FROM Michaela Watkins
Michaela Watkins From her memorable stint on Saturday Night Live, to scene-stealing moments on VEEP, The New Girl and Transparent, actress Michaela Watkins is always one to watch. She narrates her life through music in her Guest DJ set, with many laughs along the way.
The Groundlings There’s a good chance you’ve encountered the work of Jim Rash and Michaela Watkins. Maybe at the movies or maybe on TV or maybe in a web series. Rash won an Oscar for co-writing the George Clooney movie The Descendants with Nat Faxon and Alexander Payne. He also co-wrote and appeared in last summer’s The Way, Way Back. And Rash plays Dean Pelton on the TV show Community. Watkins has appeared on TV shows like Trophy Wife, Enlightened and Saturday Night Live. She’s also the co-creator of a new comedy, Benched, coming to the USA Network. Something they have in common? They’re both veterans of the Groundlings. The improv and sketch comedy troupe recently celebrated its 40th anniversary. Rash and Watkins tell Kim Masters how the Groundlings opened the door for them to find work in LA, even after both occasionally bombing on stage. The Groundlings and their school are a Los Angeles institution. Students have to auditions for the chance to work their way through classes, hoping to join the team that performs on Sunday nights. From there, you might be voted into the main company, or you could be cut. The competition is fierce, but the potential payoff is big. Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Will Forte, Maya Rudolph and Will Ferrell are Groundlings alumni. The troupe often feeds talent to Saturday Night Live. Montage of Jim Rash as Dean Pelton in Community Michaela Watkins in Funny Or Die sketch
Elif Batuman: The Idiot Selin, the heroine of Batuman’s autobiographical first novel, The Idiot, is an 18-year-old Harvard freshman of Turkish-American descent. Set in 1995, the novel observes the rise of internet culture.
Bassem Youssef and Sara Taksler on 'Tickling Giants' Known as the "Jon Stewart of Egypt," Bassem Youssef hosted a satirical news show that was the first of its kind in the Middle East. The show was immensely popular, until the military-backed government forced Youssef off the air and out of the country. Youssef and director Sara Taksler tell us about their documentary Tickling Giants, which profiles Youssef’s leap from heart surgeon to super star satirist.
How California gave birth to Trumpism California served as an incubator for the hard-line conservative thinking that helped propel Donald Trump to the White House. It’s an ideology birthed out of opposition to the liberal politics and multiculturalism that now dominate the state.
North Korea tests more missiles, Turkey's president gains more power Early Tuesday morning, North Korea tested another intercontinental ballistic missile. It blew up shortly after take-off. But North Korea keeps working on a nuclear missile that could reach the U.S. Also in Turkey, a close vote has given sweeping new powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Turkey is an important Western ally in the region, but its leader is becoming increasingly authoritarian.