever. I just have a vague sense that they should be.

iZombie on The CW at 9:00pm ET. Third season finale.

World of Dance on NBC at 10:00pm ET. I find this an awfully grand title for a reality series about dancing, but I suppose that is Jennifer Lopez’s style.

Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen on Bravo at 11:15pm ET. The guests tonight are Scott Wolf and Neve Campbell so any Party of Five fans should definitely tune in. And then wonder why you’d still consider yourself a «fan» of a show that ended 17 years ago.

Pajiba

The Keepers Deconstructs the True Crime Genre to Focus on Women’s Lives 

The Keepers isn’t much of a true crime documentary, at least in the traditional sense of the genre. And that’s to its immense credit. Netflix’s seven-part docudrama flirts with the genre but resists its pitfalls; this series is no whodunit, no he-said-she-said narrative that concludes with neat resolution. Instead,…

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Jezebel

If You Had To Pick One Song To Represent An Entire Genre, What Song Would It Be?

So I was sat over a pot of coffee the other day, blearily straining to see through a mid-week hangover and weakly attempting to summon up at least one coherent thought in the blasted wasteland inside my skull when a song came on on the speakers that I’d left going the night before.

It’s a song that announces its intentions immediately. Like probably the greatest video game theme of all time, there is no hesitation here, no countdown; it is an instantaneous conflagration of glorious noise.

Now, they probably need to invent a new number for how many times I’ve listened to ‘Master of Puppets’, but what struck me that particular morning as I headbanged my way through the morass of a hangover was just how perfectly emblematic the tune is of its genre. Sure there are others—Slayer’s ‘Raining Blood’ and Megadeth’s ‘Holy Wars…The Punishment Due’—that could be called upon should aliens invade and demand to see one canonical entry for the genre known as ‘thrash metal’; but there is something about ‘Master of Puppets’ that puts it head and shoulders above its competition. Not in terms of quality, mind you, that isn’t the question being asked by the aliens—just in terms of pure genre representation. The ferocious, punk-derived, breakneck attack alchemically synthesised with intricate musicality; the raw aggression and power of the vocals, conjuring up dark and violent imagery; the shred-tastic lead guitar lines laced over the palm-muted, down-picked, chug-work; the thundering rhythm section—yeah, ‘Master of Puppets’ is thrash metal.

If those intergalactic music auditors ever do arrive and demand to see thrash, I will know what to show ’em.

What say you, Pajibans—should you find yourself standing before the uncanny tribunal yourself, what would your genre and your champion be?

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Petr Knava
lives in London and plays music

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