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Casting a Critical Eye on Culture: Arrested Development and the Power of the Sitcom

Joel Brown / ArrestedFanArt.com

This Olio looks at American culture and recent history through the TV show Arrested Development. Unlike many TV shows in the 2000’s, a major part of its humor and story lines, were conscious of the real world. The show cast a critical and astute eye on contemporary politics and culture. The writers successfully mined some of the biggest political events of our time, George W. Bush’s Iraq War, for biting observations and humor (i.e. repeated use of Mission Accomplished Banners at failed events). 

Arrested Development also made knowledge of TV shows a platform for its humor, playing on the broad cultural awareness and impact of TV. The show introduced a new production format for sitcoms. We'll discuss how from the second Iraq War to the Crash of 2008, Arrested Development successfully engaged with the real world events to produce an insightful satire of our times.


Recommended reading from Penguin Press:

Better Living Through Criticism by A.O. Scott

The New York Times film critic shows why we need criticism now more than ever.




Location: Berg'n

899 Bergen St, Brooklyn, NY 11238

Hip, late-night beer hall featuring microbrews & food vendors in a spacious, industrial-chic venue. Classes will be held in the private room.


Other upcoming Olios


Jul 22

Immoral Art?

Taught by Jeanne Proust
3 p.m. at Mathew Gallery

Sign Up - $15

Jul 26

A Dog Named Ego

Taught by Michael Prettyman
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

Jul 28

NYC Poetry Festival | Revolutionary Letters, Confronting the Times

Taught by Jessica Rogers
1 p.m. at Governors Island

Sign Up - $10

Jul 28

NYC Poetry Festival | Sekou Sundiata & Radical Citizenship

Taught by Brian Lewis
3:30 p.m. at Governors Island

Sign Up - $10

Jul 29

NYC Poetry Festival | The Dangerous Pleasure of Art

Taught by Geoff Klock
3:30 p.m. at Governors Island

Sign Up - $10

Jul 29

NYC Poetry Festival | Poetry of Loneliness and Collaboration

Taught by Heather O'Neill
1 p.m. at Governors Island

Sign Up - $10

Jul 31

Immersive Listening - Bowie's "Low"

Taught by Whitney George
7:30 p.m. at Nowadays

Sign Up - $15

Aug 21

The Poetry in Piledrivers: Pro-wrestling as Art

Taught by Ben Abelson
7:30 p.m. at Living Room

Sign Up - $15


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