The It List is Yahoo’s weekly look at the best in pop culture, including movies, music, TV, streaming, games, books, podcasts and more. Here are our picks for March 11 to 17, including the best deals we could find for each.
WATCH IT: Empire
The midseason premiere of the Fox hit already promised to bring the drama — this is Empire, after all — but now it will feature the added drama of seeing how the show handles cast member Jussie Smollett. The actor was charged last month with 16 felony counts of disorderly conduct for allegations that he orchestrated a racist, homophobic attack in which he was the victim. While Smollett’s case is still playing out, and he’s set to be arraigned in court this week, show producers announced last month that his character would be written out of the final two episodes of the season. Just how isn’t yet clear.
Empire returns Wednesday, March 13 at 8 p.m. on Fox; stream it on Hulu.
WATCH IT: Vice
Adam McKay’s raucous recounting of Dick Cheney’s life story scored eight Oscar nominations, including nods for stars Sam Rockwell, Amy Adams and Christian Bale — whose extreme makeover into the former Veep nabbed the statue for Best Makeup and Hairstyling. Like the director’s breakout hit, Anchorman, Vice throws a lot of material at the wall and hopes some of it sticks. (We know at least one thing didn’t: a musical number that was left on the cutting room floor.) The results are scattered, but the movie also burns bright with an impassioned — if highly partisan — anger that captures the tenor of our current times.
Vice can be purchased on Blu-ray and DVD on Amazon; or download it on iTunes and Vudu.
READ IT: Detective Comics: 80 Years of Batman
Gotham City’s resident champion celebrates eight decades of caped crusading this month, and this deluxe anthology collects some of his finest adventures. Former DC Comics president, Paul Levitz, curated the collection, which plucks classic Bat-stories from the 1930s to the 2010s, and also makes room for essays penned by the likes of Neil Gaiman and Dennis O’Neil. This is the first big celebration of Batman’s 80th birthday, but it definitely won’t be the last: DC is dedicated much of 2019 to celebrating the octogenarian crimefighter with special events and releases. Life may be short, but Batman is forever.
Detective Comics: 80 Years of Batman can be purchased on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Comixology.
Fans of comedian Conan O’Brien’s late-night show Conan will be interested in this just-launched podcast from show writers Mike Sweeney and Jessie Gaskell. They’ll offer not only behind-the-scenes scoop, such as where they got the idea for certain characters, but also the best parts of an interview that were cut for time or an outstanding stand-up performance that didn’t quite make it to air.
Inside Conan: An Important Hollywood Podcast is available now on iTunes.
HEAR IT: Karen O & Danger Mouse, Lux Prima
Never ones to rest on their laurels, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs frontwoman and Gorillaz/Black Keys/Beck super-producer join forces for an ambitious psych-rock project 11 years in the making. They’ll celebrate its unveiling next month with an “immersive, communal listening experience” and art installation at L.A.’s Marciano Art Foundation.
Lux Prima can be purchased on CD/vinyl on Amazon or download it on iTunes.
With Galaxy’s Edge set to take over Disneyland and Walt Disney World this summer, Universal Studios is giving their popular Wizarding World of Harry Potter attraction some new bells and whistles at both their Hollywood and Orlando theme parks. In April, the Hogwarts Castle at Universal’s Hollywood branch will be the site of an all-new sound and light show called the Dark Arts at Hogwarts, where the famed school of witchcraft and wizardry comes alive with the sinister images cast by Voldemort and his Death Eaters. Fans can attend the red carpet premiere event on April 11 and 12 that includes a catered meal and access to all the existing attractions. And make sure to pre-book a trip to Orlando in June, when the all-new thrill ride, Hagrid’s Magical Creature Motorbike Adventure, opens to aspiring Hogwarts students.
Tickets for the Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle premiere event can be purchased on the Universal Studios Hollywood website.
The Grease star’s memoir was published in Australia last fall, but it’s only arriving in U.S. bookstores on March 12. Expect its pages to be filled with scoop on John’s high-profile life in Hollywood, alongside famous friends such as John Travolta, making iconic movies (Xanadu) and songs (“Physical”), but also insights on her ongoing struggle with cancer.
Don’t Stop Believin’ can be purchased in hardcover, audio or Kindle on Amazon.
HEAR IT: Blaqk Audio, Only Things We Love
Davey Havok, the hardest-working man in alternative rock, is staying busy with one of his many side-projects. The fourth album from his darkwave duo with longtime AFI bandmate Jade Puget marries the hardcore ferocity of their main stadium band with the shadowy synthpop of Depeche Mode, Soft Cell and New Order.
Only Things We Love can be purchased on CD/vinyl on Amazon or download it on iTunes.
The CW’s cult musical comedy series officially wraps up its four-season run on April 5. But the show ain’t over until the crazy lady sings. Co-creator and star Rachel Bloom heads east from West Covina to the Big Apple on May 14 and 15 for a triumphant two-night farewell show at the most New York of institutions, Radio City Music Hall. You can bet that she’ll share the stage with many of her crazy ex-co-stars as well as a few surprise Broadway-adjacent guests. Don’t settle for missing this: Grab a Rebretzel and boba tea, and be ready to sing along.
Tickets for Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Live can be purchased on Ticketmaster.
WATCH IT: If Beale Street Could Talk
Barry Jenkins’s acclaimed adaptation of James Baldwin’s novel didn’t scale the awards season heights of his previous feature, Moonlight. At least national treasure Regina King has an Oscar for playing the fiercely devoted mother of a pregnant woman (Kiki Layne) separated from the love of her life (Stephen James) by an unjust twist of fate. As with Moonlight, the visual and aural lushness of Beale Street is second to none. Jenkins immerses the audience in a stylized version of the past that resonates with even more urgency now.
If Beale Street Could Talk can be purchased on Blu-ray and DVD on Amazon; or download it on iTunes and Vudu.
HEAR IT: The Faint, Egowerk
The Nebraskan new-wavers and festival favorites’ first album since 2014 revives their signature post-punk energy and electro beats on glitchy, hard-charging indie tracks like “Quench the Flame” and “Chameleon Nights.”
Egowerk can be purchased on CD/vinyl on Amazon or download it on iTunes.
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