Just TV

Jason Mittell's picture

Thoughts on Blogging for Tenure

I recently was contacted by Stephen Olsen from the MLA, who is coordinating a pre-conference workshop entitled “Evaluating Digital Work for Tenure and Promotion: A Workshop for Evaluators and Candidates” taking place on the 5th of January at this year’s convention. For the session, they are organizing a number of case studies of digital work that they will discuss in terms of how a promotions committee or reviewers would approach them, and my blog was suggested as a possible example. ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

Best TV of 2011

Being in Germany since August, I feel quite detached from American television, even though that’s what I’m here to write and talk about. I’ve found ways to access the shows that I’m missing, but without the ease of my TiVo and the television schedule matching my timezone, I’m definitely watching less, and therefore more selectively. So as I approach my annual list of top programs, I feel like I’m mirroring critical consensus in large part because I’m only seeking out newer shows that critics I trust recommend, rather than sampling widely and carving my own path. ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

The Qualities of Complexity: Aesthetic Evaluation in Contemporary ...

This is a busy week for the Popular Seriality group I’m working with here in Göttingen. First, we took over In Media Res for a series of posts about seriality – my own contribution was on Wednesday, focused on Breaking Bad and how it constructs character interiority through serial memory. Head over and join the conversation! ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

Legitimating Television: An Unofficial Book Review

One of the great gifts of sabbatical is having the time to read books that are not immediately required for teaching or manuscript reviews. I’ve taken advantage of that by reading some fiction (and would highly recommend D.B. Weiss’s Lucky Wander Boy if you’re into classic videogames and/or metafiction), as well as some scholarship. ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

Serial Orientations

Last week, I traveled to Bochum, an industrial city in northwest Germany, to serve as a keynote speaker at the conference (Dis)Orientations: (dis)orienting media & narrative mazes. I enjoyed my time in Bochum and at the conference, connecting with some interesting European media scholars and exploring another German city and university. ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

Birthday Blogging


The blog in its infancy ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

Playing for Plot in the Lost and Portal Franchises

I’m writing from FROG 2011, the Vienna conference on videogames. This conference is unlike any other I’ve been to in a range of ways: it’s my first game studies conference, which means the range of presenters and disciplinary backgrounds is broader and more eclectic than at the typical television or media studies conference. ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

Middlebury Looking for a Media Production Faculty Member

For the media academics reading my blog, I want to briefly point to a position that my department is searching for this Fall:

Assistant Professor of Media Production, Middlebury College

Jason Mittell's picture

Louie as Jazz for TV (with fart jokes)

An old college friend posted the following on Facebook yesterday: “So I keep watching the show Louie, which I find to be the most depressingly realistic TV I’ve ever seen. I think it’s a really good show, but it’s about as far from comedy as one can get. Why is it called a comedy? The topics are exceedingly heavy, and handled with a minimum of drama – they are too realistic.” My brief reply to her was that the show could be as funny as anything on TV (citing the episode “Come On, God” about masturbation as an example), but that really it’s a show that transcends genre. ... read more »

Jason Mittell's picture

When is a Publication Not a Publication?

August was quite a month for me personally, precluding any blogging here – moving to Germany and adjusting to life abroad has been my primary occupation (as documented on our family blog). I’m not acclimated enough to understand German television sufficiently to blog about it (although I did learn the word Schnabeltier from my kids watching Phineas und Ferb here). ... read more »