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The Birthday Boys: Mike Recaps “Catching up on Shows”


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By Mike Mitchell

If you tuned in to The Birthday Boys episode three, “Catching up on Shows,” this past Friday night, you would have seen a man driven to insanity while trying to clear out his DVR, a paparazzo fighting to get the perfect shot, and a Dad figuring out his priorities with the help of a song. I know this, not because I watched, but because I worked on the show.

I actually missed this Friday’s episode. I got home from the mall and fell asleep in my car. When I woke up the show was long over. I turned on IFC anyway hoping that I’d catch a repeat, instead The Shining was on. I have never seen The Shining so I decided to give it a look.

And I’m lucky I did! All I can say is, “Wow!” This movie is fantastic. Jack Nicholson puts in a stellar performance and you can tell that director Stanley Kubrick knows his mise-en-scene (telling the story with visuals, for those of you who are NOT film snobs).

Nicholson plays Jack Torrance, a struggling author that decides to take the winter caretaker job at the Overlook Hotel. The hotel is extravagant, grand, but let’s just say it turns out to be a lot more devious than it first appears!

I don’t know if anyone has ever said or thought this before, but the Overlook Hotel is almost a character unto itself. The place is creepy, man. I mean, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cryptkeeper was one of the bellhops. I’ve never really been afraid of hotels before, but next time I’m pulling into a Days Inn, I might just opt to spend the night in my car instead! I should have known what I was in for. The Shining is based off a novel written by Stephen King (Gulp!).

A few of the big scares were ruined for me by the Scary Movie trilogy, so there were a few moments were I should have been peeing my pants in fear but instead I was laughing out loud. Thanks a lot Wayans family!

Anyway, it was a fantastic film. I give both The Shining and “Catching up on Shows” 3 out of 5 stars.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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