The 25 essential baby books every nursery should have

Our A.V. Club Field Guide To Parenting is designed to guide you toward the best kids’ books, shows, movies, and music, just like we do with The A.V. Club for adults. Every month or so, we will feature a new subject with a few essential pop culture takes parents should know, saving you from the mountains of kids’ dreck…

Legendary critic Michiko Kakutani reviews all the president’s lies in The Death Of Truth

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If the role of the critic is to “educate the public,” as Oscar Wilde once wrote, Michiko Kakutani couldn’t have picked a worse time to retire from her post as chief book critic of The New York Times last July. Sure, serving for three decades as arguably the most important gatekeeper in literary publishing warrants a…

Chris Rock as a white man, freaky Fridays: The Swapcast celebrates the body-swap tropes we know and love

Oh, bless this podcast. Cher And Retweet springs from a delightful corner of the podcast world, where two or more people come up with some super-specific thing to discuss—in this case, Cher’s Twitter feed—as an excuse to get together and crack each other the hell up. It’s the podcast equivalent of a hangout film,…

Megan Abbott’s Give Me Your Hand mixes the horrors of high school and work

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Thriller author Megan Abbott can make anything creepy. In her latest novel, Give Me Your Hand, she describes a hotel’s indoor water park as “a hothouse for dying grandparents and abandoned children [with] two water slides and a bumper-boat pool and the sharp echo of kids screaming all night, their throats gurgling, as…

From evil twins to boyfriend cloning: Teen Creeps explores YA genre fiction—with plenty of detours

The podcasters: Perhaps more friendships ought to start with a shared love of horror. Unlike the many popular podcasts helmed by siblings, lifelong friends, or longtime colleagues, Teen Creeps hosts Lindsay Katai and Kelly Nugent first met in early 2016, when the former was a guest on the latter’s Buffy-centric series …

Inside The Disney Vault tackles the entire twee canon, from the classics to the bombs

Anyone who assumes that “a podcast about dictionaries by people who write dictionaries” might have limited appeal hasn’t heard lifelong lexicographer Kory Stamper rattle off the word “pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis” with aplomb and glee. She and fellow dictionary editor Steve Kleinedler approach Fiat Lex…

Walton Goggins gives us a rundown of his favorite cocktails and cocktail bars

After wrapping up his turn as the sociopathic Lee Russell on HBO’s Vice Principals, Walton Goggins has spent 2018 taking on a couple villainous roles—Vogel in the rebooted Tomb Raider film and Sonny Burch in Ant Man And The Wasp. He’s also had more time to focus on Mulholland Distilling, a spirits company based out of…

Prelude To The Wedding ends on a high note by focusing on love and Harley Quinn

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It should be no surprise to even casual fans that Batman’s impending wedding is the focus of a lot of what’s happening in his corner of the DC universe. Along with Brian Michael Bendis’ new work at the publisher, the Bat-Cat wedding has been one of the most hyped events in a long time. Romance has long been missing…

Ant-Man And The Wasp team up for a charming microscopic adventure

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With Ant-Man And The Wasp hitting theaters this summer, it was inevitable that Marvel would bring these two characters together in the comics, but Scott “Ant-Man” Lang and Nadia “The Wasp” Pym have a very different relationship than their big-screen counterparts. In fact, they don’t really have a relationship at all.…

Pat Bertoletti shows us how to competitively eat hot dogs—not that you’d want to do that

The Fourth Of July is just a week away, which means backyard barbecues elaborate fireworks displays, and, of course, Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. A tradition as American as apple pie—hey, there’s an eating contest for that too!—this year’s competition will see last year’s record-breaking champions Joey Chestnut…

The best podcasts of 2018 so far

With one study recently estimating that as many as 180 million Americans are listening to online audio each month, podcasting as a form is indisputably on the rise in every way—a fact demonstrated by its inclusion, for the first time, in The A.V. Club’s “best of the year so far” coverage. As the sheer number of…